McKimm, James (No. M2/193481)

McKimm, James

Private

No. 193, 1st Battalion, Irish Guards, transferred to

No. M2/193481, 52nd M.T. Company, Army Service Corps

Died in service on Thursday 12 October 1916 (aged 35)

Buried:

Newtownards (Movilla) Cemetery, Co Down (Grave 11. 33)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Newtownards and District War Memorial

Journey of Remembering Belfast Book of Honour

Brother of Ex-Rifleman David McKimm (No. 1806)

Brother of Ex-Rifleman Robert McKimm (No. 3/25599)

BIOGRAPHY

In some records his surname is spelt McKim.

James McKimm was born on 23 August 1881 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards and he was a son of William and Margaret McKimm (nee Henry, sometimes Henery) who were married on 15 February 1864.

The McKimm family lived at 2 Wallace’s Street, Newtownards and in Greenwell Street, Newtownards

William McKimm was a weaver and he and Margaret had at least twelve children:

Ann Jane (born 1 September 1864 in Wallace’s Deed, Newtownards)

David (born 4 April 1868 in Wallace’s Street No. 2, Newtownards)

Robert (born 22 March 1870 in Wallace’s Street No. 2, Newtownards)

Thomas (born 18 January 1872 in Wallace’s Street No. 2, Newtownards)

William (born 16 August 1873 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

Samuel (born 13 July 1876 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

Margaret (born 24 January 1880 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

James (born 23 August 1881 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

Sarah (born 16 January 1883 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards; died of scarlatina 25 January 1883)

Alexander (born 6 September 1884 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

Alice (born 25 April 1886 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

Charles (born 23 February 1889 in Wallace’s Street, Newtownards)

James McKimm declared his age to be 17 years and 10 months when he enlisted in Newtownards on 22 February 1897 (he was in fact 15 years 6 months old).  It was noted that he was 5 feet 6½ inches tall with a fresh complexion, grey eyes and brown hair.  Private James McKimm served with the 3rd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (No. 3356) for three years and then on 13 August 1900 he joined the 1st Battalion Irish Guards (No. 193) at Bulford Camp on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire.  At that stage he declared his age to be 21 years and 1 month (it was in fact his 19th birthday).  It was noted that he was 5 feet 11½ inches tall with a clear complexion, blue eyes and dark brown hair.  Also noted were some congenital strawberry marks on his body.  In 1903 he transferred to the Army Reserve and was discharged from the Army on 12 August 1912.

James McKimm and Margaret Sherrit (sometimes Sherritt, sometimes Sherrard who was born in Aberdeen) were married on 12 June 1903 in St Mary’s Church, Fulham, London.  They lived for a time in Aberdeen before moving to Belfast where they lived at 18 Parker Street and later at 6 Methuen Street.

James and Margaret McKimm had at least seven children:

Thomas James (born 4 October 1903 in Aberdeen)

Mary Ann (born 4 October 1905 at 3 Elmdale Street, Belfast; died 23 October 1905)

Maria Annie (born 24 July 1907)

Louisa Laughlin (born 18 September 1909 at 18 Parker Street, Belfast)

William (born 19 April 1911 at 18 Parker Street, Belfast)

Richard (born 3 June 1913 at 31 Martin Street, Belfast)

Samuel Allen (born 22 January 1916 at 6 Methuen Street, Belfast; died of broncho-pneumonia 28 December 1916)

Thomas James was born in Aberdeen and their other children were born in Belfast.

James McKimm worked as a steam traction engine driver before he enlisted on 27 June 1916 in Belfast.  At attestation it was noted that he was 5 feet 11½ inches tall and he declared his age to be 35 (he was in fact 34 years 10 months old although in the 1911 census he had declared it to be 33).  Private James McKimm served again with the 1st Battalion Irish Guards (No. 193) before being transferred to the Mechanical Transport Company of the Army Service Corps.

It was reported that two of his brothers were serving with the King’s Royal Rifle Corps and that he had applied for a transfer to that Regiment.

On 23 October 1916 Private James McKimm was found dead at Thornhill Camp, Aldershot (he had gone missing on 12 October 1916) and he was buried in Movilla Cemetery, Newtownards.