Harvey, John (No. 17790)

Harvey, John (Jock)


No. 17790, ‘B’ Company, 13th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Died of disease on Sunday 31 December 1916 (aged 38)


Newtownards (Movilla) Cemetery, Co. Down (Grave 1. 279)


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Newtownards and District War Memorial

Second Newtownards Presbyterian Church

Brother of Private David Harvey (No. 241092)


John (Jock) Harvey was born on 25 October 1878 in Little Francis Street, Newtownards and he was a son of William and Mary Harvey (nee Service, sometimes Servace) who were married on 8 May 1866 in Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s).

The Harvey family lived at 9 Upper Movilla Street, Newtownards.

William Harvey worked as a pedlar and then as a wool weaver and he and Mary had thirteen children:

Margaret Ann (born 5 March 1867 in Russell Place, Newtownards; died 14 July 1889 aged 22)

Robert (born 5 April 1869 in Zion Place, Newtownards)

Eliza (born 3 September 1871 in Russell Place, Newtownards)

James (born 21 February 1874 in East Street, Newtownards)

William (born 2 June 1876)

John (born 25 October 1878 in Little Francis Street, Newtownards)

Edward (born 17 May 1881 in Little Francis Street, Newtownards)

Susanna (born 30 September 1883 in Movilla Street, Newtownards)

George (born 15 September 1885 in Movilla Street, Newtownards)

Hugh (born 18 July 1887 in Movilla Street, Newtownards)

Margaret Ann (born 7 August 1889 in Movilla Street, Newtownards)

David (born 1 July 1892 in Upper Movilla Street, Newtownards)

Mary (born 16 March 1894 in Upper Movilla Street, Newtownards)

Jock Harvey worked as a house painter and decorator before the outbreak of the Great War and he and Martha McManus were married on 11 May 1906 in Second Newtownards Presbyterian Church.  Martha McManus from Newtownards was a daughter of David McManus, a weaver.

The Harvey family lived at 77 Mark Street Newtownards and they had at least four children:

Mary Eleanor (born 18 May 1908 in Front Shuttlefield, Newtownards)

David (born 19 September 1910 in Thomas Street, Newtownards)

William (born 24 November 1912 in Mark Street, Newtownards)

John (born 19 July 1915 in Mark Street, Newtownards)

John Harvey was 35 when he enlisted on 17 September 1914 in Belfast and he served with the 13th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles.  After training at Clandeboye he went to England where he became ill and was hospitalised.  He recovered and was posted to the 18th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles.

Rifleman John Harvey went to France on 22 November 1915 where he served with the 12th Battalion and again he became seriously ill.  Suffering from pulmonary tuberculosis Jock Harvey was hospitalised in England and later in Forster Green Hospital Belfast.  Rifleman John Harvey was discharged from the Army on 14 May 1916 because he was deemed to be no longer fit for active service.

Ex-Rifleman John Harvey died of consumption on 31 December 1916 and on 2 January 1917 he was accorded a full military funeral.  The coffin was wrapped in the Union Jack and the band of the 10th Royal Irish Fusiliers under Drum Major F. May played funeral marches on the way to Movilla Cemetery.  The services in the house and at the graveside were conducted by the Rev J.A.F. Young of Second Newtownards Presbyterian Church.  When the funeral cortege was passing along the Donaghadee Road a cow broke through the crowd, knocked several mourners to the ground and then galloped ahead of the procession.  No-one was seriously injured.

There is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:



Rifleman John (Jock) Harvey is commemorated on Newtownards and District War Memorial and in Second Newtownards Presbyterian Church.