Saturday, 6 December 2014

1 May 1917

On this day, four sailors from Barra, Eriskay and Vatersay were lost in the sinking of SS Bagdale. The steamer was heading from the Clyde to Naples, when she was sunk by U-boat UC-66 off Ushant, Brittany, France, with the loss of 23 lives. UC-66 was lost about six weeks after the sinking of the Bagdale, on 12 June 1917. The story is that she was forced to dive and when she was depth-charged by HMT Sea King, her own mines blew up. Like in the sinking of the Bagdale, 23 lives were lost with UC-66, among them her captain, Herbert Pustkuchen.

Sailor John Macdonald
At the age of 17
Iain Néill Ghréitheir
Son of Neil MacDonald, of No. 14, Cleat, Barra, Oban, Scotland. Born at Barra.
Last known address in Barra: Cleat
Service unit: Merchant Navy, SS Bagdale
Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
Local memorial: Barra & Vatersay

Sailor John Macdougall
At the age of 20
Son of Effie McDougall (nee McInnes), of Coilleac, Eriskay, South Uist, Inverness, and the late Donard McDougall.
Last known address in Eriskay: Eriskay
Service unit: Merchant Navy, SS Bagdale
Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
Local memorial: South Uist

Able Seaman Donald Macneil
At the age of 23
Dòmhnull Iagainn Dhòmhnuill
Son of Angus and Ann McNeil, of The Square, Watersay, Barra, Oban, Scotland.
Last known address in Vatersay:
Service unit: Merchant Navy, SS Bagdale
Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
Local memorial: Barra & Vatersay

Able Seaman Neil Macneil
At the age of 24
Son of D. McNeil, of The Square, Watersay, Barra, Inverness. Born at Barra.
Last known address in Vatersay:
Service unit: Merchant Navy, SS Bagdale
Memorial: Tower Hill Memorial
Local memorial: Barra & Vatersay

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Centenary of Sacrifice

One hundred years after the day on which they fell, Centenary of Sacrifice will publish the names of those from the Western Isles, from the Butt of Lewis to Vatersay, who made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of King and Country during the First World War. The project will run by means of scheduled blogposts, and will continue until 1 January 2019, the centenary of the Iolaire Disaster.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Remember, remember, the 11th of November

Armistice Day is nearly upon us, and I feel it is appropriate to post a reminder of my links that commemorate the Fallen from the Outer Hebrides in both World Wars.

Centenary of Sacrifice is an on-going project, which will post the names of all the Fallen from these islands on the date, 100 years later, on which they died.

Isle of Lewis

Faces from the Lewis War Memorial
A listing of the casualties from Lewis from WW1.

Lewismen lost in the Great War
A listing of the casualties from Lewis from WW1, including all available information (e.g. images of war graves, transcript of Stornoway Gazette tributes etc).

Roll of Honour, Isle of Lewis 1914-1919
A transcript of Loyal Lewis, Roll of Honour, listing all from the island who served during WW1

Tributes for the War Memorial
A transcript of tributes from the Stornoway Gazette to WW1 casualties from Lewis

Tributes for the War Memorial (WW2)
A transcript of tributes from the Stornoway Gazette to WW2 casualties from Lewis

John Macaulay RNR and SS Kenmare
The story of one WW1 casualty, the ship on which he died and the U-boat that launched the fatal torpedo

Lewismen in Australian service
A listing of those WW1 casualties who served with the Australian forces

Lewismen in Canadian service
A listing of those WW1 casualties from Lewis who served with the Canadian Expeditionary Force

Lewismen from the 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
A listing of WW1 casualties from the 2nd battalion Seaforth Highlanders , accompanied by transcripts from the battalion war diary for the day on which they died.

Iolaire Disaster 1919
Listing of all casualties who died in the sinking of HMY Iolaire on New Year's Day 1919

HMS Timbertown
About the internment camp at Groningen, Holland, where 105 Lewismen were interned during WW1

World War II tribute for Lewis
A listing of WW2 casualties from Lewis

Wargraves in Lewis
Photographs of all CWGC and private wargraves in Lewis and information on the casualties

War memorials in Lewis
Photographs of all war memorials in Lewis with transcripts.

