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The Missing

In my post "Numbers from the War Memorial" I mentioned that a there were 28 men who I had been unable to locate  - I've since been back through the records and found 8 or so of the missing but 20 remain unfound.  Here is a list of them and a summary of my attempts to fnd them.  If anybody has access to other records that may help identify them or clarify which of the recorded men may have a connection to Galashiels I would really appreciate if you could let me have access or point me in the right direction.  I have identified over 600 men using CWGC, SNWM, Ancestry and the British Newspaper Archive and it would be lovely to find them all. 


Royal Field Artillery

Gunner John Higgins

4 John Higgins listed in CWGC database. No connection to Galashiels.  No Service records with connection to Galashiels, Nobody of that name in 1901 or 1911 census lived in Galashiels.  One reference to a J Higgins who sent a letter of thanks to Selkirk Soldiers Comforts committee in April 1918 evidently from his hospital bed.  One Higgins family appears in 1901 census in Galashiels but no ”Johns” 3 John Higgins in RFA listed in SWB records but no connection to Galashiels

Gunner James Thomson

8 Listed in CWGC of which 5 born in Scotland but none in Galashiels. One James Thomson from Selkirk served in the RGA and enlisted in Galashiels where his brother lived – possible but would his brother placed him in the wrong artillery corps?

Argyll & Sutherland  Highlanders

Pte Andrew Knox – One person listed in CWGC but no identified links to Galashiels and full name is Alexander.  A Andrew Knox S/27890 2nd Btn A &SH rcvd VM & BWM. Nothing in local papers for a “Andrew Knox” and “A Knox”

Pte D McCulloch – One person listed in CWGC but no identified links to Galashiels. Soldiers Died has him being born in Renfrew.  A David McCulloch was born in Galashiels in 1886 Nothing in local papers for David McCulloch and D McCulloch.  Several D McCullochs served in A & SH according to MIC’s.  One Douglas McCulloch served 4/7596 +GH & RE died 1/3/1917 arrived France 27/12/1914.  Missing from CWGC

Cameron Highlanders

Pte Robert Brown 9 listed on CWGC. One unofficial report in local newspaper of  a Robert Brown of the 7th Cameron Highlanders ex Scott Street Galashiels  dying pre 3rd Feb 1916 but cannot locate death in CWGC or SNWM or Soldiers died.

Pte Alexander Sutherland 2 listed on CWGC no additional information. Both located in soldiers died both born in highlands no A. Sutherlands  in SNWM born in Galashiels.  10 listed in MIC but no addresses. No

Dorset Regiment

Pte James W. Tod: A James William Tod was living in Galashiels in 1901 but tracing him in the army in the Dorset Regiment  or finding a newspaper reference has not been possible. A James William Tod served with the 1st  Cameron Highlanders S18009 died of wounds 23/7/1916 buried in Contalmaison Chateaux.  Recruiting officer noted he was a ”Superior, Smart lad, anxious to go with a friend” – but wrong regiment and born and lived in Dumfries.


King’s Own Scottish Borderers

Pte Robert Bradley

No R Bradley in CWGC attached to KOSB, No SWB Nothing Soldiers Died

A Robert Bradley was born in Galashiels in 1891 and by 1901 was living in New Monkland. A Robert Bradley attested in 1915 and joined the Royal Scots with the correct age possible? But gives his place of birth as Barony Glasgow?

Pte William Murray

Two William Murrays listed on the GWM who served with the KOSB.  One of them listed in the CWGC  has parents and a wife resident in Galashiels.  No other CWGC listed William Murrays have a connection to Galashiels.  No William Murray deaths in Gala can be tied to KOSB service

Pte Richard J. Turnbull

2 Listed in CWGC.  Only one Richard Lillico Turnbull has connection to Galashiels as according to Soldiers Died he enlisted there so a possible connection but he was born and lived in Selkirk. The other is connected to Hawick.

Pte Peter White

No Pte Peter Whites in the CWGC list for KOSB or SNWM or SDGW.  A Peter White Labourer of various addresses was hauled up in front of the magistrates several times pre-war for poaching salmon (cleeking) and drunkenness – the same person? Nothing in 1911 census or post war death records for Galashiels or nearby towns.

