Friday, 2 October 2015

John Dougherty 1898-1918, age 19.

Barnsley Chronicle 9th February 1918
with thanks to Barnsley Archives
Born: 1898 in Barnsley Q2.  

Son of: John and Mary Dougherty nee Garnett. John Dougherty Snr (1870-1949, died age 79) was a miner born in Barnsley. He married Lancashire born Mary Ellen Garnett at Ringley Chapel in Prestwich, Manchester in 1891. Mary died in 1934 at the age of 58. The couple had 13 children. 

Military Service: John was a Lance Corporal in the York and Lancaster Regiment, second Barnsley batallion, service number 14/410. 

He enlisted on 2nd February 1915 at the age of 16 years by giving his elder brother Edward Jasper Dougherty's date of birth. John declared to the Military authorities that he was 19 years and 33 days old. 

His mother desperately tried to get him sent back home, but John was already en-route to France. It would appear that in the Army John was a lively lad, punished a number of times for not complying with orders, irregular conduct and overstaying his leave. During his service, John was wounded in action and gassed in July 1917 and was later admitted to hospital with influenza.

Military Medal
On 26th January 1918 the Barnsley Chronicle reported that John had been awarded the Military Medal for having distinguished himself by the promptness with which he brought his Lewis gun into action against a hostile machine gun, silencing it and allowing the attack to proceed.  

Before the war John was a miner working at the Victoria Colliery, Dodworth Road. He was unmarried and Roman Catholic. At the age of 13 years he lived at 24 Longcar Street, later moving to 25 Myrtle Street. At the time of John's death his parents lived at 16 Middlesex Street, later moving to Raley Street until their deaths.      

Death: 8th October 1918 in France from wounds received in action. 
Buried: John was originally buried elsewhere but was moved to Busigny Communal Cemetery Extension in Northern France, grave number VI.B.20. 

John is not named on any Barnsley memorial at the request of his mother Mary who never got over her son's death. 

Commonwealth War Graves Commission link: here 

Research by KingstoneHistory with thanks to John's youngest sister, Faith. 

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