Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
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Date Name Information
29/08/2018 Pte. William Stewart 01580
29/08/2018 Pte. William Stewart 01579
29/08/2018 Pte. William Stewart 01578
29/08/2018 Pte. William Stewart 01577
29/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde The remains of Corporal Robert Forde, of the 9th Battalion Inniskilling Fusiliers, stationed at Randalstown, were buried with full military honours in Antrim Cemetery on Saturday. The deceased, who was a native of Bardahessiagh, Pomeroy, was a young man of sterling character, and was a general favourite in the camp. He had been an esteemed section leader of the Pomeroy Company, Dungannon Battalion, U.V.F, and on volunteering for service with the Inniskillings, was rapidly promoted. He became ill with scarlet fever a short time ago, and was removed to Antrim Hospital, where he died. A detachment of officers and men from Randalstown attended the funeral, and wreaths were sent by the officers and men of the battalion. The coffin, which was covered with a Union Jack, was borne on a gun carriage, which was preceded by a detachment of the deceased’s comrades and band with muffled drums. The father of the deceased and Lieutenant Colonel R T G Lowry, D.L., Pomeroy House, followed immediately behind the coffin, and there was a large attendance of the general public. The services were conducted by Rev W A Adams, B.A., chaplain of the forces, Antrim, and Rev George Kelly, B.A., of Pomeroy, and the last named paid a tribute at the graveside to the esteem in which the deceased had been held in his native district. The solemn service at the grave was concluded by the sounding of the Last Post by the buglers.
29/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde 01576
29/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 5th June 1915: Pomeroy Volunteer’s Death
29/08/2018 Staff Nurse Rachel Ferguson Miss Rachel Ferguson, daughter of Mr and Mrs John S Ferguson, Lanebrooke, Ballygoney, is one of four nurses from the royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast, who volunteered and were accepted by the War Office for Red Cross hospital work. Miss Ferguson was asked to report herself at the headquarters in London, and was subsequently sent to Malta, for which place she sailed on S.S. Mongolia a few days ago.
29/08/2018 Staff Nurse Rachel Ferguson 01575
29/08/2018 Staff Nurse Rachel Ferguson From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 5th June 1915:
28/08/2018 Pte. Robert Cander 01574
28/08/2018 Pte. Robert Cander 01573
28/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson There is no evidence to suggest Robert Thompson ever lived in the Cookstown area.
28/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The 1911 census lists Robert as age 15, living with his grandparents at house 29 in Killinchy. Robert was a farm labourer. His birthplace is given as County Derry.
28/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The 1901 census lists Robert James as age 5, living with his grandparents at house 25 in Killinchy, County Down. His birthplace is given as Derry.
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor 01572
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor Thanks to Mid Ulster Council who supplied us with this photo of his grave.
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor He lies between Private Joseph Burns (left of picture) and Private Robert Blair (right of picture).
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor 01571
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor 01570
27/08/2018 Sgt. William Taylor 01569
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson In his will James left all to his mother.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson 01568
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The CWGC record Private Robert Thompson as the son of the late Thomas and Matilda Thompson of Dundonald, County Down.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Private Robert Thompson is commemorated on the Killinchy Parish Church of Ireland WW1 Roll of Honour.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The grave inscription reads: GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Private Thompson was interred in Warloy Baillon Communal Cemetery Extension in France.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Private Robert Thompson died of his wounds the following day on Sunday 2nd July 1916. He was twenty years old.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Private Robert Thompson was seriously wounded on the first day of the Somme offensive and was taken to a field ambulance at Warloy Baillon.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Private Thompson later transferred to the 108th Company Machine Gun Corps (No. 17774).
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Robert James Thompson enlisted in Downpatrick and served with the 13th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (No. 18823).
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The 1911 census does not list Robert as living with family in Killinchy, County Down. His father was still working as a coachman.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson The 1901 census does not list Robert as living with family at Drumshanbo Glebe, Killeenan, County Tyrone. He would have been around 6 years old. Thomas was a coachman.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Family: Thomas Thompson, Matilda Thompson, John Thompson (born 4th January 1894, Magherafelt), Robert Thompson (born 13th August 1895, Magherafelt), William Thompson (born 31st May 1898, Cookstown).
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson According to GRONI, Robert was born in Magherafelt on 13th August 1895. He was the second of three sons.
26/08/2018 Pte. Robert Thompson Robert Thompson was the son of Thomas and Matilda Thompson. Thomas Thompson and Matilda McKee were married on 23rd March 1893 in the district of Magherafelt.
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott Some of the newspaper reports seem to confusing two different John Scotts. Both served together with the Canadians. Jack Scott’s number was 922. John Scott’s number was 923. Both hailed from the same area, Loup / Ballyronan / Moneymore.
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott John Suffern Scott enlisted with his cousin John. He too was called John Scott. He was known as Jack Scott. Jack’s Scott’s father was called William.
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott John Scott enlisted at Valcartier Camp in Quebec on 21st September 1914 and joined the 8th Battalion Canadian Infantry. He claimed he was eighteen, but in fact he had just turned sixteen a month earlier.
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott 01567
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: With the Canadians – Moneymore Man’s Experience (Jack Scott- cousin of John Suffern Scott)
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan Private John Sloan was serving with the 5th Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in France when he was killed in action along with four comrades on 17th October 1918.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan Private Sloan then went with the British Force to Greece where he was injured once more on 4th December 1915.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan Private Sloan then served in the Dardanelles, where he was shot on the shoulder on 15th May 1915. He spent some time in hospital in Cardiff recovering from his injury.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan Private Sloan was a reservist in the 5th Inniskillings, and went to France with the First Expeditionary Force in 1914.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan John enlisted in Cookstown with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan GRONI has a record of the death of a Maggie Sloan in the Cookstown area on 12th November 1914. There is no report in the Mid Ulster Mail from that time.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan The 1911 census lists Mary Jane as living with the Thompson family in William Street, Cookstown.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan The 1911 census lists John as age 17, living with his grandmother at house 1 in Tullyconnell, Tullaghoge, County Tyrone. John was a farm servant.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan The 1901 census lists John as age 10, living with his grandmother at house 3 in Lurganboy, Tullaghoge, County Tyrone. His seven year old cousin, Mary Jane Hanna, was also living with them.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan No details of his parents are available.
