No. 181766, 11th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles
Died of wounds on Tuesday 26 December 1916 (aged 26)
Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension (Nord), France (Grave III. A. 152)
Ballywalter and District War Memorial
Ballywalter Parish Church of Ireland Church (Holy Trinity)
Robert Carpenter was born on 16 July 1890 in Ballywalter and was baptised in Ballywalter Parish Church of Ireland Church (Holy Trinity).
Robert Carpenter was a son of Edward and Alice Carpenter (nee Bell) who were married on 7 January 1884 in Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s). Edward Carpenter from Ballywalter was a son of Edward Carpenter, a labourer. Alice Bell from Russell Place, Newtownards was a daughter of Thomas Bell, a labourer.
Edward Carpenter worked as an agricultural labourer and he and Alice had at least six children:
Mary Eliza (born 29 January 1875 in Ballywalter; died of debility 12 December 1886)
John (born 7 November 1884 in Ballywalter; died of measles 16 November 1885)
Jane (born 29 August 1886 in Ballywalter; died of diarrhoea 29 October 1887)
Thomas John (born 23 June 1888 in Ballywalter)
Robert (born 16 July 1890 in Ballywalter)
Edward (born 14 December 1893 in Ballywalter)
Their mother Alice died of puerperal convulsions on 16 December 1893 (aged 38).
Robert Carpenter worked as an agricultural labourer and he was a member of the Ballywalter contingent of the Ulster Volunteer Force.
Robert Carpenter and Jane Keenan were married on 20 April 1910 in St Anne’s Church of Ireland Cathedral Belfast. Robert Carpenter was from 15 Mervue Street, Belfast. Jane Keenan, an embroiderer from 5 Carlow Street, Belfast was a daughter of Hugh Keenan, a labourer.
Robert and Jane Carpenter (nee Keenan) had five children:
Hugh (born 13 June 1911 in Ballywalter)
Thomas John (born 2 July 1912 in Ballywalter; died of cerebro spinal fever 23 March 1915)
Edward (born 6 January 1914 in Ballywalter)
Alice (twin, born 6 December 1914; died and was buried on 21 December 1914 in Whitechurch Cemetery, Ballywalter)
Bella (twin, born 6 December 1914; died of debility 31 January 1916)
These five children were baptised in Ballywalter Parish Church of Ireland Church (Holy Trinity).
Robert Carpenter enlisted on 9 November 1915 in Newtownards and served with the 11th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division.
Rifleman Robert Carpenter (No. 18/766) was wounded in action on 18 December 1917 and he died eight days later. He had made a will and his widow Jane received his property and effects. Jane Carpenter placed a For King and Country notice in the 20 January 1917 edition of the Newtownards Chronicle.
Rifleman Robert Carpenter (No. 18/766) was buried in Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension (Nord), France and he is commemorated on Ballywalter and District War Memorial and in Ballywalter Parish Church of Ireland Church (Holy Trinity).
Rifleman Robert Carpenter’s brother Edward also served in the Great War and he survived. Edward Carpenter died on 5 November 1986.