World War I Internment of British subjects as Prisoners.

I am attempting to fill in a missing few years of the life of my wife's great grandfather, Wilfred Gottlieb Roland Patrick NORDMANN. He was born in British India in 1876 and emigrated to South Australia with his mother in 1891. His father was was an engineer from Prussia who served in the Anglo-German Legion in the Crimea before taking up a position as railways engineers in India. He married Sarah Cadell in India.

It is not known what became of  the father, Karl Friedrich Nordmann. He had other children who, it appears, settled in Germany. Some were later members of the German Armed Forces.

In Adelaide, Wilfred Nordmann joined the 1st Battalion Adelaide Rifles for service in the Boer War. In 1902 he was appointed a Lieutenant. (Commonwealth of Australia Gazette 16 May 1902).

He had married a local girl, Eva Fanny Harris, in 1901. They had a son in Adelaide in 1905 then moved to Sydney where twin daughters were born in 1909. He may have worked as an accountant in Sydney. According to a newspaper article of the day, he (Captain Nordmann) also and had an appointment as Area Officer, at (hard to read)  Hills. The press stirred a very paranoic anti German feeling including a vindictive campaign to have him removed from that position. That did happen in February 1916. 

He did have another daughter born in Sydney in 1916 but did not appear to be there at the time. According to family recollections, his family was destitute. His wife was not able to care for the growing children and the sad decision was made to adopt the baby out to a known family in South Australia from Eva's childhood, Lionel and Ethelberga Despard of Renmark and later, Glenelg. 

It was thought that Wilfred was arrested and sent to an Internment Camp in Victoria. I have not been able find any references to him at Langwarrin (which was generally closed in 1915) nor at Holsworthy/Liverpool.

Is it possible to view the prisoner lists for both places (or any others which may apply) to determine where he may have been sent?

The whole episode was devastating to his family. He personally  was so affected that on 28 January 1918, he renounced his name by deed poll and sought a Court order to be known thereafter by the anglicized version as Wilfred Roland Patrick NORMAN (Govt Gazette of the State of New South Wales 5 April 1918). Little is known of his life after that. He died in Sydney in 1950.

Any assistance will be greatly appreciated.

Views: 208

Comment by Elizabeth Allen on November 21, 2018 at 8:41

Edwin,  Have you checked the NSW electoral rolls to see if he is listed?  If you don't have access with I can do it for you

have you seen this info on him from the Oz Boer War database?


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