Davison, William Norman (No. 27880)

Davison, William Norman (Norman)


No. 27880, 15th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment)

Killed in action on Saturday 4 November 1916 (aged 22)


Zouave Valley Cemetery, France (Grave II. H. 7)


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canadian Virtual War Memorial (CVWM)

Canadian First World War Book of Remembrance

Cookstown’s War Dead (Book of Honour)

Portrush War Memorial

Portrush Presbyterian Church

Portrush Heroes (Book of Honour)

Bangor Grammar School


William Norman Davison was born on 18 June 1894 (21 June 1894 in attestation papers; July 1895 on CWGC headstone) in Moneymore, Co Londonderry and he was a son of Harper Campbell Davison and Mary Ellis (sometimes Alice) Davison (nee Mann) who were married on 15 June 1893 in Castledawson Parish Church of Ireland Church.  In the marriage registration papers Harper Campbell Davison was described as a gentleman and a widower and a son of Alexander Davison, a gentleman, of Manor House, Moneymore.  Mary Ellis Mann (aged 19 and a spinster) of Drumlamph House, Castledawson was a.daughter of Henry Church Mann, a gentleman.

Harper Campbell Davison had previously been married to Agnes Mitchell and in the marriage registration papers he was described as a bachelor and a farmer from Ballydonnelly, Toome.  Agnes Mitchell was described as a spinster from Ballydugennan, Toome and a daughter of William John Mitchell, a farmer.  They were married on 20 October 1887 in Duneane Presbyterian Church, Toomebridge, Co Antrim.

Harper and Agnes Davison lived in Drummaul, Randalstown and they had at least three children including:

John Alexander (born 26 August 1888 in Randalstown)

Campbell Mitchell (born 2 April 1890 in Randalstown)

Agnes Davison was 37 when she died of puerperal fever on 23 December 1891, nine days after giving birth.

In 1901 Harper and Mary Davison were living in the Old Cavehill Road, Belfast.  Harper was a magistrate and property broker and he and Mary had at least five children:

William Norman (born 18 June 1894 in Moneymore)

Sarah Margaret (born 6 July 1895 in Moneymore)

Mary Olive (born 22 July 1896)

Henry Church (born around 1897/1898)

Frederick Harper (born 4 August 1907 at 21 Salisbury Terrace, Portrush)

William Norman Davison attended Bangor Grammar School as a boarder between 1906 and 1907 (aged 12/13).

In 1911 the Davison family was living at 11 Alexandra Gardens, Duncairn, Belfast.

After leaving school William Norman Davison worked as a bank official before he moved to Canada.  He enlisted at Valcartier, Quebec on 22 September 1914 and at that time his mother’s address was 5 Golf Terrace, Portrush.  It was noted in his attestation papers that he was 5 feet 8½ inches tall with a fair complexion, blue eyes and blond hair.  He had a scar over his left eye and a mole on his back.

Private William Norman Davison was 22 when he was killed at 11.15 am on 4 November 1916 by an enemy trench mortar while a member of a working party and at that time his parents were living at 47 Barkston Gardens, Earl’s Court, London.  He was buried in Zouave Valley Cemetery, France and there is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:



JULY 1895

Private William Norman Davison is commemorated on Portrush War Memorial; in Portrush Presbyterian Church; in Portrush Heroes (Book of Honour Page 53); in Cookstown’s War Dead (Book of Honour Page 183) and on the Memorial Plaque in Bangor Grammar School.