Author Topic: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War  (Read 87404 times)

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #150 on: June 26, 2007, 12:30:11 AM »
Hiya TC.

No worries on the info I gave on your Grandfather - glad it was appreciated.

Brave men all.

Colonial and Empire forces, those from Ireland and America that answered that call.

They gave their lives for feedom, one and all.

Lest We Forget.

A.
We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

doe

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #151 on: June 27, 2007, 04:36:02 PM »
CONGRATULATIONS acheux for the big job that you have undertaken in the writing of your book.  I hope that it is a great success.

Don't forget that there were Irish settlers right across Canada, but most of them settled Ontario and Newfoundland.so therefore,
When you get published, the biggest bookstore chain in Canada is CHAPTERS.ca

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #152 on: June 27, 2007, 11:01:36 PM »
Many thanks for your kind comments doe!!

Been a big part of my life for nearly 5 years now, but beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel.

Thanks to the forum, I have been able to elaborate on the lives of some of the men who fought with the South Belfast Volunteers. Next step is to scour the papers from Nottingham, as a vast number of men joined the Battalion in 1916 following the massacre at the Somme. Although not South Belfast Volunteers in the true sense, these men served alongside the Belfastmen for a further three years, and to miss them out would be disrespectful.

Still looking for any futher info - so if you think that one of your relatives may have served, let me know the details!! I may even have some info already on them, but always looking for that wee bit more!

Thanks again doe,

Best Wishes,

Acheux.
We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

doe

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #153 on: June 28, 2007, 08:45:43 PM »
Hi acheux,   
 Thanks for the offer.   Is there information available for WW11 yet? My uncle left Canada to come to N. Ireland to join up. I understand he was in the 36th Ulster div. was injured but survived.His name was Boomer Partridge  (named after his father,Boomer)  doe

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #154 on: July 01, 2007, 04:54:31 PM »
Lying in my bed this morning, dawned on me that 91 years ago to that moment, men of Belfast were dying en mass as they went over the top at the Somme.

Decided to list my complete entry for that day. Maybe this will give a feel of what I am trying to achieve in my book on the 10th (Service) Battalion (South Belfast Volunteers), Royal Irish Rifles.

This is dedicated to all those who died and to those who survived but had to live with the horror for the rest of their lives. In particular, L/Sjt John Mateer, who fell in August 1918.

Brave men, lest we forget.

1st July 1916

The day of the offensive dawned. It was bright and sunny, with a soft breeze. Dawn had broken just before 4 a.m., giving the men a few hours to contemplate the task ahead, to think of loved ones at home and to make final preperations for the forthcoming assault. 

The front line, as held by the 36th Division, was to be divided into four sections. 107th Brigade, less 15th Battalion, which was attached to the 108th Brigade, was to be held in Divisional reserve to facilitate the assault on the ‘D’ line, which was the final objective. The Brigade was to follow the path of the 109th Brigade, through Thiepval Wood and to their objective of  ‘C’ line.  Once ‘C’ line had been achieved, the Belfast Brigade was to pass through and attack the ‘D’ line.

At 6 a.m., the 10th Rifles formed up in Averluy Wood, prior to moving up for the attack. The men moved across the River Ancre to the western tree-line of Thiepval Wood, at the bottom of the Ancre valley.

The Royal Artillery intensified their barrage for the preceeding 65 minutes to Zero Hour.

At 7:30 a.m., the barrage would lift from ‘A’, and then move to ‘A.1’. At Zero plus three, the shells would creep forward to  line ‘B’, delivering death and destruction for a further 15 minutes before moving to a position 400 yards to the east of the primary objective. At Zero plus twenty-eight, the barrage would creep to line ‘C’, and there it would remain, softening the enemy position for the 109th Brigade, until Zero plus one hour and eighteen minutes. At this time, it was estimated, the Brigade would have taken the line and the 18 pounders and 4.5 Howitzers would cease firing, allowing the Belfastmen of the 107th Brigade, to pass through the position, en route to line ‘D’. The barrage would recommence at Zero plus two hours and thirty eight minuites and would creep forward, along the enemy communication trenches to the position three hundred yards to the east of ‘D’ line. The 10th Rifles objective was the German line to the left of ‘D.8’, with the West Belfast men on their right flank, attacking ‘D.9’. Once these positions had been captured, the 9th Rifles then had to extend to ‘D.10’ with the 10th Rifles moving along the line to consolidate ‘D.9’. Although the initial assault was to be made in eight successive waves, timed at 50 yard intervals, the 107th Brigade alone were to advance in ‘artillery formation’ until force to extend by enemy fire.
 
By 6:30 a.m., the Battalion had fully assembled by the track known as ‘Speyside’, giving the men an anxious hour of waiting whilst the barrage intensified overhead.

At 6:53 a.m. the Battalion War Diary records that the “Battalion moved off coming under machine gun fire from THIEPVAL VILLAGE a few minutes later”.

At 7:10 a.m., as the Battalion reached the position know as ‘Ross Castle’, the Commanding Officer of the South Belfast Regiment, Colonel Herbert Clifford Bernard, was killed by a shell splinter whilst leading his men. Colonel Bernard was an officer who had seen previous campaign service with the Rattray’s, coming to the Rifles in 1915. He was well respected by all the officers, N.C.O.’s and other ranks whom he commanded and his death, being witnessed by many of the men as they followed his lead, came as an overwhelming blow. Rifleman James Smyth, who was alongside his Colonel when he died, recalled the incident after the war. He told of how the Colonel was leading his Platoon, his Webley pistol drawn, when the fateful shell-burst decapitated Bernard. The momentum of his charge propelled him forward for a number of yards, giving the impression to his men that although fatally wounded, he was still advancing.  Colonel Bernard may have survived the Somme Offensive had he obeyed orders, and remained with Battalion Headquarters in the rear echelon. He chose to lead the Belfastmen the way he had led his native Indian Regiment – from the front. As a result, he paid the ultimate sacrifice, along with many of the men he led. Of his death, his close friend Lieut Colonel Crozier wrote “the adjutant of the 10th tells me Colonel Bernard is no more. The Colonel and half his men walked into a barrage of death during the advance. All died behind him as he resolutely faced the edge of the wood in an impossible effort to walk through a wall of raining iron and lead, which had lifted for us that brief five minutes.”

The Battalion continued to advance despite their losses, suffering heavily from shell and machine gun fire, the ground being much cut up and difficult to cross.

7:30 a.m. - Zero Hour. The 107th Brigade, led by the men of the South Belfast Volunteers, moved a short distance eastward to the rides which were to provide slight cover as they moved to the front line. On the right hand flank, the men had full view of the other platoons of  the Division as they moved forward from their trenches, to form up in ‘No Man’s Land’, under a hail of machine-gun fire. The ride that the 10th Rifles were using was on the right hand side of that section, and had been totally denuded of foilage by artillery fire, thus offering minimal cover for the advance to the German line. The men were now in an exposed position with machine-gun fire hitting them heavily from the front, from the right and from the rear similtaneously. The enemy machine-gunners were visible to the leading men and casualties amongst the Battalion were already mounting. Lewis machine-gun teams were called forward to provide sustained covering fire, but these teams were quickly destroyed whilst attempting to engage their counterparts in the German lines.

By 7:45 a.m., it was the 10th Battalion’s moment. Officers and men went over the front line trenches and formed up in ‘No Man’s Land’ in artillery formation in support of 109th Infantry Brigade. The final passage to the German ‘A’ line was to be made by breaking any formation and ‘rushing’. By this time many of the Officers and Senior N.C.O.’s had been hit. At 8 a.m., the Battalion commenced to advance to the attack over the marshy open ground under heavy sufilade from the machine-gun positions which survived in Thiepval Village.

Up to this point, Captain J.E. Sugden  (Battalion Adjutant) had commanded the Battalion following the death of Colonel Bernard.

Amidst the confusion of the ongoing battle, runners were sent back to Battalion H.Q. Company, bringing news just before 10 a.m. of the capture of ‘C’ line, although in reality, the line had only been reached by elements of the 109th Brigade. At 10:08 a.m., the 107th Brigade was due to pass through that position and advance forward to ‘D’ line, with the support of creeping artillery. It was later to transpire that the 107th Brigade was to be ordered to hold back on it’s advance to the final line, due to the still destructive force from each of it’s flanks. A suggestion had been made by one of the Intelligence Staff Officers, Colonel Place, to hold the 107th until the position at ‘D’ line had been consolidated. At 9:16 a.m., the order was finally received from 10th Corps Headquarters to withhold the Brigade. All communications lines to the front had been cut by enemy artillery, and despite a runner from the Royal Signals being dispatched, the order was never received and the men pushed on.

At 10:30 a.m., the Battalion War Diary records that “Major W.R. Goodwin assumed command of the Battalion”.

At 12:30 p.m., runners confirmed that the Battalion had reached German support line. After this, the Battalion became mixed up with other units and as most of the Officers and N.C.O.’s were killed, very few reports were sent in.

Throughout the actions of the day, many men of the Division distinguished themselves with personal acts of gallantry; some were recognised, others not. Rfn Robert Thompson, 10/16017, was subsequently awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for such actions on this date. The award was Gazetted in the London Gazette on the 26th September 1916, the citation reading “For conspicuous gallantry during operations. When his platoon had suffered severely by the explosion of a mortar shell, he rallied his men and led them forward with great gallantry. On the same afternoon he acted as a runner, and went backward and forwards over ‘No Mans Land’, a distance of 300 yds., three times under very heavy fire until he was eventually wounded.”

5:30 p.m. D Company reported to be in the German 1st line and sent for more ammunition.

8:35 p.m. Battalion War Diary states that Major Peacock, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, took command of the remainder of the Battalion at the Crucifix.

At 11:15 p.m., Lieutenant Trevor Moutray Bennet, who was the only surviving Officer of the Battalion reported that the Division had retired back into Thiepval Wood. He was subsequently awarded the Military Cross for his actions on this day, the citation stating “For conspicious gallantry in action. When his platoon had suffered heavy casualties, he rallied all available men and got them forward into the enemy’s lines. Later, when put in charge of an attack, he reached his objective, consolidating it and held it against repeated bombing attacks”.

At 11:30 p.m. General Withycombe’s request for fresh troops was granted, the 36th Division being given support from 148th Infantry Brigade. The 4th (Service) Battalion, Yorkshire and Lancashire Regiment were brought up to the line, and were to be followed by men from both the 4th and 5th (Service) Battalions of the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, although the latter never arrived. These fresh men were to give much needed support to the remnants of the 107th and 109th Brigades during the attempt to retake Schwaben Redoubt. By 1 a.m. on the 2nd July, the 4th and 5th K.O.Y.L.I. had still not materialized and General Withycombe was forced into a reappraisal of the situation. His decision that it would be impossible to organize an assault during the hours of darkness, and that any action at first light would lead to ‘a repetition of the previous day’s experience’, was submitted to Corps and they deemed that this decision had to be made by ‘a man on the spot’. After consultation with General Nugent, the attack was cancelled. It was believed by both, that even if the Redoubt was taken, it would be impossible to hold whilst Thiepval village was still occupied by the enemy.

Acheux.
We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #155 on: July 01, 2007, 04:55:47 PM »
Those brave men...

