The 1891 Census on Ancestry.co.uk shows us that Robert Brown was living with his family at 6, Wallace St. Dumbarton, Scotland. Head of the family is shown as Robert Brown 30 years of age born in 1861 in Motherwell, Lanarkshire, his trade was listed as Plumber on ship yard. The rest of the household consisted of Eliza Brown, wife, 24 years of age born in St. Monans, Fifeshire and their children, Robert age 2 and Agnes M. age 1 month.
Ten years on we find the family living at 6, Victoria St. Dumbarton. Robert Brown (Snr) is 40 years of age and his trade is Ships Plumber, Eliza Brown age 35 wife and they have a further addition to the family, Thomas 7 years, scholar. Robert age 12 and Agnes age 10 are also listed as scholars.
Unfortunately I haven’t been able to locate the family on the 1911 census.
Library and Archives Canada. Soldiers of the Great War 1914 – 1918.
Attestation Papers for Lieutenant 408566 Robert Brown.
Robert Brown enlisted into the 37th Reserve Battalion on 15th June 1915 at Niagra, Ontario. His regimental number was 408566.
Robert was born in Renton, Scotland. His date of birth was shown as 20th October 1889 and his trade was Clerk – Accountant.
After training in Canada, Robert sailed from Halifax on 27th November 1915 on board S.S. Lapland arriving in England on 11th December 1915.
Robert was promoted to Corporal at Bramshott Camp on 13/12/1915, then Acting Sergeant at Shorecliffe Camp on 7/6/1916 and finally to Temporary Lieutenant at Dibgate Camp on 25/8/1916 after which he was transferred to 23rd Battalion.
He was overseas from August 1916 until May 1917.
Robert Brown was transferred to the 3rd Division Signal Company on 17/3/1917 but unfortunately had to be admitted to the 14th General Hospital in Bologne on 5/5/1917 suffering from Stomatitus Pyorrhoea or Trench Mouth, which is a severe infection of the mouth. He was transferred to Yorkhill War Hospital three days later.
He was discharged from Yorkhill War Hospital, Glasgow on 31/5 1917 but was given 1 months home service.
Robert was transferred on 2/6/1919 from the 3rd Division Signal Company, Canadian Engineers to No. 6 Salvage Corps Rhyl while stationed at Kinmel Camp preparing for repatriation.
Tragically, he committed suicide on 5th September 1919 and was buried at St. Margaret’s Cemetery, Bodelwyddan.
It would appear that tragically Robert was suffering from the effects of Gas Poisoning and Shell Shock when he took his own life.
May he Rest in Peace.
Robert is buried in St. Margaret’s Cemetery, Bodelwyddan.
He is commemorated on the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.