Wyndham History

J. M. Marley (1883-1951)


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Dublin Core



J. M. Marley (1883-1951)



Wyndham City Libraries





World War One Veterans Item Type Metadata


J. M. Marley or Cyril Joseph Marley

Birth Date

Service Number

No.463, then No.5862 and later No.1843

Enlistment Date

Next of Kin

Mrs Ada Victoria Marley

Address at time of Enlistment

Chirnside Place,
West Footscray.


Marital Status


Death Date

Place of Burial

Springvale Botanical Cemetery

Biographical Text

No.1843   Private Cyril Joseph Marley
[Real name: Cyril Joseph Marley]
There is no record of a 'J. M. Marley' serving in the A.I.F. during the Great War.  There was however just one Marley who enlisted from Victoria (C. J. Marley), and he came from West Footscray. 

This accords with the entry in the Werribee Shire Banner, Roll of Honor, which records that J. M. Marley enlisted from West Footscray.  It is  believed that both these names are the same person, and that he was Cyril Joseph Marley from West Footscray.  According to his A.I.F. Service Record and Victoria Police records, Mr C. J. Marley also used aliases.

Cyril Joseph Marley stated that he was born in Inverness, Scotland, c1883. I have not been able to confirm this, or to find a record of his emigration to Australia.  According to the Public Record Office he was born in Carlton in 1891, and it was his father who was born in Scotland.

A death notice for Cyril's brother was published in The Argus, 13 September 1919, p.13.  It lists the Marley family at that time as:

  • Father – Cornelius Marley, from Parkville, deceased
  • Mother – Mrs G. Marley
  • Son – Albert Cornelius Marley, died at Carnarvon W.A. on 9 September 1919
  • Daughter – Dot Marley (Mrs Alf Willey) of Beverly W.A.
  • Daughter – (Mrs Hartness)
  • Son – Peter Marley
  • Daughter – (Mrs Archer)
  • Son – Cyril Marley (on A.I.F. active service)
  • Daughter – (Mrs Knaus)
  • Daughter – (Mrs Henderson)

The Marley Family Tree from the Victorian Pioneer Index CD and Victorian Federation Index CD was:

  • Cornelius Marley married Catherine Mcaulay (nee Sligo) in Victoria, 1872.
  • Jane Bridget Marley - born 1876 at Hotham (1876/3323)
  • Rose Agnes Marley - born 1879 at Hotham (1879/3424), died 1881 at Hotham (1881/7708)
  • Albert Cornelius Marley - born 1881 at Hotham (1881/3467)
  • Beatrice May Marley - born 1885 at Hotham (1885/10775)
  • Peter Mcauley Marley - born 1887 at Hotham (1887/11927)
  • Cyril Joseph Marley - born 1891 at Carlton (1891/31152)
  • Doris Pearl Marley - born 1893 at Carlton (1893/20657)
  • Phyllis Myrtle Marley - born 1895 at Caulfield (1895/9760)
  • Ruby Isabella Marley - born 1889 at Hotham West (1889/13483)

Pre War
There is no Cyril Joseph Marley recorded in the 1881 or 1891 United Kingdom Census.

On his first enlistment paper, Cyril Marley claimed that he had previously served in the Royal Navy for one month.  Then at a Court Martial in 1918, he claimed that he had previously served for 15 years with the Navy.

On 5 January 1912, Cyril Marley was charged with threatening behaviour against his father, Cornelius Marley.  *
He had made death threats against everyone in his father's house, and was subsequently detained by police.  His father was a retired railway worker, and was living at Parkville in Melbourne. During the hearing it was mentioned that the accused had three prior convictions against his father. 
The Age, 6 January 1912, p.15.

In 1913, Cyril was again in court, accused of stealing a gramophone and records.  A jury found him guilty, and he was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment.  During the trial, Cyril admitted to five previous convictions. 
The Age, 9 September 1913, p.10.

In July 1914, Cyril Marley married Ada Daley (or Daly).  The wedding occurred just prior to him enlisting in the A.I.F. 
The Advertiser (Footscray), 23 January 1915, p.2. and Marriage Certificate No.8456/1914.

The registered children of Cyril Joseph Marley and Ada Victoria Daley were:

  • Cyril Joseph Marley (Jnr) - born 1915 at Footscray, Victoria
  • John James Marley/Daly (Father not named) - born 1919 at Brunswick North, Victoria
  • William Francis Marley - born 1920 at Footscray, Victoria
Another child, Dorothy Annie Marley, was born in 1913.

