Tag Archives: In Memoriam

In Memoriam: Nevill Hampton Wallis

Photograph of Nevill Hampton Wallis in uniform

Nevill Hampton Wallis

Nevill Hampton Wallis died of wounds received in action in France on 25th May 1918, aged 26 years.

Nevill attended Bootham from 1905 to 1909.  His hobbies at school included music and archaeology, and he was a member of the school Natural History Society.

The school magazine, “Bootham”, of Febraury 1906 contains a report of the Christmas Exhibition, Natural History of 1905. It shows that Nevill won a prize for Entomology.

“ENTOMOLOGY. It is pleasing to note that several boys have taken up this deserving branch since last show. Thus we find several collections in progress, most of which are as yet small. …….Wallis and Burford each have made a good beginning……… ..”

Nevill continued collecting and in the following Christmas Exhibition he won another prize for Entomology:

“ENTOMOLOGY. …….  N. H. Wallis also has a small collection of butterflies and a few moths.”

In early 1907, Nevill became a curator of Entomology in the school Natural History Society. In the Autumn term of 1907, he joined the committee of the school Junior Essay Society.

The report of the Autumn School Term in “Bootham” of February 1908 tells us:

“Often on Wednesday evenings you can hear loud applause from the Lower Schoolroom, where the Junior Essay Society holds its conclaves. The meetings are characterised by a deal of good, sensible work, papers and discussion, some diverting nonsense, and the able management of the Committee, Todd, Brockbank, Pearman, Wallis and Milner.”

 “Bootham” of June 1908 has the report of the Spring Term.

“The concerts this Term were of unusual interest, and were especially welcome, as our athletic events had suffered so from rain.

Of no less interest was the Upper Schoolroom concert, about ten days later. A quartette, consisting of Wallis, Watson, Pearman and Brockbank, first sang, Barringer played a piano solo, Clothier recited ” Ben and the Butter,” Wallis played on the ‘cello, then came a scene from Alice in Wonderland, in which Gibbons, Brockbank, Gray and Lister took the parts. Last of all was a chorus by the class.”

 In 1909, Nevill became a curator of Drawing at school, and also of Meteorology. He took readings of the Sun Recorder.

In the Autumn Term of 1908, Nevill passed the Cambridge Extension Examination.

“The Cambridge Extension Lectures were given this term by J. B. Stoughton-Holborn, M.A., on Gothic Architecture. Most of the Lower Senior and a few of the Upper Senior took the course, and the examination in December resulted in the following eleven boys passing out of the fifteen who entered :— L. H. Gilbert (with distinction), C. L. Ashby, R. E. Barringer, F . A. Brockbank, N. M. Brown, W. E. J. Clothier, A. C. Dent, A. S. Jennings, A. H. Pumphrey, N. H. Wallis and A. B. Webster. A larger number might have done likewise but for the rule debarring boys younger than 15 from taking the examination.”

The report of the Autumn School Term also includes the following:

“The Charades, based on the “The Rivals,” were given at the Retreat, on Wednesday night, and in the John Bright Library on the last night. …….. Wallis and Milner contributed some very good scenery.”

 Nevill’s entry in “Bene Decessit” in the October 1909 issue of “Bootham” reads:

“NEVILL H. WALLI S leaves from the Lower Senior. A good musician and archaeologist.”

 The next we hear of Nevill is in the July 1918 Issue of “Bootham”, which reports Nevill’s death:

“WALLIS.—On the 25th May, 1918, of wounds received in action in France, Nevill Hampton Wallis, of Brighton (1905-9), in his 26th year.”

and

“In Memoriam

NEVILL HAMPTON WALLIS (1905-9) died of wounds at Wimereux Hospital the Saturday we were meeting at Jordans. He was wounded on April 30th by a shell bursting about two feet from him and blowing him into the air; in hospital his left leg was amputated above the knee; his left arm had been badly shattered. His parents were with him for a fortnight and he passed peacefully away on the 25th. The funeral took place next day at Boulogne Cemetery. He was in the R.F.A., and had been continuously with his Battery in the 9th Division (so much praised by Sir Douglas Haig) since April, 1917. He was a Second Lieutenant, and had served nine months in 1916 with the Artists’ Rifles.”