Lieut Maurice Leslie Adamson, killed in action. He was reported as “a son of Sir Harvey Adamson, K.C.S.I., Lieutenant Govenor of Burma from 1910 to 1915, and a grandson of the late Rev. Alex Adamson, of Kinnermit. Sir Harvey Adamson has had a distinguished career in the Indian Civil Service as a soldier, judge, and legislator. He was an ordinary member of the Council of the Govenor-General of India from 1906 till 1914. Deceased had been in the South Belfast Regiment since January, 1915, and a few weeks ago received a permanent Commission in the Royal Scots Fusiliers, but in the meantime was continuing to serve with his old Regiment.” Lieutenant Adamson was mentioned for gallantry on this date by Major Goodwin, and had formerly served in the ranks as 17092, Private M. L. Adamson with the 1st British Columbia Regiment. He was aged 23 years when killed and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 3.C. Sir Harvey and Lady Adamson resided at 36 Palace Gardens Terrace, Kensington, London.
Rfn Joseph McCann Agnew, 10/16, killed in action, aged 19 years. Joseph was born the son of Mr. James Graham and Mrs. Elizabeth Agnew, who resided at 19 Ravenscroft Street, Belfast. His remains were never recoverd and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn George Anderson, 1815, posted as missing and later confirmed as killed in action on this date. He was born at Shankill and enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn William John Archer, 13958, of 17 Conduit Street, Belfast, killed in action. William served with A Company, and was interred at Serre Road Cemetery No.2, plot XII, row L, grave number 4. Aged 19 years, he born at Shankill and was the son of Mr. William and Mrs. Ellen Archer. His headstone inscription from his parents reads “There is a link, none can sever, love and rememberance last for ever.” William is recorded as enlisting at Belfast.
Rfn William Henry Ashe, 16157, reported as killed in action on this date, obituaries from a wide circle of family appearing in the Belfast Telegraph on 21 July 1916. He was husband of Mrs. Jane Ashe of 41 Connswater Street, Belfast. The first notice in this edition was submitted by his wife and read “For King and Country. Ashe – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Lance-Corporal Wm. H. Ashe (16157), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers). ‘Sleep, on dear husband, thy labour’s o’er, thy loving heart will grieve no more. On earth there’s strige (sic – believed that it should read ‘strife’), in Heaven rest, they miss you most who loved you best.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing wife and family. Jane Ashe. 41 Connswater Street.” The next notice, again under the ‘For King and Country’ column reads “Ashe – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Lance-Corporal Wm. H. Ashe (16157), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers). ‘We do not know, we cannot tell, what pain he had to bear; we only know he gave his live, for King and Country there.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing father, mother and sisters; also his brother (on active service). Robert H. and Rachael Ashe. 74 Belmont Avenue.”  The next notice, which was published by his sister reads “Ashe – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Lance-Corporal Wm. H. Ashe (16157), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers). Deeply regretted by his sister and brother-in-law, Emma and Wm. Smith. 60 Belmont Avenue.” The next notice, although it states it is from William’s other sister, is believed to be from his brother and sister-in-law. It reads “Ashe – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Lance-Corporal Wm. H. Ashe (16157), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers). Deeply regretted by his sister and brother-in-law, Hugh and Annie Ashe. 21 Belmont Avenue.” On the first anniversary of William’s death, the family posted a further notice in the Belfast Telegraph. Due to the 1st July 1917 being a Sunday, the notice did not appear until the 2nd July. It reads “Ashe – In loving memory of our dear son Lance-Corpl. William H. Ashe, 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action on July 1, 1916. Thy purpose lord, we cannot see, but all is well that’s done by thee. Deeply regretted by his father, mother, sisters and brothers (one of the latter on active service). Robert H. and Rachel Ashe. 74 Belmont Avenue.” William was born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. His remains were interred at Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval in grave I.C.39 and he is remembered on the family grave at Bangor Abbey. The headstone reads “Erected by Robert H. Ashe in the loving memory of his dear father and mother, Henry Ashe died 4th April 1895, aged 70 years; Sarah Ashe died 22nd November 1906 aged 83 years. Her sister Diatilda Burke, died 12th July 1881 aged 25 years. His son, William H. Ashe, killed in action at the Somme, 1st July 1916, aged 36 years.” William was recorded as a Private on his Medal Index Card, reference WO 372/1, but as a Lance-Corporal in Part 67 of ‘Soldiers Died in the Great War’. William H. Ashe is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912 at Westbourne Presbyterian Church and as residing 41 Connswater Street at that time.
L/Cpl James Atkinson, 10/12, reported as missing, but subsequently confirmed as killed in action on this date by the War Office, August 1917. James was the husband of Mrs. Wilhelmina Atkinson who resided at 3 Convention Street, with their two small children. His death notice, which appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on 16th July 1917 read “For King and Country. Atkinson – Missing since 1st July 1916, now reported killed in action on that date (or since), Lance-Corpl. James Atkinson, 10th Batt. Royal Irish Rifles, the dearly-beloved husband of Mina Atkinson, 3 Convention Street. ‘Somewhere abroad a volley rings, a bugle sounds farewell. A wooden cross, a passing flower, marked where my dear husband fell. However long my life may last, whatever lands I view, whatever joys or cares be mine, I will remember you.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing wife and two little daughters.” James, who was born in Glasgow and enlisted at Belfast, was 28 years when he died. He has no known grave but is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn John Edward Baxter, 10/14063, killed in action whilst serving with B Company, aged 22 years. He was the son of Mrs. Isabella Baxter of 63 Windsor Road, Lisburn Road, Belfast and the late Mr. Thomas Edward Baxter. John was born and enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is recorded as signing the Ulster Covenant from the above address, September 1912. He enlisted with his brother, who also served  in the 10th Battalion as 10/14064 Rifleman Robert Baxter.
Rfn George Bell, 1894. Killed in action, aged 18 years. He is recorded as the son of Mr. John Bell of 194 Donegall Avenue, Belfast. George was born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never recovered and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn William James Bell, 565,  who resided 4 Bristol Street, Belfast, killed in action. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. William was born at Shankill, enlisted at Belfast and was 18 years of age when he met his death. He and his parents, Mr. William James and Mrs. Annie Bell were members of Agnes Street Presbyterian Church.
L/Cpl William James Benson, 10/14084, is reported as missing, presumed to have been killed in action whilst attached 107th Field Ambulance. Willie had been born at Drumcree in County Armagh, enlisting at Belfast and giving his home residence as Portadown, County Armagh. He is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant at Drumcree Parochial Hall in 1912. The War Office subsequently confirmed that William had been killed in action on the 1st July 1916. On 17th August 1917, the Belfast Telegraph reported that “Intimation of the death in action, on July 1, 1916, of Lce-Cpl. W. J. Benson, Royal Irish Rifles, has been received. Deceased, who was previously reported missing, was a member of the South Belfast Regiment, U.V.F., and won the Ulster Division certificate for gallantry in the field. His brother, Marshall is serving with the Colours. He was a son of Mr. Samuel Benson, Canagola, Portadown.” The same edition of the Belfast Telegraph carried a notice from William’s family, under the column “For King and Country”. It reads “Benson – killed in action, Lance-Corpl. Willie Benson, R.I.R. (Field Ambulance), eldest son of Samuel and Mrs. Benson, Canagola, Portadown. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing parents, brother, and sisters.” A photograph subsequently appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 27th August 1917 with the caption “Lance-Corpl. W. J. Benson, Royal Irish Rifles, Canagola, Portadown, killed. (photo: R. Lyttle)”. Although this picture is supposedly Willie, the soldier wears a cap with the badge of the Machine Gun Corps. It is possibly a picture of Willie’s brother, Rfn Marshall Benson, 17/44, who subsequently served as Pte Marshall Benson, 24818, Machine Gun Corps. Willie was laid to rest at New Irish Farm Cemetery, in plot XVIII, row D. grave number 1.
 
Acheux.
We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #156 on: July 01, 2007, 04:57:08 PM »
Those brave men.

