Ishmael Blackwell was born in Northop, Flintshire during 1898.
The 1911 Census tells us that the family resided at Top Borth Ddu, Halkyn, Flintshire. The head of the family was Joseph Blackwell aged 48, who was employed as a Lead Miner at the Halkyn Lead Mines. His wife Alice Blackwell aged 44, a Dressmaker and their three sons – Ishmael Blackwell aged 13, Baden Powell Blackwell aged 10 and John Blackwell aged 4 years. They also had two daughters – Alice Blackwell aged 8 and Dilys May Blackwell aged 6.
During May 1917 Ishmael enlisted as a Private with the Royal Field Artillery at Wrexham Barracks.
Following the death of his elder brother Ishmael, Baden Powell Blackwell who was then aged 18 enlisted as a Stoker in the Royal Navy on 1 August 1918. He completed his training at Devonport aboard the Base Ship HMS Vivid11 and then served as a Stoker on RMS Aquitania, which was at that time in service as a Troopship. Baden Powell was honourably discharged on 7 March 1919. He died in Flintshire on 7 June 1939, aged 39 years.
The County Herald Newspaper – Death of another local soldier. ‘We are informed that Mrs Blackwell of Roseneath, Bagillt received information on Tuesday morning of the death of her son Private Ishmael Blackwell. The deceased was well known to a number of Bagillt, Flint and Halkyn residents and sympathy is expressed with his bereaved mother and relatives’.
There is a Flintshire Roll of Honour Card for Ishmael Blackwell at the County Archives Office, Hawarden, containing details of the medals he was awarded. This card was completed on 2 September 1919 by his mother Alice.
On 6 November 1918 a payment of £11.12s 3d was made by the War Office to Ishmael’s father, Joseph Blackwell, being monies owed to his son. On 16 December 1919 a further payment which was recoded as a War Gratuity of £7.10s 0d was also made to him.
He is also remembered on the North Wales Heroes Memorial Arch, Deiniol Road, Bangor, North Wales.