The December 1918 issue of “Bootham” contains a letter from Nevill’s father:

“In Memoriam

NEVILL HAMPTON WALLIS (1905-09). See last number of BOOTHAM.

His father writes :—

“It has been a great consolation to know how he was really loved by his men. Three have called on us—two on leave and one wounded, in hospital. They all say his men were his first care. He started a canteen for them, which was most successful, and provided them with many comforts. One told us that if there was a dangerous job to be done he would always go himself instead of sending a man, and, as he put it, ‘ Mr. Wallis could always get what he wanted done without giving an order.’ ”

N. H. Wallis, previous to the war had a position on the staff of Messrs. R. Fry and Co., the Brighton firm of mineral water manufacturers, of which his father is the managing director. “

Second Lieutenant Nevill Hampton Wallis is buried in Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, France.

In Memoriam: Archibald Carmichael

Photograph of Archibald Carmichael in uniform

Archibald Carmichael

Archibald Carmichael, of Coldstream, died of wounds received in action in France on the 22nd May, 1918, aged 26 years.

Archibald was born in 1892 and attended Bootham School from 1906 to 1908.  At school he played 2nd XII football and was a member of the Natural History society and Photographic club.

In the school Christmas Exhibition of 1906, Archibald won the Workshop Prize for Bookshelves.

The February 1908 issue of the school magazine, “Bootham”, contains  The Seventy-fourth Annual Report of Bootham School (York) Natural History, Literary & Polytechnic Society of January, 1908, including the following:

“CONCHOLOGY.

A. Carmichael has started this term, but as winter is not the time for shell collecting, he has had very little opportunity of doing much.

CHRISTMAS EXHIBITION, 1907. NATURAL HISTORY.

I I. Conchology.—………….F. A. Brockbank shows 23 species of marine shells, and A. Carmichael a tiny but most promising set of six species.

VII. Oology.—First comes F. A. Brockbank, who has collected 38 species, all this year. ………….E. B. Marriage has 40 species, of which 21 have been shown before. ……………………… A. Carmichael comes third with 22 species.”

The February 1909 issue of “Bootham” contains the Seventy-fifth Annual Report OF Bootham School (York) Natural History, Literary & Polytechnic Society. January, 1909, which includes the following:

“NATURAL HISTORY CLUB.

The Ornithological reports of C. N. Levin, A. Carmichael, B. Pickard, R. B. Graham and F. A. Brockbank also deserve mention, for they were all the records of careful observations in various parts of the country.

CONCHOLOGY.

A. Carmichael has increased his collection by 32 species

NATURAL HISTORY DIARIES.

A. Carmichael and B. Pickard’s works both deal with birds and shells, and both have excellent illustrations of the latter.

ZOOLOGY.

Oology has also prospered, and Marriage, Brockbank and Carmichael have good collections.

 PHOTOGRAPHIC CLUB.

The quality and amount of Photography have been better on the whole than last year, and quite up to the average. A. Carmichael and A. H. Pumphrey filled the places on the Committee occupied before by C. Rowntree and E. R. Midgley.”

A report on the School Term in the same issue reports that A Carmichael joined the football committee for the 3rd and 4th teams.  This issue also includes:

“Bene Decessit

ARCHIBALD CARMICHAEL entered in September, 1906, and leaves from the Upper Senior to enter his father’s business. Second X L half-back; hobby, conchology.”

We next hear of Archibald in the March 1915 issue of “Bootham”:

“Bootham School War Lists. Under Military Discipline:—

[Those whose rank is not stated may or may not be privates.]

CARMICHAEL, A., Lothian Border Horse. Trooper.”

 In “Bootham” of March 1916, we read:

 “Bootham School War Lists. Under Military Discipline :—

[Those whose rank is not stated may or may not be privates.]