Rfn Thomas James Bentley, 17/437, reported as missing in action. Subsequently confirmed as killed in action on this date by the War Office, July 1917. The Belfast Telegraph of the 28th July 1917 reported “Belfast Rank and File. Reported missing on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Thomas J. Bentley, Royal Irish Rifles, is now officially returned as killed on that date. He was 20 years of age, and the only son of Mr. Thomas H. Bentley, 10 Westminster Avenue, Belfast. Prior to enlistment deceased was employed at the Queen’s Island.” Contained within the same issue was Thomas’ death notice, inserted by his “sorrowing father, mother and sister” which read “He fell at his post like a soldier brave, he answered his Master’s call, he sleeps far away in a hero’s grave, for his Country’s call he did fall. No mother’s care did him attend, nor o’er him did a father bend, no sister by to shed a tear.” Thomas had been born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Col Herbert Clifford Bernard. Commanding Officer 10th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, confirmed as having been killed in action whilst leading his men into the battle. Born in Cheltenham, his father at one time Deputy Inspector General of Hospitals and Fleets, Colonel Bernard had fought in the Burmese War of 1885-1891 and was Commandant of the 45th (Rattray's) Sikhs Regiment from 1909 until his retirement early in 1914. Quickly formed when war was declared in August, 1914 was Kitchener's "New Army." Made up entirely of volunteers, it would be the experienced old and often retired soldiers of all ranks that would take responsibility of command and training. So it was that Colonel Bernard took command of once such formation. The 10th (Service) Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles (South Belfast), part of the 36th (Ulster) Division. Having landing in France with his Battalion, the Colonel, now in his fiftieth year would lead his men forward from Aveluy Wood, across the River Ancre and into the western edge of Thiepval Wood. It was the early hours of 1 July, 1916 and the first day of the great Battle of the Somme was about to begin. In reserve for the time being, the Rifles would have an hour to wait before going forward. An hour in which they would see other men of the 36th Division leave their trenches and in good and steady order enter No Man's Land. The men of the 10th Rifles would also witness the devastation that followed. Machine-gun fire and shell burst cutting through the ranks as they disappeared into the smoke. But the Rifles would themselves come under fire. Colonel Barnard being one of the first to be hit as he stood at the head of his men. His body was taken back and later buried in Martinsart British Cemetery on the south side of the village and the road to Aveluy. Colonel Bernard’s service is remembered at Saint Bridget’s Parish church, Bridstow. On the south side of the church is a brass plaque, bearing the regimental badge and motto Quis Separabit (Who shall separate us) of the Royal Irish Rifles. Below the badge an inscription that tells much about an old and gallant soldier: “In Loving Memory Of Herbert Clifford Bernard, Colonel Indian Army. Sometime in Command of Rattray's Sikhs, who was killed at Thiepval, 1 July 1916, while gallantly leading his Regiment, 10th Royal Irish Rifles”. Herbert was a close personal friend of Lieut Col Crozier, who fondly recalled in his book ‘A Brass Hat in No Man’s Land’ of how the ‘old warrior’ had lost his trousers whilst stuck in the mud. “One morning I go down to the right to meet Colonel Bernard at our junction, in order to decide a tactical consideration. We are to meet at 10 a.m. I wait. The Colonel is late, a most unusual thing for him. I stay on till 11 a.m. and am on the point of departure when I hear a sound. I look up. What do I see? It is Bernard all right, but he walks gingerly. What has he got on? Socks, shirt, tunic, cap, nothing else! He roars with laughter as he approaches. I regard him with amazement! ‘You may well look’, he says. ‘I got bogged. Luckily they heard me. My trench boots were wedged, so they pulled me out of them. I had slacks on in order to free the circulation, so I undid the braces and thigh straps and got them to pull me out of the lot. Your H.Q. is nearer than mine, so I have told them to send me along a pair of breeks and some boots!’ As it is very cold we move on to dry ground in a hollow and make for my dugout, my orderly carrying the Colonel on his back as his feet are cut.”
L/Cpl Richard Blair, 14/6706, killed in action. Born at Ballymacarrett, County Down, Richard enlisted into the 14th Battalion (Y.C.V.’s) at Belfast, before transferring to the 10th Battalion. His remains were interred at Connaught Cemetery, grave I.A.30.
Rfn Alexander Boland, 10/14098, son of Mr. Charles and Mrs. Martha Boland, killed in action aged 20 years. Alexander had been born in Newtownards, County Down but enlisted at Belfast where he resided at the outbreak of war. He signed the Ulster Covenant from 13 Gosford Street in 1912, with his family home recorded as 21 Gosford Road, at the time of his death. Alexander has no known grave, but he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Robert Boyd, 17/582, killed in action. Robert was born at Douglas, County Cork and enlisted at Belfast. He was the son of Mrs. Jeannie Boyd, 17 India Street and is recorded as residing this address when he signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912. At 37 years at the time of his death, Robert’s remains were never recovered from the battlefield. He is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Alexander Brown, 10/14120, was born at Partick, Glasgow, enlisting at Belfast from his home, 2 Walnut Street, where he resided with his mother, Mrs. Margaret Brown. Alex was 20 years old when he died; his remains were never recovered. His is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Robert Brown, 10/3620, of 200 Roden Street, is reported as having been killed in action. Robert was born in Lurgan, County Armagh as son of Mrs. Deborah and Mr. Henry Brown. He was 28 years when killed, and his body was never recovered from where he fell. He is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Herbert Ernest Campbell, 17/1567, killed in action aged 18 years. Herbert was born Shankill and lived 50 Battenberg Street, Shankill Road. He was the son of Mrs. Ellen and Mr. Thomas Campbell and resided at this address in 1912 when he signed the Ulster Covenant. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Hugh Clarke, 10/14208, who resided at 22 Irwell Street and who was a member of Broadway Presbyterian Church, was killed in action, age 44 years. He was the son of Mr. Hugh and Mrs. Esther Clarke. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn John Connor, 10/16348, killed in action. He was born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is remembered upon the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
2nd Lieut William Dean, reported as killed in action, aged 30 years. Lieutenant Dean had been attached to the 10th Battalion from the 3rd R.I.R.  He had formerly served as 118061, Pte William Dean with the Canadian Cavalry Brigade, being attested on the 1st February 1915 at Pincher’s Creek. His attestation papers show that he was born on 23rd April 1886 at Babington, Cheshire and his mother, Ina, whose address is given as 26 Chatsworth Road, Rocks Ferry, Cheshire is recorded as next-of-kin. He was unmarried at his time of enlistment and trade is recorded as ‘rancher’. The Belfast Telegraph of the 15th July reports “Notes on Officers. Sec-Lieut. W. Dean, missing, obtained his commission in the Special Reserve of the Royal Irish Rifles at Belfast in December, 1915, and was serving at the front with the South Belfast Volunteers. He is officially reported missing since 1st inst. He is a son of Mrs. Dean, 14 Kipling Avenue, Rockferry, Birkenhead.” Further information reveals that he was the son of Mrs. Thomisina Dean, of Beachworth, Town Lane, Woodhey, Rock Ferry, and the late Mr. Joel Frederick Dean. William Dean has no known grave and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b, and also in Canada’s Great War ‘Book of Rememberence’, page 570.
Sjt Robert Deane, 10/14419, who was born at Ballygawley, County Tyrone, was reported as being killed in action. His remains were interred at Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval in grave I.C.21. Robert had enlisted at Belfast at the outbreak of war.
Rfn Francis Dickson, 10/915, killed in action whilst serving with C Company, aged 22 years. Francis was born at Killyleagh, County Down and was the son of Mr. Robert James and Mrs. Margaret Dickson, of 35 Farnham Street, Ormeau Road, Belfast. His body was never recovered and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
L/Cpl James Dickson, 10/14370. Reported as wounded and missing and subsequently confirmed as having been killed in action on this date. The Belfast Telegraph of the 7th August, 1917 reported “Belfast Soldiers Killed. Reported wounded and missing on 1st July, 1916, Lance-Corporal Jas. Dickson, Royal Irish Rifles, is now returned as killed. He was the third son of Mr. Jas. Dickson, 10 Walnut Place, and was in the gas department of the Corporation before he enlisted. A member of the South Belfast U.V.F., deceased was also in the Orange Institution (Lily L.O.L. 1602) and the I.O.R. He was 20 years of age.” James was born in Belfast, the son of Mr. James and the late Mrs. Ellen Dickson. He resided at Belfast, signing the Ulster Covenant from 10 Walnut Place, September 1912. He enlisted at Belfast, and was remembered by the Lily L.O.L. 1602 who reported a “desire to record their deep regret at the loss of their esteemed Brother, Lance-Corporal James Dickson, R.I.R. (Ulster Division), who has been missing since the “Big Push” on 1st July, 1916.” James Pinkerton, the Chief Ruler of the Independent Order of Rechibites, Rescue Tent No. 1286, also relayed the regret of the Officers and Members of the Tent and District, at the loss of James, who had been their esteemed Brother. James has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Cpl Samuel Doherty, 10/14353, wounded in action. Samuel lived at 40 Lisburn Avenue, Lisburn Road and was a close friend of Rfn Samuel Johnston, 15008, who is listed below as killed in action on this date. Samuel was a champion boxer, and fought for the Battalion whilst in France. He was a member of Saint John’s Church of Ireland on the Laganbank Road. Prior to enlistment he had played football for Linfield Football Club. Samuel’s service is commemorated on St. John’s Church of Ireland Memorial Roll, Laganbank, Belfast.
Rfn Frederick Donnelly, 10/14512, is reported as missing in action and is subsequently confirmed as having been killed in action on this date. Frederick was born at Stewartstown, County Tyrone and enlisted at Belfast. His body was never recovered from the battlefield and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The death in action is recorded of Rfn Robert Dummigan, 9/4325. Robert was born at Banbridge, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He was the husband of Mrs. Margaret Dummigan and was aged 30 years when he died.
Rfn Benjamin Duncan, 10/14356, reported as missing and then, in June 1917, confimed as killed in action on this date. He was remembered by his family circle in the Belfast Telegraph of 30th June 1917. The report read “For King and Country. Duncan – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Ben Duncan, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), youngest and dearly-beloved son of James and Agnes Duncan, 275 Donegall Road, ‘He fought and died for truth, his God, and his country.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing Father, Mother, Sisters and Brothers. Also his brother Jim (on active service). James and Agnes Duncan.” A previous report, on the  eve of the 1st anniversary of the Battle reads “Duncan – In fond and loving memory of our youngest and dearly-loved son, Rifleman Ben Duncan, 10th R.I.R., killed in action on 1st July, 1916. ‘At the river’s crystal brink, Christ shall join each broken link.’ Ever remembered by his sorrowing father, mother, sisters and brothers. Also his brother Jim (serving with the Salonika Forces). James and Agnes Duncan. 275 Donegall Road.”
Rfn William Dunwoody, 14405, was reported as presumed killed in action. The newspaper report, which appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 24th July stated “Rifleman William Dunwoody, South Belfast Volunteers, has been killed in action. Before enlisting he was employed in the Queen’s Island. His sister resides at 216 Blythe Street.” His sister posted an obituary in the same edition which read, “For King and Country – Dunwoody – Killed in action on July 1, 1916 (14405), Rifleman William Dunwoody, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), youngest son of the late John and Eliza Ann Dunwoody. ‘Worthy of true respect was he, from those he left behind; a better brother never lived, he was both good and kind. For King and Country well he stood, unknown to coward’s fears; in battle’s strife he shed his blood, with the Ulster Volunteers.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing sister and family, Annie Doloughan, 216 Blythe Street.” On the anniversary of his death, William’s sister once again posted an ‘In Memorandum’ notice in the Belfast Telegraph. The notice read “Dunwoody – In fond and loving memory of my dear Brother, 14405 Rifleman William Dunwoody, 10th Batt. Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action at the Battle of the Somme, on 1st July, 1916. ‘In a far-distant land though his body may rest, far from home, and the ones he loved best, still deep in our hearts his memory we keep, sweet is the place where our dear brother sleeps.’ Sadly missed by his loving sister and family, Annie Doloughan, 216 Blythe Street.” William was also remembered in the Belfast Telegraph by Sandy Row Volunteers L.O.L. 1299, of which he was an active member. His remains were never recovered from the battlefield and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Hugh Elliot, 17/2331, is reported as missing in action on this date. Subsequently confirmed in August 1917, by the War Office as having been killed in action on, or since this date. Hugh is recorded on his Medal Index Card as ‘Private Hugh Elliott’, and no entries for his death can be found in either the Imperial War Grave Commission records or Part 67 of ‘Soldiers Died in the Great War’.
2nd Lieut Thomas Brignall Elliot, reported as wounded in action, believed killed. Subsequently confirmed as killed in action. The Belfast Telegraph, 11th July 1916 printed “Personal Notes. Second-Lieutenant T. B. Elliot, R. I . Rifles (South Belfast), missing, believed killed, is son of Mr. Thomas Elliot, Tremona, Knockdene Park, Belfast, who is secretary to Messrs. J. & T. Sinclair, Tomb Street. He enlisted as a Private at the outbreak of war in the Ulster Division, and was raised to commission rank on the 30th November, 1914, in the East Belfast Battalion. He was transferred to the South Belfast’s in March 1915. He was educated at the Royal Academical Institution, and is one of three brothers who responded to the call of King and Country. Rev. James Quinn, one of the chaplains of the Ulster Division, in a letter to Mr. Elliot says:- ‘You will have heard, no doubt, before this reaches you the sad news of your son Thomas. He fell leading his men on the morning of the 1st inst. It is hardly possible for him to have been left dying where he fell if the wound had not been mortal as the ground has been frequently and fully searched. Of course, until his body has been found there is a slight chance for him, as wonderful and almost incredible instances of survivors are returned on such occasions, but up till this afternoon (6th inst.) there was no trace of him. I had a special interest in Tom since I got to know him out here, as it was like old times when I was curate in Bangor.’ The rest of the letter is a pathetic expression of sympathy with the parents and members of the bereaved family.” Tom’s remains were never recovered from the battlefield and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #157 on: July 01, 2007, 05:00:02 PM »
Those brave men....

Rfn William James Elliott, 10/14532, reported as missing, presumed to have been killed in action. Confirmation of the death of William came the following year, with the Belfast Telegraph dated 24th August, 1917 reporting, “The War Office has just intimated to Mr. Hugh Elliott, 31 Lindsay Street, Belfast, that his son, Rifleman Wm. J. Elliott, Royal Irish Rifles, must be presumed to have been killed on July 1, 1916, on which date he had been posted missing. Deceased was a member of the South Belfast Regiment, U.V.F., and prior to enlistment was employed at Messrs. H. & J. Martin.” Robert was the son of Mr. Hugh and Mrs. Sarah Elliott. He was born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. His body was never found and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Ernest Ewington, 10/3642, who was born at Hertford Bury, Hertfordshire and enlisted at Belfast, is reported as killed in action. Ernest has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn John Alexander Forsythe, 17/1770, was reported as missing in action on this date. He was subsequently confirmed by the War Office, in July 1917, as having been killed in action on this date. A newspaper report from his family appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, 9th July 1917. “Forsythe – Missing since 1st July, 1916, now reported killed on that date (or since), Rifleman John A. Forsythe (1770), 10th Royal Irish Rifles. ‘Sleep on, beloved, sleep, and take thy rest, lay down thy head upon thy saviour’s breast; we loved thee well, but Jesus loves thee best. Good night. Only good night, beloved, not farewell, until we meet again, clothed in the spotless robe he gives his own, until we know even as we are known. Good night.’ Sadly missed by his loving wife and four children. Isabella Forsyth. 32 Canton Street, Belfast.” John was born at Dromara, County Down and enlisted at Belfast, where he resided at the outbreak of war. His mother, Agnes, resided at Roundhill Street. His remains were never recovered and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Samuel Fulton, 14/7239, killed in action, aged 18 years. He was born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. He was the son of the late Mr. John Fulton, who resided 16 Maralin Street, Belfast. His remains were never located and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Hugh Gamble, 10/14686, of B Company, killed in action aged 22 years. He was born at Belfast and was the son of the late Mr. John and Mrs. Margaret Gamble. Hugh enlisted at Belfast and is recorded on the Ulster Covenant as residing 14 Moore’s Place in 1912. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
L/Cpl James Joseph Gannon, 17/593, who was born at Dublin, is reported as having been killed in action, aged 27 years. He was the son of Mr. James and Mrs. Elizabeth Gannon of Elvera House, 51 Royal Canal, Phibsborough, Dublin. He has no know grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn George Geddis, 10/14696, reported as missing, presumed killed, and who was subesequently confirmed in June 1917 as having been killed in action on this date. George has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. His family published his death notice in the Belfast Telegraph on 30th June, 1917. It read “Geddis – In loving memory of our dear son, Rifleman George D. Geddis (14696), 10th R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), killed in action on July 1, 1916. ‘Shall we forget? Ah! No, for memory’s golden chain, shall bind our hearts to the heart we loved, till we meet in Heaven again. Short was thy life, my darling son, but peaceful be thy rest; Mother misses you most of all, because she loved you best.’ Ever remembered by his loving father and mother, brothers and sisters. 61 Donegall Avenue.” 
Rfn Oliver Gibson, 10/4300, reported as missing in action and subsequently confirmed in June 1917, as having been killed in action on this date. Oliver was born at Monaghan and enlisted at Belfast. Both his wife and parents submitted ‘Killed in Action’ notices in the Belfast Telegraph on the 2nd July 1917. His wife wrote “Gibson – In loving memory of Private Oliver Gibson, 10th Batt. R.I.R., Lewis gun section, killed in action July 1st 1916, the dearly-beloved husband of Sarah Gibson. Shaws Bridge.” His parents also submitted a notice, which read, “Gibson – in fond rememberence of Private Oliver Gibson, 10th Batt. R.I.R., Lewis gun section, killed in action July 1st, 1916, the only and dearly-beloved son of William and M. Gibson. 20 Hardcastle Street.” Oliver’s body was never recovered from the battlefield and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Henry Gilliland, 10/14704, is reported as missing in action and subsequently confirmed by the War Office in August 1917, as having been killed in action, 1st July 1916, aged 23 years. Henry resided at 8 Milner Street and was the son of Mrs. Martha Gilliland. His remains were never recovered and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He had been a member of the South Belfast Regiment, Ulster Volunteer Force and had signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912, his address given as 8 Milner Street, Roden Street. His father served with the 10th Battalion as Cpl William J. Gilliland, 10/14646 and was reported on 12th July as having been wounded.
Rfn Adam Glass, 10/14651, killed in action. Adam had been born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. He resided 10 Dorchester Street, and was the husband of Mrs. Susan Glass. His body was interred at Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval, plot X, row E. grave number 4. In the Belfast Telegraph of 22nd July, 1916, his obituary reads “For King and Country. Glass – Killed in action, 1st July, 1916, Rifleman Adam Glass, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), dearly-beloved husband of Susan Glass. ‘We cannot, Lord, thy purpose see, but all is well that’s done by thee’. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing wife and nephew, 10 Dorchester Street.” He is recorded as signing the Ulster Covenant at the City Hall in 1912 from the above address (although his handwriting has been misinterpreted as “10 Farchester Street”).
Rfn John Goodwin, 14/6911, who had been born at Croydon, Surrey and who had enlisted at Belfast to the 14th Battalion (Y.C.V.’s) is killed in action whilst serving with the 10th Rifles. John’s body was never recovered from the battlefield and he is remembered upon the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. The Belfast Telegraph of the 22nd July, 1916, carried the death notice from his family. It read “For King and Country. Goodwin – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Rifleman John Goodwin, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), dearly-beloved husband of Mary Goodwin, of 22 Nelson Street. ‘Sleep on, dear husband, thy labour’s o’er, thy loving heart will grieve no more; on earth there’s strife, in heaven rest, they miss you most who loved you best.’ Inserted by his sorrowing wife and one little child. English papers please copy.”
L/Cpl George Gorman, 10/14713, is reported as having been killed in action. George had been born in Lisburn, County Antrim and had enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave, and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Edward Graham, 10/205, the son of Mr. Joseph and Mrs. Laura Graham, is reported as having been killed in action, aged 21 years. Edward was born at Banbridge, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. His parents resided at 4 Windsor Terrace, Banbridge. He is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant at Banbridge Orange Hall in 1912. His remains were never found and Edward is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn George Graham, 10/189, reported as missing, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date. George had been born at Armagh and had enlisted at Belfast. The Belfast Telegraph of 2nd July, 1917 reported his death; his wife writing “Graham – In loving memory of my beloved husband, Private George Graham (189), 10th Batt. Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action in France on 2nd July 1916. Mary Graham, 9 Radnor Street.” His sister also inserted a notice in the same edition of the newspaper, reading “Graham – In fond and loving memory of my dear brother, Riflmn. George Graham, who fell in the advance on the Somme with the Ulster Division, 1st July, 1916. Annie Herron. Jesmond. Old Cavehill Road.”
2nd Lieut William Osmond Green, reported wounded then later confirmed as having been killed in action on this date. William’s photograph appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 14th July, with the caption “Second-Lieut. W.O. Green, Portadown (South Belfast Volunteers), missing.” Lieutenant Green’s body was never recovered and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

