Leading Seaman Peter Beatty

This is part of a series of essays about the First World War casualties commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Louisiana.

Editor’s Note: Some details about Leading Seaman Beatty were incorrectly recorded by the CWGC. His online record now reflects his correct date of death, service and ship and his gravestone will be replaced.

The war memorial at Chester Cathedral
The war memorial at Chester Cathedral

When the war memorial was unveiled at Chester Cathedral on 24 May 1922, two mothers played a central role in the ceremony—Mrs Lydia Sheriff Roberts had lost three sons in the war and Mrs Mary Beatty had lost four.[1]

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Leading Seaman Joseph Thompson Clark

This is part of a series of essays about the First World War casualties commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Maryland.

The grave of Acting Leading Seaman Joseph Thompson Clark
The grave of Acting Leading Seaman Joseph Thompson Clark

Joseph Thompson Clark was nearby when HMS Natal  blew up in Cromarty Firth in 1915, was present at the Battle of Jutland, and survived being torpedoed in the Mediterranean only to drown in a swimming accident in Baltimore harbour in 1917.

He was born on 26 August 1896 at Cowpen, near Blyth, an industrial town in Northumberland, one of the three children of Fergus and Mary Ann Clark.[1] His father had worked variously as a miner, a boiler fireman and as a crane driver; Joseph, like his older brother, worked in a sawmill.

Just after the outbreak of war, Clark enlisted on 21 August 1914 Continue reading

SS Kerry Range

This is part of a series of essays about the First World War casualties commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Maryland.

Acting Leading Seaman Eustace Alfred Bromley, Royal Navy
(and Cadet Reginald Cyril Johnson, Mercantile Marine)
(and Seaman Algot Buske, Mercantile Marine)

SS Kerry Range scuttled in shallow water in Baltimore harbour
SS Kerry Range scuttled in shallow water in Baltimore harbour

Late on 30 October 1917 a fire broke out on Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Pier 9 at Locust Point in Baltimore, Maryland. The fire destroyed the pier, the old immigration building on it, and set fire to the SS Kerry Range, a British, armed, merchant ship that was moored alongside. Four men died and the damage caused was considerable—freight worth over $5,000,000 was destroyed and the Kerry Range was wrecked. The fire occurred at the height of anti-German hysteria and speculation about incendiaries placed by German agents led to the arrest of a number of ‘alien enemies’. An investigation concluded, however, that the blaze was caused by an electrical fire in one of the buildings on Pier 9, which ignited piles of oakum.[1] Continue reading

Dr Henry William Wilson Davie MRCVS

This is part of a series of essays about the First World War casualties commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Virginia.

The grave of Dr Henry William Wilson Davie MRCVS at Greenlawn Cemetery, Newport News
The grave of Dr Henry William Wilson Davie MRCVS at Greenlawn Cemetery, Newport News

The death and commemoration of Dr Harry Davie are unique for two reasons. Firstly, he is the only civilian veterinary surgeon commemorated by the CWGC. Secondly, he is the only CWGC commemoration in Hampton Roads, the large metropolitan area in south-east Virginia based around the sea ports of Norfolk and Newport News. Sadly, the tragedy of his death was not the only terrible event to befall his family.

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