Southern Isles
Outer Hebrides losses in the Great War
A listing of military and personal details of the WW1 casualties from Harris, Berneray, North Uist, Grimsay, South Uist, Eriskay and Barra

Berneray to Vatersay tribute
A listing of the WW1 and WW2 casualties from Berneray, North Uist, Grimsay, South Uist, Eriskay and Barra

Harris War Memorial
A listing of the casualties from Harris from WW1 and WW2.

Western Isles wargraves
A listing of all wargraves in the Western Isles, listed by cemetery

Western Isles war memorials
A listing of all war memorials in the Western Isle

Other
Lyness Royal Naval Cemetery
A listing of photographs of wargraves and military information of  the casualties, interred at the Lyness Royal Naval Cemetery in Orkney

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

New sites

One of my two sites showing the casualties from the First World War from Lewis has been extensively revamped, and updated with references to the Lewis War Memorial. Faces from the Lewis War Memorial shows this information now. The more detailed listings on Lewismen lost in the Great War do (as yet) not.

A literal transcript of Loyal Lewis Roll of Honour 1914-1918 has been placed on line. This includes transcripts of all the prefaces by the district school head masters, and features on (groups of) military men. The original can be viewed on this link.


Thomas Coull

The war memorial for North Uist at Clachan lists Thomas Coull, Fairfield Works as one of the casualties from the First World War. Although he is referred to as a private, it soon becomes clear that he was a civilian.

The Fairfield Works was a shipyard in Govan, Glasgow. Thomas's death certificate says he was an iron driller at the yard, living at 1269 Govan Road. He was aged 23, the son of James and Sarah-Ann Coull. Thomas died at 11.55pm on 1 June 1915, having suffered from meningitis for eight days. His death was reported by his brother Duncan.

Thomas also had a brother, Frank, who had joined the Royal Engineers. He died in military hospital at Etaples, on the northwestern coast of France, in 1919. Research into Frank Coull yielded the census return for 1901 from which the above information on Thomas was corroborated.

Frank appears in the 1901 census aged 17, a game watcher, the son of James (48) and Sarah Ann (47) and brother of Rhoda (15), William James (13) and Duncan (11) and Thomas (8). That same census also shows that Thomas was born in South Knapdale, an area in the Kintyre peninsula of Argyll. His father was born in Strath (Isle of Skye), and his mother came from Devon.

Friday, 1 August 2014

Tipperton, South Uist

During my recent visit to South Uist, I came across a house called Tipperton (Tobar Tiobairt), near the Polochar Inn on the extreme southwestern point of the island. Searching the Internet revealed the Gaelic name, and the story of human remains found in a crouching position nearby. The 2005 hurricane caused severe coastal erosion in the area. Tipperton was the home of James and Margaret Morrison, both now deceased. James died in 1979, aged 85, and is pictured with a bottle of "Politician" whisky in this tweet from Struileag. His wife Margaret followed him out of this world in 1996, aged 93. The Hallan Cemetery website gives further information on the two people that lived at Tipperton.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

98 years ago today

98 years ago today saw the start of the Battle of the Somme, which was to last into the middle of November 1916. The death toll on both sides exceeded 1 million. Of those that died on the first day of the battle, 25 came from the island of Lewis, and this post remembers them.

Private Malcolm Campbell
Last address in Lewis: 26 Cross
Son of Donald and Catherine Campbell, of Cross
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7308
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 22
Interred: Serre Road Cemetery no 2, grave I. K. 6.
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Private Kenneth Graham
Last address in Lewis: Aird Dell
Son of Catherine Graham, of Aird, South Dell
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7457
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 19
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Private Malcolm Gunn
Last address in Lewis: 15 Eorodale
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7267
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Lance-Corporal Donald Macarthur
Last address in Lewis: 29 Breasclete
Son of Malcolm and Mary Macarthur
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7214
Died of wounds at the age of 19
Interred: Sucrerie Military Cemetery, Colincamps, grave I. H. 28.
Local memorial: East Loch Roag, Callanish