giannineo

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #158 on: July 01, 2007, 05:00:52 PM »
Amazing Acheux, thanks, put me down for a signed copy when the book is ready.
   My grand uncle John Copeland would have been thereabouts and aged about 30 at the time.I believe he was with the Inniskilling Fusiliers.
    Fabulous reading, and thanks for sharing it with us, G.

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #159 on: July 01, 2007, 05:01:55 PM »

Those brave men....

Rfn William Greer, 10/14738, who was born Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast is killed in action. William’s remains were never located and his is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn William John Greer, 10/3645, confirmed as having been killed in action. William was born at Cookstown, County Tyrone but enlisted at Belfast, where he resided at the outbreak of war. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. His death must have been witnessed as his family posted his death notice in the Belfast Telegraph on the 29th July 1916, despite the fact his body was never recovered. The notice read “For King and Country. Greer – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Wm. John Greer, R. I. Rifles (South Belfast Volunteers). ‘The midnight stars are shining, on a face I cannot see, where sleeping without dreaming, lies the one so dear to me. A face still loved, though sadly missed, his smile that was so bright, he was so thoughtful, good, and kind, time slumbers now in a soldier’s grave.’ Inserted by his sorrowing wife and little children. Sarah Elizabeth Greer, 24 Majorca Street.”
Rfn Robert E. Gregory, 10/14748, reported missing in action. Subsequently confirmed by the War Office, August 1917, as having been killed in action on 1st July 1916. Robert was a member of the Sandy Row Volunteers L.O.L. 1299, and is recorded as residing 55 Great Northern Street, Belfast. He was born, and enlisted at Belfast and appears as having signed the Ulster Covenant from this address in 1912. His remains were never recovered from were he fell, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn John Hall, 923, reported by the Belfast Telegraph, 11th july 1916, as having been wounded on this date. The report, as placed by his family reads “Rifleman John Hall, South Belfast Volunteers, wounded in the neck in the taking of the German third line trenches, is in hospital at Epsom. His wife lives at 11 Irwell Street. He was formerly a winding master for the Broadway Weaving Co. His wife has three brothers, an uncle, and four cousins on active service.” John made a sufficient recovery to rejoin his Battalion, and later served with an Entrenching Battalion, Labour Corps.
Rfn Thomas Halliday, 10/14820, who was born at Shankill, County Antrim, and enlisted at Belfast is reported as wounded and missing, and subsequently confirmed as having been killed in action on this day. He was qualified, and served with A Company as a Signaller. Although his body had still not been recovered by the anniversary of his death, his remains were later identified and laid to rest at Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval, in plot V, row A, grave number 3. His family posted a notice, confirming that the War Office had listed Thomas as killed on the 1st July. It appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, 7th July 1917, and demonstrated the distain that many families felt, in not knowing the fate of their loved ones, who had been posted as ‘missing’ – often for more than one year. The notice read “Halliday – wounded and missing since 1st July, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date (or since). Signaller Thomas Halliday, (14820) “A” Co., 10th Batt. Royal Irish Rifles. ‘Weary and long have we waited, for his coming, but all in vain, asking ourselves this hopeless question, will he ever return again? He little thought when leaving home, it would be his last good-bye; but some day we hope to meet him in that happy home on high.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing father, mother, sisters and brothers. 58 Elm Street.”
Rfn George A. Hawthorne, 10/14863, is reported as having been wounded and now missing in action. Subsequently confirmed as having been killed in action on this date by the War Office, August 1917. The family reported the wounding of both George, and his brother William, in the Belfast Telegraph on the 31st July 1916; “Rifleman George A. Hawthorne, South Belfast Volunteers, has been officially returned as wounded. His brother William of the same Battalion, was wounded at the same time. The lads, who are sons of Mr. George Hawthorne, 19 Mulhouse Street, were both employed on the Great Northern Railway.” In a further report, posted in the same newspaper on 13th August 1917, George’s death, aged 22 years, was finally confirmed. He was still recorded as ‘missing’ but his remains were later identified and removed from the battlefield, for interrment at the Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval, in grave I.A.17. The boys were born at Tynan, County Armagh and enlisted at Belfast where they resided.
The wounding in action is reported of Cpl William Hawthorne, 10/14861, brother of Rfn George Hawthorne, who was killed in action on this date. The Belfast Telegraph of the 10th July 1916 reports “Lance-Corporal Wm. Hawthorne, South Belfast Volunteers, wounded, is one ot two soldier sons of Mr. George Hawthorne, 19 Mulhouse Street. He formerly worked on the Great Northern Railway.” William’s photograph subsequently appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 14th July, with the caption “L.-Cpl. Wm. Hawthorne (South Belfast Volunteers), of 19, Mulhouse Street, wounded.” The wounding in action of both William, and his brother George (above) is also mentioned in the notice which appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 31st July 1916. William made a full recovery and returned to action, subsequently serving with the Royal Air Force as Cpl William Hawthorne, 144785. He appears on the Ulster Covenant as residing 63 Glentoran Street in 1912, when he signed the document at Belfast City Hall.
2nd Lieut George York Henderson is reported in the Belfast Telegraph, 7th July 1916, as having been wounded in action on this date. The notice read “Wounded. Sec.-Lieut- G.Y. Henderson, R.I.R., Oakley, Windsor Park (South Belfast Volunteers).”  His photograph subsequently appeared in the Belfast Telegraph of the 10th July 1916, with the caption “Sec.-Lieut. G. Y. Henderson, Windsor Park, South Belfast Volunteers, wounded.” George recovered from his wounds and returned to his Battalion, later being promoted and being awarded the Military Cross for Messines. He subsequently fell with the Regiment at Havrincourt Wood, 22nd November, 1917.
Rfn George Hendry, 10/12871, was killed in action and his remains interred at Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval, in plot X, row E, grave number 2. He was born at Burghead, near Elgin, but had enlisted at Belfast.
Capt Barry Hill, the son of the Squire and Sarah Hill, of Ballyclare, County Antrim, is reported as having been killed in action, aged 30 years, whilst serving with A Company. Initially reported as wounded and missing, Barry Hill was confirmed as killed on this date, by the War Office. He is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant at Saint Patrick’s school, Jordanstown in 1912. Barry Hill had formerly been a medical student and Queen’s University, Belfast. He was Gazetted to Captain, the appointment appearing in the Belfast Telegraph on the 27 March 1916. The same newspaper reported on the 13th July 1916; “Missing. Capt. Barry Hill. Capt. Hill, officially reported missing, is a son of the late Squire Hill, J.P., Ballyclare, and a brother of surgeon Rowland Hill, R.N., formerly of University Street, Belfast, and Mr. Stanley Hill, paper agent, Donegall Street, Belfast. Before the war Capt. Hill was in practice as a dentist in University Street. He was a Company Commander in the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F., and joined the South Belfast Regiment on its formation. An unofficial report states that Capt. Hill was seen at a dressing station, but relatives have so far ascertained nothing definate on that matter.” Barry Hill appears on the Army List, March 1917, as serving  with the 10th (Service) Battalion (South Belfast), from the 10th November 1915. His remains were never recovered, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is also commemorated by Queen’s University, Belfast, both on the War Memorial within in the campus grounds, and on the illuminated Book of Rememberence. It records “Hill, Barry, Captain, Royal Irish Rifles. Faculty of Medicine 1904-1907. 1st July 1916.”
Rfn George Hoy, 10/14938, was born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. He resided at Rowland Street, south Belfast. He was reported as missing in action on this date, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action, 1st July 1916. His remains were recovered recovered from the battlefield at a later date and interred at Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval, plot I, row B, grave number 14. The Belfast Telegraph of 18th April 1917 reported “Belfast Casualties. Mrs. Hoy, 1 Penrith Street, Belfast, has been notified that her son, Rifleman George Hoy, Royal Irish Rifles, reported missing since July 1, 1916, is now reported killed on that date. Before the outbreak of war Rifleman Hoy was an apprentice coachmaker, employed by Smyth, Johnston, and Co., Montgomery Street. His father is serving in (owing to pressure on space a number of casualties to Belfast-Canadian and other soldiers has been held over till tomorrow.).”
The Belfast Telegraph on the 14th July 1916, reported the wounding in action of Sjt James Hyndman, 10/14813. A photograph of James appeared in this edition with the caption, “Sergt. J. Hyndman, (South Belfast Volunteers), of 57, Egmont Street, Belfast, wounded.” James is also mentioned in a subsequent notice, reporting the confirmation of the death on this date of James’s brother-in-law, Rfn Isaac Richardson, 17/51, which was published on 31st July 1917. This report states “At the last meeting of Court Duke of Abercorn, A.O.F., the Secretary reported the death of Br. Isaac Richardson, R.I.R. who was now officially reported killed on July 1, 1916. A resolution of sympathy with his widow and other relatives was passed in a manner suitable to the occasion, and the Bretheren bore testimony to the simplicity of the life and the noble character of the deceased. This is the third member of the Order in Belfast District who has fallen in the war. It may also be mentioned that the deceased’s brother-in-law – Company Sergeant-Major Hyndman, R.I.R., and also a member of this court – was severely wounded on the same date, and has since been declared unfit for active service.”
Rfn Paul Irvine, 10/802, is reported as having been wounded and now missing in action. Subsequently confirmed by the War Office, on the first anniversary of the battle, as having been killed in action on this date. The Belfast Telegraph of the 2nd July 1917, reported the confirmation of Paul’s death. “The War Office has just reported that Rifleman Paul Irvine, Royal Irish Rifles, must be presumed to have been killed on July 1, 1916, on which date he had been previously posted missing. Deceased was a member of the South Belfast U.V.F., and enlisted from the service of Messrs. Workman Clark, & Co. (North Yard). He was a son of Mr. William Irvine, 31 Lower Rockview Street, Belfast.” An ‘In Memorandum’ notice, from the family, appeared in the same edition. It read “Irvine – Officially reported wounded and missing on the 1st July, 1916, now reported killed on or since that date, Paul, third and beloved son of William and Ellen Irvine, 31 Lower Rockview Street, Belfast. Inserted by his loving Father, Mother, Sisters and Brothers (one on active service).” A photograph of Rifleman Irvine also appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, 6th July 1917. Paul has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, pier and face 15a and 15b.
L/Cpl Henry Johnston, 10/14993, the son of Mr. Andrew and Mrs. Catherine Johnston, 251 Donegall Road, Belfast, is reported to have been killed in action aged 31 years. Harry’s remains were never located and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant at Belfast City Hall in 1912, whilst residing at the above address. Henry’s father is also recorded at 251 Donegall Road alongside Annie, John and William Johnston, who also signed the Covenant.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #160 on: July 01, 2007, 05:03:30 PM »

Those brave men...