26/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan John Sloan was born in Tullyconnell, Ardtrea, in Cookstown on 7th January 1891.
26/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott His brother George Scott also served throughout the war and survived. His cousin Jack also survived the war.
25/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott ‘I am sure you were very anxious for a few days when you saw in the papers the sort of fighting the Canadians had come through. No doubt we suffered very heavy losses, but we held the line and kept the Germans back. I guess you saw in the papers where the Germans tried to break through our lines, but were stopped by the Canadians. I can tell you it was one of the bloodiest battles that ever was fought since the war begun. On the 22nd we were in the first line of trenches when early in the morning we discovered a cloud of greenish smoke coming from the German trenches, and we did not know what it was until it came into the trenches and then we knew too well when we started to drop for the want of breath, and at the same time they kept shelling our trenches with shrapnel, but still our boys held on. Then the Germans started to advance in three lines, but when our lads heard the enemy was advancing they jumped to their posts, although nearly half dead with poison, and made their rifles speak out ‘No Surrender’. Our fire so quick and effective they had to retire again. We repulsed them three times that morning, each time with heavy losses. But that was only the beginning of what was to come. Next day the poison came again and the awfulest shell fire ever witnessed, but still we held on for our lads were determined to do or die. We have got one of the best colonels in the British Army, Colonel Lipsett, and he formerly belonged to the Royal Irish Regiment. It makes me sigh with pain when I think of so many of my brave comrades who have gone never to return. I never expected to come out alive, but the Lord brought me through safe and sound. I got my rifle smashed in my hand with shrapnel and I had bullet wounds in my boots and tunic and yet I never got a scratch.’
25/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott Private John Scott, of the 90th Winnipeg Rifles, writing to his father, Mr William Scott, Ballygrooby, Moneymore, says:-
25/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan Private John Sloan, 2nd Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, got a bullet through his shoulder on 15th May, and is at present in hospital in Cardiff. His cousin, Mary Jane Hanna, William Street, Cookstown, received a letter from him this week stating that he is progressing favourably, and hopes to be home for a few days soon.
25/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan 01566
25/08/2018 Pte. John Sloan From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915:
25/08/2018 Pte. Edward McGeown Private McGeown, who was only twenty years old, was very popular in Cookstown and well-known as a footballer, being a member of Blackburn Football Club. He was of a cheerful disposition, and filled with the spirit of loyalty and patriotism for the Empire. Much sympathy is felt for his parents and other relatives in their bereavement. An older brother, who was in a Derbyshire Regiment, and who went through the Boer war unscathed, died later at Singapore as a result of sunstroke.
25/08/2018 Pte. Edward McGeown Mr James McGeown, Killymoon Street, Cookstown, has received intimation from the War Office that his son, Private Edward McGeown, 1st Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, has been killed in action at the Dardanelles. A little over two years ago the deceased enlisted in the 4th Hussars, but after a year’s service, he was operated on for appendicitis, and being considered unfit for a cavalry unit, and refusing to transfer to a foot regiment, he was discharged. At the outbreak of the war however, he re-enlisted in the Inniskillings, and only a few weeks ago went out with a draft from Londonderry. His parents received a letter from him about ten days ago, a cheerful, encouraging and loving letter, in which he said:- ‘We have not done any fighting yet, but by all appearances it won’t be very long now. We are all ready to face the music and the men are all in the best of health.’
25/08/2018 Pte. Edward McGeown 01565
25/08/2018 Pte. Edward McGeown From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Private Edward McGeown
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless Robert Lawless was a leading member of Cookstown Whites Football Club.
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless If I come across a handy souvenir I will send it home to you. They are easily got when we are advancing, but at present we are at a standstill. But before long, and with the help of Carson’s Army, we should surely shift them. There is great fighting going on here at present, but I cannot say where. If the people of Ireland saw how the chapels are smashed to the ground as I have seen them. Where we are at present there is a little chapel and graveyard and it is a pitiful sight. I saw a grave yesterday where a child of 20 months old was buried in a vault. A ‘Jack Johnston’ blew up the vault, grave and all the remains of the child were scattered all about. The chapel is like the ruins of some old building of long ages ago. The statues of our Lord are lying about with legs and arms smashed to atoms. You speak of the poison gas by the Huns. It is terrible to behold the sight of men lying dead with not a mark on them. Let your letter be thrice as long as the last. Go on the Whites!’
