Thomas’ Grave

After I found the location of Thomas’ grave in Kilmarnock Cemetery on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Website, I found that I could order pictures of his monument from The War Graves Photographic Project. In a short time, I received three 5 x 7 color photos of his grave and its place in the cemetery.

Thomas Hall’s Grave in Kilmarnock Cemetery, Scotland

The second picture was a close up of the monument inscription. This inscription did tell me that Thomas was in the army for 21 years, so he must have enlisted as a private in the Highland Light Infantry in 1886 when he was twenty years old.

Inscription on top part of Thomas’ monument

The third picture was of a road in the cemetery which I assume is in the section where Thomas is buried, although I can’t pick out his monument.

Kilmarnock Cemetery

The most touching part of the monument is the inscription Sarah chose for the bottom part. It is in smaller print, but I was able to transcribe it by enlarging just that part of the picture.

I will cherish his name in my pensive thoughts,

And his memory a treasure will be,

And for me he will wait at the golden gate

By the side of the glassy sea.

I am so glad I have these pictures. They add a loving, personal touch to the lives of ancestors I knew only as names, dates, and places.

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August 27, 2012 at 2:14 pm Leave a comment

Thomas’ Obituary

Lieutenant Thomas Hall, Highland Light Infantry

As I think I said before, the war records of almost all soldiers in the British army during World War I were destroyed during World War II by German bombing. Aside from the censuses and a few other records, I had little clues about his life as a soldier. Then my cousin Jane send me Thomas’ obituary from the Perthshire Constitutional and Journal, dated November 7, 1917.

  • Lieutenant and Quartermaster Thomas Hal, of the 1st Garretson Battalion Highland Light Infantry, died at Yorkhill War Hospital after a short illness.
  • He was a native of Perth, and an old St. Ninian’s Choir boy.
  • He joined the 1st Battalion Highland Light Infantry as a private, rising to the rank of Regimental-Quartermaster-Sergeant after 14 years service.
  • He did important work in the mobilizing of the battalion when it went out to the South African War and was with them though all the campaign.
  • He had also seen active service in Egypt, India, and Gallipoli, was invalided home, and on recovery obtained his commission as Lieutenant and Quartermaster in January 1916. He was sent to Nigg and then to Fort George
  • Greatly esteemed by his Colonel and fellow-officers as a good soldier. He performed his responsible duties in a most efficient manner.
  • Lieutenant Hall was buried with military honors, the body being conveyed from the hospital to St. Enoch’s Station on a gun carriage drawn by six horses, accompanied by his brother and a party of officers, non-commissioned, and men of his regiment.
  • It was taken to Kilmarnock by rail, and at the cemetery an appropriate service was conducted by the Reverent W. J. Smith, M.A. Three volleys were fired over the grave while a pipe-major sounded the “Last Post.”
  • He leaves a widow, having only been married slightly over a year. Much sympathy is felt for his relatives, who were well-known in Perth.

August 27, 2012 at 1:43 pm 1 comment

Thomas’ Death Record

Yorkhill Hospital, Dalnair Street, Glasgow.  Oblique aerial photograph taken fac...

Yorkhill Hospital, Glasgow, Scotland

Thomas Hall died at the age of 51 on October 21, 1917, in Yorkhill War Hospital, Glasgow, Scotland. He was a Lieutenant and Quartermaster in the 1st Battalion Highland Infantry and was married to Sarah Purdie Barnes. He died of Carcinoma of the Gullet (esophagus) and had been ill for three months. His father was William Hal,l an Army Pensioner who was deceased, and his mother was Lydia Selina Hall, née Ramsbottom, who was also deceased. His wife Sarah, of 15 James Little Street in Kilmarnock, provided the information for the death certificate and was present at the time of death. Thomas is buried in Kilmarnock Cemetery in Ayrshire County, Scotland.

Kilmarnock Cemetery, Ayrshire County, Scotlandd

Thomas Hall

Cemetery: Kilmarnock Cemetery
Country: Scotland
Area: Ayrshire
Rank: Lieutenant (Quartermaster)
Official Number:
Unit: Highland Light Infantry
Force: Army
Nationality: British
Details: Died of sickness 21st October 1917. Age 51.
Son of William and Lydia Celina Hall;
husband of Sarah Purdie Hall of 22 Hauraki Rd. Takapuna Auckland New Zealand.
Born at Perth.
J.Newsection.379.

August 27, 2012 at 12:38 pm Leave a comment

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My Mom Ada


This blog traces the family history of my mom, Edith Porter Duffy. From the time I was a little girl, my mom would tell me stories about her family, who all called her Ada. I only wish I had asked her more questions while she was still here!

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