Rfn Hugh Johnston, 17/1627, is reported as missing and then subsequently killed in action on this date. Hugh’s body was never found and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He was born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast.
Rfn James Johnston, 15/11986, was killed in action, aged 21 years. He was the son of Mrs. Margaret E. Johnston, and was born at Shankill, County Antrim. James enlisted at Belfast and is recorded as residing 35 Bracken Street, Belfast. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Brothers, Rfn James Johnston, 10/14999 and L/Cpl Samuel Johnston, 10/15007, are reported as missing in action. Both boys are subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date. The Belfast Telegraph of the 13th August 1917 carried the confirmation of both deaths. James’s name appeared first in the columns and read “Returned K.I.A. (previously reported as missing in action, 1 July 1916). Lived 18 Rainey St. South Belfast U.V.F.” Further on in the same report is the news of the death of Samuel. It reads “Returned K.I.A. (previously reported as missing in action, 1 July 1916). Lived 18 Rainey St. South Belfast U.V.F. Brother of above.” Both brothers are recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant from this address in 1912. They enlisted together, served together, died together and are remembered alongside each other on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. Their bodies were never recovered from the battlefield.
L/Cpl Samuel Johnston, 10/15008, who was born and enlisted at Belfast, is reported as missing and then subsequently as having been killed in action. His remains were never recovered from where he fell, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn James Ritchie Jones, 10/15025, is reported as missing, and subsequently confirmed as having been killed in action on this date. The Belfast Telegraph of the 13th August 1917, carried confirmation of the War Office notification, reporting that James had been returned as being killed in action, having previously been reported as missing in action, 1 July 1916. He was a member of the South Belfast U.S.S.F., and of the Donegall Road Temperence L.O.L. 833. James’s remains were never located and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. His ‘supreme sacrifice’ is also remembered by the “management of Sandy Row Orange Hall, in honour of our members of No. 5 District L.O.L.”, his name appearing on a memorial chair in Sandy Row Orange Hall. James was born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast.
Lieut Henry Jordan, reported in the Battalion War Diary as having been wounded in action on this date.
Rfn William John Keefe, 14/6882, son of Mr. John and Mrs. Mary Keefe, is reported as missing in action and subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date. William wa born at Rathmullace, County Down and resided at 42 Derwent Street, Belfast, with his wife Alice. He had signed the Ulster Covenant whilst residing at 42 Derwent Street, Newtownards Road, Belfast and had enlisted to the Young Citizen’s Volunteers of Ireland. On the anniversary of his death, notices from his family appeared in the Belfast Telegraph. “Keefe – In loving memory of my dear husband, Private W.J. Keefe (Y.C.V.’s), 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action on 1st July, 1916. ‘No more will the smile of his countenance brighten, the long dreary days of the ones left behind; for no one who knew him could ever forget him, his ways were so loving, so faithful and kind.’ Ever remembered by his loving wife and children. Alice Keefe, 42 Derwent Street.” A further notice appeared in the same edition on the 2nd July 1917. It read “Keefe – In loving memory of Pte. William John Keefe, R.I.R. (Y.C.V.’s), killed in action on 1st July, 1916, at the Battle of the Somme. Inserted by his loving parents, sisters and brother. Also his sister and brother-in-law. Mary E. and James Cummings. Whitehouse.” William’s remains were interred at Aveluy Wood Cemetery, Mesnil-Martinsart, plot I, row E, grave number 13. He was 34 years of age when he died.
Rfn Alfred Kerr, 17/1543, who was born at Ballymacarret, County Down and enlisted at Belfast, is reported as having been killed in action. His remains were recovered from the battlefield and interred at the Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval in plot I, row B, grave number 29.
Capt William Robert Langtry, is reported in the Battalion War Diary as having been wounded in action on this date, whilst serving as an acting Captain. He had formerly served in the ranks of the Battalion as a Serjeant. The Belfast Telegraph of the 7th July 1916, carried the report, which read “Wounded. Captain W.R. Langtry, South Parade (South Belfast Volunteers).” The same edition went on to elaborate with biographical notes, recording “Captain W. R. Langtry. Captain W. R. Langtry, who is suffering from shell-shock, is a son of Mrs. Langtry, 79 South Parade, Belfast. He was in the linen business before the war, and received his commission in the South Belfast Regiment from the ranks early in the war. He was promoted Captain a few weeks ago. Captain Langtry reached Belfast this morning greatly shaken after a very narrow escape from death.” Captain Lantry’s photograph, again reporting shell-shock, appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 11th July 1916.
Rfn Henry Larkin, 15134, reported as missing in action, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date. Henry had been born at Salford, Lancashire, but had enlisted at Belfast. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Rfn Henry Leacock, 14/7189, is reported as having been killed in action. Henry was born at Tobermore, County Londonderry and is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant there in 1912. He enlisted at Belfast, again giving Tobermore as his home. His remains were interred at Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval in plot XIX, row G, grave number 2.
Rfn Joseph Leckey, 6177, reported as having been killed in action on this date, whilst serving with 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles. His death was reported in the Belfast Telegraph on the 29th July 1916, stating “The death in action is reported of Rifleman Joseph Leckey, Royal Irish Rifles. Before he was called to the Colours, Rifleman Leckey was employed with the firm of Messrs. Combe, Barbour Ltd. He leaves a widow and five children, who reside at 118 Bentham Street.” Joseph’s remains were never recovered from the battlefield, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He was formerly a member of the South Belfast U.V.F. Joseph is believed to have signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912, whilst residing at 34 Clementine Street, Sandy Row. Margaret Leckey is also recorded at this address in 1912.
Bugler William J. Lewis, 10/15157, the son of Mr. William James and Mrs. Ellen Lewis, of 58 Rutland Street, Belfast, is reported as having been killed in action, aged 18 years. Willam was born and enlisted at Belfast, and was known as ‘Willie’. His death was remembered by his parents on the first anniversary of the Battle. The notice appeared in the Belfast Telegraph and read “Lewis – In loving memory of our dear son, Bugler W.J. (Willie) Lewis, 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action on 1st July, 1916, aged 18 years, beloved son of W.J. and Ellie Lewis. ‘O! darling son, little did I think, when I first cradled thee, that on the battlefield of death, you’d fall so far away from me. There are loved ones left to mourn you, I see their sad tears fall, but ah! my brave, my noble boy, Father and Mother loved you best of all.’ Inserted by his sorrowing Father and Mother, Brothers and Sisters (who former on active service). – 58 Rutland Street.” Willie’s body was never recovered from where he fell, and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. William and his parents all appear on the Ulster Covenant as residing 58 Rutland Street in 1912.
Rfn James Livingstone, 10/1144, who was born at Shankill, County Antrim, and enlisted at Belfast, was killed in action. James is recorded on the Ulster Covenant as residing 203 Donegall Road, and signing the document at Sandy Row Orange Hall. In August 1917, the Belfast Telegraph reported his death. The notice read “Livingstone – in loving memory of Rifleman James Livingstone, 10th Batt, Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action on July 1st, 1916. ‘Short was thy life my darling son, but peaceful be thy rest, Mother misses you most, because she loved you the best.’ Ever remembered by his loving Mother and step-Father, M.J. and R. Alcock. 23 Fox Row, also by his brother, George (on active service).” James has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. Both James, and his brother George, signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912, giving Fox Row as their address. George is believe to have also served with the Royal Irish Rifles. 

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #161 on: July 01, 2007, 05:04:54 PM »

Those brave men....

Rfn Edward Stewart Lockington, 10/16881, killed in action whilst serving with C Company, aged 25 years. He was the son of the late Mr. John and Mrs. Mary Lockington of 10 Kinallen Street, Ormeau Road, Belfast. His brother served with the 10th Rifles as Rfn John Lockington, 17/1165. Both brothers, who were born and enlisted at Belfast, are recorded as residing 74 Palestine Street in 1912, signing the Ulster Covenant at the City Hall. Edward’s remains were never recovered from the field of battle and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The wounding on this date of brothers L/Cpl Frank Lough, 10/15172, and Rfn Matthew Lough, 10/47167, is reported by the Belfast Telegraph of 8th July 1916. The article read “Rifleman Matthew and Frank Lough (South Belfast Volunteers), wounded, are sons of Mrs. Lough, 24 Deramore Avenue. The former was shot in the forehead, and the latter in the leg.” Frank Lough resided at, and is recorded as signing the Ulster Covenant from 44 Mount Street. He served with A Company, and was subsequently awarded the Military Medal, the notification appearing in the Battalion War Diary, 15th November 1916.
Rfn Andrew McBride, 10/15202, reported as missing in action on this date, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office, in August 1917, as having been killed in action. Andrew was 24 years of age when he died. He was the son of Mr. James McBride of 46 Antrim Street, Lisburn, and of the late Mrs. Margaret Ann McBride. The notice that reported the confirmation of the news from the War Office, appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on 17th August 1917; “The War Office reports that Rifleman Andrew McBride, Royal Irish Rifles, was killed in action on July 1, 1916, on which date he had been posted missing. He was a member of the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F., and worked at the Belfast docks before the war. His widow resides at 225 Matilda Street, Belfast.” Two further notices, from family circle, appeared in the same edition. The first reads “McBride – Missing since 1st July, 1916, now reported killed on that date (or since), Rifleman Andrew McBride, Royal Irish Rifles, the dearly-beloved husband of Elizabeth McBride, 225 Matilda Street. ‘May the heavenly wind blow softly, o’er that sweet and hallowed spot, though the sea divides your grave from us, you will never be forgot. Oh! for the touch of a vanished hand, and the sound of a voice that is still.’ Inserted by his loving wife and son.” The final notice, from his wife’s family read “McBride – Missing since 1st July, 1916, now reported killed on that date (or since), Rifleman Andrew McBride, Royal Irish Rifles. Deeply regretted by his loving Mother-in-law, Brother-in-law, and Sister-in-law. 225 Matilda Street.” Andrew’s body was never found and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is recorded as having enlisted at Belfast.
Rfn Robert McCandless, 10/307, is reported as having been killed in action on this date, aged 29 years. Born at Ballaney, County Down, and enlisted at Belfast, Robert was the son of the late Mr. William and Mrs. Margaret McCandless, of Ballaney, Banbridge, County Down. He was the husband of Mrs. Mary Jane McCandless, 60 Excise Street, Belfast, who posted a notice in the Belfast Telegraph on the first anniversary of his death. This notice read “McCandless – In loving rememberence of my dear husband, Private Robert McCandless, 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action, on the 1st July, 1916. ‘In an unknown grave across the sea, in a far-off distant land; lies the one who was so dear to me, a soldier and a man.’ Ever remembered by his sorrowing wife and children. Minnie McCandless, 60 Excise Street.” A second notice in the same edition reported “McCandless – in fond and loving memory of my dear son, Private Robert McCandless, 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action on the 1st July, 1916. Ever remembered by his sorrowing Mother, Brothers, and Sisters. Margaret McCandless. Bellaney, Banbridge.” Robert’s body was subsequently recovered from the battlefield and interred at Serre Road Cemetery, No. 2, in plot IV, row E, grave number 3. His headstone inscription read “Till he comes”.
Cpl John McCoy, 10/15250, of 1 Walnut Street, Donegall Pass, Belfast, is reported as having been killed in action, aged 27 years. John’s father, served as Company Serjeant Major Joseph McCoy, 1470, with C Company, 13th Battalion (1st County Down Volunteers), and was also reported as having been killed in action, aged 46 years, two days earlier. John had been born at Shankill, County Antrim and is recorded as enlisting at Belfast. On the first anniversary of their deaths, a notice in the Belfast Telegraph remembered both men “McCoy – In loving memory of my dear husband, Corporal John McCoy, 10th Batt. Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action on the 1st July 1916, the eldest son of Eliza and the late Company-Sergeant Major Joseph McCoy, also killed on the 28th June, 1916. ‘Would we wish for them back from their bright home in heaven? No, in patience we’ll wait till the veil shall be risen, and the Saviour restores us the ones he has given, in the land where our loved ones rest.’ Deeply regretted by his loving wife and family, Rebecca McCoy, 25 Little Brunswick Street, also his Father-in-law, Mother-in-law, Brothers-in-law, and Sister-in-law. – 1 Walnut Street.” John’s remains were subsequently recovered from the battlefield and interred at the Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval in plot II, row B, grave number 2. His father was interred at Martinsart British Cemetery, plot I, row A, grave number 1. He is recorded as having been the son of the late Richard and Margaret McCoy of County Monaghan and as residing with his wife, Eliza at 22 Blythe Street, Sandy Row. Joseph’s brother, Piper James McCoy, 17/6226, was wounded on this date and subsequently died as a result of his injuries, 3rd July 1916. Both men are believed to have served with the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F.
The death from wounds on this date, of Rfn Robert M. McKibbin, 11/6863, is reported in the Belfast Telegraph on 14th July 1916. He was 27 years of age. Although Robert has the 11th Battalion (South Antrim Volunteers) prefix, the newspaper report reads “Rman R. McKibbin (South Belfast Volunteers), of British Post Office, Crumlin, died of wounds.” He was the son of Mr. James and Mrs. Mary McKibbin, of Belfast, Ireland. His remains were interred at Forceville Communal Cemetery and extension, in plot 2, row B, grave 15.
Rfn George Wallace McKillen, 17/1512, is reported as having been killed in action. George was born at Shankill, County Antrim and enlisted at Belfast. His body was later recovered from the battlefield and interred at Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval in plot XIX, row F, grave number 9.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #162 on: July 01, 2007, 05:06:02 PM »

