A Public Family Tree on Ancestry, I was examining last night for other reasons, pointed me towards two new additions to my database of Smethwickians who served in the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902. They were brothers and both have borne up to further scrutiny, one better than the other.
The elder - Private 307 Philip John Reid, 5th Company, 2nd Battalion of the Imperial Yeomanry. He is listed in the ABW Forum database and his service record is downloadable from FMP. He embarked for SA 30th January 1900 and was “severely wounded” by a GSW to the right thigh at Kheis River on 28th May 1900. He was invalided home, arriving back in Blighty on 19th December 1900 and was discharged medically unfit on 19th February 1901. He was left with a “permanent limp” and received the Queen’s South Africa Medal with a single clasp – “Cape Colony”. I conclude he spent nearly 7 months in SA receiving medical treatment and another two in England undergoing convalescence – locations not apparent for either.
Surprisingly Philip (b 1867) enlisted again in September 1914 and was made a Lance-Corporal but never served overseas and was discharged, without given reason, in October 1915.
His younger brother was named Hugh ? Reid, he is not listed on the ABW Forum database, I cannot find his service records (not surprising as he was kia) and I cannot find a medal roll record for him. His death was widely reported in British newspapers because his family roots lay in Scotland, he born in Middlesbrough, lived in Smethwick for about a decade and partly because his father was a newspaper tycoon (amongst many other things). The following appeared in the Edinburgh Evening News of the 26th July 1900:
“A SON OF SIR H GILZEAN REID KILLED – Lieutenant Hugh Thomson Reid, who was recently killed in the South African Light Horse engagement at Waterval, was the youngest son of Sir H Gilzean Reid, and was only 23 years of age. He was educated at Middlesbrough High School, and afterwards at Haileybury, where he excelled in all forms of outdoor pastimes. At the outbreak of the war he was at Pietermaritzburg, on the staff of the daily ‘Times of Natal’. He at once joined the City Guards, and having been trained as a volunteer and member of the Warwickshire Yeomanry, he was a good shot and a daring horseman.”
The above report is repeated verbatim in several other papers, but another report describes him as Trooper Hugh T G Reid, son of Sir H Gilzean-Reid, and says he was killed on 9th July 1900 at Waterval as a member of Thorneycroft’s Mounted Infantry. The Public Family Trees on Ancestry name him as Hugh Stanley Thomas Reid (b 1877) killed in action on 9th July 1900 at Waterval, Eastern Cape, South Africa.
Can anybody else shed further light on Trooper/Lieutenant Hugh ? Reid, South African newspaper man who died in battle at Waterval on 9th July 1900.
Had a good trawl through the medal rolls, couldn't find one to Hugh Reid. However the ABW site did provide the information below.
Certainly no mention of Lieutenant anywhere.
Reid H T G 1658 Private Killed at Waterval. 9 Jul 1900.
Source: Natal Field Force Casualty Roll, page 234 line 39
Reid H T G 1658 Private Demise: Killed in action 09 Jul 1900
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
Interestingly in the reference column of the S Watt entry there is a remark pertaining to TMI & SALH.
But I did find his personal effects entry under H S G Reid and it also has him serving in South Light African Horse, also mentions the journalist angle, so I'm confident it's our man. I would guess he served in both regiments at some point. But his death is recorded with Thornycrofts MI. If only we could find his medal entitlement?
You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
Many thanks Dave - The effects document is 110% him with the final clincher being his father's name - Sir H G Reid = Sir Hugh Gilzean Reid. In Smethwick the family lived in a grand house called Warley Abbey. The house has gone but the grounds remain as a green and open space called Warley Woods where I spent many happy hours in my formative years.
I see "In Memorium by S Watt" referred to a lot - how does one find it or obtain a copy?