Machine Gun Corps

Pte George F Thomson

Only George Thomson is from Kilmarnock – No connection apparent to Galashiels

Royal Scots

Cpl Robert Fairburn

Two listed in CWGC have no connection to Galashiels.  A Peter Fairbairn enlisted in August 1915 in the Royal Scots moved to the Labour Corps then discharged aged 52 in 1919 – may have died later

Pte Thomas Hart

No Thomas or T Harts died in service with the Royal Scots.  A Thomas Hart did serve with the RS but was discharged in late 1918 under KR 392, Medals were not delivered –may have died but  no Thomas Hart deaths post war then can be tied to the Thomas Hart discharged. 

Pte Russell Mason

None listed, no trace in newspaper

Royal Scottish Fusiliers

Pte James Thomson.

8 men named James Thomson listed  in CWGC but none with a connection to Galashiels. SNWM has no James Thomson’s connected to Galashiels. No James Thomson’s who served in RSF are listed in SDGW have any connection to Galashiels.  BNA searches for “James Thomson” and “Royal Scottish Fusiliers “ in the border area don’t yield any likely results

United States of America

Pte William Newlands

Pte Newlands is not the on ABMC list but a L/Cpl William Newlands of the 9th Btn Gordon Highlanders is listed by the CWGC as having died on the 1st of August 1917 at 32nd  CCS. Service records survives and he was born in Galashiels but he is recorded in the Gordon Highlander part of the GWM – A double entry? If so why under the USA?


Pte Alexander Brown

94 Alexander Browns attested with the Canadian forces and by cross referencing with the CWGC record of Canadians named A Brown who died (36 in total) 6 Men named Alexander Brown are identified.  Cross check against the 1901 census list 6 Alexander Browns in Scotland associated with Galashiels.  One’s birth year corresponds to Alexander Finletter Brown 163068 who was living in Hunter Square Galashiels in 1901. His NOK  on his attestation is a William Brown but his father was a James, but a brother named William is listed in the 1901 census.  Birth locations differ CFR =Maybole, 1901 = Dumfries.  Not enough to confirm.

Cpl E. Miller

1 Cpl E Miller in CWGC in Canadian Forces. Details do not give a connection to Galashiels.  Canadian attestation records give NOK in Canada and birthplace as Queensland Aust.  Cpl E Miller 790649 died 26/10/1917 no known grave, listed on Menin Gate. A Report in the Southern Reporter 9/5/1918 report his death states he worked at Abbotsford Mill and was in the Galashiels Harrier Athletics Club prior to emigration.  But no details connect the Men described. Nothing in 1901 census.

Sgt Joseph White

2 Possibilities: A Pte Joseph  White, known as Joe. 437020 49th Btn Canadian Infantry ex Scots Guards 3491born Edinburgh 14/1/1883 parents lived  Galashiels Camp Cook in the Yukon prior to war. Siblings in Canada, note Incorrect rank.

A Sgt Joseph White, note correct rank 725123 44th Btn CI.  Born Ontanrio, parents lived Ontario – no known connection to Galashiels – unlikely ?

L Cpl J.H. Young

One Sgt J H Young listed on CWGC but Canadian Records and CWGC show no connection to Galashiels or Scotland.  One John Young (no H) born in the Borders is an alternative. 34 J Youngs in CWGC and Thousands in Canadian Attestation records


Many thanks for reading!


Recommended Comments

There is a good chance that some, if not most, of your 20 are not recorded by the CWGC - in a similar exercise with the Newbury memorial (339 names) I have found 15 who, for one reason or another, were not recorded.  As I still have a few left to identify, I suspect that 15 will not be the final figure.

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United States of America

Pte William Newlands

Pte Newlands is not the on ABMC list


You need to be careful about relying on the ABMC site for US servicemen killed in the war. Families had the option to repatriate bodies and many did. The ABMC lists only cover those men still in the care of ABMC but not all US casualties.

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For US servicement not on the ABMC lists (the majority), you could try the site: Findagrave.com They have a lot of servicement among all the others.

Draft registration cards are now available from: familysearch.org (the Mormons).

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Thanks Phil and congratulations on working your way through the Newbury memorial, as you say most of these will likely not be listed on the CWGC  - I already have about 20 men who aren’t listed by the CWGC but died of war related afflictions  before the war memorial panels were cast.  

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Spov and healdav.  Thanks for the advice on tracing Americans I’ll investigate further

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