War Service
First Enlistment
Cyril Joseph Marley swore his oath of enlistment at Melbourne on 22 August 1914, and was allocated a Service Number of 463.  That was later changed to Number 5862.  On his Attestation Paper he claimed that he was 26 years of age (which means that his birth year was 1888, rather than 1883 which he admitted to on his second enlistment).  He trained with "D" company of the 6th Battalion A.I.F., before he was discharged as medically unfit, on 16 September 1914.

On his original attestation papers Cyril added "Gordon House, Little Bourke Street" to his name, which confirmed that he was already separated from his wife and family at that time.
[Gordon House is today a Heritage Listed, former boarding house in the centre of Melbourne.]

In January 1915, his wife Ada Marley charged her husband in court, with deserting her and their young baby.  He hadn't given her anything since October in the previous year, and she was dependant on her own father for support.  Cyril appeared in court wearing a soldier's uniform (even though he had been discharged in September of 1914), and stated that he was currently undergoing a sentence of two months imprisonment for larceny.  He said that he had been out of work for three months, but was prepared to keep his wife and child, after he had been released.  The case was adjourned for three months.
The Independent (Footscray), 23 January 1915, p.3.

Second Enlistment
At the expiration of the three months court adjournment, Cyril Joseph Marley decided to go back to the Army, rather than go to court.  He swore his oath at the Broadmeadows Camp on 20 March 1915, and completed his initial training there. Unusually, he was older than most of his fellow volunteers, now claiming to be 32 years and 7 months old.

Re-entering the military was possibly a way to provide some financial support to his wife and child (by way of an allotment from his pay).  She was living at her father’s house, "Cooee", Chirnside Street in West Footscray, and Cyril allotted her four shillings per diem from his pay.

While in camp, Cyril was appointed to the 4th Reinforcements to the 8th Battalion.

Private Cyril Joseph Marley, Number 1843, embarked from Melbourne per HMAT Wiltshire A18, on 14 April 1915, and sailed to Egypt as a reinforcement.  After a short stay in Egypt, Private Marley landed at Gallipoli on 26 May 1915, and joined the 8th Battalion at Gaba Tepe.  Their main task at this time was defending the beachhead at Anzac Cove.

On 29 May 1915, Private Marley was charged with his first recorded breach of military discipline.  He was found guilty and awarded 28 days loss of Field Pay No.2 (at Gallipoli) for losing his arms and equipment.  That charge was later remitted to two weeks (on 11 June 1915), by Lt Col Brand, D.S.O.

On an unknown date later in June 1915, Private Marley claimed that he had been wounded and buried by an exploding Turkish shell.  He was subsequently evacuated to Egypt on 5 July 1915, and admitted to the Government Hospital at Port Said.  Two days later, on 7 July 1915, he was admitted to No.2 Australian General Hospital in the Ghezireh (Gezira) Palace in Cairo, suffering with slight epilepsy. 

One week later, on 15 July 1915, he was transferred to the No.2. Australian General Hospital at Mena Camp in Cairo.  After a period of treatment, Cyril was discharged from hospital on 4 August 1915, and transferred to the Helouan convalescent Camp.  During his stay there, he suffered a relapse and another attack of "fits".  He was then returned to the Mena Camp, where the decision was made that he would return him to Australia.

Private Marley embarked at Suez per Themistocles for Australia, and sailed on 15 August 1915.  His ship docked at Fremantle, and while there Acting Corporal Marley was charged with being absent without leave from 10 pm on 3 September 1915 until 12 noon on 4 September 1915.  He also struck a Military Policeman when apprehended.

Cyril Marley disembarked at Melbourne on 9 September 1915, and was admitted to hospital for further treatment for his epilepsy.

The editor of the The Age (Melbourne) made an interesting observation when he reported on the list of Disabled Soldiers who returned to Victoria per H.T. Themistocles in September 1915,  “On glancing through the list of names, one is struck by the fact that only a few of the men have sustained really serious wounds or injury.  Many of the returned soldiers are shown to have received shock from the explosion of shells in their immediate vicinity.  The impression gained by an examination of the complaints of many of those in the category of "medically unfit" is that they have been invalided to Australia in the hope that the sea voyage would bring about their recuperation and thus enable them to re-join their comrades in the trenches."  One of those listed was "8th Battalion – Private C.J. Marley, epilepsy."  
The Age (Melbourne), 24 September 1915, p.8.

