Samuel Archibald Spicer was born in Orange in 1890, the second son of James Spicer and his wife Margaret (nee MacElligott).
Samuel and his younger brother, William, enlisted together in Liverpool in July 1915. An older brother, James, enlisted the following January. The Lewis Ponds community farewelled Samuel and William when they left for camp, presenting them with a gold watch and silver match box each. A family friend gave thanks on the boys’ behalf since they were suffering the ill-effects of having been recently vaccinated.
Samuel embarked in February 1916, a sapper with 1st Tunnelling Company. He was promoted to Corporal and served in France for just over a year before being badly gassed and hospitalised in England with pleurisy. He returned to Australia in October 1917 following a lengthy period of furlough.
In early November 1917 over 100 people gathered in Lewis Ponds to a celebrate Corporal Spicer’s return. A “dainty repast” was served, “dancing was heartily indulged in” and the guest of honour presented with an inscribed gold medal.
Samuel suffered ongoing lung troubles as a result of his war service, and was discharged in May 1918 due to medical unfitness. He died in Lewis Ponds in June 1923 and is buried in Byng Cemetery. A cousin, Thomas Samuel Spicer, also enlisted in WWI.
Leader, 12 November 1917, p. 6.
Welcome to Corporal SA Spicer