Those brave men....

Rfn Richard McNamara, 10/15461, reported as having been wounded and missing on this date, whilst serving with B Company. Richard was subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date, aged 22 years. The notification was reported in the Belfast Telegraph on the 4th August 1917; “Belfast and district losses. Official intimation has been received that Rifleman Richard McNamara, Royal Irish Rifles, who was previously reported wounded and missing on July 1, 1916, was killed on that date. Prior to enlisting he was in the employment of Messrs. Rennick Robinson & Co., Bedford Street, as a machine mechanic. Deceased was a son of Mr. Richard McNamara, Tramway Depot, Sandy Row.” The Imperial War Graves Commission recorded Richard as the son of Mrs. Catherine and Mr. Richard Johnston McNamara, of Ardoyne Tramway Depot, Crumlin Road, Belfast. On the 6th August 1917, a further notice appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, which read “Magdalene Church Defenders Temperence L.O.L. 616. McNamara – The officers and members of above lodge have learned with deep regret of the death of their highly respected brother, Rifleman Richard McNamara (15461), R.I.R., killed in action on July 1, 1916. They extend to his bereaved parents and relatives their sincere sympathy. J. Doherty, W.M., Wm. S. Grey, Secretary.” The death of Robert is further recorded at Sandy Row Orange Hall, his name appearing on the Memorial Roll of Honour for Magdalene Church Defenders Temperence L.O.L. 615, and also on the Memorial Chair at the hall, dedicated to the men of No. 5 District, Loyal Orange Order. His photograph, which was taken at the studio of R. Lyttle, appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 20th August 1917, the caption stating “Rifleman R. McNamara, Royal Irish Rifles, killed, was a son of Mr. and Mrs. R. McNamara, Tramway Depot, Sandy Row.” Richard’s remains were never recovered from the field of battle, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He had been born, and enlsited at Belfast, and it is indicated on the Ulster Covenant that he may have been residing at 19 Oban Street in 1912.
Rfn Alexander McNeice, 448, the son of Mr. James McNeice of Glenavy, County Antrim and the husband of Mrs. McNeice, of 24 Haldane Street, Belfast, is killed in action. Alexander was born at Glenavy and enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never located and he is therefore remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The death in action is recorded of Rfn Samuel McCrory, 16/395. Samuel had been born at Shankill, County Antrim and had enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never located and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Crumlin man, Rfn James Alexander Magee, 17/1517, who had been born in the County Antrim town, but had enlisted at Newry, County Down, was killed in action. At the time of enlistment he had stated ‘Belfast’ as his residence. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
2nd Lieut Frederick Michel Masterman was killed in action with the 10th Battalion, whislt attached from the 3rd Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, aged 32 years. Frederick had been born at London on 29th September 1883, and had originally enlisted in the ranks of the Canadian Expeditionary with the Canadian Mounted Rifles. He was attested on 1st February 1915, aged 30 years and 4 months and served as L/Cpl Frederick Micheal (sic) Masterman, 118082 in the ranks of the Fort Garry Horse. Upon his attestation, at Pinchers Creek he listed his mother, Mrs. Masterman, as his next-of-kin, recording her address as 44 Harly House, Hyde Park, London. He was a single man with no previous military experience, and was employed as a ‘rancher’. His medical papers from the attestation show Frederick as having been a height of 5 ft 10 ½ inches with a dark compexion, dark hair and grey eyes. His chest, when fully expanded was 37 ½ inches, with a range of 3 inches. The medical documents revealed no distinguishing marks or scars and recorded a willingness to be vaccinated. His denomination is noted as Church of England. The Belfast Telegraph of the 13th July 1916 reported both the loss of 2nd Lieutenant Masterman and also his biographical notes. The first notice reads “The Roll of Honour. Latest officer list. Another heavy batch of officer casualties is reported to-day, the operations of the past fortnight having taken a heavy toll from the commissioned ranks of the Ulster regiments, and regiments in which Ulstermen are serving. Appended are the latest names:- Killed. Second-Lieut. F. M. Masterman, Royal Irish Rifles (South Belfast Volunteers).” The second notice in that edition reports “Personal notes. Second-Lieut. F. M. Masterman. Second-Lieut. F. M. Masterman, killed, was an officer of the special reserve of the Royal Irish Rifles at Belfast. He joined on 17th February, 1916, and on going to the front was posted to the South Belfast Volunteer Battalion. He was a son of Mrs. Masterman, Harley House, Regent’s Park, London, and has a sister resident in Dublin.” Frederick’s death was also noted in the Battalion War Diary on the 3rd July along with the fact that he had been “Mentioned for Gallant Conduct by Major Goodwin.” Frederick’s remains were never recovered from the field of battle, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is also commemorated in Canada’s National First World War ‘Book of Rememberance’ on page 572.
The son of the late Mrs. Margaret Maxwell and Mr. Dunlop Maxwell, of 26 Hurst Street, Sandy Row, Belfast is killed in action whilst serving with A Company. Rfn James Maxwell, 10/1413, was born at Stranraer, Wigtown and enlisted at Belfast. He was the husband of Mrs Jane Maxwell, who resided at 20 Abbott Street, Ormeau Road. James was 27 years of age when he fell, and his remains were never recovered from the battlefield. He is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
L/Sjt Thomas Meaney, M.M., 6/10504, was killed in action whilst serving with A Company. Thomas was born at Dublin and enlisted at Belfast. He was awarded the Military Medal “for distinguished service performed prior to 1st July 1916”. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The son of Mr. George and Mrs. Mary Ann Megarry of Lurganure, Maze, Lisburn, Sjt Robert George Megarry, 10/15582, is reported as having been wounded and missing. Robert is subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed in action on this date, aged 24 years. Robert was born in Moira and lived at the Maze, until moving to Belfast where he enlisted with the South Belfast Regiment. His remains were interred at Serre Road Cemetery No. 2, plot 12, row L, grave 6. His headstone bears the private inscription “Thy will be done”. The Lisburn Herald published an ‘In Memoradum’ notice from his family on the 1st July 1922. It is believed he resided at 35 Columbio Street, South Belfast.
Rfn William Milligan, 16/15585, reported as having been killed in action whilst serving with B Company. William was born, and enlisted at Belfast. He was a member of No. 5 District, Loyal Orange Lodge, and is remembered on a memorial chair, placed by the officers and members of the District, in Sandy Row Orange Hall. On the first anniversary of his death, two notices were published in the Belfast Telegraph, 2nd July 1916. The first, from his wife and children read “Milligan – In ever-loving memory of Rifleman William Milligan, 10th Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action on the 1st July, 1916. ‘When I look around my lonely home, and see his vacant chair, where on thy sat with listening ear, when I told him all my care. Some may think that we forget you, when at times we are apt to smile, little know the grief that’s hidden, ‘neath the surface all the while. But the hardest part is yet to come, when the heroes do return, and I miss among the cheering crowd, the face I dearly loved.’ Ever remembered by his loving wife and two little sons. Martha Milligan. 41 Majestic Street.” The second notice, published in the same edition reads, “Milligan – In loving memory of our dear brother, Rifleman W. Milligan (15505), B Coy., 10th Batt. R.I.R., killed in action on 1st July, 1916. ‘A little thought, dear brother, when we last said good-bye, that we parted for ever and you were to die; the grief that we feel words can never tell, for we could not be with you to bid you farewell.’ Deeply regretted by his loving brother and sister-in-law. Adam Milligan, 25 Farnham Street, Belfast.” William had initially been posted as missing, but was subsequently confirmed by the War Office as having been killed on this date. His remains were never recovered from the battlefield, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The Belfast Telegraph of the 2nd July 1917, reported the death in action on this date of Rfn William Milliken, 813, aged 23 years. William had been serving with C Company when he met his death. He was the son of Mr. David and Mrs. Martha Milliken, of 25 Rowland Street, Belfast. He had signed the Ulster Covenant at the Belfast City Hall in 1912 from this address. On the anniversary of his death, three notices were published in the Belfast Telegraph. The first read “Milliken – In loving memory of our dear son, Private William Milliken (No. 813), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), killed in action on July 1st, 1916. ‘His warfare o’er, his battle fought, his victory won, though dearly bought; his fresh young life could not be saved, he slumbers now in a soldier’s grave.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing Father, Mother and sisters – 25 Rowland Street.” William’s parents and his sisters, Tilly and Mary, must have been unaware that their loved one had no known grave. He is remembered for eternity on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. The second notice that appeared on the 2nd July 1917 read; “Milliken – In loving memory of Private Wm. Milliken (No. 813), R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), killed in action on July 1st, 1916. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing sister and brother-in-law. Mary and Edward Harold. 9 Symons Street.” The final notice stated “South Belfast Conservative Flute Band. ‘In memory of Rifleman Thomas Smyth, William Milliken and William Kincaid, who have also made the supreme sacrifice.’ Wallace Cadoo, Chairman. Francis Reynolds, Secretary.”
Rfn George Mills, 17/478, reported as having been killed in action on this date, aged 26 years. George was born at Waterside, County Londonderry, the son of Mr. John and Mrs. Margaret Mills. He was the husband of Mrs. Agnes Chapman (formerly Mills), of 94 Dorset Street, Dublin. George’s remains were interred at Serre Road Cemetery No. 2, in plot IV, row H, grave number 5. His headstone inscription, which is partially obscured reads “The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord…”.
Rfn John Mills, 17/1810, reported as having been killed in action. John was born at Ballygowan, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never recovered from the spot where he fell, and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
The Belfast Telegraph of the 2nd July 1917, published a notice of rememberance of Rfn Edward Moore, 17/775, who was killed in action this date. The notice reads “Moore – In loving memory of my dear son, Private Edward (Ted) Moore (775), 10th Batt. R. I. Rifles, killed in action on July 1, 1916. Ever remembered by his loving Mother, Sisters and Brothers (one of the latter on active service). Inserted by his sorrowing Mother, C. Moore. 61 Donegall Road, Belfast.” Ted had been born at St. Anne’s, County Antrim and had enlisted at Belfast to the 17th Battalion. His remains were interred at Serre Road Cemetery No. 2, in plot XII, row J, grave number 5. It is believed that Edward had previously resided at 13 Zetland Street, with his mother and sister, both named Clara.
The wounding in action on this date, of Cpl Edward S. Moore, 10/15622, is subsequently reported in the Belfast Telegraph on 10th July 1916; “Lance-Corporal E. S. Moore, South Belfast Volunteers, wounded in the left cheek-bone on July 1, is in hospital at Cheltenham, Gloucester. He is a member of L.O.L. 731 and the Browning Club Apprentice Boys.”
Rfn Robert Morrow, 17/871, reported as missing on this date, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office in July 1917, as having been killed in action on the 1st July, 1916. Robert had been born at St. Anne’s, County Antrim and had enlisted at Belfast. The Belfast Telegraph of the 23rd July 1917 carried confirmation of the War Office notification. “Morrow – Private Robert Morrow, R.I.R., previously reported missing, now reported killed in action on July 1, 1916. Deeply regretted by his sister-in-law, Sarah Morrow. 19 Rathmore Street, Belfast.” A second notice appeared in the same columns, reporting “Morrow – missing since July 1, 1916, now reported killed on that date (or since), Rifleman Robert Morrow (871), R. I. Rifles, youngest son of the late Stewart and Mary Morrow (late of Glentoran Street), ‘Thy purpose, Lord, we cannot see, but all is well that’s done by thee.’ Deeply regretted by his brother-in-law, Thomas Allen. Also his nephews and neices, Sergt. S. Allen, John, Cissie, and May. 31 Shamrock Street.” Robert’s sacrifice is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. Robert’s nephew, Serjeant S. Allen, served as 12530, Sjt Stewart Allen, Royal Irish Rifles, later serving with the Garrison Battalion of the Royal Irish Fusiliers as Sgt S. Allen, G/19244. He is noted as having signing the Ulster Covenant from 31 Shamrock Street, where he resided in 1912 with Thomas and John Allen.
The death in action on this date, of Rfn Matthew Murphy, 10/15661, is subsequenty reported in the pages of the Belfast Telegraph, 23rd August 1917. Matthew’s photograph, as taken by Turnball and Sons, appears in this edition, the caption reading “Rifleman H. Murphy, Royal Irish Rifles, 21 Excise Street, Belfast, killed.” (the initial is incorrect, but has been verified as the being Matthew, as no other men of that name fell on the 1st July 1916). Matthew was 21 years of age when he fell, and his remains, which were later recovered from the battlefield, were subsequently interred at the Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval, in plot I, row A, grave number 28. He was the son of Mr. Henry and Mrs. Elizbeth Murphy of 21 Excise Street.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #163 on: July 01, 2007, 05:07:16 PM »