While he was a patient in the Melbourne Hospital, his conduct was so bad that a report was submitted to Victoria Barracks on 17 November 1915.  It stated that he was abusive to a medical officer, Major Wilkinson, was suffering from an overindulgence of alcohol, and that his general conduct was unbecoming of a soldier.

The Melbourne Hospital doctors investigated his epilepsy, and were told that it began four years earlier, when he had been thrown from a horse.  He had not been subject to fits for over three months.  It was acknowledged that his condition could have been aggravated by suffering from shock after having been buried by shell fire.  It was noted that he was taking too much alcohol, and reeked of it.  After being told that he was unfit for further military service, particularly while he continued to drink, he became impertinent and abusive.  It was recommended that he be discharged, "...until he takes care of himself."

The Victoria Police Gazette, 27 January 1916 contains a listing, Marley, Cyril Joseph, soldier, 54 Sackville Street, Collingwood, reports stolen from his dwelling, between the 20th and 25th inst., 2 blankets, 2 sheets, a white kit bag containing a tunic, a pair of soldier’s trousers, and a pair of boots. The kit bag was marked “Cor C. J. Marley, 1843, Melbourne".

On 8 May 1916, it was recorded that Cyril Marley was still undergoing treatment at No.5. Australian General Hospital (Base Hospital) in St Kilda Road, Melbourne. (No.5 A.G.H.) Acting Corporal Marley was discharged from hospital on 25 May 1916.  His disability was recorded as “Adhesions to Duodenum”, and he was not recommended for a pension.

Then on 18 June 1916, he was discharged from the A.I.F., after serving 666 days.

The family were back together, and lived at 9 Railway Place, East Richmond for a short time, before moving back to Chirnside Street in West Footscray.

One month after his discharge, Cyril Joseph Marley was arrested on a warrant and then charged in the Footscray court in July 1916 with wife desertion.  In reply to a query from the bench, the defendant explained his appearance in uniform by saying that he had been attending a parade on the French Red Cross Day with other returned men when his wife had had him arrested.  Mrs Marley said her husband refused to get work, and was going with other women.  She had two children at her skirt, and spoke in a bitter vein about her husband.  He hadn’t given her anything since his discharge from the military on 12 June 1916; she claimed that he was able to get work, but didn’t want it; and would not get out of military uniform.

In reply, Cyril said that he had been living with other returned soldiers at the Returned Soldier's Association home since his discharge, and was not strong enough to work.  This was confirmed in his 1916 Embarkation Roll entry, which shows his address as 9 Railway Place, East Richmond, and his wife was at 83 Balmain Street Richmond.)  While in court, Cyril described an incision half down his body from an operation he had undergone.  This would become a distinguishing mark later in his life.  The judge adjourned the case for one month, to allow the parties to come to some other arrangements. 
The Advertiser (Footscray), 22 July 1916, p.1. and The Independent (Footscray), 22 July 1916, p.1.

Third Enlistment
During the one-month court adjournment, Cyril Marley decided to re-enlist in the A.I.F.  He swore his oath on 14 August 1916, and was allocated with Service Number 5862.  After completing initial training at the Royal Park Camp in Melbourne, he was appointed to the 16th Reinforcements for the 24th Battalion.  On his enlistment papers he agreed to financially support his wife and children. This amounted to 3s shillings per Diem.

Cyril embarked from Melbourne on 2 October 1916 per A71 Nestor and sailed for England as part of the 16th Reinforcements for the 24th Infantry Battalion; which were part of the 6th Infantry Battalion.  Six weeks later he disembarked at Plymouth and marched in to the 6th Training Battalion at Larkhill in Wiltshire, on 16 November 1916.

In 1915 and 1916, the influenza viruses, type A, began to establish themselves across Europe.  Two big outbreaks occurred in the military camps at Etaples in France, and Aldershot in south east England. **

On 19 December 1916, Private Marley was admitted to the Fargo Military Hospital at Larkhill in southern England, suffering with influenza.  He made a quick recovery, and was discharged back to the 6th Training Battalion on 27 December 1916, where he had been appointed as a member of the Permanent Cadre.

On 1 January 1917, he was made an acting Corporal, and a recommendation was submitted that his rank be made substantive.

