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David Simpson - Bo'ness War Memorial *Found*

 
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Gow67



Joined: 27 Dec 2016
Posts: 21
Location: Bo'ness

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:50 pm    Post subject: David Simpson - Bo'ness War Memorial *Found* Reply with quote

David Simpson appears on the Bo'ness War Memorial.

We have found a contemporary newspaper report containing the following info:

Bo'ness Journal 22nd Jan 1915

"KILLED IN ACTION

Intelligence has been received by Mrs Dunleavy, Pottery Barns, from her husband Pte. Thomas Dunleavy, 2nd Royal Scots, that another Bo'ness man was killed in action on Hogmanay night in the person of Pte. David Simpson, who is the brother of Mr Alex Simpson, Forth Place...Simpson, who was married, leaves a wife and children who are presently in Belfast".

Some specific info and date there but we cannot identify David Simpson on CWGC or SNWM.

Can anyone help find him? Any information welcomed.

Thanks in advance.


Last edited by Gow67 on Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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Stewartry



Joined: 19 Dec 2006
Posts: 272
Location: nr Nottingham

PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:06 pm    Post subject: David Simpson's alias? Reply with quote

My suggestion would be the man below:

Name: David Hunter
Birth Place: Alloa, Clackmannanshire
Residence: Belfast
Enlistment Place: Edinburgh
Death Date: 29 Dec 1914
Death Place: France and Flanders
Type of Casualty: Killed in action
Rank: Private
Regiment: The Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment)
Battalion: 2nd Battalion
Regimental Number: 3026

There are enough similarities to suggest that he served under the alias Hunter. For example, a good proportion of men who served under an alias still retained their given first name. Also, this man served with the same battalion as Thomas Dunleavy and the residence (for next-of-kin) is given as Belfast. The date of death is, of course, out by a couple of days but various possibilities exist for an error to have been introduced into the date of death.

Best wishes,

Stuart
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Stewartry



Joined: 19 Dec 2006
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Location: nr Nottingham

PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having got my Ancestry subscription to work properly, I checked the Soldiers' Effects register and Hunter is indeed an alias for Simpson. In fact, it states Hunter, David (alias Masterman Simpson). Not sure where Masterman comes into the story. His will is in favour of Mrs D Simpson.
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Kenneth Morrison



Joined: 29 Sep 2008
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Location: Rockcliffe Dalbeattie

PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Scotsman Monday 25 January 1915 p.10

ANOTHER ALLOA SOLDIER KILLED
Private David Simpson of the 2nd Royal Scots, reported to have been killed in action at Ypres on 31st December, was a son of the late Peter Simpson, operative baker, Broad Street. The deceased soldier, who was about 30 years of age, joined the army in August.
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Stewartry



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nothing then everything!

His service file survives. In fact two copies, one of which isn't any help but the other includes Army Form W. 508 which gives the family details. It is dated 9 Aug 1920 and was filled out by Mr Thomas Sellers, brother-in-law to Mary Simpson (deceased). Thomas Sellers name was also stated on the Soldiers' Effects register as guardian to David and Mary's two sons.
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Kenneth Morrison



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess the first man listed on scotlandspeople is "our" man?

SIMPSON
DAVID MASTERTON
M
1881
465/ 94
Alloa (Clackmannan)

SIMPSON
DAVID MASTERTON
M
1899
465/B 35
Alva (Clackmannan)

SIMPSON
DAVID MASTERTON
M
1901
288/A 191
Forfar
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Kenneth Morrison



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1881 at Old High Street Alloa

Peter Simpson 38, (a Baker) Isabella Simpson 38 Alexr Simpson 16
Peter Simpson 14 Isabella Simpson 11 Robt Simpson 9 Janet Simpson 7
Helen Simpson 5 David Simpson 1 Mo
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Gow67



Joined: 27 Dec 2016
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Location: Bo'ness

PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 11:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done Stuart and Ken! I think this is our man.

More confirmation - in his service records on Findmypast I can see Forth Place, Bo'ness mentioned on sheets 37 and 46.

Also sheet 45 seems to be correspondence in January 1919 asking about identity. They must have concluded he was indeed the same man as the effect's record suggest the war gratuity was authorised to be paid out to the two children's guardian Thomas Sellers in Sept 1919.

I'm confident this is indeed David Simpson. Out of curiosity Stuart - i'd be interested to learn how you found him. Did u look for a David, Royal Scots, killed around that time? Also - any theories on why he used Hunter as an alias?

Finally - this has reminded me of the incredible help this Group provides. If it's ok I will be posting a few other names that we are struggling with that I'd be grateful for any information on?

Many thanks again.

G67
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Stewartry



Joined: 19 Dec 2006
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Location: nr Nottingham

PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, a basic search of men named David who died on 31 January +/- a few days either side. As a starter, instead of using the CWGC, I searched the Scottish National War Memorial because it would filter out the non-Scots units, so giving a smaller record set to check. If nothing obvious had shown up, I would then have extended the search UK-wide (I would then have focused on the Belfast info - see below).

I then used Soldiers Died to check for residence of next-of-kin because I knew that if Belfast came up we'd be onto someone. After that, it is a case of what other documentation survives. For those who died in service, the soldiers' effects register can be a great help, particularly with respect to serving under an alias - I have pinned down a few 'difficult' cases using this resource.

Of course, as with this case, a surviving service file tops it all off.

Cheers,

Stuart
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Gow67



Joined: 27 Dec 2016
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant stuff Stuart.

Forgive me if there is an obvious answer - but is there an easy way of searching for residence of next of kin and on what site?

G67
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Stewartry



Joined: 19 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Soldiers Died in the Great War (SDGW) is the source. Each soldier's entry should state where he was i. born, ii. enlisted and iii. resided (n.b. strictly, residence was of next of kin i.e. not necessarily where the soldier lived at time of enlistment). However, the completeness of an individual soldier's entry is dependent on the regiment submitting the info (not all regiments filled in all three sections) and the information provided by the soldier on enlistment.

SDGW can be bought as a CD-ROM (very expensive) or searched through various online genealogy sites (FMP and Ancestry). Again, there will be subscription fees to be paid, although a lot of local libraries provide free access to some of these sources.

Cheers,

Stuart
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Gow67



Joined: 27 Dec 2016
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Location: Bo'ness

PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many thanks Stuart - I hadn't realised that about residence.

We've got access to Ancestry and FMP so will have a look around to see what else I've missed.

All the best,

Alan
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