Carmichael, A., Trooper, Lothian Border Horse, 26th Division.”

and in the section “Across the Months”, we hear from Archibald himself:

“A. CARMICHAEL was in the neighbourhood of Salonika when he wrote on February 13th. He says that his chief employment is ” touring Europe at British Government expense. To be a little more precise, I was mobilised with the Territorial Forces when war broke out, and for a year the regiment (the Lothians and Border Horse) was on coast-defence work.”  After being in France he was sent to Greece. ” Since landing on December 18th we have lain at four camps. Six weeks at L. is, however, the only period worth mentioning. Our duties were to patrol the whole country between the entrenching camp and S., on a front of roughly eight miles. . . . Villages are dotted all over the hills, and look quite pretty with their brown-tiled and white chimneyed houses ; and a minaret, purest white, in the clear sunlight. . . . The people, mostly Turks, are civil and even courteous on occasion, our officers having been regaled with honey and coffee. .. . I have been reading the December number of BOOTHAM. I might go on to tell of the joys and sorrows of this life—natural Turkish baths; soakings, and the subsequent drying; parcels from home ; days on the hills, when the sun shines from a sky of purest blue, and a keen wind makes one’s ears tingle with the breath of the snowmantled mountains; and, best of all, I think, a good batch of letters. ” A. C. regards a hot sulphur spring as a great boon, a small swimming-bath about 15 ft. in diameter and 4 ft. deep. There has been plenty of snow in his district. One day, when they were lunching, three eagles settled near them (absit omen!)”

Archibald wrote again, as we read in “Bootham” of October 1916:

“A. CARMICHAEL sends a confession from Greece that he experienced nervousness on seeing some of his sentences in print in BOOTHAM. He begs for mercy this time, as literary aspirations suffer under the strain of Macedonia’s summer heat. So we will only add that in July he longed for strawberries and cream at the Cocoa Work s party ten days after he had lost four teeth in twenty-five minutes to a Greek-American dentist in Salonika.”

We hear more of Archibald in “Bootham” of June 1917:

Bootham Oversea

A. CARMICHAEL (1906-1909) writes from Salonica, where he is as contented as he can be “under war conditions,”though longing” for a sight of the home folk and familiar surroundings.” Of his recent doings he says : “We have just got settled after an eight days’ march from a precautionary front where nothing happened, to one where guns boom and roar without stop, and aircraft are very active. Our camp is in a safe and cosy corner of hills and work is at present light. Our principal duty is to guard a station on the shore of a now famous lake. A few kilometres distant is the town it served in peace time, which is in Bulgar hands. They have a magnificent position, which I should think only a huge artillery preparation and considerable sacrifice of life could reduce.” There was a great air fight yesterday, a dozen or so machines taking part; only at intervals were they overhead, and we could not make much out of the general mess-up. A few bits of shells came whistling down near us.” A few days ago I had a note from A. S. Jennings; he is in General Hospital at Salonika.” It is not long since A. C. was himself in hospital with malaria, and has only just escaped the same fate a short time before writing.

Across the Months

A. S. JENNING sent good wishes for Whitsuntide from the Salonika district, where he has met CARMICHAEL looking very fit.”

In “Bootham” of May 1918, we hear more of Archibald:

“Bootham Oversea

ARNOLD S. JENNINGS (1907-11) writes most interestingly from Salonika, where he has at last been run to earth after many and devious postal pursuits. He refers to this epistolary game of Hare and Hounds as follows: “The idea of invoking the aid of ‘ The Hielan Laddie ‘ [the ' H. L.' is ARCHIE CARMICHAEL (1906-9)] was fine, and you see it has proved successful. He visited me some months ago and I had a very pleasant hour with him. But from the time I saw him clamber upon a W.D . motor lorry and begin his bumpy journey to town I have neither seen nor heard of him. Where has he vanished to? I rather think he must be in England. “This surmise is correct. A. CARMICHAEL is at present training for a Commission in the R.F.A., near Exeter. “

Later in the same issue we read:

“O.Y.S. War-time Service Lists.

Old York Scholars serving in the Navy and Army.

Carmichael, A., Sec. Lieut., R.F.A.”

