Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
ff
16318   Private James Smyth
Save as PDF
Dated added: 30/12/2015   Last updated: 01/05/2020
Personal Details
Regiment/Service: 9th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (British Army)
Died: 01/07/1916 (Killed in Action)
Age: 33
Summary      
James Smyth was born in the parish of Derryloran, Cookstown. He was working at Clydebank, Scotland, at the outbreak of war but returned home to enlist, joining Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. On 1st July 1916, they attacked close to where the Ulster Tower now stands. James Smyth was listed as missing after 1st July and no confirmation had been received at that time as to his whereabouts. James was listed as killed in action on 1st July.
Further Information
James Smyth was born in Derryloran, Cookstown about 1883.
James was working at Clydebank, Scotland, at the outbreak of war.
James returned home to enlist at Finner Camp, Ballyshannon, County Donegal. He joined the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.
Medal card
On the morning of 1st July 1916, the 9th Inniskillings attacked close to where the Ulster Tower now stands and were successful in capturing the Schwaben Redoubt, and holding it until being forced to withdraw through lack of ammunition and support on there left and right flanks.
In a letter by Private Thomas Taylor of Waterloo Terrace, Cookstown, he reported that James Smyth was listed as missing after 1st July and no confirmation had been received at that time as to his whereabouts.
Private James Smyth was serving with the 9th Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers when he was killed in action on the first day of the Battle of the Somme on Saturday 1st July 1916.
From the Mid Ulster Mail dated Saturday 12th August 1916: Letters to Mrs Annie Speers, Church Street, Cookstown.
Mrs Annie Speers, Church Street, Cookstown, has received a letter from her husband, dated 24th July, in which he says he has been ill but is now recovered. The big push on the 1st in which he took part, was he says, a bit hot. His battalion had a few daysí rest, but were going out again. He is longing to see his wife and other relatives. Mrs Speers has also received a letter from her brother, Private George Donaldson, saying he is well. He believes Jimmie Smith is killed, but is not certain if it is true. Willie Taylor, Paddy Barton, and McAtackney are out with him and are all right. J McGarvey was slightly wounded a good while ago but is not now at the front. He is in England.
Private James Smyth has no known grave. His name has recently (2018) being added by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission to Addenda Panel 9 on the Thiepval Memorial.
Private Smyth is commemorated on Cookstown Cenotaph and on St. Luranís Church of Ireland Roll of Honour, Derryloran, Cookstown.
Read more
References and Links
No Link Reference Map Doc
1 National Archives UK Medal card can be purchased here
Cookstown District's War Dead Acknowledgements 2010-2020