Private Allan Macdonald
Last address in Lewis: 18 Habost, Ness
Service unit: Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 7216
Killed in action at the Somme at the age of 19
Interred: Euston Road Cemetery, Colincamps, Sp Mem A. 8
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Company Sergeant-Major Murdo Macgregor
Last address in Lewis: 12C Tolsta Chaolais
Son of Duncan Macgregor; husband of Marion Macgregor, of 255, Cumberland St., South Side, Glasgow.
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 9314
Killed in action on the Somme at Beaumont Hamel at the age of 30
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: Tolsta Chaolais
Awarded Recommended for distinguished conduct in the Field, Oct., 1915
Went to France in August 1914, wounded in 1915

Private John Duncan Mackay
Last address in Lewis: 8 Kershader
Son of Duncan and Mary Mackay; family later moved to 3 Caverstay.
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: S/9777
Killed in action at the age of 19
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: Park, Kershader; Nicolson Institute WW1, left panel
Was a junior student at the Nicolson Institute in Stornoway before joining up

Private William J Mackay
Last address in Lewis: 20 Adabrock
Son of Catherine MacKay
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7382
Killed in action in France at the age of 19
Interred: Redan Ridge Cemetery no 1, Beaumont-Hamel, grave C.8
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Private Evander Mackenzie
Last address in Lewis: 5 Upper Garrabost
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7455
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 19
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: Point (Garrabost)

Private John Macrae Mackenzie
Last address in Lewis: 26 James Street, Stornoway
Son of Angus and Margaret Macrae MacKenzie
Service unit: 17th Highland Light Infantry, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce Battallion
Service number: 15999
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 25
Interred: Lonsdale Cemetery, Authuile, grave III. F. 9.
Local memorial: Lewis War Memorial; Nicolson Institute WW1, middle panel

Private William Mackenzie
Last address in Lewis: 1A Mid Borve
Son of Kenneth and Ann MacKenzie
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7371
Killed in action at the age of 19
Interred: Sucrerie Military Cemetery, Colincamps, grave I. H. 27
Local memorial: North Lewis, Borve
Had previously been wounded

Private Alex Macleod
Last address in Lewis: 30 Lower Garrabost
Son of Angus and Margaret Macleod
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/6940
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 23
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: Point (Garrabost)

Lance-Corporal Angus Macleod
Aonghais MhicLeoid - Aonghas, Mac Thormoid Mhic Thormoid Mhoir
Last address in Lewis: 6 North Tolsta
Son of Norman and Christina MacLeod
Service unit: 2nd Gordon Highlanders
Service number: 3/6713
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 24
Local memorial: North Tolsta
Mentioned on family gravestone in the cemetery at North Tolsta
Had been at the front since 1914.

Lance-Corporal John Macleod
Iain, Mac Aonghais Mhic Iain Saighdeir
Last address in Lewis: 20 North Tolsta
Son of Angus and Mary McLeod
Service unit: 2nd Gordon Highlanders
Service number: 3/5601
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 22
Interred: Gordon Cemetery, Mametz, Sp. Mem. B. 53.
Mentioned on family gravestone in the cemetery at North Tolsta

Private John Macleod
Seoinaidh Dhanaidh - Iain, Mac Dhomhnaill Mhic Dhomhnaill Mhic Iain
Last address in Lewis: 1 Hill Street North Tolsta
Son of Donald Macleod
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7478
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 18
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Tolsta

Sergeant John Macleod
Last address in Lewis: 24 Tolsta Chaolais
Brother of K. Macleod, Esq., M.A., Rector, of Fortrose Academy, H. G. P. School, Fortrose, Ross-shire.
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/8341
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 24
Interred: Sucrerie Military Cemetery, Colincamps, grave I. H. 30
Local memorial: Tolsta Chaolais

Private Murdo Macleod
Last address in Lewis: 65 Back
Son of Duncan and Annie McLeod
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7191
Killed in action at the age of 21
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: Back

Private Alex Morrison
Last address in Lewis: 14 Eorodale
Son of Kenneth and Catherine Morrison
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7429
Killed in action on the Somme at the age of 20
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross

Private John Morrison
Last address in Lewis: 16 Skigersta
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 3/7358
Killed in action in France at the age of 18
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Lewis, Cross
Mentioned on family gravestone in the cemetery at Habost (Ness)

Private Kenneth Smith
Last address in Lewis: 25 Leurbost
Service unit: 2nd Seaforth Highlanders
Service number: 9079
Killed in action on the Somme
Memorial: Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 15C
Local memorial: North Lochs, Crossbost
Was wounded twice previously