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Private Sam Smith


Harrogate Herald - 27th June 1917

Roll of Honour

Mr & Mrs Charles Smith, 37 North Lodge Avenue, New Park, Harrogate, whose son, Private John Smith, was missing since April 28, received official notice that he has been posted as missing and wounded from that date. Now they have received a letter, which was sent by the missing man's officer to his brother, Private Sam Smith, in France, in which he states : In answer to your letter writing about your brother, there is no further news. I am very much afraid that he must have died of wounds. He was very badly wounded by a machine gun. I met the sergeant just now who was with him when it happened. They were making an attack at the time, and had got about three-quarters of the way to the objective, the village of --------. The sergeant at the time he was wounded did not think that your brother would live. Nobody seems to know anything, so far as I can discover, of your brother having been carried out to a dressing station, and there is no record of his having passed through any other dressing station or field ambulance or hospital. He was hit in the stomach. I am afraid there is very little chance of his getting down the line without a single record having been made of his transfer from one medical unit to another. The Germans did not return to the position that was captured, so he would not be a prisoner. It looks very much as though he had been buried near the front line by the battalion which relieved us the following day, and that they found no identification on the body. I am very sorry for the distress that it must be causing you, and especially your parents. Tell them all his comrades, officers, and men would very much wish to join with me in this little message of sympathy.

Private John Smith, who was the third son of the above, joined the Army in Canada in November, 1915, and went out to France in November, 1916, and, excepting one day's leave, had not been home for five years. His eldest brother, Private T Smith, is in the RE's in France. Driver C A Smith, the second son, is with the ASC in training in England. The missing man is the third son, and the youngest is Private Sam Smith, who is with the West Yorks in France, to whom the letter was written.


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