Born in York on 10 August 1878. Early on, he joined the army as a «regular», but he leaves in 1912 when he married Hannah Maria BURGAN and becomes a miner. From their union was born a son James Cornelius ELLISON, born on 16 November 1913.

He is recalled during the mobilisation and joined the 5th Royal Irish Lancers Regiment with number L/12643. His regiment is part of the 3rd Cavalry Brigade commanded by General Gough.

With his regiment, he participates in all of the conflict and all types of battles: the war of movement, the mud of the trenches, gas attacks and the appearance of the tanks. He first sees action at Mons in August 1914, followed by the retreat with the battles of Cateau and the Marne. At this time, the 3rd, 4th and 5th Cavalry Brigades will form the 2nd Cavalry Division, under the command of General Gough.

Then the fighting will continuously follow: capture of the monastery on the Mount of the Cats in October 1914, the first battle of Ypres. During the year 1915, Ypres and Loos. In 1917, from April until 20th May taking of the Gillemont farm (near Vendhuile), afterwards in November the fights of the wood of Bourlon (where the regiment won its first Victoria Cross: Private George William CLARE) and finally, the seizure of Cambrai. In 1918, it is Saint Quentin, then the canal du Nord and the breakthrough of the Hindenburg line, followed by the 100 days until Mons.

C Squadron commanded by Captain Batten Pool (including Ellison) is placed under the command of the 6th Canadian Brigade. On 11 November 1918, at 3:00 am, it travels to Hyon where it divides. Two platoons under the orders of Lieutenant Biggs pass through a place called «Malplaquet» heading for the Havré forest where machine gun fire awaits them. Another patrol was sent to the north end of the wood in order to try to reach the canal. This patrol spotted German cyclists and after venturing into the woods, was greeted with machine gun fire. Lt. Biggs then tried to capture the machine gun, but failed. It is 9:30am, the patrol leaves the wood, to give way to the infantry. At that moment a shot is fired. Ellison is hit, and falls from his horse. He was killed on the spot! He who miraculously escaped the slightest injury throughout the war.

He is buried in the Saint-Symphorien military cemetery.