Saturday, October 26, 2013

Stoker First Class, William Beattie

William Beattie


There were 21 results for William Beattie on the CWGC database and 15 for W Beattie. I looked at the 'other information' on the CWGC to rule out men from other places then cross-referenced with the UK soldiers died in the great war and UK Royal Navy and Royal Marine War Graves Roll to identify men who were from Liverpool. This gave me 2 possibilities, one in the navy and one in the army.

Of these two men, one lived in the area of St James' church. I know this isn't a perfect identification but unless I find otherwise, here are his details:

Family Information

On his Naval Service Record William Beattie's date of birth is recorded as 3rd July 1889 in Liverpool, I haven't been able to find a corresponding record on the Births Index. 

Information added to his entry in Royal Naval Division Casualties of the Great War 1914-1924 (transcript below) shows that his father was John Beattie of 56c Northumberland St.

In the 1911 census, William was enumerated on the battleship "Mars" in Weymouth Bay.

Other information shows that in 1914 his next-of-kin was listed as Mrs Elizabeth Throwell, an aunt living at 33 Hughson St and she received William's 1914 Star in 1919.

Naval Service

On 25th September 1908 William signed up for the navy as a Special Service Rating [i.e. Short Service] he signed up for five years with the RN [Official No. SS107737] & seven years with the Royal Fleet Reserve [B/5376].

His record shows that William was born on 3 July 1889 in Liverpool, his occupation was Scaler and this was his first engagement. 

He was 5ft 3 1/2 inches tall with a 35 inch test. His hair was dark brown, eyes dark blue and complexion fresh. He had a scar on his right cheek.

William's service record show that his time with the Royal Navy was spent as follows:

Ship etc
Vivid II
Stoker 2nd class
25/9/1908 – 19/2/09
V.G. 31.12.08

20 Feb 1909
V.G. 12.09.09 G
Stoker 1st class
25/9/09 – 03/10/10
V.G. 31.12.10 V.G.
Vivid II

04/10/10 – 11/01/11
V.G. 31.12.11 SAT

12/01/11 – 1/1/12
V.G. 31.12.12 SUP

02/01/12 – 13/09/13

Vivid II

14/09/13 – 20/09/13
V.G        SAT
If Discharged, whither and for what cause:   SHORE RFR
Transferred to RFR Devonport 5376 21 Sept 1913
Vivid II
Stoker 1
2/8/1914 – 14/9/14
V.G. 31.12.14
Victory IV (RND Howe)
Stoker 1
15/09/1914 – 03/6/15

If Discharged, whither and for what cause:   DD
N.P. 4982/15 & NP 5067/15
D.D. 4 June ‘15
Killed in action in Dardanelles (Howe Battalion)

N.P. 31/6/15 Missing during operations in Dardanelles (Howe Battalion) Sept '15 ledger.
For service in R.N.Division see N.(?) 142/25

His discharge card for the Royal Fleet Reserve/Naval Division gives the following information:

1914 STAR                                       DISCHARGED DD

WILLIAM BEATTIE                                                        B/5376
Number: DEV/SS/107737/RFR/5376   Branch of Service: R.F.R.
Rank or Rating:
Private address: (blank)

G.C. Badges: 1
Class for Conduct: 1.    Religion R.C.
Next of Kin: Aunt
Name: Elizabeth Throwell
Address: 33 Hughson St, Liverpool
15.9.14               A/194
Where Serving:
Howe Battalion
19.6.15 (rep.rec) Missing D’nelles
RND List No 147
9.8.15 11.8.15



Unofficially reported dead cabled R.O.64 for confirmation
KPC 9766 read “nothing further reported enquiring”
NOK informed
Any further information to be sent to father also. Mr John Beattie, 56c Northumberland St, off Mill St, Liverpool.
MFC 16310 Repts killed in action 4.6.15 RND List 338
NOK informed also father
“D.D” List No 15
A.F.B. 2090a received (4.6.15 Killed in Action, Dardanelles)
D.C. No 512 send to N.O.K. Copy to Aunt Mrs Throwell.
A.F.B.103 received (4-6.6.15 missing Dardanelles, 4.6.15 killed in action, Dardanelles) Cable from D.H.C.)
S.C. Conduct sheet and A.F.B.103 sent to Commodore R.N.D. Depot C.P. for notation service and completion of discharge certificate and return.
Recd. D.O. 30, 7.7.15 missing 4-6.6.15
Recd. D.O. 47, 15.9.15 Killed in action 4.6.15. Previously reported missing
S/C., C/S., recd. From S.C.O. Blandford. Forwarded to A.G.9
W.G. Form passed to A.G.9B Paid £5
Issued by A.G. 14a with 1914 star

Link to William's entry in the CWGC database (opens in new window)
His entry in Great Britian, Royal Naval Division Casualties of the Great War 1914-1924 gives the information:

William Beattie

Service Branch:
Royal Navy

Howe Bn.

Stoker 1st Class

Death Date:
4 Jun 1915
Cause of Death:
Missing, later reported killed in action
Helles Memorial (MR 4)

Service History:
Enlisted 25/9/1908 ; Enrolled RFR 21/9/1913 ; Howe Bn.

A/194 15/9/14-4/6/15 DD.
Service Number:


CWGC = Hawke Bn. ; Born July 3rd 1889, in Liverpool,

Lancashire, the son of John Beattie of 56c,

Northumberland Street, off Mill Street, Liverpool. He was

unmarried and was employed as a scaler in civil life. ;

Nephew of Elizabeth Throwell, of 33 Hughson St.,

Liverpool (listed as Next-of-Kin in 1914). ; 1914 Star

issued to Legatee, Mrs. E. Thornewell, 31/3/19.


William has no known grave and is commemorated on the Helles Memorial (Turkey) you can find out more about this cemetery and memorial here on the CWGC website.
Helles Memorial (copyright CWGC)
William's entry on the CWGC website has the incorrect information of Hawke Battalion instead of Howe Battalion. 

Liverpool Echo Family Notices 3rd June 1916

Roll of Honour
BEATTIE - In loving memory of William, killed in action in the Dardanelles, June 4 1915. (never forgotten by his Aunt E Throwell. Rest in peace)

Liverpool Town Hall, Hall of Remembrance

There are two entries for W Beattie on the Roll of Honour in the Hall of Remembrance, one of them has the regiment "Royal Naval Brigade" and the other "Howe Battery, HMS Reliance"  These entries were submitted by family members who were often unsure of exact regiments etc and as far as I know "Howe Battery" did not exist and is probably a mistake for Howe Battalion, HMS Reliance was a repair ship which was in the Dardanelles in 1915. It is possible that either, or both of these entries are for William Beattie.

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