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless ‘I received your letter with the greatest pleasure, also a parcel of cigarettes, which were gratefully appreciated. You refer to my gallant deeds. I have done my share as fat as lay in my power, thank God. I was once very nearly in the hands of the brutes – as everyone calls them. On Halloweve day we got orders to advance to take the village of Messines, supported by the London Scottish, who, as you may have read, got the full praise. My company ( c ) where ordered to drive the enemy out of their trenches, which we did up to 9pm. My officer then ordered me to take my section and take a trench occupied by the Huns on our left front. As we advanced I heard great shouting coming from the trench to which we were advancing. I was not feeling happy, advancing with only twelve men, but was surprised and delighted to find only dead Huns in the trench, and the noise being made by two of our own native troops ‘Sioux’, who had been wounded. On had a bad wound in the leg and the other a bayonet trust in his breast. We threw the dead out of the trench and prepared to occupy it ourselves, but an order came for us to retire again to the village of Messines, which was only 100 yards back. We left the London Scottish in possession of the village and surroundings, for which they got the praise, but it was the old ‘Skins who paved the way for them. Most of the regiment were employed bringing up the wounded Huns and native troops into the village. I and three men were left in charge of the wounded Germans until the Medical corps could get them away. There were many wounded and the ambulance had to come up three or four times to get them all away. They left two on my hands at the last, and has daylight had come the ambulance could not come up again, and I had got orders to join my company again before daylight. They were lying on the right of the village where they had slipped into a better position during the night. My men and the two wounded prisoners were having a meal in a house when I heard the sound of running feet. It was the London Scottish tearing through the village with a whole horde of Huns on their heels. When the men, the prisoners and I came out, I was frightened to see so many of the enemy only fifty yards distant and coming towards us. I was sure all of us would be captured, bout owing to our having treated the prisoners well, we escaped. The prisoners shouted something to the advancing Huns, who did not fire at us, although they could easily have riddled the lot of us. As you know I can run fairly well on the football field, but I never ran as I did that morning. I could have beaten the one-time Willie Roy. Still, it was three hours before I rejoined my company. Soon after, the Huns were driven back again through the village by other troops, I think French, as we were relieved that day. That’s how I cracked my nuts on Halloweve; not exactly as I wanted them cracked.
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless Lance Corporal Robert Lawless, Inniskilling Fusiliers, a leading member of Cookstown Whites F.C., writing to a chum on 13th May, says:-
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless 01564
25/08/2018 L/Corp Robert Lawless From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Cookstown Footballer’s Halloweve
23/08/2018 Pte. John Jordan Private John Jordan, Moneymore, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, killed in action on 14th May. Private Jordan was a reservist, and was called up at the mobilisation and left for France on 23rd August 1914 and had been through several engagements, including the Battle of Mons. Much sympathy is felt for his mother and sisters in their sad bereavement. Another brother is in the same battalion and left for the front at the same time as the deceased, while two other brothers are in training at Shane’s Park camp, Randalstown. The late Private Jordan took a great interest in the U.V.F. before he was called up for active service.
23/08/2018 Pte. John Jordan 01563
23/08/2018 Pte. John Jordan From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Private John Jordan
22/08/2018 Pte. John Harvey Three privates of the 9th Battalion Inniskilling Fusiliers, encamped at Randalstown, who had absentees for the previous ten days, were on Saturday arrested in Cookstown. Head Constable O’Neill arrested one – Samuel Spiers, and Sergeant Hayes the others – W Harvey and J Watters. They are all natives of the town. They were brought before Mr H Alfred Mann, J.P., and charged with being absentees. They were remanded in custody for a week or pending the arrival of an escort. The escort arrived on Monday, in charge of Sergeant Reid (formerly on the compositing staff of the Mid Ulster Mail), and conveyed the accused to Randalstown.
22/08/2018 Pte. John Harvey 01561
22/08/2018 Pte. John Harvey From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Deserters Arrested in Cookstown (Private William Harvey – half-brother of John Harvey)
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers In his Will, Samuel left all to his wife, Annie Speirs.
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers In the event of my death I give the whole of my property to my wife Mrs Annie Speirs. Private Samuel Speirs, 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers 01562
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers Last Will and Testament of Private William Speirs dated 21st September 1915:
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers Three privates of the 9th Battalion Inniskilling Fusiliers, encamped at Randalstown, who had absentees for the previous ten days, were on Saturday arrested in Cookstown. Head Constable O’Neill arrested one – Samuel Spiers, and Sergeant Hayes the others – W Harvey and J Watters. They are all natives of the town. They were brought before Mr H Alfred Mann, J.P., and charged with being absentees. They were remanded in custody for a week or pending the arrival of an escort. The escort arrived on Monday, in charge of Sergeant Reid (formerly on the compositing staff of the Mid Ulster Mail), and conveyed the accused to Randalstown.
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers 01561
22/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Spiers From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Deserters Arrested in Cookstown
21/08/2018 Pte. James Herbert Clarke 01560
21/08/2018 Pte. James Herbert Clarke 01559
21/08/2018 Pte. James Herbert Clarke Many thanks to Geert Brouckaert, who photographed the headstone.
20/08/2018 Pte. James Espey Mrs Espie, Church Street, Cookstown, has received a post card from her husband, Private James Espey, who has been at the Dardanelles since February, dated 1st May, in which he says he is wounded and in hospital and hopes to be on duty soon again. On Thursday last she received intimation from the War Office dated 14th May, stating that he is posted ‘Missing’. It seems hard to reconcile the two messages. The post card is in his own handwriting, and it would appear he was not in a serious condition, That between the 1st and the 14th he had returned to the firing line and was taken prisoner seems the only possible explanation.
20/08/2018 Pte. James Espey 01558
20/08/2018 Pte. James Espey From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Cookstown Casualties
20/08/2018 Pte. Francis Tohill Word has been received that Private Francis Tohill, son of Henry Tohill, Rainey Street; Private Pat Doherty, son of James Doherty. Queen Street; Private John Kearns, Tullyinksay; Private George McLean, Ballynagowan; and Lance Corporal T McGurk, Rosegarland, have been wounded, and are at present in hospital somewhere in France.
20/08/2018 Pte. Francis Tohill 01557
20/08/2018 Pte. Francis Tohill From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915:
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry Mrs Jane Curry, Drapersfield, has received a letter from her son, Private William Curry, attached to the Special Reserve, 3rd Battalion Inniskilling Fusiliers, who has been at the front for a considerable time, that he has been wounded and is in a military hospital in Essex, England. His injury was received in the fighting on Sunday 16th May. He makes kind enquiries about others from the neighbourhood whom he knows have been in the firing line.
