Friday, 26 November 2010

Isaac Campbell, 33 North Bragar

Tracing casualties from the First World War is throwing up some strange findings, particularly as I continue to peruse tribute articles in the Stornoway Gazette from the last two war years. Today, I came across the above man in a tribute from December 1917. And I can find no reference to him whatsoever. He is not in the Roll of Honour for North Bragar although his brothers are mentioned. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission only knows a soldier called Isaac Campbell, not a seaman. And Isaac is mentioned as being lost at sea due to enemy action, meaning his ship was mined or torpedoed. He is not listed on the Naval History website either. There is no definitive record of merchant shipping crews lost in the war - that I know of.

Isaac had emigrated to Canada around 1907, but had returned to join the RNR. As things turned out, he "took seafaring", by which I suppose the Merchant Navy is meant, rather than the Royal Naval Reserve.The account in the Gazette is not very clear. I have found Isaac's birth record, which shows him being born on 4 June 1886. But I cannot find any reference to his death.

Nonetheless, I am pleased that I have found one more man from Lewis who made the supreme sacrifice in WW1, and am able to highlight his name, however tenuous the evidence at present.

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