Those brave men....

Rfn Robert Neill, 10/482, reported as missing in action on this date. Subsequently confirmed by the War Office, in July 1917, as having been killed in action on 1st July 1916. Robert had been born at Glasgow, but enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never recovered and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. The Belfast Telegraph of the 17th July 1917, carried notices from his family circle, reporting the War Office confirmation of his death. The first, from his mother reads “Mrs. Davis, 145 Durham Street, Belfast, has received official notification that her eldest son, Rifleman Robert Neill, Royal Irish Rifles, who was reported missing since July 1st, 1916, was killed in action on that date. He is the eighteenth member of Sons of Conqueror’s L.O.L. 2005 to fall in the war. Another son, Private James Davis, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was killed in action in October, 1914, while a son-in-law, Corporal Robert Preshur, R.I.R., was killed at Thiepval.” Robert’s brother, James Davis, served as Fus James Davis, 10554, 2nd Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and his brother-in-law, Robert Preshur, is listed below. Both men were former South Belfast Regiment, U.V.F. Robert’s mother also posted a personal notice on her son’s death. It read “Neill – previously reported missing, now officially reported killed in aciton on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Robert Neill, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), eldest and dearly-beloved son of Margaret Davis. ‘What though in lonely grief is sigh, for the beloved no longer nigh, submissive still wound I reply, thy will be done.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing mother, step-father, brother and sisters. Margaret and Samuel Davis. 145 Durham Street.” Both Robert’s sister and younger brother, also posted personal notices in the same edition. His sister wrote “Neill – previously reported missing, now officially reported killed in action on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Robert Neill, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), the dearly-beloved brother of Annie Bingham. ‘We cannot, Lord, thy purpose see, but all is well that’s done by thee.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing sister and brother-in-law, Annie and Robert Bingham (the latter on active service).” The final notice in the Belfast Telegraph reported “Neill – previously reported missing, now reported killed in action on July 1, 1916, Rifleman Robert Neill, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), the dearly-beloved brother of Samuel Davis. ‘In a far-distant land in the field of battle, we know not the spot where our loved one is laid; but forget we’ll never, though times may still alter, to us his memory never shall fade.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing brother and sister-in-law. Samuel and Sarah Davis, 11 Bagot Street.”
The Belfast Telegraph of the 3rd August 1917, reported the confirmation of the death on this date of Rfn Hugh Nicholson, 10/15711. The newspaper article reported “Belfast Casualties. The War Office reports that Rifleman Hugh Nicholson, Royal Irish Rifles, was killed in action on July 1, 1916, on which date he was reported missing. Deceased, who was a member of the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F., leaves a widow and three children, who reside at 30 Ferndale Place, Lisburn Road, Belfast.” The same edition carried personal notices from Hugh’s wife and parents. The first notice reported “Nicholson – previously reported missing on July 1, 1916, now returned killed in action on that date (or since), No. 15711, Rifleman Hugh Nicholson, dearly-beloved husband of Elizabeth Nicholson. Deeply regretted by his wife and children. E. Nicholson. 30 Ferndale Place, Belfast.” The other personal notice came from Hugh’s parents and read “Nicholson – previously reported missing on July 1, 1916, now returned killed in action on that date (or since), No. 15711, Rifleman Hugh Nicholson, dearly-beloved son of Hugh and Ellen Jane Nicholson, 9 Marlboro’ Avenue, Lisburn Road. Inserted by his loving father, mother, sister and brother.” Hugh had been born at Dundonald and had enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never found and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b.
Aged 19 years of age, Rfn Charles Nixon, 17/1829, was reported as missing in action on this date. He had served with B Company, and was subsequently confirmed by the War Office in August 1917, as having been killed in action on the 1st July 1916. His remains were never recovered from the battlefield and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. Charles had been born at Shankill, County Antrim, and had enlisted at Belfast. He was the son of Mrs. Margaret Ann Nixon, of 13 Curzon Street, Belfast and of the late Mr. William John Nixon. He is recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant at the Old Town Hall, giving Curzon Street as his place of residence in 1912. The Belfast Telegraph of the 3rd August 1917 printed the news of the confirmation from the War Office. “Belfast Casualties. Official intimation has been received that Rifleman Charles Nixon, Royal Irish Rifles, who had been missing since July 1, 1916, was killed on that date. Deceased, whose mother resides at 13 Curzon Street, Belfast, was just 19 years of age. He was a member of the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F., and prior to enlistment was a sorting clerk in the G.P.O. Another brother, James, is serving with the North Irish Horse.” The same edition of the Belfast Telegraph also carried notices from the family circle; “Nixon – previously reported since 1st July, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, Rifleman Charles Nixon (1829) Royal Irish Rifles, the dearly beloved son of Margaret and the late William John Nixon. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing Mother, sisters and brothers. 13 Curzon Street.” A further notice reads “Nixon – July 1, 1916, previously reported missing, now reported killed. Rifleman Chalres Nixon (1829), Royal Irish Rifles. Inserted by his loving sister and brother-in-law. Maggie and Isaac Finlay. 22 Cairo Street, Belfast.” In a subsequent edition of the Belfast Telegraph, dated 7th August 1917, a photograph of Charles is published. The caption states “Rflmn. C. Nixon, Royal Irish Rifles, 13 Curzon Street, Belfast, killed.” In this portrait, the sitter is wearing a cap-badge of the Young Citizen’s Volunteers of Ireland. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records Charles as having died whilst serving with the 19th (Reserve) Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles. His ‘supreme sacrifice’ is lovingly remembered on a memorial chair, Sandy Row Orange Hall, which reads ‘In honour of our members of No. 5 District L.O.L. who served in His Majesty’s forces during the Great War, 1914-1918 – Nixon. C. R.I.R. – They came at their Country’s call’.
Rfn Mark Nutt, 10/15703, reported as being missing in action on this date, and subsequently confirmed by the War Office in August 1917, as having been killed in action on the 1st July 1916. Mark was the son of Mrs. Jane Nutt of 36 Ulsterville Gardens, Belfast and resided at 70 Maryville Street at the time of his death. He was a member of the Broadway Presbyterian Church and is commemorated in their book of rememberence. On the 3rd July 1917, his mother posted confirmation of his death in the pages of the Belfast Telegraph; “Mrs. Nutt, Meeting Street, Dromore, and formerly of Broadway, Belfast, has been officially advised that her son, Rifleman Mark Nutt, Royal Irish Rifles, must be presumed to have been killed on July 1, 1916, on which date he had been posted missing. Deceased was in his 20th year, a member of the South Belfast Regiment U.V.F., and before the war worked at Milfort Finishing Co. Two of his brothers are also serving with the Colours.” In a further notice in the same edition, his mother wrote “Nutt – Missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, Rifleman Mark Nutt (15703), Royal Irish Rifles (South Belfast Volunteers), late of Broadway, the dearly-beloved son of Jane Nutt. ‘Short was thy life, my darling son, but peaceful be thy rest; Mother misses you most of all, because she loved you best. We have lost the dearest brother, and we mourn his absence sore; his loving form and kindly face, we’ll see on earth no more.’ Deeply regretted by his loving Mother and sisters, Meeting Street, Dromore. Also his two brothers (on active service).” Mark’s remains were never recovered from where he fell. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. His brothers, Alex and Robert, both served as Riflemen with the 10th Rifles., their service also recorded in the Broadway Presbyterian Church ‘Roll of Honour’. Both Mark, and his mother Jane, along with Minnie and Rebecca Nutt, are recorded as having signed the Ulster Covenant in 1912, at that time residing 8 Benburb Street, Belfast.
Reported as missing in action on the 1st July 1916, Rfn James Park, 10/15755, was subsequently confirmed by the War Office in August 1917, as having been killed in action on this date. James was born at Ballymacarrett, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. The Belfast Telegraph of the 6th August 1917, carried confirmation of James’s death, reporting “Missing since 1st July, 1916, Rifleman James Park, Royal Irish Rifles, is now officially reported killed. He was a member of the East Belfast Regiment U.V.F., and was employed at McKeown’s Foundry. His mother lives at 22 Lismore Street, Belfast.” Notices from James’s family also appeared in subsequent of that edition. “Park – missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, 15755, Rifleman James Park, R.I.R., the beloved son of Sarah and the late David Park. ‘Silently the shades of evening, gather round my lonely door; silently they bring before me, faces I shall see no more. Oh! not lost, but gone before us, let them never be forgot; sweet their memory to the lonely, in our hearts they perish not’. Deeply regretted by his loving Mother, brother, sister-in-law, and two little nephews. Sarah, Willie, Lizzie, John and Thomas Park. 22 Lismore Street.” Further notices read “Park – missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, 15755, Rifleman James Park, Royal Irish Rifles. ‘Duty nobly done’. Deeply regretted by his brother and sister-in-law. George and Maggie Park. 70 Thistle Street.” Another notice reads “Park – missing since July 1, 1916, now offically reported killed on that date, 15755, Rifleman James Park, R.I.R. ‘I deeply mourn for you, dear brother, but now with outward show, for the heart that mourns sincerely, mourns silently and low.’ Sadly mourned by his sorrowing sister and brother-in-law. Sarah and W. J. Heaney (the latter on active service). 22 Lismore Street.” Another of James’s sisters, Maria, wrote “Park – missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, 15755, Rifleman James Park, R.I.R. ‘As dawn crept o’er the trenches, ‘midst shot and shell he fell, my only grief I was not there, to bid him my last farewell.’ Inserted by his loving sister and brother-in-law. Maria and George McVeigh. 10 Clermont Lane. Also his loving aunt and cousin, Rachel and Catherine Reynolds, Ballylinney, Ballyclare.” The final notice on the 6th August 1917 read, “Park – missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date, 15755, Rifleman James Park, Royal Irish Rifles. ‘What though in lonely grief we sigh, for friends beloved no longer nigh; submissive still would we reply, thy will be done.’ Deeply regretted by his uncle, aunt, and cousins – Cassie, Jeannie and Harry (the latter on active service). 7 London Road.” In the Belfast Telegraph of the 25th August 1917, two weeks after the confirmation of his death, a picture of James appeared, bearing the caption “Rflmn. Jas. Park. R.I.R., missing since July 1, 1916. Information to his mother, 22 Lismore Street, Belfast.” Whether this was a mother simply wanting to know the circumstances of her son’s death, or whether Sarah Park was clinging to the hope that the War Office was mistaken, we will never know. We do know that James’s remains were never identified and that he has no known grave. He is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. His sacrifice is also remembered on the Strandtown War Memorial.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t

acheux_rifleman

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Re: South Belfast Volunteers in the Great War
« Reply #164 on: July 01, 2007, 05:08:29 PM »

Those brave men....