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry 01556
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Private William Currie (brother of Hugh Currie)
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry Mrs Jane Curry, Drapersfield, has received a letter from her son, Private William Curry, attached to the Special Reserve, 3rd Battalion Inniskilling Fusiliers, who has been at the front for a considerable time, that he has been wounded and is in a military hospital in Essex, England. His injury was received in the fighting on Sunday 16th May. He makes kind enquiries about others from the neighbourhood whom he knows have been in the firing line.
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry 01556
17/08/2018 Pte. Hugh Curry From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915: Private William Currie (brother of Hugh Currie)
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne Private Joseph Bayne was later sent to Greece for more hospital treatment.
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne His wife, who was by then living in Coagh Street, received a letter from him in May saying he was in hospital in Malta.
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne Private Joseph Bayne was with the 1st Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in Gallipoli where he was seriously wounded in the back.
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne Mrs Bayne, Coagh Street, Cookstown, has received a letter from her husband, Private Joseph Bayne, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers that he was wounded in the back and is in hospital at Malta.
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne 01555
17/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Bayne From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 29th May 1915:
16/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell Another brother, David Mitchell, survived the war.
16/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell Mr and Mrs John Mitchell, Coagh, have given four sons to serve their King and country. Mr and Mrs Thomas Mitchell come second with three sons in the Ulster Division. Altogether since the beginning, Coagh and district is nobly responding to the call.
16/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell 01554
16/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 22nd May 1915:
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Mitchell Mr and Mrs John Mitchell, Coagh, have given four sons to serve their King and country. Mr and Mrs Thomas Mitchell come second with three sons in the Ulster Division. Altogether since the beginning, Coagh and district is nobly responding to the call.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Mitchell 01554
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Mitchell From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 22nd May 1915:
16/08/2018 Pte. James Mitchell Mr and Mrs John Mitchell, Coagh, have given four sons to serve their King and country. Mr and Mrs Thomas Mitchell come second with three sons in the Ulster Division. Altogether since the beginning, Coagh and district is nobly responding to the call.
16/08/2018 Pte. James Mitchell 01554
16/08/2018 Pte. James Mitchell From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 22nd May 1915:
16/08/2018 Pte. Matthew Hagan Matthew Hagan’s medal card records that he was a Private with the North Irish Horse (No. 1480), the Staffordshire Yeomanry (No 71398) and the Corps of Hussars (No 71398).
16/08/2018 Pte. Matthew Hagan Trooper Matthew Hagan is buried in Beirut War Cemetery.
16/08/2018 Pte. Matthew Hagan 01553
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor The 1911 census lists Mary Hayes as age 20, a charwoman living with the Whann family in Coolreaghs. William Whann, one of the family, aged 19, also died in the war.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor 01552
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Private Joseph Taylor is commemorated on Cookstown Cenotaph and St. Luran’s Church of Ireland Roll of Honour, Derryloran, Cookstown.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Private Joseph Taylor is buried in Cuinchy Communal Cemetery in France.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Hugh Taylor received a letter of condolence from Quarter-Master Sergeant M Mahaffy.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Private Joseph Taylor was as killed in action at around 6 a.m. on the morning of Wednesday 5th May 1915. Private Taylor was buried at 4pm that day.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor At the opening of the Battle of Festubert the battalion was called upon to show their mettle in attack. Up until 15th May 1915 they had encountered little resistance. It was reported that there had been 6 men killed and 40 wounded.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor On 25th January 1915 the 2nd Inniskillings were posted to 5th Infantry Brigade, 2nd Division, but came into no serious action for some time.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Joseph’s brother, Sergeant William Taylor, was recruiting with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers when he contracted pneumonia in Cookstown and died on 20th January 1915.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Joseph was called back to his old regiment at the outbreak of the First World War.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Family: Joseph Taylor, Mary Taylor, Jane Taylor (born 8th September 1914).
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor They lived at Coolreaghs, near Cookstown. They had one child. Jane Taylor was born on 8th September 1914 in Cookstown.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Joseph Taylor and Mary Hayes were married on 2nd September 1911 in the district of Cookstown.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Both men retired from the army to work in Cookstown.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Joseph and William Taylor both served with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers during the Boer War in South Africa.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Known family: parents unknown, Joseph Taylor, William Taylor
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Joseph Taylor was born in Dungannon about 1867.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor ‘France, 6th May 1915. To Mr Hugh Taylor. Dear sir, I received a letter yesterday addressed to No 2445, Private J Taylor and I am very sorry to have to inform you that he was killed about 6am yesterday morning. It will I hope be some consolation to you to know that he suffered no pain as his death was instantaneous. He was buried yesterday afternoon, about 4pm, the burial service being conducted by the chaplain in a little cemetery behind the trenches. A wooden cross bearing his rank, name, regiment and the date, has been placed at the head of the grave. You will probably receive an official communication from the War Office. Should you require any further particulars which I can furnish, I shall only be too pleased to help. Would you kindly let any other of his relatives who are alive know the facts, and, as I understand he was married, would you kindly let her know as I have not got her address, and you may be able to break the news more gently to her than I could in a letter. Someone sends him out a small packet of tobacco every week, and if you know who the sender is, you can tell them he received a packet on the afternoon before his death. With deepest sympathy I remain, yours sincerely, M Mahaffy, Quarter Major Sergeant, C Company, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.’
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor The following is a copy of the letter received:-
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor 01551
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 15th May 1915:
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor A letter has been received from the sergeant major of C Company, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, stating that on 5th May, Private Joseph Taylor, No 2445, was instantaneously killed, and that his body had been interred in the little cemetery behind the trenches the same afternoon. Private Taylor was about 48 years of age, and leaves a widow and one child, about two years of age. He was an old militia man, and had seen service in the South African war, for which he received two medals, and was well known in the district, being engaged in the dealing business all over the country. He was called up when the war broke out and went to the front about 1st November last. He resideas at Coolreaghs, Cookstown, and was a brother of Sergeant William Taylor, who had been recruiting officer for some time, and who died in January last.
