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Jensen, Joergen Christian (1891–1922)

by H. J. Zwillenberg

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 9, (MUP), 1983

Joergen Christian Jensen (1891-1922), soldier, was born on 15 January 1891 at Loegstoer, Denmark, son of Joergen Christian Jensen, farmer and wool merchant, and Christiane, known as Jensen. Nothing is known of his childhood. He migrated to Australia alone in March 1909, having spent the previous year in England. After disembarking in Melbourne he worked as a labourer at Morgan, South Australia, and at Port Pirie, and was naturalized on 7 September 1914 in Adelaide.

Jensen enlisted as a private in the Australian Imperial Force on 23 March 1915, was posted to the 6th Reinforcements for the 10th Battalion and joined his unit at Gallipoli in August. The battalion left the peninsula on 22 November for a rest period at Lemnos and did not return before the evacuation. Jensen moved from Egypt to France in March 1916. On 14 August he was wounded in action and after recovering was transferred to the 50th Battalion on 28 January 1917.

Jensen won the Victoria Cross for 'most conspicuous bravery and initiative' on 2 April at Noreuil, one of the 'outpost villages' of the Hindenburg line. During its long advance towards the village the 50th Battalion came under enfiladed fire from a German forward machine-gun post which caused heavy casualties. Jensen, covered by another private, rushed the post with bombs. After eliminating the machine-gun crew with one of his bombs he threatened to throw the others and bluffed the German position into surrendering, taking about forty prisoners. Later that day, after a fierce fight, Noreuil was captured. Jensen served from July to October with the 13th Training Battalion and returned to the 50th on 6 October; he had been promoted lance corporal on 4 April, corporal on 4 July and temporary sergeant on 5 October. He was seriously wounded on 5 May 1918 while on patrol near Villers-Bretonneux and was invalided to Australia on 26 August.

Jensen was discharged from the A.I.F. in Adelaide on 12 December 1918 with the rank of corporal. After demobilization he worked as a marine store dealer. He married Katy Herman, née Arthur, at the Adelaide Registry Office on 13 July 1921. Jensen died of war-related injuries in Adelaide Hospital on 31 May 1922. His wife later remarried.

Select Bibliography

  • C. E. W. Bean, The A.I.F. in France, 1917 (Syd, 1933)
  • C. B. L. Lock, The Fighting 10th: A South Australian Centenary Souvenir of the 10th Battalion, A.I.F., 1914-1919 (Adel, 1936)
  • L. Wigmore (ed), They Dared Mightily (Canb, 1963)
  • London Gazette, 8 June 1917
  • Advertiser (Adelaide), 1 June 1922
  • Observer (Adelaide), 3 June 1923.

Citation details

H. J. Zwillenberg, 'Jensen, Joergen Christian (1891–1922)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1983, accessed online 5 June 2020.

This article has been amended since its original publication. View Original

This article was first published in hardcopy in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 9, (MUP), 1983

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