Cyril Marley was back in hospital one week later when he was admitted to the Bulford Hospital on 5 January 1917 suffering with V.D. (Gonorrhoea).  After 28 days of treatment, he was released on 2 February 1917, and returned to the 6th Training Battalion at Larkhill.  During his time in hospital, had been appointed as a substantive Corporal.

During 1917 and his time in England before going to France, Private Marley was charged with absenting himself from duty, without leave, on five separate occasions.

On 9 February 1917, he was again admitted to the Fargo Military Hospital, and from there he immediately went absent without leave (first occasion).  After an absence of 27 days he was apprehended on 8 March 1917 and taken into custody. Three days later, on 12 March 1917, he was tried and awarded 28 days detention by Major H J Smith (his Commanding Officer) and fined 60 days pay.

Immediately after being sentenced, Private Marley was admitted to the 1st Australian Dermatological Hospital (A.D.H.) at Bulford on 13 March 1917, suffering with scabies.  After receiving nine days of treatment, he was discharged from hospital on the 22 March 1917, and returned to serve out his detention at Larkhill.

Cyril Marley's detention finished on 2 April 1917, and he failed to report for duty on the following morning.  He remained absent from duty without leave (second occasion) until 10 April 1917, when he was apprehended by two members of the Anzac Provost Corps at Victoria Station in London.  He was then held in custody at the Provost Office at 51 Warwick Square, while arrangements were made to return him to his unit.

On 26 April 1917, Corporal Marley was charged at a District Court Martial (conducted at the Rollestone Camp) before Major P. Curie (26th Battalion) and two other officers, with being absent without leave from Larkhill for one week, between 3 April and 10 April 1917 (second occasion).  A witness at his trial, (Sgt Watts, stated that Corporal Marley was a fellow member of "D" Coy, 6th Training Battalion, A.I.F.  After pleading guilty he was reduced to the ranks, and forfeited 24 days pay.  He was then struck off strength as a permanent Cadre of the 6th Training Battalion. ***

Eight days after his Court Martial, Private Cyril Marley went absent without leave again from 4 May 1917 until 23 May 1917 (third occasion).  His subsequent trial was held at Larkhill before the Commanding Officer of the 6th Training Battalion, and for this crime he was awarded 20 days in detention and forfeited 28 days pay.

After completing his sentence at Rollestone, Private Marley was transferred to the 2nd Training Battalion at Durrington on 19 June 1917.  During his time there he was officially placed on strength with the 8th Battalion (This was the unit that he had previously served with at Gallipoli).

Two days after arriving on 21 June 1917, he again went absent without leave for one day (fourth occasion).  For that crime he was awarded 96 hours in detention and a loss of 10 days pay.

On 1 July 1917, he went absent without leave for an extended period (fifth occasion), and was declared as an illegal absentee by a Board of Inquiry, convened at Durrington on 23 July 1917.  He was eventually apprehended by the local police at Sandport (near Portsmouth), by a Constable Brace.  His report of the arrest was presented at the subsequent District Court Martial.  In his report Constable Brace stated that "At 9.30 pm on Sunday 12 August 1917, I arrested the prisoner in Charlotte Street, Sandport. He was then in the uniform of another Australian soldier named "Brown", of the 1st Pioneer, stationed at Salisbury, who he had induced to change for the old suit of civilian clothes now worn by himself, when charged said "yes".  I am a deserter and shall do so again.  He has been a source of great trouble in this borough."
Corporal Brown of the 2nd Training Battalion collected Private Marley on 14 July 1917, and returned him to the No.5 Camp at Durrington.

A District Court Martial was held at Larkhill on 30 August 1917, where he pleaded guilty.  He was sentenced to 120 days in detention (approximately four months) and forfeited 180 days pay.

After spending 10 days in custody at Durrington, he was transferred to the Chelmsford Detention Barracks on the 10 September 1917, where he remained for 35 days.  He was then moved to detention at the Tidworth Camp on 15 October 1917, and remained there until 1 December 1917, before being moved to the A.I.F. Detention Barracks at Lewes.

One week later, on 7 December 1917, the unexpired portion of his sentence was cancelled, because of his good conduct. Private Marley was released to the 2nd Training Battalion at Sutton Veny, where he prepared to join his unit at the front, in France.

Private Marley embarked at Southampton on 18 December 1917, and marched in to the 1st Australian Infantry Base Depot (A.I.B.D.) at Havre in France on the following day.

Service on the Western Front
Twenty-eight days after arriving in France 15 January 1918, he was taken on strength of the 8th Battalion, from the Australian Infantry Base Depot at Havre.  The 8th Battalion were then at Rossignol Camp, preparing to go into the front line at Wolverghem.  Two weeks later the Battalion was relieved from the front on 29 January 1918, and moved to the Doncaster Huts at Locre.  Bathing parades were carried out at the Locre Baths on 31 January 1918.  This was the date when Private Marley was reported to the Australian Provost Marshall (A.P.M.) 1st Division, as being absent.

He remained free for over one month until 7 March 1918, when he was apprehended and sent to No 1 Field Punishment Compound.

There is no mention in his service record as to what his punishment was, or when he returned to duty.

[Note: Field Punishment No. 1 consisted of heavy labouring duties, possibly being restrained in handcuffs or fetters, and being tied to a post or wheel.] 

Private Marley returned to his unit by 5 April 1918, when the Battalion were resting at Strazelle (Strazeele) in Northern France. He mentioned that town in a later court martial, as where he had seen action.  The 8th Battalion then went into the Front Line between 12 and 22 April 1918, and then again between 30 April and 4 May 1918.

After a period of rest and relocation, on 13 May 1918, the 8th Battalion were positioned at Hondeghem in Northern France, and preparing to go into the line again.  Private Marley was warned to prepare to move, but went with a friend to the nearby village of Borre.
[Evidence from his court martial].

He remained free until 3 July 1918, when he was arrested at the port of Le Havre by Corporal Mercer of the Australian Provost Marshal (A.P.M.).  When arrested he initially said that he was No.821, Corporal McLeod from the 14th Battalion, A.I.F. [Evidence from his court martial].

Most of July 1918 was then spent in detention centres and in the custody of the Deputy Assistant Provost Marshall (D.A.P.M.), while he awaited his trial.  During this time, he was hospitalised for a further treatment for scabies.

A Field General Court Martial (F.G.C.M.) was held on 1 September 1918.  Number 5862, Private C J Marley was charge with Deserting His Majesty's Service, while on Active Service (W.O.A.S.), in that he was absent from 13 May 1918 to 3 July 1918.

When giving evidence, his Sergeant (W.J. Frith) said that earlier in the day he had warned the whole section that the Battalion was about to move into the line that night - Monday 13 May 1918 - and that the accused was present.  Accused had reported to him at 5.30 p.m., in the billets and was issued with rations.  Everyone was warned of the forthcoming move. When the Sergeant called the roll at 6.30 p.m., the accused was missing.

In his defence, Private Marley stated that he had not been warned about going into the line that night. He had been in detention from the previous Friday, until Monday night.  He had been brought back by the Sergeant of Police, and handed over to Sergeant Major Breeze.  After collecting rations from Sgt Frith, he had been called away by S.M. Breeze (to collect a tin hat), and didn’t see Sgt Frith again.  At about 5.30 p.m. he and another man went to the village of Borre, without permission.  When he returned, he found that his unit had gone, so he went to Le Havre.  In mitigation, he said that he had enlisted in 1914, served at Gallipoli from May until he was wounded in September, had re-joined the Battalion at Christmas 1917.  He had served at Lone Pine, Strazeele and the Somme.  He had also served in the Navy for 15 years without a crime.

After pleading not guilty, he was found guilty as charged and sentenced to 10 Years Penal Servitude (P.S.)  That was confirmed by the General Officer Commanding (G.O.C.) 2nf Infantry Brigade on 5 September 1918.

Despite the harsh conditions of Penal Servitude, Private Marley escaped from custody on 11 October 1918, and remained at large until he was apprehended in Paris by the members of the (Deputy Australian Provost Marshall) D.A.P.M. on 7 December 1918.  During his absence the Commanding Officer of the 8th Battalion held a Court of Inquiry on 2 December 1918, and declared him to illegally absent without leave from 11 October 1918, and was still illegally absent.

While in custody in Paris, Private Marley was admitted to the 61st Casualty Clearing Station (C.C.S.) at Bohain on 14 December 1918 suffering with P.U.O. (Pyrexia of unknown origin).  This is a condition in which the patient has an elevated temperature (fever) but despite investigations by a physician no explanation has been found.  He was transferred to the 50th Casualty Clearing Station Bohain on 15 December 1918, and then admitted to the 3rd General Hospital at Abbeville with P.U.O. N.Y.D. (Pyrexia of unknown origin, cause not yet determined).

