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Eric William Tulloch (1883–1926)

by P. C. Dane

This article was published:

Eric William Tulloch (1883-1926), brewer, soldier and rower, was born on 16 April 1883 at Ballarat, Victoria, eldest son of William George Tulloch, brewer, and his wife Agnes Ann, née Wheeldon, both Ballarat born. Educated at Melbourne Church of England Grammar School (1897-99), he represented the school in football and rowed in the first eight and four. In 1901-02 he won the Victorian Champion VIII's title for the Albert Park Rowing Club and in 1902-04 represented the State in the victorious interstate eight-oared crew.

After studying brewing under Auguste de Bavay, bacteriologist of the Foster Brewery, Melbourne, Tulloch was brewer at R. Marks & Co., Maldon, Victoria, in 1904-06. For the next two years he was head brewer at the Swallow Brewery, Perth. In that city on 15 April 1908 at St John's Anglican Church he married Lillian Jane Temby.

A commissioned officer in the Citizen Military Forces, Tulloch joined the Australian Imperial Force in January 1915. As captain in the 11th Battalion, he landed at Gallipoli on 25 April. He was wounded that day while achieving his objective, the southern slopes of Battleship Hill, and was probably the closest officer to enemy lines until repelled.

Recovering in Australia, he was posted in October 1917 to France where he was gassed in the second battle of Passchendaele and fought on the Somme at Cappy. On 23 August 1918 near Chuignolles he commanded two companies and captured Froissy Wood; on 18 September at Hargicourt, near Villeret, with two others Tulloch overpowered and captured the crews of two enemy machine-guns. He was given command of the 12th Battalion and awarded the Military Cross and Bar. Appointed officer-in-charge of the rowing section, sports branch, in February 1919, Tulloch coached the A.I.F. crew which won the King's Cup at Royal Henley.

On his return Tulloch took up a senior position at the Victoria Brewery where he worked until his death. He was an original member of Legacy and was gazetted in 1921 lieutenant-colonel, 22nd Battalion, Commonwealth Military Forces. He coached the Melbourne Grammar first eight which won the Head of the River in 1923 and finished second in 1924. That year he was appointed to the Old Melburnians council.

Early on the morning of 8 May 1926 he disturbed an intruder in his room at the boarding house, Lauriston Hall, East Melbourne. During a struggle Tulloch was fatally shot. No motive for the killing could be established and the identity of the murderer has never been discovered. Tulloch's funeral was conducted with full military honours. After a service at Melbourne Grammar chapel, the procession, more than a mile long, proceeded to Brighton cemetery by way of St Kilda Road which was lined by thousands of people. His wife, who had been in Sydney receiving medical treatment, survived him; they had no children.

Select Bibliography

  • C. E. W. Bean, The Story of Anzac (Syd, 1921)
  • C. E. W. Bean, The A.I.F. in France, 1918 (Syd, 1942)
  • J. B. Kiddle (compiler), War Services of Old Melburnians 1914-1918 (Melb, 1923), and Liber Melburniensis 1848-1936 (Melb, 1937)
  • Australian Brewing and Wine Journal, 20 June 1906, 20 May 1926
  • Argus (Melbourne), 9, 11 May 1926
  • Truth (Melbourne), 15, 22 May, 12, 19 June, 3 July 1926
  • inquisition, inquest no 723/1926 (Public Record Office Victoria).

Citation details

P. C. Dane, 'Tulloch, Eric William (1883–1926)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1990, accessed online 18 July 2024.

This article was published in hardcopy in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 12, (Melbourne University Press), 1990

View the front pages for Volume 12

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