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor 01550
16/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 15th May 1915: Private Joseph Taylor
15/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor Inserted by his sorrowing wife (Mary Taylor, Coolreaghs) and little daughter Jane.
15/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor TAYLOR – 5th May, killed in action in France, Joseph Taylor, 2445, Private, C Company, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, late of Coolreaghs, Cookstown, aged 48 years.
15/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor 01549
15/08/2018 Pte. Joseph Taylor From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 15th May 1915:
14/08/2018 Capt George Malcolm Dunlop Captain George Malcolm Dunlop, of the 1st Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers, was killed in action at the Dardanelles on the 25th April, the day of the landing of the Allied forces in the Gallipoli Peninsula. The deceased was the youngest and last surviving son of Mrs Dunlop, St Helens, Holywood, sister of Mr J B Gunning Moore, D.L., Coolnafranky. The telegram from the War Office conveying the sad intelligence has just been received at St Helens, and the news was immediately forwarded to Mrs Dunlop, who has been in London for the past six months, but who is expected home in a fortnight. The blow is all the more severe in so much as the deceased’s brother, Second Lieutenant J G M Dunlop, of the 2nd Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers, was killed in France last August. Mrs Dunlop is now left with only one child of the marriage, a daughter, but has three step-children – Colonel Archibald Dunlop, stationed at St Albans, Dr Shuldam Dunlop, who is in Australia, and Mrs Elliott Hill, of Fairholme, St Helen’s Bay. The deceased officer was 25 years of age, and was educated at Cheltenham. He joined the Dublin Fusiliers in 1906, and received his captaincy last December. We are sure we express the universal feeling in Cookstown in tendering our sympathy to Mr Gunning Moore in this double bereavement.
14/08/2018 Capt George Malcolm Dunlop 01548
14/08/2018 Capt George Malcolm Dunlop From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 8th May 1915: Captain G M Dunlop
11/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Rice A popular wedding took place on Tuesday morning in Tamlaght Parish Church, the contracting parties being Private Samuel Rice, 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, Randalstown Camp, and Mrs Mary Kempton, widow of the late Henry Kempton, Coagh, County Tyrone. The best man was Mr James Kempton, Coagh, and the bridesmaid was Miss Bella Hudson, Coagh. The party drove to Castledawson and spemt a very pleasant day, and at night returned to the home of the bride, where the reception was held. A large number of their friends awaited their return, and after supper had been served by Miss Anne Loughran, Miss Mary Creighton and Miss Maggie Hagan, a really enjoyable hour followed. The following contributed songs etc., Mr Thomas Young, Mr bob Hagan, Mr Charles Cowden. Mr Thompson gave a couple of recitations, and Mr James Smith gave a step dance, the music being supplied by Mr H M McCorkell, Coagh. After all wishing the pair future good luck, the merry party broke up at midnight.
11/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Rice 01547
11/08/2018 Pte. Samuel Rice From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 1st May 1915: Coagh
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea Robert and Hessie Gildea.
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea Relieved her pain and gave her rest.’
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea But God alone who thought it best,
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea To wait for cure, twas all in vain;
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea ‘Long days and nights she bore in pain,
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea GILDEA – 10th April, at her father’s residence, Oldtown Street, Cookstown, little Annie, beloved daughter of Robert and Hessie Gildea.
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea 01546
08/08/2018 Sgt. Thomas James Gildea From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 17th April 1915: Deaths
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea Robert and Hessie Gildea.
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea Relieved her pain and gave her rest.’
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea But God alone who thought it best,
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea To wait for cure, twas all in vain;
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea ‘Long days and nights she bore in pain,
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea GILDEA – 10th April, at her father’s residence, Oldtown Street, Cookstown, little Annie, beloved daughter of Robert and Hessie Gildea.
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea 01546
08/08/2018 Fusilier Robert Gildea From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 17th April 1915: Deaths
08/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde Lance Corporal Forde is at present on a visit home from the Randalstown camp. Before volunteering for Kitchener’s Army he was a section leader of the local companies of Pomeroy U.V.F, and one of the best in the force, and his success, and the honoured promotion he has gained, is hailed with delight by all his comrades in Pomeroy.
08/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde 01545
08/08/2018 Corp Robert Forde From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 17th April 1915:
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill Stretcher Bearer Corporal Ernest Devine survived the war
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill ‘Dear Sir, I thought it my duty, being the stretcher bearer of your brother’s company, to let you know your brother was killed on the 28th March 1915. He was a very nice man in my opinion, never caused any trouble in the company, and died very quietly. I hope this news will not be too much for you to bear – if you can let me know if this letter reaches you, including some letters I got off him when he was dying. So cheer up, and try to bear up; the sacrifice is great, but here will I hope be reward somewhere. I remain, your friend in need, 7991 Bandsman Devine, Stretcher Bearer.’
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill ‘Dear Sir, I much regret to have to report that your brother, No 3035, Private Francis O’Neill, was killed in action on 29th March 1915, and has been buried near the village of Festubert. His little personal belongings have been forwarded to you today under separate cover. Yours faithfully, Captain J R Stewart, for Lieutenant Colonel commanding 2nd Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. 30th March 1915.’