Rfn Thomas James Patton, 10/15730, who was born at Shankill, County Antrim and who enlisted at Belfast, is reported as having been killed in action. Thomas’s remains were recovered and interred at Connaught Cemetery, in plot I, row A, grave 4. In early July 1917, Thomas’s family circle posted notices in the Belfast Telegraph to commemorate the first anniversary of his death. His wife, Jeanie, wrote “Patton – in ever-loving memory of my dear husband, Rifleman Thomas J. Patton, 10th Batt. R. I. Rifles, who was killed in action on July 1, 1916. ‘He leaves behind some aching hearts, that loved him ever dear; hearts that never shall forget, his memory written here.’ Inserted by his loving wife and children, Jeanie Patton, 20 Renfrew Street.” The notice, inserted by his father reads, “Patton – in sad and loving memory of my dear son, Rifleman Thomas J. Patton. 10th Batt. R. I. Rifles, who was killed in action on July 1, 1916. ‘Until the day break.’ Ever remembered by his father, sisters and brother (on active service); also his sisters and brother-in-law. 11 Balmoral Street.” The final notice, published on the 2nd July 1917, also remembered with pride, Thomas’s service; “Patton – in ever loving memory of Rifleman Thomas J. Patton, 10th Batt. R. I. Rifles, who was killed in action on July 1, 1916. ‘Midst the battle’s awful din, with firm resolve to die or win, a credit to his uniform, our hero fell, and so we mourn.’ Inserted by his sister-in-law and brother-in-law (on active service), M. and B. Chambers. 15 Renfrew Street.” It is believed that Thomas’s brother-in-law served as Rfn Benjamin Chambers, 17/2052, Royal Irish Rifles.
The son of the late Mr. John and of Mrs. Catherine Peden, Cpl Henry Peden, 10/15772, is reported as having been killed in action. Henry was born at Dromore, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. On enlistment he is recorded as residing Dromore and his parents are recorded by the Imperial War Graves Commission as residing Greenan, Dromore, County Down. Henry’s remains were never recovered and he is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He was 23 years of age when killed.
Cpl Robert Preshur, 10/15744, reported by the Belfast Telegraph on the 24th July 1916, as having been killed in action on the 1st July 1916. The notification reported “Corporal Robert Preshur, Lewis Gun Section, South Belfast Volunteers, who has been killed in action, leaves a wife and six children, who reside at 8 McGahan Street, Linfield Road. He was formerly employed as a steeplejack. A brother and two brothers-in-law are on active service and nothing has been heard of one of the latter, Rifleman Neill, since the advance began. Another brother-in-law fell early in the war. Corporal Preshur was a member of the Special Service Section of the U.V.F.” Further on in the same edition, the newspaper carried notices from Robert’s family circle. The first notice, posted by his wife reads “For King and Country. Preshur – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Corporal Robert Preshur (15744), Lewis Gun Section, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), the dearly beloved husband of Ellen Preshur. ‘All tears are vain, we cannot now recall thee, gone is thy loving voice, thy kindly smile; gone from the home, where we so dearly loved thee – where none again can ever fill thy place. Weary and long we have waited for his coming, but in vain, asked ourselves this hopeless question – will he ever come again? How we long to see our loved one, and to hear his kindly voice, but in heaven with joy we’ll meet him; how our hearts will then rejoice.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing wife and little children, Ellen Preshur. 8 McGahan Street.” His parents also posted a notice in the same columns; “For King and Country. Preshur – killed in action on July 1, 1916, Corporal Robert Preshur (15744), Lewis Gun Section, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), the dearly loved son of John and Elizabeth Preshur. ‘It Is hard to be a mother and see her loved one go, to a distant land and take a stand – against a cruel foe; it is heard to be a mother, yet though our poor hearts break, we’ll smile with the rest, and give our best, for King and our Country’s sake.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing father and mother, John and Elizabeth Preshur. 26 Linfield Road.” A further, vivid report in this edition, posted by Robert’s brother Andrew, who served as Driver Andrew Preshur, T/27241, with the Army Service Corps,  reflected the fact that he too was aware of the horrors of active service; “For King and Country. Preshur – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Corporal Robert Preshur (15744), Lewis Gun Section, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers). ‘Sadly missed from the field of conflict, where the wounded and the slain, lay with pale and upturned faces, some in peace and some in pain. Slow they bore a valiant soldier, who had fallen in the fight, and to them he faintly whispered – Comrades, let me sleep tonight!’ Deeply regretted by his loving brother and sister-in-law, Andrew and Annie Preshur (the former on active service in Egypt). 72 Donegall Road.” The final notice in this edition read “For King and Country. Preshur – Killed in action on July 1, 1916, Corporal Robert Preshur (15744), Lewis Gun Section, R.I.R. (South Belfast Volunteers), the dearly-beloved son-in-law of Margaret Davis, 145 Durham Street. ‘Though dark my path and sad my lot, let me be still and murmer not; and breathe the prayer divinely taught, “Thy Will be Done.” Deeply regretted by his loving mother-in-law and sister-in-law; also his brother-in-law.”  To mark the first anniversary of Robert’s death, his wife posted another notice in the Belfast Telegraph on the 2nd July 1917. It reads “Preshur – In sad and loving memory of my dear husband, Corporal Robert Preshur (Lewis Gun Section), 10th Royal Irish Rifles, killed in action, 1st July 1916. ‘He loved duty and honour more than he feared death. What though in lonely grief I sigh, for one I loved no longer nigh, submissive still would I reply, thy will be done.’ Deeply regretted by his sorrowing wife and six little children. Ellen Preshur. 8 McGahan Street.” The final notice that commemorates Robert’s service appeared in the Belfast Telegraph on the 17th July 1917; “Mrs. Davis, 145 Durham Street, Belfast, has received official notification that her eldest son, Rifleman Robert Neill, Royal Irish Rifles, who was reported missing since July 1st, 1916, was killed in action on that date. He is the eighteenth member of the Sons of Conqueror’s L.O.L. 2005 to fall in the war. Another son, Private James Davis, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was killed in action in October, 1914, while a son-in-law, Corporal Robert Preshur, R.I.R., was killed at Thiepval.” Robert is recorded as having been born at Shankill, County Antrim and having enlisted at Belfast. His remains were never recovered from the spot where he fell and he is therefore remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, pier and face 15a and 15b. He is also recorded on the Ulster Covenant as having resided with Ellen at 26 Railway Street in 1912 and having signed the Covenant at the Old Town Hall.
Rfn Isaac Richardson, 17/51, husband of Elizabeth Richardson of 39 Abingdon Street, Donegall Road, Belfast, reported as missing in action. His remains were subsequently recovered and the War Office, in 1917, confirmd him as having bee killed in action, aged 36 years. Isaac had been born at Banbridge, County Down and enlisted at Belfast. His remains were interred at the Connaught Cemetery in plot I, row A, grave number 27. The Belfast Telegraph of the 13th July 1917, recorded the notification of his death: “Rank and File Losses. Mrs. Richardson, 39 Abingdon Street, Belfast has received official intimation that her husband, Rifleman Isaac Richardson, Royal Irish Rifles, reported missing on 1st July, 1916, was killed on that date or since. Before enlisting he was employed in Linfield Mill.” The same newspaper, 21st July 1917, recorded notices from friends and family. The first, from his wife, Elizabeth read; “Richardson – missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date (or since), Private Isaac Richardson (1751) Royal Irish Rifles, the beloved husband of Elizabeth Richardson. ‘Weary and long have we waited, for his coming, but all in vain, asking ourselves this hopeless question, will he ever return again? He little thought when leaving home, it would be his last good-bye, but some day we hope to meet him, in that happy home on high. Sleep on, dear father, thy task is o’er, your hands for us will toil no more.’ Deeply regretted by his wife and four little children. Elizabeth Richardson. 39 Abingdon Street.” The next notice reads “Richardson – Missing since July 1, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date (or since), Rifleman Isaac Richardson (1751), R.I. Rilfes. ‘At the river’s crystal brink, Christ shall join each broken link.’ Deeply regretted by his father-in-law and mother-in-law. Robert and Fanny Hyndman. Also his sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law. 39 Abingdon Street.” Another listing appears in this edition, posted by Isaac’s lodge of the Ancient Order of Foresters. The notice reads “A.O.F. – Belfast District. Richardson – The Officers and Members of Court Duke of Abercorn, No. 8390, deeply regret the loss of Rifleman Br. Isaac Richardson (1751), missing since 1st July, 1916, now officially reported killed on that date. James Copeland, D.C.R. Francis Rea, District Secretary, Richard Jackson, C.R., Court 8390, Thos. Clarke, Secretary, Court 8390.” Also reported in this edition, under ‘Ulster Division News’ was the fact that “The War Office reports that Rflmn. Isaac Richardson, Royal Irish Rifles, who had been missing since July 1, 1916, must be regarded as killed on that date. Deceased, who was a member of the A.O.F., leaves a widow and four little children, who resided at 39 Abingdon Street, Belfast.” A photograph of Isaac also appears, with the caption “Rifleman I. Richardson Royal Irish Rifles, 39 Abingdon Street, Belfast, killed in action.” Subsequent to the confirmation of Isaac’s death, there was a meeting of the Ancient Order of Foresters Court, of which Isaac had been a member. On the 31st July 1917, the Court posted another notice in the Belfast Telegraph reporting “At the last meeting of Court Duke of Abercorn, A.O.F., the Secretary reported the death of Br. Isaac Richardson, R.I.R. who was now officially reported killed on July 1, 1916. A resolution of sympathy with his widow and other relatives was passed in a manner suitable to the occasion, and the Bretheren bore testimony to the simplicity of the life and the noble character of the deceased. This is the third member of the Order in Belfast District who has fallen in the war. It may also be mentioned that the deceased’s brother-in-law – Company Sergeant-Major Hyndman, R.I.R., and also a member of this court – was severely wounded on the same date, and has since been declared unfit for active service.” Isaac is recorded on the Ulster Covenant as having resided at 93 Abbyden Street, Belfast, in 1912 and as signing the Covenant at the City Hall.
Intially reported as missing in action on this date, Rfn Thomas Robinson, 10/15855, was subsequently confirmed by the War Office in April 1917, as having been killed in action on the 1st July 1916. On the 12th April 1917, the Belfast Telegraph carried confirmation of Thomas’s death. The notice read “Robinson – missing since July 1, 1916, now reported killed in action on that date, Rifleman Thomas Robinson, R. I. Rifles. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing father and mother, Thomas and Annie Robinson. Also his brother and sister-in-law, Wm. A. Robinson and Martha Robinson. 34 Cosgrave Street.” Worse news was to subsequently be received by the family. Although the notice that was published in April had contained the name of Thomas’s brother, William, he too had been listed as missing in action on the 1st July. On the 30th July 1917, the newspaper reported the news that both had been confirmed as having been killed on the first day of the Somme offensive; “Belfast Brothers’ Fate. The War Office reports that Rifleman Thomas Robinson, Royal Irish Rifles, who has been missing since July 1, 1916, was killed on that date. His brother, Private William Robinson, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was killed on the same day. They were sons of Mr. Richard Robinson, 108 Bentham Street, Belfast. Before enlisting, Thomas, who was 20 years of age, was a member of the South Belfast U.V.F., and worked at the Queen’s Island. His brother, who was 22 years of age, was in India when the war broke out. He served at the Dardanelles, where he was wounded, and after recovery was sent to France.” A photograph of the brothers was subsequently printed in the Belfast Telegraph on the 7th August 1917. The caption reads “Rflmn. Thos. Robinson and Pte. Wm. Robinson, two sons of Mr. R. Robinson, 108 Bentham Street, Belfast, who have made the supreme sacrifice. Thomas belonged to the Royal Irish Rifles, and his brother was serving with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.”  William had served as Pte William Robinson, 10388, 1st Battlion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. The remains of neither brother were ever recovered from the battlefield, and both are remembered on the Thiepval Memorial – Thomas on pier and face 15a and 15b, his brother on pier and face 4d and 5b. Thomas is further remembered in Sandy Row Orange Hall, his name appearing upon the Memorial Chair, dedicated by the Officers and Members of  No. 5 District, L.O.L. Thomas is recorded as having been born, and enlisted at Belfast.

Acheux.

We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further - it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or t