Looking for soldiers that served prior to WW1? Find My Past is the best resource for finding information about Victorian-era Soldiers.
By far the best resource for WW1 research. WW1 Service Records, pension papers, medal index cards and casualty information.
Search through millions of archived British Newspaper Articles to find any references to your ancestors.

Joseph Douglas was born in Preston in 1880 to John and Isabella Douglas (nee Bradley). Joseph`s father died in the late 1890`s and when the Census was taken on the 31 March, 1901 Joseph, his widowed mother Isabella and two sisters, Alice and Mary were resident at 55 Atkinson Street in Preston. At the time Joseph was employed in a saw mill as a labourer and his sisters were working in a local cotton mill.

Joseph married Isabella Slater on the 25 May, 1901 in St. Ignatius Roman Catholic Church in Preston and over the next ten years they had seven children but by 1911 only four of them had survived; Mary Ann (1900), Ada (1902), William (1908) and Richard (1909). The 1911 Census record states that Joseph was a self-employed salt dealer and at the time he was living at 41 Robert Street in Preston with Isabella and the four children. Sadly Richard the youngest of the four children died not long after the Census was recorded and then in the December quarter of 1911 another daughter Alice was born.

Pre-war the couple had two more children, a daughter Mary was born in 1913 and she was followed by a son Joseph in December 1914 but sadly Joseph died before he reached his first birthday.

On the 2 September, 1914 Joseph enlisted in the Army Special Reserve at Preston. He was given the service number 13884 and posted into the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion. He confirmed his age as 34 years and 1 month and his occupation as a driver. Joseph was 5`6” tall and weighed 119lbs and he had grey eyes and brown hair.

On 29th November, 1914 he set sail for France to join the 1st Battalion as a reinforcement and by the 4th December Joseph and 457 other men under the command of 2/Lieut Horace Gray Gilliland had joined the 1st Battalion at Hazebrouck.

The 1st Battalion spent the next couple of days in Hazebrouck refitting but at 9am on the morning of the 6th December 1914 Joseph was wounded by a bomb dropped from a German aeroplane.

War Diary, 6th December 1914; Hazebrouck

At about 09.00AM three bombs were dropped from a German aeroplane, hitting a house within C Company`s billets and wounded 9 men and killed 9 men. Pte Devine died of wounds in hospital later – making total casualties 8 men wounded 10 killed. Several civilians were also wounded and eight killed including children. The Prince of Wales who was visiting the battalion billets that day expressed his sympathy with the Regiment.

Sadly, Joseph did not recover and died in hospital from his wounds six days later on the 12th December 1914.

The following article with a photograph of Joseph was printed later in the local paper.

Joseph DOUGLAS 1

Joseph was awarded the 1915 Star, British War and Victory Medals. After his death he was buried in Hazebrouck Communal Cemetery with the other 1st Battalion men who were killed on the 6th December, 1914 or who later died from wounds received on that date.

Rank: Private
Service No: 13884
Date of Death: 12/12/1914
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn.

Janet Davis
Latest posts by Janet Davis (see all)
(This post has been visited 125 times in the last 90 days)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.
%d bloggers like this:

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.