Allen, William J

Allen, William J


Royal Irish Rifles

Died of disease on Sunday 27 March 1921 (aged 33)


Movilla Cemetery, Newtownards, Co Down (Grave Section 3) 


Newtownards and District War Memorial 


The name Wm. J. Allen is listed on Newtownards and District War Memorial and in the booklet produced for the Unveiling and Dedication Ceremony held on Saturday 26 May 1934 he is described as a Rifleman in the Royal Irish Rifles.

The organising committee of the day decided to include the names of ex-servicemen who died up to that date from what they considered to be war related causes, whether as a result of wounds or disease.

A discharged soldier from Newtownards named William Allen who died of phthisis pulmonalis (consumption) on 27 March 1921 (aged 33) was buried in Section 3 of Movilla Old Cemetery. William Allen had suffered a severe gunshot wound to his right leg in August 1917.  When he was discharged from the Army on 28 June 1918 his home address was 69 East Street, Newtownards.  His Silver War Badge number was 421515.

William Allen died at his mother’s house in East Street, Newtownards and she (Mrs Margaret Orr) was present when he died.  On his death certificate he is described as an Army Pensioner.  In civilian life he worked as a linen weaver.

William J. Allen was born on 30 August 1887 in the townland of Ballywatticock and he was a son of William and Margaret Allen (nee Pagen).  William Allen from Ballyblack and Maggie Pagan from Loughries were married on 24 June 1882 in Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church Newtownards.  William Allen was a son of Robert Allen, a labourer.  Maggie Pagan was a daughter of Robert Pagan, a labourer.

William and Margaret Allen (nee Pagen) had at least three children:

Mary (born 14 May 1883 in Loughriscouse)

Sarah (born 23 May 1886 in Ballywatticock)

William (born 30 August 1887 in Ballywatticock)

Sarah Allen worked in a factory and she had a daughter, Mary Anne McCracken Allen, who was born on 28 October 1908 in East Street, Newtownards.

William Allen Senior died on 13 September 1888 as the result of injuries caused by an explosion in the quarry at Ballycultra where he worked.

Margaret Allen (nee Pagen) and William Orr were married on 27 January 1896 in St Anne’s Parish Church of Ireland Church, Belfast.  Margaret Allen (nee Pagen), a widow aged 32 from 18 Little Holme Street, Belfast, was a daughter of Robert Pagen, a labourer.  William Orr, a weaver and a widower aged 40 from 50 Craigmore Street, Belfast was a son of William Orr, a weaver.

William and Margaret Orr (formerly Allen, nee Pagen) had at least two children including:

Margaret (born 27 May 1899 in East Street, Newtownards; died of pertussis 26 January 1906 in Mark Street, Newtownards).