A British officer, believed by the IRA, to have been John Watt (no known regiment and a very common name - over 20 on TNA files) was kidnapped and shot in Jun 1921. Experience leads me to believe that the name "John Watt" is substantially correct - men about to die had due cause to tell their real name, but it does rely on the Irish perceivence of "Watt" (Watts, Wattie, Watte,..)
He was buried in a bog by the IRA and in 1962 turf cutters found the grave
He was then re-buried in a churchyard, and I now have his grave location and photo
Michael Farry who wrote a book about the War of Independence "Sligo" was kind enough to send me the photos and noted "It's actually sad to be there and realise that no-one of his family ever knew where he ended up, in a remote Irish graveyard among Kelly and McDonaghs.
So I have the grave, but I cannot find who Lt Watt(s) was. The British were negligent at reporting missing soldiers, and apparently have not expressed any interest in his reburial - at least I cannot uncover any correspondence from the discovery in 1962.
The only way I can see to solve his identity would be to find who was garrisoned in the area - there are 3 or 4 possible locations. Sadly dates of British Regiments being based in particular out-stations are also difficult to find
There is an IRA Witness Statement WS 1312
John Joe Dockery, Ballymote, Co Sligo, 4th Battalion Sligo IRA, Intelligence Officer. In June, 1921, it was reported to me that some soldiers had deserted from the British Army unit stationed at Boyle and were knocking about in our area. One of them was arrested by Volunteers from the 5th Battalion near Riverstown. I was summoned to act as a member of the courtmartial. Sufficient evidence was available to convict him as a spy and he was sentenced to death. The sentence was duly carried out. He admitted that he was a member of the British forces; he stated he was a private soldier; he was, in fact, a commissioned officer in the British Army with the rank of lieutenant. His name was Watt. A Question was later asked In the British House of Commons as to his. fate. This gave us the facts as to his identity and confirmed our earlier decision.
I cannot get a Hansard question that might get us any further.
Basically I have run out of ideas in trying to establish who he was. Can anyone help?