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill Mr Patrick O’Neill, Carmean, Magherafelt, has received intimation that his brother, No 3085, Private Francis O’Neill, was killed in action on the 29th March. Private O’Neill, who belonged to Moneymore, where he had been working for many years, was on the Special Reserve, and was called up at the commencement of the war, and was wounded some time ago. He had only just recovered from his wounds and had written to his relatives before going back to the trenches that he was better again; but he had just got back when he was killed. The following are letters received by his brother:-
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill 01544
07/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 10th April 1915: Moneymore Soldier Killed
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle Arrangements were made by his brother, Mr Robert Liddle, solicitor of Kilrea, to have him interred in Co0kstown, but the Admiralty decided to inter his body at Sheerness.
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle The many friends of the family of the late Mr Edward Liddle of Cookstown were shocked tom, learn of the death of his youngest son, Dr T D Liddle, which took place on Friday. Being staff surgeon on one of the vessels of the Mediterranean Fleet, it was assumed that he had been killed or wounded in the operations at the Dardanelles, but this was not the case. For some time he was indisposed, but his illness was not regarded as sufficiently serious to acquaint his brothers, the first intimation they received being of his death, which took place on board the vessel at Sheerness. Dr Liddle was educated at the Academy and took his medical course at in Queens College, Belfast, graduating in the Royal University with the triple degrees of M.B., B.Ch. and B.A.O. in 1904. He decided to join the Royal Navy and in the entrance examination he took second place, and was appointed to the Mediterranean Fleet. For a couple of years he was cruising about and had an opportunity of visiting all the important cities along the Mediterranean, including Constantinople where, with the other officers of the Fleet, he was entertained by the Sultan of Turkey. Returning to England, he spent a number of years at the Royal Navy Hospital at Haslar. He was then sent to the Australian station, where he saw a good deal of the Antipodes. Accompanying an expedition to the Pacific Islands with Sir H May, the Governor of Fiji, he nearly lost his life, as the party was attacked by the natives on one of the islands and a bullet passed close to his head. On his return to England he was promoted to the rank of Staff-Surgeon, and was appointed to H.M.S. New Zealand. In 1913 he was transferred to H.M.S. Thames, the depot ship of the Submarine Fleet stationed at Sheerness, where he was when he died.
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle 01543
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 10th April 1915:
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle LIDDLE – 2nd April, on board H.M.S. Thames (suddenly), Staff Surgeon Thomas Dickson Liddle, Royal Navy, youngest son of the late Edward Liddle, of Cookstown.
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle 01542
07/08/2018 St Surg Thomas Dickson Liddle From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 10th April 1915:
07/08/2018 Maj Hubert Maxwell Lenox-Conyngham D.S.O. Major H M Lenox-Conyngham, Army Veterinary Corps, son of the late Sir William Lenox-Conyngham, K.C.B., of Springhill, Moneymore, and brother of Major W A Lenox-Conyngham, D.L., has been recommended for ‘gallant and distinguished service in the field’, by Sir John French. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and has been serving at the front as assistant director of veterinary services.
07/08/2018 Maj Hubert Maxwell Lenox-Conyngham D.S.O. 01541
07/08/2018 Maj Hubert Maxwell Lenox-Conyngham D.S.O. From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 10th April 1915: Moneymore Officer Honoured
07/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell The local Ulster Volunteers held a route march on Easter Monday to Springhill. The men, who wore side arms and carried rifles, were in charge of Corporal W T Mitchell, who was on furlough from Randalstown Camp, and Mr Hugh Duff, company commander. They returned home early, and in the evening they held a reception in the Orange Hall in honour of the soldiers in their ranks who had joined Kitchener’s Army and at present were at home in Coagh for their Easter holidays. Dancing was begun about 8 o’clock, the music being supplied by Messrs McCullagh and Hamilton, Tamlaghtmore. Mr Joseph Mitchell kindly acted as M.C. At eleven o’clock tea was served by Miss Violet Ashcroft, Miss Selina McKnight and the Misses Hagan, Coagh, assisted by Mr A Ashcroft and Mr H Shuter. The following contributed largely to the musical programme – Corporal William Mitchell, William Charleton, Joseph Mitchell, Thompson Marks, George Hagan, Thomas McKnight and William Rankin. A vote of thanks to the tea makers and all those who helped make the night a success, was proposed by Mr Thomas Young, seconded by Private James Hudson, and passed. The proceedings concluded by the singing of God Save the King.
07/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell 01540
07/08/2018 Sgt. William Thomas Mitchell From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 10th April 1915: Coagh
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair The 1911 census lists Francis and Anne Blair living in Glasmullagh, Castlecaulfield, Tyrone.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair The 1901 census lists Francis and Anne Blair living at house 13 in Glasmullagh, Castlecaulfield, Tyrone. Robert was not living with the family.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair Francis Blair married Anne Forbes on 9th June 1891 in the district of Dungannon. This may have been one his parents’ second marriage.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair It is believed Robert was born on 4th August 1887, although there is some doubt to this, as GRONI has his mother’s maiden name as Holmes.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair Robert Blair was, according the list of mourners at his funeral, the son of Francis and Anne Forbes.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair We regret to announce the death of Mr Robert Blair, which took place at the residence of Mrs Campton, Toberlane, on Thursday 8th April after a short illness. He was a special reserve man of the 2nd Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, and was called up early in August last and was doing his duty on Omagh, and was just home on furlough for Easter. He was attended by Dr Elliott, Cookstown, up to the time of his death. Much sympathy is felt for his sorrowing widow and child in their bereavement. The funeral took place on Saturday afternoon, the place of internment being Cookstown Cemetery. There was a very large attendance of the people of the town and district. The polished hazelwood coffin, with brass mountings bore the following inscription:- ‘Robert Blair, died 8th April 1915’. The chief mourners were Mrs Sarah Blair (wife), Francis Blair (father), Mrs Annie Blair (mother), Mrs Minnie Grimes (sister), James Blair (uncle), J Campton, W Reynolds, A Reynolds (relatives).
