Skip to content Skip to footer
Town Hall, 333 Bay Street, Port Melbourne
Town Hall, 333 Bay Street, Port Melbourne

Vass, James Johnston (Jock) (2044)

Place of Birth: Walworth, England

Age: 29 years 1 month

Enlistment Details: Monday, 11 January 1915 – Melbourne, VIC

Service Number: 2044            view online service record

127 Clark Street
Port Melbourne, VIC

Next of Kin:
William Vass (brother)
12 Nelson Street
Port Melbourne, VIC

Embarkation Details:
Date: Saturday, 17 April 1915
Ship: HMAT Hororata A20
Port: Melbourne, VIC
Unit: 7th Infantry Battalion – 5th Reinforcements

DOW: Tuesday, 25 July 1916
Place: France

Lance Sergeant, 59 Infantry, killed in action 25 July, 1916, France, aged 31, commemorated Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension.

Parents: deceased, brother: William VASS, born Ayr, Scotland according to his circular (arrived c. 1906 at 21 years), educated Royal Caledonian, Pentonville, London. Vass was a 29-year-old carpenter/joiner who enlisted from 127 Clark Street, his brother returning the circular from 30 Stokes Street. Known as “Jock”, family notices have a fiancée May DONAGHY who died at Port Melbourne (also Clark Street) on July 23, 1914. Died of gunshot wounds to the abdomen, No 1 Canadian Casualty Clearing Station.

Additional research by Brian Membrey

Corporal Vass was given a social evening at the Temperance Hall by the Swimming Club on Wednesday, 31 March 1915.

1915 ‘SOCIAL EVENING.’, Port Melbourne Standard (Vic. : 1914 – 1920), 10 April, p. 3, viewed 31 March, 2015,

James survived a narrow escape when unbeknown to him a bullet passed through his cap and singed his hair.

1915 ‘LIFE IN THE TRENCHES.’, Port Melbourne Standard (Vic. : 1914 – 1920), 6 November, p. 2, viewed 12 October, 2015,

James was popularly known around the swimming club as ‘Jock’.

1916 ‘SWIMMING CLUB NOTES.’, Port Melbourne Standard (Vic. : 1914 – 1920), 19 August, p. 2. , viewed 05 Aug 2019,

J Vass was listed on the Swimming Club Roll of Honour, 25 November 1916.

1916 ‘ROLL OF HONOR.’, Port Melbourne Standard (Vic. : 1914 – 1920), 25 November, p. 2. , viewed 04 Nov 2016,

Leave a comment

PMHPS acknowledges the generous support of the City of Port Phillip.


The content of this site (images and text) must not be reproduced in any form without the prior consent of PMHPS or the copyright holder.

Acknowledgement of Traditional Custodians

We respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we meet and work, the Bunurong Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung peoples of the Eastern Kulin Nation and pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging.