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TOPIC: Private J. F. Grourke, 1st South Staffs. Regiment - died at Tamworth 14.11.1900

Private J. F. Grourke, 1st South Staffs. Regiment - died at Tamworth 14.11.1900 2 months 1 week ago #59161

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"Hundreds of spectators were on Saturday afternoon assembled along the principal streets of the town, on the occasion of the funeral of Private John Francis Grourke, of the 1st South Staffordshire Regiment, who had died at the house of his parents in Bolebridge street, on the previous Wednesday. The deceased had been in South Africa during the war, and was wounded at Thabanchu, and also by a shell at Winburg. He had likewise suffered from enteric fever, and had been invalided to Netley Hospital, from which he was discharged some weeks ago and came home to Tamworth. Subsequently he caught a chill, from the effects of which he died at the age of 24 years. The authorities at Whittington Barracks decided to give the funeral military honours."
Tamworth Herald, Saturday 24th November 1900

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Private J. F. Grourke, 1st South Staffs. Regiment - died at Tamworth 14.11.1900 2 months 1 week ago #59172

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Very good, thanks for posting Berenice.

Thank goodness for newspapers. The medal rolls states his date of death as 27-6-00, Soldier's Effects as 11-10-00. But I can find no corroboration for his wound or "shell shock" in any other source. I read the full report and the vicar officiating relates those facts - you can trust a vicar can't you?

He is buried in Wigginton Road cemetery.

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Private J. F. Grourke, 1st South Staffs. Regiment - died at Tamworth 14.11.1900 2 months 1 week ago #59174

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Tamworth Council has a grave location service, but charges £16, so I'd rather have a walk round first and have a look myself. Find A Grave has only 10 names for that particular cemetery.

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Private J. F. Grourke, 1st South Staffs. Regiment - died at Tamworth 14.11.1900 2 months 6 days ago #59183

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From the Tamworth Herald, 21st July 1900 -
"Private J. Grourke, 1st South Staffords, writing from Deelfontein to a friend at Tamworth, says: It has been a bit rough here, and I shall be glad when the Boers throw up the sponge. There are some awful cases in the hospitals here, caused by those explosive and poisoned bullets. We have the best hospital in South Africa. We have Mr. Fripp, surgeon-in-ordinary to the Prince of Wales, and a splendid staff from the London hospitals, and it is marvellous the cases they have cured. I saw Harry Haddon at Thabanchu. Of all the places I have been in, Africa is the worst. All you can see here is British Army, great kopjes, and hundreds of miles of deserts. They said that Bloemfontein was a lovely place, but there is only one good house, and that is where Steyn lived and it is a fine place, but the town is like Dordon to a certainty. I have a few curios in the shape of Boer bullets and Kaffir tobacco."

* Dordon is a village in North Warwickshire - in the 1891 census the population numbered 877, but, mostly due to Birch Coppice Colliery, it had increased to 1,365 by 1908.


The same newspaper, of dates 19th May and 16th June, 1900, listed the soldiers from Tamworth, Atherstone, and District who were at the front. Private Grourke was listed, with the service number 5315.
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