Thomas Ernest De Maine of Morecambe

Thomas’s name appears on the Morecambe War Memorial. The first source to mention his existence is the 1901 census:

Demaine Family on King Street, Morecambe in 1901

Demaine Family on King Street, Morecambe in 1901

We see that Thomas’s parents were Henry and Mary De Maine and that Thomas had a brother called John McClure Demaine who was born in about 1893. The next source is the 1911 census: Continue reading


Private Farrell G. Dixon of Morecambe

Private Dixon appears on Morecambe War Memorial and was mentioned in the ‘Lancaster Guardian’ of 25th March 1916 as follows:

Farrell Dixon 'Lancaster Guardian' 25th March 1916

‘Lancaster Guardian’ 25th March 1916

The article is typical of the time and gives us a brief, but useful introduction to the experiences of one Morecambe family during the Great War. We notice the following facts:

  • In 1916, the Dixon family lived at 65 Edward Street, Morecambe.
  • Farrell was serving with the Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment.
  • He was killed in action ‘in France’ on 2nd March 1916 aged 24.
  • He went to France at the beginning of the summer of 1915.
  • He had been on leave a month prior to his death.
  • Farrell’s father, George, served in the Royal Army Medical Corps.
  • His brother, Leonard, was an ‘Old Territorial’, who was also on active service and had been seriously wounded in the left arm.
  • His brother, George Frederick, was a sergeant in the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, also on active service.

Continue reading

Private George William Nelson of Kendal

During July 2016, some pupils and staff from the Queen Katherine School in Kendal spent four days walking the Somme Battlefields in Northern France. The party was divided into four groups, each led by a teacher, who explored the experiences of one soldier buried or commemorated in the area. The group led by Dick Forsyth researched and commemorated George William Nelson from Kendal. Dick wrote the following biography, the first from Kendal to be published on this blog, but I hope not the last.

Commemorating Private George W. Nelson at Waggon Road Cemtery

Dick Forsyth, the author of this post, speaking about Private Nelson, July 2016.


There is little evidence left of Private George Nelson, who died on 18th November 1916, the last official day of the Somme campaign, in an assault on German positions along
Redan Ridge to the east of Beaumont-Hamel. He had been in France just over three months. It appears to have been his first and only time in a large scale assault.

Continue reading

The Quick and the Dead – People from Carnforth 1914 -1924

This post looks at the list of people from the Carnforth area who served and who became casualties during and immediately after the Great War. There are two sources for the names – the War Memorial, which distinguishes between people who died during and after the Great War and the ‘Carnforth Patriots’ document. Images and transcriptions can be seen here.

There are not many towns which have extant lists of everybody who served as well as of those who died. In this sense, Carnforth is fortunate. In addition, there are no discrepancies between the Patriots list and the War Memorial, so it is probable that the lists are accurate and comprehensive. They help us to learn about the numbers of people who served, who became casualties and who survived. Continue reading