Alexander was born in Gartcosh, Scotland in 1894. The 1901 census shows the family living at 65, Retreat Street, Wolverhampton, Staffordshire. Alice M. Martin, 26, was head of the household. She was a Publican who had been born in Smethwick Staffordshire. The children listed were Alexander 7, Elizabeth 6, John 3 and Agnes 1. Also present was Sarah A. Smith 24. Alexander’s father, John 33, a steelworker was away from home in Hospital. He was listed at South Staffordshire General Hospital, Cleveland Road, Wolverhampton.
Father John 42 an ironworker, was home on the 1911 census. The family had moved to 42, Ash Grove Shotton, Flintshire. His wife of 18 years, Alice was aged 36. Nine children had been born but 1 had died. Alexander was 17 and an Ironworker like his father. Elizabeth 16, was in Domestic Work. John 13, Agnes 11, Lewis 9 and David 5 were all at School. Robert was 3 and Maurice was 1.
Alexander’s army Records survive and are accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk. They tell us that he attested in Liverpool on the 28th December 1914 when he was 21 years and 58 days old. His physical condition was assessed and the following description was noted. He was 5 feet 7 and1/2 inches tall, his chest measurement was 38 inches with a 2 inch expansion. His physical development was good. He served ‘at home’ from December 1914 to the 31st October 1915 and then joined the British Expeditionary Force on the 1st November 1915.
There is correspondence between the army and Alexander’s mother concerning the receipt of his medals, plaque and scroll, the location of his grave and the return of his possessions. These were listed – letters, photos, notebook, tobacco pouch, shaving soap, cig lighter, wallet and a cotton bag. His mother also applied for a pension.
There are 2 entries for Alexander in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929, one – 507/878907/18/19 – tells us that the sole Legatee was his mother Alice M. who was paid £1. 4s 6d on the 13th June 1919. (see also 507/833781/18/19)
The other one for Alexander Martin in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 – 507/833781/18/19 tells us that the sole Legatee was his Mother (Wife crossed out) Alice M who was paid £31. 19s 1d paid on the 14th April 1919. There was a War Gratuity of £24, but it did not state whether the £31. 19s 1d included this, which was often the case and no date of payment was entered either. (see also 507/878907/18/19)
An army relatives form tells us that his father had died in August 1918. It names Alice Maud Martin of Ash Grove Shotton as his mother and lists his brothers John, Lewis, David, Robert, Maurice and James. His sisters were Elizabeth and Agnes.
There is a casualty form that says he was hospitalised earlier in the war but it isn’t easy to read the detail. It says he died in 32 Statey Hospital in Wimereaux of influenza and bronchial pneumonia.
Alexander’s medal card also accessible on ancestry, records his medal details and also tells us that his first theatre of war was France and that he entered it on 3rd November 1915
There is an index card for Alexander in The Flintshire Roll of Honour at the County Record office in Hawarden. (Flintshire WW1 Index Cards F 25 Shotton) It confirms his regimental details and gives the address 42, Ash Grove, Shotton, Flintshire. It says he died in France 29th November 1918. The card was signed on the 19th Jan? 1920 by A.M. Martin, his mother.
Alexander was named on 2 other memorials – the Hawarden War Memorial and the Memorial Screen at St Ethelwold’s Church, Shotton. Somebody made an effort to ensure he was remembered.
My apologies to Ernest Martin for the delay adding his information on Alexander Martin and his family which he sent me in 2012. I have been tidying up the files and somehow I missed this information below. Many thanks Ernest.
My 1st cousin 1x removed Birth 23 Oct 1893 in Gartcosh Cadder, Lanarkshire, Scotland Death 29 Nov 1918 in Killed in action WW1 – Bombardier Royal Garrison Artillery – TERLINCTHUN BRITISH CEMETERY, WIMILLE http://trees.ancestry.co.uk/pt/editperson.aspx?tid=9484014&pid=406284672&mrgIgn=1&pg=32768&pgPL=pid
His Father my grandfathers brother:-
My grand uncle Birth 10 SEP 1868 in Woodneuk Ironworks, Gartcosh, Scotland RD 626-A2 0105 Cadder East, Lanark Death 2 Aug 1918 in Isolation Hospital, Groesynyd, Llangelynin, Conway, Wales (Conway, County: Caernarvonshire Volume: 11b Page: 516)
Alice Maud Smith
Relationship to me: wife of grand uncle Birth abt 1874 in Smethwick, Staffordshire, England Death 12 Dec 1921 in 42 Ash Grove, Shotton, Registration district: Hawarden Inferred County: Flintshire Volume: 11b Page: 278 Marriage to John Martin
Chryston Manse, Chryston 13 Dec 1892 – RD 626-A2 0018 Cadder East, Lanark Witness Robert Allan and Margaret Laidlaw
As you can see Gartcosh has a lot to do with them
I myself and my late father are natives of Gartcosh
I would appreciate anything that you can send me