No. 18/976, 18th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, transferred to
No. 275368 Labour Corps
Died of disease on Tuesday 12 November 1918 (aged 30)
Newtownards (Movilla) Cemetery, Co. Down (Grave 12. 89)
Robert Harvey was born on 6 April 1888 in the townland of Lurganure, Lisburn and he was a son of William Martin Harvey and Sarah Harvey (nee Campbell) who were married on 8 June 1871 in Lisburn Church of Ireland Cathedral. William Martin Harvey from Maze was a son of Robert Harvey, a labourer. Sarah Campbell from Lurganure was a daughter of James Campbell, a weaver.
William Martin Harvey and Sarah Harvey (nee Campbell) had at least five children:
Sarah Jane (born 18 October 1872 in Lurganure, Lisburn)
Agnes (born 3 April 1879 in Lurganure, Lisburn)
Martha (born 16 September 1881 in Lurganure, Lisburn)
Mary (born 26 June 1885 in Lurganure, Lisburn)
Robert (born 6 April 1888 in Lurganure, Lisburn)
Prior to the outbreak of the Great War, Robert Harvey worked as a labourer.
Robert Harvey from Maze, Hillsborough enlisted in Lisburn on 15 November 1915. He declared that he was 25 and a labourer. It was noted that he was 5 feet 7 inches tall and initially he cited as his next-of-kin his uncle, Henry Campbell, of Maze, Hillsborough. Later his next-of-kin details were amended to: his wife, Maria Harvey, of 16 William Street, Newtownards.
Robert Harvey and Marion (Maria) McWilliams were married on 3 January 1917 in Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s). At the time, Robert Harvey was serving in the 18th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles and he was a son of Martin Harvey, a farmer. Maria McWilliams was a daughter of Andrew McWilliams, a labourer.
It was also noted in Robert Harvey’s attestation papers that he had an adopted daughter, Ellen Marion, who was born on 8 September 1915 at 24 Gray’s Hill, Bangor.
When she was born, this child was registered as Ellen Marion McWilliams and her mother, Maria McWilliams, worked as a domestic servant.
Robert and Maria Harvey (nee McWilliams) had a daughter named Maria who was born on 15 October 1917 in Newtownards.
Robert Harvey served with the 18th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (No. 18/976) before being transferred in 1917 to the Labour Corps (No. 275368). Robert Harvey suffered from gastric ulcers and he was discharged from the Army when he was deemed to be no longer fit for war service.
Ex-Rifleman Robert Harvey contracted influenza and died of pneumonia on 12 November 1918 in Newtownards Hospital (aged 30). His daughter Maria had also contracted influenza and she died of pneumonia at home the previous day. Maria Harvey died on 11 November 1918 in 85 Church Street, Newtownards (aged 1) and she and her father were buried at the same time and in the same grave.