"The first direct report we have that mentions him is a court trial where he was a witness in a robbery trial in April 1905. He was only incidentally involved.
Following this we have a series of reports of his social activities including balls, theatricals and billiards. He was involved in Rifle shooting and bike races.
He is mentioned in the activities of the Loyal Star of Hornsby Lodge. Manchester Unity, I.O.O.F. This association with Lodges continued in later life. By 1908 he was a lodge committee member.
In February 1909 he first appears in shooting results at Cobar. References of rifle shooting, lodge activities and social events repeat indicating that he had moved there.
Chris operated a Tailor Shop in Cobar... The shop ceased advertising in mid 1915 probably coinciding with the Gallipoli campaign. His eldest brother died at Gallipoli.
The mass movement of men from the area, in recruitment marches, no doubt killed the trade, as there were few customers left at Cobar. There are reports of the period of all the adult men and many boys from a town joining these marched denuding the towns of men. Chris as a married man with a child would have needed his wife’s consent to enlist.
There is no record of the closing of the shop but it must have happened around late 1915.
There are reports of Chris and Cecilia in the Brisbane and Maryborough area in March 1916.
His AIF attestation form gave him as a Hardener at the Lithgow Arms Factory. His address is given as Mort St Lithgow. The form dated 26th March 1918. The form also shows him as a Corporal in Militia. Some Cobar Shooting reports name him Cpl Bohlsen.
He was immediately made Acting Corporal, a rank he had for his entire service, though he was never actually promoted to the rank.
On 17th July 1918 he embarked on HMAT A30 Borda arriving London on 27th September 1918.
He was in 18th Training Battalion in England till his return to Australia on Leicestershire embarking on 3rd May 1919, disembarking 11th June 1919. His record shows several times in Military Hospital but gives no details. He was discharged from the army 21st June 1919.
On return from war there are a couple of Coffs Harbour reports of a welcome home for returning soldiers including 2 Bohlsen brothers . They have to have been Chris and Frederick due to their discharge dates. They obviously went to the Coramba Road Property [purchased by their father c.1912] where Chris’s wife and daughter had spent their time away. However his father’s property is advertised for auction on 30th March 1920 and a later auction of his furniture and effects in April 1921.
In the Maryborough Chronicle, Wide Bay and Burnett Advertiser of Tuesday 10 January 1922 and Tuesday 7 February 1922 there are reports of the Land Commissioners Court sittings, dealing with Applications for Certificates, which dealt with an application by C H G Bohlsen. The matters were adjourned. There were no subsequent reports so it seems that the application was withdrawn.
On 28th April 1922 in the Coffs Harbour Advocate there is a report of the rescue from drowning of Vennie Bohlsen, aged 8. daughter of Mr. Chris Bohlsen. of Coramba Road, Coffs Harbour by a young man. The girl’s mother is mentioned as being there.
Chris is mentioned frequently in Chamber of Commerce, Hospital Board, Lodge, social and community activities in the next few years.
Advertisements for a Tailor Shop in his name appeared from late in 1922 .
He is listed as purchasing a Coffs Harbour house early 1923.
He is reported to have been in hospital for a period from 16th January 1923 suffering from war wounds.
5th August 1926 Daily Examiner Grafton carries the last reference to Chris at Coffs Harbour with later references giving Alfred as the ‘Bohlsen’ Tailor in Coffs Harbour. It is also interesting that before this date Chris was regularly in the paper reports on the committees of the Chamber of Commerce, the Hospital Board, the School of Arts Committee etc. From early 1927 his brother Alfred appears in exactly the same roles.
It is possible that Chris’s infidelity caused the family to banish him or did he run off with a lover? We will never know.
Chris first appears in shooting results at Jerilderie on 26th May 1927.
13th October 1927 Jerilderie paper.
Mr. D Stephenson announces he has bought the business lately carried on by the late Mr J. R. Firth, as a tailor and mercer, and can guarantee all his customers just what they want in regard to tailoring and mercery. The tailoring trade is in the capable hands of Mr. Chris. Bohlsen, and a trial will guarantee satisfaction.
5th April 1928 The Hillston Spectator and Lachlan River Advertiser reports
Mr. C. H. Bohlsen notifies in this issue that he has opened a high class ladies and gents' tailoring business in High street, Hillston.
He regularly advertises for business, which as is usual in small papers, gets him news stories plugging his wares and business.
e.g. Persons requiring a first class suit of the latest design should inspect a full range of the season's patterns to be seen at C. H, Bohlsen's high grade tailoring establishment, High street, opposite Council Chambers, Gents own material made up, also cleaning and pressing done.
The suit of clothes (tailor-made to order by Mr C. H. Bohlsen) which was to have been disposed of at the Manchester Unity function on the 4th instant, will be decided during, the interval of the pictures at the Globe Theatre on Wednesday night next. The suit or costume is valued at £10 10s, and Mr Bohlsen has a few tickets left.
His wife is the judge for the needlework at the 1928 and 1930 Hillston Shows.
He was active in the Hillston Lodge. He assisted in installing the 1931 officers." 10
"January 22 1932 at a private hospital, Darlinghurst, Christian H Bohlsen (Chris), late of Hillston and Coffs Harbour, aged 40 years. At rest." 6
"Mr. Chris. Bohlsen, who was in business in Coffs Harbour for some years as a tailor, and was succeeded by his brother Alf, died in Sydney, last week, at the age of 46 years. His wife (née Miss Jenny Smith, of Coffs Harbour) died in Sydney during last year."
"Christian Herbert Gerhard Bohlsen, late of Leichhardt, Tailor.
21st July, 1932. On this date, Letters of Administration of the Estate of the abovenamed deceased were granted to the Public Trustee. Intestate died 22nd January 1932. Estate sworn at £710/14/8d Net." 7