On  10 January 1919, he was declared fit for duty and discharged from hospital.  He was then admitted to the No.2 Military Prison at Rouen in France, to begin his sentence of 10 years.

Soldiers would arrive at a military prison in full marching order.  They were searched, weighed and measured, their hair was clipped and they were then bathed.  Prisoners were woken each day at 6 a.m., when they washed and cleaned their cell. After roll call at 6.30 a.m., their cells were inspected, and then they worked at tasks until breakfast at 8 a.m. The meal comprised of bread, porridge and water.  They would then prepare their kit before a parade at 9.30 a.m. Mornings were spent working or on military training, until the next parade at noon.  After lunch, work continued until the 5 p.m. roll call, and the evening meal at 5.30 p.m. Inmates were locked up at 6 p.m. ****

On 29 April 1919, Private Marley was admitted to the 10th General Hospital at Rouen suffering with a urethral stricture (inflammation of the passage way out of the bladder).  He was still suffering with this complaint when he was eventually discharged from the A.I.F.  After three weeks of treatment he was discharged from hospital and sent to the No 3 Military Prison at Le Havre in France.

At this time Australian prisoners were being returned to England, and on 23 May 1919, Private Marley arrived in England under escort, and was admitted to the H.M. Prison at Portland in Dorset.

In July 1919, the Australian government granted amnesty to all AIF soldiers in military prisons and detention, and remission of sentences. (Amnesty to members of AIF, classified file AWM 368) *****

This amnesty did not immediately impact on Private Marley, and on 15 August 1919, his original sentence of 10 years was commuted to 2 years.  The unexpired portion of his sentence was to be waivered as from date of evacuation to Australia, per H.T. Devon.

The finding of a Military Board, held at the A.I.F. Detention Barracks on 23 September 1919, was that Private Marley was now Unfit for all Services.

On 8 October 1919, Private Marley embarked at London per H.T. Devon, to return to Australia.  While crossing the equator, on 19 October 1919, he was admitted to ship's hospital for three days, after suffering heat stroke at sea.  He presented with dizziness, severe headache, and pains in the body after exposure to the sun.

Their ship called in at Capetown, South Africa, on the voyage home.  On 1 November 1919, he somehow got ashore and went absent without leave.  Cyril failed to re-embark at Cape Town, at the appointed time.  A document on his service record at this time records that his character was “Bad (explosive)”, and that he had debts of £155.

Cyril Marley was apprehended on the following day by the Australian Military Police and placed in arrest at Wynberg Detention Barracks.  He was charged with being A.W.L. and was fined a forfeiture of 30 day's pay, £7/10s.

Then on 20 November 1919, Cyril Marley re-embarked at Cape Town for Australia per H.T. Nestor.

After arriving back in Australia Private Marley underwent a medical examination on 16 December 1919, and the report noted that he had a large scar on his right side, as a result of a gunshot wound to his abdomen inflicted in 1915, a ventral hernia, gonorrhoea and a stricture. "...Otherwise, his general condition was good."

On 4 January 1920, Cyril Marley was discharged from A.I.F. at 3rd Military District in Melbourne.

Post War
On his Demobilisation Form he gave his date of birth (incorrectly) as 24 August 1874, and stated that he intended to reside with his family and father-in-law at Coo-ee, Chirnside Street, West Footscray.  His wife was recorded as Ada, and his two children were Dorothy Ann, and Cyril Joseph Jnr.  His occupation, prior to enlistment was a self-employed Dealer, and he asked for assistance from the Australian Repatriation Department in obtaining employment.

Just after returning to civilian life, Cyril Marley was in trouble with the police. A Supplement to the Victorian Police Gazette, No 121 of 1922 contains a front and side photo of him, and the following entry:

"Cyril Joseph Marley, No.32884. Tried at the Carlton Petty Sessions on 19 July 1922 for illegally using. Awarded 6 months. Born in Scotland in 1873. Occupation – canvasser. Discharge from prison due on 24th December 1922." [From Ancestry.com].

His release from prison was subsequently recorded in the Victorian Police Gazette, 29 December 1922 as:

“Cyril Joseph Marley, No.32884. Tried at the Carlton Petty Sessions on 19 July 1922 for illegally using. Sentence to 6 months. Labourer. Born 1881. Last discharged from Penal Establishment, Pentridge, on 18th March 1915, as No.32884, Charles Ross.”
[From Ancestry.com].

