Robinson, James (No. 18/1087)

Robinson, James


No. 18/1087, 12th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Died of wounds on Tuesday 4 July 1916 (aged 22)


Puchevillers British Cemetery, France (Grave I. B. 36)


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Donaghadee and District War Memorial

First Donaghadee Presbyterian Church


James Robinson was born on 10 March 1894 in the townland of Cannyreagh, Donaghadee and he was a son of James and Agnes Robinson (nee Taylor) who were married around 1892/1893 (from 1911 census).

James Robinson Senior worked in Belfast as a riveter, Agnes Robinson worked as a domestic servant and they had at least two children:

James (born 10 March 1894 in Cannyreagh)

Minnie Elizabeth (born 28 November 1898 in Cannyreagh)

In 1901 Agnes Robinson was living in Cannyreagh with her father, James Taylor, her stepmother, Eliza Taylor, her children James and Minnie Robinson and her daughter Aggie Robinson (aged 11) who was therefore born around 1889/1890.

In 1911 Agnes Robinson was living in Ballyhay with her daughter Minnie.  Her son James was living with his maternal grandparents, James and Eliza Taylor (nee Martin), on their farm in Cannyreagh.  Prior to the outbreak of the Great War James Robinson worked as a farm servant on that farm.

James Taylor and Eliza Martin were married on 21 January 1881 in First Newtownards Presbyterian Church.  James Tayor had been married twice previously:

James Taylor and Ellenor Jane McMillen were married on 3 October 1867 in Ballygrainey Presbyterian Church.  Ellenor Jane Taylor (nee McMillen) died on 12 November 1876.

James Taylor and Margaret McCracken were married on 27 September 1877 in First Donaghadee Presbyterian Church.  Margaret Taylor (nee McCracken) died on 21 June 1880

In November 1915 James Robinson enlisted in Donaghadee and joined the 18th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles.  He was posted to the 12th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles and he served overseas in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division.  On 4 July 1916 he died of wounds received during the Battle of the Somme.

Rifleman James Robinson (No. 18/1087) was buried in Puchevillers British Cemetery, France and there is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:



After Rifleman James Robinson died three For King and Country notices were placed in the Newtownards Chronicle, one from the Blue Banner Total Abstinence Loyal Orange Lodge No. 781 in Donaghadee, one from the Blue Banner Total Abstinence Royal Arch Purple Chapter No. 781 in Donaghadee and one from his mother, sister, grandparents and friends.  The latter contained the verse:

We do not know what pain he bore,

We did not see him die,

We only knew he passed away,

And could not say good-bye.

In 1917 his mother and sister placed an Our Heroes – In Memoriam notice in the Newtownards Chronicle and it contained the verse:

We little thought when he left home,

That he would ne’er return;

That he so soon in death would sleep,

And leave us here to mourn.

A notice placed by his maternal grandparents contained the verse:

One year has passed since that sad day,

When one we loved was called away;

His heart was good, his spirit brave,

His resting place a soldier’s grave.

Rifleman James Robinson (No. 18/1087) is commemorated on Donaghadee and District War Memorial and in First Donaghadee Presbyterian Church.