However it was not long before “Bootham” of July 1918 reported:

“Bootham Oversea

It may be remembered that in a previous letter A. S. J. referred affectionately to ” The Hielan’ Laddie” (ARCHIE CARMICHAEL). It was with very real sorrow that we received from Mrs. Carmichael the sad news that her son Archie had died of wounds on May 22nd. Those of us who were privileged to be counted amongst his friends know how true that friendship was. Both as a boy and as a man he was remarkable for his unfailing good temper and for his steadfastness. We shall miss him greatly, but though his physical presence has passed away from us, there is still left to us his example. It is an example of courage and of comradeship, two qualities of inestimable value in the world to-day. B.P.

 In Memoriam

ARCHIBALD CARMICHAEL (1906-8). His father wrote the sad news on May 23rd that Archie died of wounds the day before.” We had a letter from him this morning dated 18th, when he was well and on duty, so he has not been long.”

 Deaths

CARMICHAEL.—On the 22nd May, 1918, of wounds received in action in France, Archibald Carmichael (1906-8), aged 26.”

The December 1918 issue of “Bootham” contains the following “In Memoriam”:

“ARCHIBALD CARMICHAEL (1906-08). Everybody liked Archie. He had a real genius for friendship, and a fund of good humour that made him a friend worth having. At work he combined a true zest for certain subjects with a capacity for not taking life too seriously; at play, whether it was on the field at Bootham, during an N.H. excursion, or beside his beloved Tweed at home, he was keenness itself, taking a live interest in what was going forward, and always ready and anxious to share that interest with others. Sociability was perhaps his chief characteristic.

At the outbreak of war Archie was in camp with his Territorial regiment, the Lothian and Border Horse. He expected to go to France at once, but it was not till November, 1915, that he left this country, and then for Salonika. Here he stayed for about two years, and his letters showed that he was making the most of his experiences, and observing nature and human nature as was his wont. Occasionally he would betray his longing for the Old Country, and when at last he came home for his commission his joy in the old places and old faces knew no bounds. But his sojourn in England passed all too rapidly, and in the spring of this year, having been gazetted to the R.F.A., he went once more to the front, this time to France. He had not been away a month before the news reached home that he had died of wounds on May 22nd. He will be sorely missed by some of us to whom his genial comradeship meant much, and there is no way of showing our loyalty to his memory that would please him more than by increasing our loyalty to the school he loved so well.   B. P.”

Second Lieutenant Archibald Carmichael of the Royal Field Artillery is buried at Vignacourt British Cemetery, Somme, France.

In Memoriam: Stephen Walker

Photograph of Stephen Walker

Stephen Walker

Stephen Walker, of London, was killed in a flying accident near Duxford on 14th May 1918, aged 26 years.

Stephen was born in Saffron Walden on 24th January 1893.  He spent most of his childhood at the Friends’ School, Saffron Walden, where his father was headmaster, and attended Bootham School from 1908 to 1910.

The school magazine, “Bootham”, of February 1909 reports on the school Christmas Exhibition of 1908:

“Several good cupboards and cabinets appear, the best of these being the oak cabinet by R. Gibbins while the work of Walker, Clothier, D. Goodbody and Scrimgeour was commended and prized.”

Stephen won the Workshop prize for Cupboards, and Boxes etc.  By 1910, Stephen was one of the judges for Workshop prizes.

He was keen on sports at Bootham and was in the 1st XI football and cricket teams.

In “Bootham” of May 1909:

“Football Notes by the Captain:

WALKER, S.—Has rendered very valuable assistance, at a time when Mr. Pollard’s retirement left a very difficult gap to fill. Kicks well, and tackles promptly.”

“Bootham” of October 1909 reports

“The School Term

The Pageant cannot be described; a rainfall toward the end caused the performers to omit the ” march past,” which is regrettable. This spectacle made the last half day of the term a memorable one. A number of parents of boys were present, and after supper at the school, joined us in the John Bright Library, where announcements were made of the cricket prizes and aquatics prizes. G. H. Pearman was awarded the bat for the best batting, S. Faraday the one for best bowling, and S. Walker a special bat for his fine record of 47 wickets at an average under 14.”

By March 1910, Stephen had joined the football committee at school.

In “Bootham” of  May 1910 we read:

“Football report:

Nov. 13, v. NORTHERN FOXES. Lost, 1—3.

