Carnduff, James (No. 9294)

Carnduff, James (Tibs)

Rifleman

No. 9294, 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Killed in action on Wednesday 10 March 1915 (aged 33)

No known grave

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Le Touret Memorial, France (Panel 42 and 43)

Newtownards and District War Memorial

Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s) – as Cairnduff

BIOGRAPHY

In some records his surname is spelt Cairnduff and in others Carrinduff.

James Carnduff was born around 1881/1882 in Newtownards and he was a son of Joseph and Mary Carnduff (nee McKee) who were married on 11 November 1876 in First Donaghadee Presbyterian Church.  Joseph Carnduff, a widower from Newtownards, was a son of Robert Carnduff, a stone mason.  Mary McKee from Newtownards was a daughter of James McKee, a labourer.

The Carnduff family lived in Georges Street, Newtownards.

Joseph Carnduff worked as a stone mason and he and Mary had at least eleven children including:

James (born around 1881/1882)

Alexander (born 19 July 1884 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

William (born 8 January 1887 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Grace (born around 1889/1890)

Samuel (born 20 February 1892 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Thomas (born 29 March 1894 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Mary (born 10 April 1896 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Malcolm (born 20 July 1899 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Their father Joseph died of cardiac failure on 19 December 1902 (aged 60)

Prior to the outbreak of the Great War James Carnduff worked as a stone mason and bricklayer.

James Carnduff and Isabella Hanna were married on 12 July 1899 in Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church, Newtownards.  Isabella Hanna who was born in Scotland and lived in Newtownards was a daughter of James Hanna, a labourer.

James and Isabella Carnduff had at least six children:

Mary Jane (Minnie, born 15 April 1900 in East Street, Newtownards)

James (born 9 January 1902 in East Street, Newtownards)

William Carroll (born 18 January 1905 in East Street, Newtownards)

Elizabeth Hanna (Lizzie, born 18 November 1906 in Georges Street, Newtownards)

Nellie Hanna (born 23 May 1908)

Emily Hanna Carroll (born 11 November 1910 in East Street, Newtownards)

After their mother Isabella became unwell she was admitted to Downpatrick Hospital.

The Carnduff family lived in East Street, Newtownards.

James Carnduff enlisted on 8 September 1914 in Newtownards and declared his age to be 32 years 122 days.  It was noted that he was 5 feet 5 inches tall with blue eyes and dark brown hair.  Prior to the outbreak of the Great War James Carnduff had been a member of the North Downs and when war broke out he re-joined the colours.  He went to France on 6 November 1914 and on successive days in March 1915 two men from Newtownards were killed in action at Neuve Chapelle where the Allied objective was to take Aubers Ridge – Rifleman James Carnduff (No. 9294) on 10 March and Rifleman Alexander Gibson (No. 7079) on 11 March.  First news of their deaths reached Newtownards in a letter written by Rifleman John Weir (No. 7496) to his uncle, James Weir, of Mill Street, Newtownards.

Rifleman James Carnduff (known as Tibs) left a wife and six children the eldest of whom was 15.  Before the war the Carnduffs lived in Georges Street, Newtownards and, after James enlisted, his wife and family moved to 82 Mill Street, Newtownards to live with the children’s grandmother, Mary Carnduff.  Later they lived at 34 Greenwell Street, Newtownards.

In March 1916 James Carnduff’s mother, brothers, sisters, wife and family placed an Our Heroes – In Memoriam notice in the Newtownards Chronicle and it contained the verse:

Far, far away thy grave to see,

But not too far to think of thee,

No morning dawns, no light returns,

But what, dear son, I think of thee.

We cannot, Lord, Thy purpose see,

But all is well that’s done by Thee.

Their address at that time was 27 Frederick Street, Newtownards.

Rifleman James Carnduff has no known grave and he is commemorated on the Le Touret Memorial in France; on Newtownards and District War Memorial and in Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s) – as Cairnduff.