1st Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (British Army)
Date Of Birth:
15/08/1915 (Died of Wounds)
James King was the son of John and Mary King, of Blackhill, Cookstown. James enlisted with the Inniskillings at Omagh and was posted to the 1st Battalion, and subsequently to Gallipoli. Private James King was seriously wounded in the attack and died a short time later. He has no known grave and is commemorated on panel 97-101 at Helles Memorial, Turkey.
James King was the youngest son of John and Mary King. John King and Mary Coulton were married in Omagh on 19th November 1874.
James King was born 4th August 1889 in Omagh. He was one of eleven children, eight surviving. All the children were born in Omagh.
Known family: John King, Mary King, Mary King (born 23rd August 1875), John Joseph King (born 21st November 1876), Catherine King (born 29th June 1878), John Joseph King (born 23rd May 1880), Eliza Lizzie King (born 2nd September 1884), Rebecca King (born 9th May 1887), James King (born 4th August 1889), Sarah King (born 20th January 1893).
The 1901 census lists James as 10 years old, living with the family at house 22 in Blackhill / Derryloran in Cookstown. His father John King was a farm labourer. His mother was a domestic servant. James is listed as a scholar and was educated in Cookstown.
The 1911 census lists James 23 years old. He is recorded as a mill worker. He worked at Adairís Mill, Greenvale, Cookstown.
James played regularly for the local Greenvale Swifts Football Club alongside his team mates Michael Lawn and John McCaffrey, both of whom were also killed in action.
Greenvale Football Club - Middle Row : Left to Right : Michael Lawn, James King and John McCaffrey
James enlisted with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in Omagh on 8th August 1914.
Private James King and was posted to the 3rd Battalion. He was subsequently attached to the 1st Battalion.
Private King left for the Dardanelles with a draft for the 1st Battalion.
The 1st Battalion Inniskillings were in the Helles sector at Gallipoli and were soon to leave for the Suvla Bay area, but on the night of August 14th 1915 the Turks exploded a mine that had been tunnelled towards the Inniskilling trench lines. This precipitated wave after wave of Turkish attacks, which were beaten back from the Inniskilling lines.
Captain OíSullivan and Sergeant Somers beat back the advancing Turks with bomb after bomb and held their line, an action that would warrant both men the Victoria Cross.
Private James King was seriously wounded in the attack and died a short time later on Saturday 14th August 1915.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 5th September 1915:
Mr John King, Blackhill, Cookstown, has received official notification that his son, Private James King, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was killed at the Dardanelles. Private King, who enlisted shortly after the war broke out, was only about 20 years of age, and was employed at Greenvale Mills.
Private King has no known grave and is commemorated on the Helles Memorial in Turkey.
The CWGC record Private James King as the son of John and Mary King of Blackhill, Cookstown, Co. Tyrone.