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair 01539
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 17th April 1915: Mr Robert Blair, Toberlane
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair The death took place in Toberlane, Cookstown, under sad circumstances, on Thursday morning, of Private Robert Blair of the Royal Inniskillings. the deceased, who was a native of Castlecaulfield, had served some seven years with the colours having been in service in Egypt, and was on the Reserve. He was employed at Orritor Quarry where he lost an eye in an accident to a traction engine. At the commencement of the present war he was called up, but owing to the defect to his sight he was not sent to the front, but was employed as a cook at the depot in Omagh. Nearing Easter holidays he came to Toberlane where his wife resided, on leave, but was then in poor health, apparently suffering from a bad cold. Later influenza developed and also cardiac trouble, which was the immediate cause of his death. He was a member of R.B.P. No. 598, Montober, and being of a quite inoffensive nature, was respected by all who knew him. He was married about a year ago to Miss Sarah Jane Kempton, and much sympathy is felt for the young widow in her sad bereavement.
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair 01538
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 3rd April 1915: Sad Death of a Soldier
07/08/2018 Pte. Robert Blair Robert Blair married Sarah Jane Campton on the 14th April 1914. Sarah Jane’s father was a teacher, presumably at Toberlane School.
06/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill Private Frank O’Neill, of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, whose father resides at Ruskey, Coagh, has been wounded in action at the front, and was some time in hospital on the continent. Private O’Neill, who is a reserve man, was called out soon after the war started, and has had some narrow escapes. The first intimation of his being wounded was sent home by the War Office., but in a later letter from himself, he said he was all right again, and expected soon to be back in the theatre of war again.
06/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill 01537
06/08/2018 Pte. Francis O'Neill From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 3rd April 1915: Coagh
06/08/2018 Corp Henry McDonald Glasgow Amongst the Colonials home for Easter is Mr Allan Glasgow, eldest son of Mr W J Glasgow and Mrs Glasgow, of the Post Office. When he left the Academy, Mr Glasgow entered the board of Commerce in Canada. At the outbreak of the war he was at a little town of 700 inhabitants in Saskatchewan. He volunteered with another man – the only volunteers out of the town – and was assigned to the 81st Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, which is now in Shorncliffe camp as reinforcement to the first contingent, and he is looking forward to taking his place very soon in the ranks at the front.
06/08/2018 Corp Henry McDonald Glasgow 01536
06/08/2018 Corp Henry McDonald Glasgow From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 3rd April 1915: (Private Allan Glasgow, Brother of Henry Glasgow)
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott ‘I have just received your most welcome present. We have just come back from the trenches after some days firing at the Germans, arriving at our billet about one o’clock last night, and just as I awoke, mail came in for our company, and I never enjoyed anything so much as I did the pastries you sent me., as we can get none to buy where we are. My cousin John also received a cake from home at the same time as well as some cigarettes. I was glad to receive the brown tobacco, but you need not send me any more tobacco as we are getting more now than we can use. When I sent to you for some, we thought we could only get French tobacco and we do not like it. I will be very pleased if you can send me more cake any time you can. John and I are sleeping together and are together in the trenches. Our trenches are only about 200 yards from the Germans, so as soon as night comes we start shouting at each other. The Germans sing a song and then they shout over to us that it is our turn next, so we give them one. We keep shouting to each other all night. John and I are both well.’
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott Mr William Scott, Ballygrooby, Moneymore, received the following letter from his son, John Scott, who belongs to the Winnipeg 90th Rifles and has been with the Canadian Expeditionary Force at the front for some time:-
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott 01535
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 20th March 1915: Ballygrooby Soldier’s Letter – Jack Scott - cousin of John Suffern Scott
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott Private John S Scott, of the Canadian contingent at present in the trenches, writing to his old teacher, Mr James Keatley, Ballyronan National School, tells of a narrow escape when in a tight corner where his chum was shot at his side. Private Scott is a son of Mr James Scott of Woods parish.
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott 01534
06/08/2018 Sgt. John Suffern Scott From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 27th March 1915:
02/08/2018 Pte. James Nelson The death took place in Belfast early on Wednesday morning, under sad circumstances, at a hospital in Belfast, of Private James Nelson (popularly known as Jim), of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, at present stationed at Randalstown. The deceased, who was a member of Lissan Company U.V.F., and of Tamlaghtmore Flute Band, and was very popular with all who knew him. He, volunteered for Kitchener’s Army, as well as his two brothers, Thomas and William, and was in training at Randalstown. For some time he suffered from throat trouble and was removed to hospital where an operation was performed. Septic poisoning however supervened and he passed away, to the intense grief of his father and other relatives, but also of his comrades and many friends. His remains were forwarded, at the expense of the military authorities, to his father’s residence at Lismoney, arriving in Cookstown at 7.45 on Thursday night. The train was met by almost all the Cookstown Volunteers and others, and were followed by a huge concourse. The melancholy procession along the country road under the pale moonlight being most impressive. Close behind the hearse in company with the deceased’s brothers, William and George, were Privates William Riddell and Alex McLernon, brothers-in-law, who had obtained special leave in order to be present. Rev John Entrican, B.A., was in attendance, and on the coffin being taken to the father’s home, conducted a touching and impressive service on supplication. On Friday afternoon the remains were removed for internment at Ballygoney, the funeral being largely attended. His comrades in the battalion forwarded a wreath. The funeral arrangements were carried out by Mr Steenson.
