Smyth, James (No. 18/690)

Smyth, James (served as Smith, James)

Rifleman

No. 18/690, 13th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Killed in action on Wednesday 9 August 1916 (aged 31)

Buried:

Ration Farm (La Plus Douve) Annexe, Belgium (Grave III. A. 7)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

First Newtownards Presbyterian Church (as Smith)

Family grave headstone in Killinchy Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church Graveyard

First World War Roll of Honour of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland

BIOGRAPHY

In some official records, his surname is spelt Smyth and in others, including the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) Debt of Honour Website, it is spelt Smith.

It is recorded in the CWGC Debt of Honour that J. Smith was the husband of Mrs Smith who lived in the townland of Scrabo, Newtownards.

In the Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914 – 1919 database his forename is recorded as James and his surname is spelt Smyth.

There is evidence from one source that James Smyth was born on 3 March 1885 in the townland of Craigarusky, Killinchy and he was a son of John and Mary Smyth (nee Caughey) who were married on 20 May 1884 in Killinchy Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church.  After Mary died of a scrofulous abscess on 21 March 1889 (aged 23), John re-married.  John Smyth and Jane Orr, a widow from Ardmillan and a daughter of William Stewart, were married on 2 June 1890 in Killinchy Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church.

There is evidence from the same source that James Smyth and Sarah Patton from Ballyhinney, Newtownards were married on 16 July 1907 in First Newtownards Presbyterian Church.

James and Sarah Smyth (nee Patton) had at least six children:

Jane (born 5 June 1908 in Granshaw)

Mary (born 5 September 1909 in Castleavery)

John (born 9 December 1910 in Castleavery)

Maggie (born 11 February 1912 in Corporation South, Newtownards)

Elizabeth (born 19 June 1913 in Corporation South, Newtownards)

James (born 23 August 1914 in Corporation South, Newtownards)

James Smyth enlisted in Newtownards and served with the 13th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division.  He was killed in action on 9 August 1916 by shellfire while holding the line in the Messines area.

Rifleman James Smyth (No. 18/690) was 31 when he died and he was buried in Ration Farm (La Plus Douve) Annexe, Belgium.

Rifleman James Smyth (No. 18/690) is commemorated in First Newtownards Presbyterian Church (as Smith); in the First World War Roll of Honour of the Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland and on the family grave headstone in Killinchy Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church Graveyard:

Erected by John Smyth, Ringneill

In memory of

His wife Mary, died

18 March 1889

Also his son John

Died 25 December 1913

Also his son James

Killed in action in France

9 August 1916

Also his wife Jane

Died 20 December 1931