S. Walker, at right back, always a mainstay of the team, played even better than usual.

Football Notes by Captain

WALKER, S.—-Is an extremely difficult man to get past, owing to his length of leg and speedy and timely tackling. But a most unfortunate habit of sitting down gives a great advantage to a forward who does escape him.”

By the October 1910 issue of “Bootham”, Stephen had joined the cricket committee. This issue includes the following:

Notes on the Team by the Captain

WALKER, S.—Has kept up a good bowling standard— sometimes very difficult, with varying pace and break, but easy balls on the leg side come too frequently. Takes O.S. bat for batting, being very successful early on ; his play is vigorous and entertaining, but after all the first thing is to stay in!”

 and

“Bene Decessit

S. WALKER has been a mainstay to the cricket and football teams for two years, and has just passed London Matric. He has twice running been awarded the Old Scholars’ bat, and this year he was top of the School batting averages, and third on the bowling, with 61 wickets to his credit. He was also one of the soundest full-backs the School has known.”

A few years later, “Bootham” of  November 1913 reports:

“Across the Months

STEPHEN WALKER (1908-10) has passed the Intermediate Exam, of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.”

 and then in “Bootham” of  March 1916:

“Across the Months

Degrees etc.

STEPHEN WALKER (1908-10) has passed the Final Examination of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.”

The next we read of Stephen is in “Bootham” of  May 1918:

“O.Y.S. War-time Service Lists.

Old York Scholars serving in the Navy and Army.

Walker, S., Sec.-Lieut., R.F.C.”

 but there is sad news in the next issue of July 1918:

“Deaths

WALKER.—On the 14th May, 1918, killed whilst flying in England, Stephen Walker, of Saffron Walden (1908-10), in his 26th year.”

 Stephen’s obituary appeared in “Bootham” of  April 1919:

“In Memoriam

STEPHEN WALKER (1908-10). The news of Stephen Walker’s sudden death came to all the School with a great shock. Perhaps the first thing that those who knew him would say of him is that he was a sportsman. And it is as a true sportsman, a good comrade, and a straight man, that I personally remember him. In his schooldays, at Ackworth and Bootham, he shone as an all-round athlete, and later he was one of the best full-backs who have turned out for the Foxes football team. As a cricketer, both as batsman and left-hand bowler, he was well to the fore, and as one of the “Falcons “he was on tour in the West of England when war was declared in 1914. His own desire was to “join up” in the early months of the war, but it seemed best that he should complete the term of his articles as a Chartered Accountant; but as soon as his examinations were over he entered the R.F.C. as despatch-rider. After some months in France he returned to England and obtained a commission in the Cambridgeshire Regiment. As a cadet he did so well in certain branches that he was offered a post as instructor to the United States troops in America, but his reply was that that was an older, or married man’s job. After some time on the East Coast he was passed fit for flying, and went to Reading, and from there was sent to Duxford, only seven miles away from his own home, for flying practice. He was always spoken of as a careful airman, and we had begun to feel quite easy in mind as to his safety. On Tuesday, May 14th, he was seen shortly after six to pass over Saffron Walden, and a few hours later the news came that on trying to land, his plane had got into a flat spin and had crashed down, Stephen being killed instantly.

The funeral took place in the Friends’ Burial Ground, Saffron Walden, on the following Friday. His fellow-officers at Duxford sent a most beautiful wreath as a tribute, and flowers from the Saffron Walden School gardens were made into wreaths from Scholars and Staff.

At such times we feel that words are of little avail, but we realise that death is only an episode in the life of our souls, and cannot separate us from the love of those who have achieved the great adventure. J. P. W.”

2nd Lieutenant Stephen Walker is buried at the Friends Burial Ground in Saffron Walden.

 

 

 

 

In Memoriam: Hubert Pumphrey

Photograph of Hubert Pumphrey

Hubert Pumphrey

Hubert Pumphrey, of Bradford, was killed in action in Flanders on 26th April, 1918, aged 37 years.