02/08/2018 Pte. James Nelson 01533
02/08/2018 Pte. James Nelson From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 27th March 1915: Death of a Local Volunteer
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay You would love a holiday in this part of the world, but when you come don’t be enticed into climbing the Great Pyramid, as it is a form of lunacy; so we thought last Sunday afternoon, when three of us out for a holiday (?), arrived at the top in a perfect lather of perspiration. The blocks of stone in it are about here feet deep, and climbing these in all sorts of tortuous positions is a trifle harder than even the steps of St Mary’s Whitby. One slip, and you would crash down into eternity (of, course eternity for the likes of you would be upwards); no matter how long you keep on at this gymnastic, the top ever seems to be towering away. It’s like chasing the ‘Blue Bird’. However you are amply repaid bt the wonderful view from the top. On the one side of the Nile can be seen for scores of miles, and all its fertile valleys crowded with hamlets. On the other, everywhere is absolute desert. But if you ever have to choose between climbing the outside or exploring the interior, don’t hesitate, climb. We got guides, and leaving our boots and leggings at the entrance, crawled, nearly double, after the guides, up and down slippery tunnels, running first through the rocks into the bowels of the earth, and then up to the Pyramid. There was hardly a foothold on the slippery stones and the atmosphere was stifling, but we saw the King’s Chamber and the Queen’s ditto, and the way to the daughter’s ditto, then much more painful toiling, and then out we came into the glorious day having had quite enough of the tombs of the Ancients for that day.
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay The ideal winter climate has been misbehaving itself very much of late. For the past two days a sandstorm has striven to blow us out of the camp. It was horrible drilling into it; riding against it was like being in a blizzard, and our eyes have ached – sand everywhere. All our kit was full, and every bite gritty, but it’s a sin to growl about anything here thinking about the hardships endured in the trenches in France and Flanders.
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay Animal life here seems to be as precious as human. Every cow seems to have a native, told to watch her and lead her to pasture. A flock of two or three queer looking sheep will have four or five natives hovering around. As we went into Cairo on Sunday last we laughed at the sight of two tall Arabs with dignified mien and long poles driving four scraggy turkeys. On the same trip we also saw the most wonderful funeral I ever witnessed. It must have been that of a very great man. Eight beautiful whips decked out with the greatest magnificence, great handsome trappings hanging down to the ground and white plumes sticking up from the horses’ heads two or three feet – it was just like the most extravagant picture of Cinderella’s rags. The hearse was for all the world like a huge very gaudy bride’s cake, all white and round with the different tiers and ribbons and imitation flowers, and hardly a trace of the coffin at all. It was most cheerful.
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay It was a bitter disappointment at Port Said to learn that Egypt was to be our destination, but now we are here the fascination of this country has got hold of me, and I am thoroughly enjoying the novelty of the people and everything about us. All the Australian boat is gathered in this great camp, and the place is teaming with life from long before sunrise till bed time. Right in the shadow of the Pyramids, you almost believe yourself back in the days of Exodus, with the swarm of Egyptians clad in quaint robes of every colour and design, who do the labouring for the camp; they carry the fodder, etc., on beasts of burden of every kind and primitive vehicles that certainly must have belonged to the Ancients. You see a great string of asses and mules passing along with loads which you would think would break their backs and a big long-legged Arab on top of the load. On another track, a line of big dignified camels will be moving along silently like ghosts also with huge loads of stores, nearly frightening the horses they pass out of their wits. The more the horses see of the brutes, the less they love them. The patient ox is also much in evidence, and it is funny to see the natives riding them to work. You would almost think the natives working here were the slaves of old; they are treated like such; any amongst themselves who has authority uses a cane over their backs to enforce it, and the native police use their whips with terrible force over the almost naked backs. But the Egyptian ‘fallah’ is not what my imagination had called up; he is a bright humorous ruffian, tall and well-built; he is the most persistent wretch imaginable after piastres (local coin) and every time we make a deal with him, he tries to cheat us in the most unblushing manner, and if we find him out he immediately loses his understanding of our language. He has turned us all into the greatest hagglers outside Regent Street. If he offers a water melon for three piastres, we immediately offer one piastre, and most likely after telling him two or three times to clear out we get it for two and a half – they always get the better of us as the melon would probably would only be worth half a piastre. We have good fun over the local money, milliemes and piastres. Every time we exchange our English coin they cheat us. If you see a little crowd having a heated argument, you may be sure on going closer to hear ‘piastres’.
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay Mr Greer McKay, fourth son of the late Mr W C McKay, formerly of Cookstown, is at present with the Australian Expeditionary Forces in Egypt. Mr McKay left England for Australia about three years ago, and travelled with Rev Thomas Glass, B.A., and Mrs Glass on their first voyage to the Antipodes. He joined the Expeditionary forces on the declaration of war, having has some experience in the Territorial forces in Yorkshire while residing there. Writing recently to his mother, who has resided in Leeds since she and her husband left Cookstown, he says:-
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay 01532
02/08/2018 Lieut James Greer McKay From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 27th March 1915: The Australian Forces in Egypt
01/08/2018 L/Corp Charles George Lord Constable Charles George Lord, the only surviving son of ex-Sergeant Lord, Cookstown, has obtained a commission in the 7th Leinster Regiment. Lieutenant Lord is about 29 years of age, and joined the Royal Irish Constabulary while under twenty. He was first stationed in County Kilkenny, but about eight years ago, at his own request, he was transferred to Belfast, where in the Antrim Road barracks he was very popular with is comrades, and had the confidence and frequent commendations of his superiors. About two years ago, for heroic conduct, in attempting to save life at a fire in Castleton Gardens, he was awarded the medal of the Royal Humane Society and £2. He volunteered three times for the Irish Guards, but was unsuccessful in the ballot, so, not to be denied, he made application for a commission and received favourable consideration. He has gone for military training to the Kenworth Camp, County Cork. On St Patrick’s night, his comrades and friends in the Antrim Road district, Belfast, entertained him at a dance, where he received, in addition to many good wishes for his future success, a suitable memento of his stay in the city.
01/08/2018 L/Corp Charles George Lord 01531
01/08/2018 L/Corp Charles George Lord From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 27th March 1915:
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