The domestic situation did not improve for the family after the war.  On 27 February 1923, the Department of Repatriation investigated the sale of assets loaned to the family.  Cyril Marley claimed that they were sold while he was recently in gaol.  He had stored the goods at his father-in-law's house when he separated from his wife.  The father-in-law - Mr William Daley of Cooee, Chirnside Street, West Footscray - died while he was in gaol, and when he was released, the furniture was missing.  At a hearing before the State Board, Cyril stated that he was currently working as a bricklayer's labourer, and could repay £7/10/0 at the end of the month. The State Board agreed to accept 10 shillings per week.

A Departmental Inspector called at the family home on 6 February 1923.  Finding no one at home, he interviewed a neighbour, who told him that while Marley was in prison his wife had been left destitute. They only had a box in the house for furniture.  They had since obtained new furniture from the Bon Store in Footscray.
Department of Repatriation Application for Assistance form R.No.1393 dated November 1023.

Mrs Marley wrote to the Department on 19 July 1923, stating that she was behind in her payments due to illness, and that her husband would call later.  In a letter dated 17 September 1923, she stated that she had been unable to make payments as her husband had been out of work for four weeks.  Her young son was ill, and she had been receiving assistance from the Footscray Ladies’ Benevolent Society.  Her eldest son had to go to school barefooted as she couldn't afford to buy him a pair of boots.

An Inspector from the Department of Repatriation visited Mrs Marley at her home on 20 November 1923.  She reported that her husband had only worked for three weeks in the last four months, and she had to seek assistance from the local Benevolent Society to obtain food.  The State War Council had paid her rent for the past five weeks.  Her husband had taken to the drink again, and had taken out a loan from a local moneylender.  When he failed to repay the loan the moneylender took out a distress warrant against him.  When Mrs Marley was questioned as to who sold their furniture on loan from the Department, she broke down in tears, and didn’t deny it.  The official finding was that the Departmental assets were sold while Marley was in gaol.  Both he and his wife are given a very bad character in the district.  No further action to be taken, and the debt to be written off, and no further assistance be granted. [Taken from his service file].

In January 1924, Ada Victoria Harley was the chief witness against her husband, Cyril Joseph Marley, aged 51, in the Collingwood Court, where she charged her husband with assault.  They were living at Sackville Street with their four children when he beat her.  He was sentenced to 45 hours in prison.  The Age, 15 January 1924, p.10.

Ada Victoria Marley died at Prahran in Victoria (aged 31) in 1927. [Death Index Victoria 1921-1985].

In 1933, Cyril Marley was then aged 45 years when he was charged in the General Sessions Court with the larceny of a horse and wagon in Carlton.  He was found guilty and remanded for sentencing.  At that time, he was again living at Gordon House in the city. 
The Age, 2 August 1933, p.5. and
The Argus, 2 August 1933, p.15.

The 1936 Electoral Roll shows that he was a labourer, living alone in a hut at Lloyd Street, Sandhurst Street, Bendigo.

In 1937 he had returned to Melbourne, and was working a Drainer, living at 79 Young Street, Fitzroy South.  With him was Mamie Marley, but there is no record of a marriage.

World War II
There is a record of Cyril Joseph Marley serving in World War II.

No. VX17591, Cyril Joseph Marley.  Enlisted at Caulfield in Victoria on 27 May 1940.  He was aged 40 years, and had been born at Parkville (next to Carlton) in Victoria on 24 August 1900.  His wife was Thirza Mamie Marley, and they lived at Frankston, Victoria.  No marriage appears in the Victorian Marriage Index 1921-1942 CD.

On his Attestation Paper he stated that he had previously served in the A.I.F. for four and a half years, and his occupation was a motor Mechanic.  One of his "Distinctive Marks" was an abdominal scar.

After two days at the Recruit Depot at Caulfield, Private Marley was posted to 2/4 Australian General Hospital (A.G.H.) at Puckapunyal near Seymour in Victoria.  One month after arriving he was admitted to the Isolation Depot within the hospital, suffering with scabies.  After being treated, he was able to return to duty on 1 July 1940.

Two weeks after returning to duty, Private Marley went absent without leave from 9.15 a.m. on 14 July 1940 to 3.4 p.m. on 24 July 1940.  His punishment was a fine of 10 shillings and the loss of eleven days pay.  His unit then transferred him back to the Recruit Depot in Caulfield, and he was officially identified as surplus to their requirements.

