Second Lieut. H. Norman Hill, Royal Field Artillery -killed in action 24.10.1901 1 week 6 days ago #76721
In Holy Trinity Church, North Shields, with Trooper John Dixon's memorial plaque immediately below.
SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF
HENRY NORMAN HILL
AGED 24 YEARS
2 ND LIEUTENANT 4 TH BATTERY ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
PREVIOUSLY A LIEUTENANT IN THE TYNEMOUTH VOLUNTEER ARTILLERY
KILLED IN ACTION AT KLEINFONTEIN, SOUTH AFRICA, 24 OCTOBER 1901
AND MENTIONED IN DESPATCHES FOR VERY MARKED GALLANTRY.
ERECTED BY HIS FORMER COMRADES,
THE OFFICERS OF THE TYNEMOUTH VOLUNTEER ARTILLERY.
The Late Lieut. H. N. Hill.
....The sad news of the death of Second-Lieutenant H. Norman Hill in South Africa, has been received with widespread regret in this district, and the sympathy of the inhabitants has gone out to his mother and relatives in their sad bereavement, the painfulness of which is accentuated by reason of the fact that the deceased gentleman's father, the late Mr A. H. Hill, J.P., died only a few months ago. Although only twenty-four years of age, Lieut. Hill had taken a very keen interest in the Volunteer movement, and there was no more popular officer in the Tynemouth Artillery, in which he was a Lieutenant. ln response to the appeal for Yeomen on the outbreak of hostilities, he volunteered for active service, and subsequently proceeded to South Africa with the first Northumberland and Durham contingent of the Imperial Yeomanry. Afterwards he was given a Second-Lieutenancy in the 4th Battery of the Royal Field Artillery. In South Africa, as at home, he won the esteem and respect of many, and one can but deplore the loss of one whose promising career has been brought to such an untimely end. Such, however, are the fortunes of war.
Shields Daily Gazette, Thursday 31st October 1901
VOLUNTEER GATHERING AT NORTH SHIELDS.
HOW LIEUT. HILL MET HIS DEATH.....The annual dinner in connection with the Northumberland and Durham Counties Amalgamated Volunteer Artillery Sergeants' Mess, took place on Saturday evening at the Northumberland Arms Hotel, New Quay, North Shields, and the gathering was attended with very gratifying success.
.... . . . Colonel [Kidd] referred in sympathetic terms to the death of their late comrade, Lieut. Norman Hill, of North Shields, who was killed whilst in action in South Africa a short time ago. The news of his death came very suddenly, and he (the speaker), was anxious to hear how Lieut. Hill had acquitted himself in his final trial. Only at the beginning of that week he was privileged to see a letter from South Africa giving details of the way in which the Lieutenant met his death. The letter was written by an officer in the Royal Engineers, to his mother. Lieut. Hill was a great favourite in his regiment. Although holding a commission in the Volunteer Artillery, seeing that there was no chance of garrison artillery being employed in South Africa, he immediately joined the Imperial Yeomanry, aud volunteered, and was accepted as a trooper. He underwent all the hardships and trials which had to be borne, without a murmur, and after serving for a considerable time, they would remember he was gazetted to a commission in the Royal Field Artillery. On the day of his death he was in command of the rearguard of a transport column about three miies in length. The column had to march along a road bordered on either side by thick scrub and trees. Lieut. Hill had under his command a company of Infantry and a hundred men of the I.R. with two guns. After marching about six miles through this scrub they were suddenly attacked by a force of 700 Boers, who, galloping into their midst, fired right and left. The main body of the column were a long way ahead. Hill immediately got the two guns into action, but had only time to fire off three rounds; then came his final trial. Seeing that his guns were useless, because the Boers were amongst them, he galloped back to the limbers and himself shot three or four of the horses to prevent the Boers getting the guns away. (Applause.) Next he managed to destroy his ammuuition, and while thus engaged he was shot through the right arm. With his left, however, he accounted for two Boers, but in getting back to where his men were, he was shot through the head, and met his death in that way. He fell but he saved his guns, and the main body having come back, the Boers were driven off. At night their deceased comrade was carried on one of the guns to the place where he was buried. (Loud applause.) They as volunteers felt proud that he had belonged to them.
Shields Daily Gazette, Monday 2nd December 1901
THE LATE LIEUT. HILL, OF NORTH SHIELDS.
UNVEILING OF A MEMORIAL TABLET.
....A special church parade of the Tynemouth Artillery Volunteers took place yesterday afternoon at Christ Church, North Shields, when a bronze memorial tablet, erected to the memory, of the late Lieut. Henry Norman Hill, was unveiled. Lieut. Hill was the son of the late Mr A. H. Hill, J.P., of North Shields, and was killed in active service in South Africa. There was a large and representative attendance at the parade, including companies from Blyth and Seaton Delaval. Amongst the officers were Col. Pilter, C.B., Col. Kidd, Col. Haswell, Major T. W. Elliott, Major Burgess, Capt. Spicer, Capt. Wait, Capt. Nicholson (Blyth), and Capt. A. McGill, R.A., adjutant. There was a crowded congregation. The service was conducted by the vicar, the Rev. T. E Crawhall, junior chaplain of the corps, and the Rev. Canon Hicks, of Holy Saviour's, Tynemouth, senior chaplain.
....After the service, Col. Pilter alluded to the dark cloud that had just passed away, and to the humanity, courage, and self-devotion which had characterised our soldiers during the war in South Africa. Speaking of the late Lieut. Hill, the Colonel said that as soon as he was of age he took his place amongst the defenders of his country, and joined the Tynemouth Artillery. He had not the honour of being his commanding officer, but he had asked his adjutant what sort of a soldier Lieut. Hill was, and his reply was—there was no better nor no keener soldier; no soldier knew his work better than he did; he was a credit, not only to that regiment, but to the volunteers generally of the country. After he went out to South Africa, they knew not how many narrow escapes he had, but they knew he suffered great hardships, and the end was an end of which they all might feel proud; he tell as a soldier falls, and they were all indebted to him and his comrades for the position our Empire holds to-day. Col. Pilter then read extracts from letters from Lord Methuen and others, testifying to young Hill's gallantry, and said he was mentioned in despatches, whichwas considered a very great honour for very marked gallantry. Having spoken a few words of sympathy for the mother and family of the late Lieut. Hill, Col. Pilter unveiled the memorial, which contained the following inscription:— "Sacred to the memory of Henry Norman Hill, aged 24 years, 2nd Lieut, of the 4th Battery, Royal Field Artillery, previously a lieutenant in the Tynemouth Volunteer Artillery, killed in action at Kleinfontein, South Africa, October 24th 1901, and mentioned in despatches for very marked gallantry. Erected by his former comrades, the officers of the Tynemouth Volunteer Artillery."
....The "last post" was sounded, the guard saluted, and the proceeding was brought to a close.
....The memorial tablet is placed directly above the memorial to the late Major Edward Sutton, J.P., who died in January, 1884, and which was also erected by the officers of the Tynemouth Volunteer Artillery. Near this is also a memorial to the late Trooper J. Dixon, of North Shields, who was killed in South Africa in 1901. Trooper Dixon was coachman in the service of the late Mr A. H. Hill, father of Lieut. Hill.
Shields Daily Gazette, Monday 7th July 1902
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