On 13 August 1940, Private Marley again went absent without leave from the Caulfield Depot, for an indefinite period.  A Court of Inquiry was held one year later on 31 July 1941, and he was declared an Illegal absentee, and his financial deficiencies were £8/2/5.

He was never apprehended by the Military Authorities, and was struck off Holding Strength on 4 February 1946.  Cyril Marley discharged in absentia on 21 June 1946.

The 1943 Electoral Roll shows that he was working as a Drainer, and was living alone at 24 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne.

Post World War II
The 1943 and 1949 Electoral Rolls shows that Mary Teresa Marley had left Victoria, and was living alone at 9 Young Street, Concord, Sydney, where she was working as a machinist.  Between 1958 and 1963, she lived alone at 54 Broughton Road at Homebush in Sydney, and worked as a Storewoman.

Cyril Joseph Marley died at the Royal Melbourne Hospital on 25 August 1951, aged 65 years, and was buried at the Springvale Botanical Cemetery on 31 August 1951. 

The Death Index Victoria 1921-1985 CD recorded his death at Parkville in 1951.  His parents were unknown, and his age was 50 years.

Medals and Entitlements:

  • 1914/15 Star
  • British War Medal
  • Victory Medal

Name on the Werribee Shire Oak Board: "Marley J.M."

The name "MARLEY, J. M. from West Footscray" first appeared in the Roll of Honor, Werribee Shire Banner, 13 February 1919, p.3.

Details from the Victorian Pioneer Index CD and Victorian Federation Index CD:

  •  Cornelius Marley married Catherine Mcaulay (nee Sligo) in Victoria, 1872
  • Jane Bridget Marley - born 1876 at Hotham (1876/3323)
  • Rose Agnes Marley - born 1879 at Hotham (1879/3424), died1881 at Hotham (1881/7708)
  • Albert Cornelius Marley - born1881 at Hotham (1881/3467)
  • Beatrice May Marley - born 1885 at Hotham (1885/10775)
  • Peter Mcauley Marley - born 1887 at Hotham (1887/11927)
  • Cyril Joseph Marley - born 1891 at Carlton (1891/31152)
  • Doris Pearl Marley - born 1893 at Carlton (1893/20657)
  • Phyllis Myrtle Marley - born 1895 at Caulfield (1895/9760)
  • Ruby Isabella Marley - born 1889 at Hotham West (1889/13483)

55th Casualty List. ILL VICTORIA - Pte C. J. MARLEY, 8th Batt., West Footscray. 
Hamilton Spectator, 23 July 1915, p.6.

A.I.F. Prisons: 

“The following sick and wounded Victorians are returning by the Themistocles, which left Suez on August 15th :- Pte C.J. Marley.”  
Hamilton Spectator, 31 August 1915, p.4.

  •  Part of his physical description on his first attestation in August 1914, was that he was 5ft 6½ in tall, and had brown eyes.
  •  Part of his physical description on his second attestation in March 1915, was that he was 5ft 7in tall, had dark brown hair, brown eyes and a vaccination mark on his right arm.
  • Part of his physical description on his third attestation in August 1916, was that he was 5ft 6in tall, had black hair, brown eyes.  He also had a scar on his abdomen, a mole on the left of his back, and a scar on the left side of his face.
  •  Part of his physical description on his fourth attestation in May 1940, was that he had brown hair, Hazel eyes and an abdominal scar.

Cornelius Marley of 21 Fitzgibbon Street, Parkville, died in 1916, and probate was granted to two executrices; Doris Pearl Kenaus (formerly Marley), and Beatrice May Harkness (married woman). 
The Argus, 23 June 1916, p.12.

Cornelius Marley was recorded as living at 21 Fitzgibbon
Street, Parkville as early as 1895. See the funeral notice for Peter McAuley in The Age, 12 August 1985, p.8.

** Influenza outbreaks - http://encyclopedia.1914-1918-online.net/article/influenza_pandemic

***  Permanent Cadre – A key group of officers and enlisted personnel, necessary to establish and train a new military unit.



Unit War Diary

Service Record

Pioneer Index 1837-1888 CD
Federation Index 1889-1901 CD
Edwardian Index 1902-1913 CD
Great War Index 1914-1920 CD
Marriage Index 1921-1942 CD

Medals and Entitlements

1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal


“J. M. Marley (1883-1951),” Wyndham History, accessed September 28, 2023, http://www.wyndhamhistory.net.au/items/show/2213.


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