Hubert was born in 1881 in Sunderland and attended Bootham School from 1895 to 1898. At school, Hubert was active in various societies. He was a member of the Discussion Society, and was involved in Senior Debate.  He was in the Natural History Club, with interests including Archaeology and Drawing. In 1896 at the Annual Exhibition, Hubert won prizes in Stumping (from cast), Pastel work, Illuminations, and Photography.  He took part in  Athletics (Seniors Vault), and in Aquatics, and was a member of the 1st XI football team.  After Bootham, Hubert studied at Durham College of Science.

In the February 1908 issue of “Bootham”, the school magazine, Hubert’s marriage is recorded:

“PUMPHREY—BIGLAND.—On the 11th December, 1907, at Cockermouth, Hubert Pumphrey (1895—8), of Sunderland, to Daisy Bigland, of Birkenhead.”

A year later (February 1909) “Bootham” records the birth of his daughter:

“PUMPHREY.—On the 4th December, 1908, at Bradford, Daisy, wife of Hubert Pumphrey (1895-8), a daughter, who was named Anstice Mary.”

Hubert is next mentioned in the March 1916 issue of “Bootham”:

“Bootham School War Lists,

Under Military Discipline :—

[Those whose rank is not stated may or may not be privates.]

Pumphrey, Arnold, Lieut., 20th Durham Light Infantry

Pumphrey, Hubert.”

(Arnold Pumphrey was Hubert’s younger brother.)

The July 1916 issue of “Bootham”, in “Across the Months”, reports:

“HUBERT PUMPHREY is training at Berkhamsted. In spite of his years he finds he can stick as well as most although (this for the Censor) there is a tendency to go to sleep in lectures given in the evening after a long march and field exercises with pack and rifle.”

and then the October 1916 issue reports:

“H. PUMPHREY joined the **** * O.T.C. last February.”

The July 1918 issue of “Bootham” prints a list of those Old Scholars killed in the War.  Hubert, and his brother Arnold” are both included. The “Deaths” section of the same issue has:

“PUMPHREY.—On the 26th April, 1918, killed in action in Flanders, Hubert Pumphrey, of Sunderland (1895-8), aged 37.”

Hubert’s “In Memoriam” piece in “Bootham” appeared in the December 1918 issue:

“HUBERT PUMPHREY (1895-98), 2nd Lieut. Cheshire Regt., was killed while leading his men at Kemmel Hill April 26th, 1918.

Hubert Pumphrey, son of T. E. Pumphrey, of Mayfield, Sunderland, came of an old Quaker family, one of his soldier ancestors having laid down his sword and embraced the Quaker faith in Cromwell’s time. Like his brothers—the late Capt. Arnold Pumphrey, D.S.O., Durham Light Infantry, and Lieut. (Acting- Captain) Stanley W. Pumphrey, M.C., R.F.A.—he was educated at Bootham, where he was a reeve and in the football XI. After further study at the Durham College of Science he was articled to W. P. Thompson, patent agent, in Liverpool, and eventually, after becoming a member of the C.P.A., was made a partner in the firm. He represented the firm in Bradford for some years, during which time he took an interest in and worked for the Guild of Help. In the early days of the war he was secretary for the Heaton Hall Home for Belgian Refugees, but he felt this work was not enough, and that he must do what he increasingly felt to be his duty—join the fighting forces. In December, 1915, he joined the Inns of Court O.T.C., obtaining in November, 1916, a commission in the Cheshire Regiment. He went to France early in 1917, and was wounded near Ypres in July of that year, being sent home to hospital. In April, 1918, he rejoined his old battalion in France. Early in the dawn of April 26th (less than a fortnight after leaving England) he led his men in what was described as ” a very gallant counter-attack ” on Kemmel Hill, and while running ahead of them he was caught by machine gun fire and instantly killed.

He married in 1907 Daisy, daughter of the late Charles Bigland, of Birkenhead, who pre-deceased him, leaving one child, a daughter. H. K. P”

Second Lieutenant Hubert Pumphrey, of the 10th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment, is remembered at the Tyne Cot Memorial near Ypres, Belgium.

In Memoriam: Alfred William Johnson

Photograph of Alfred William Johnson

Alfred William Johnson

Alfred William Johnson, of Victoria, B. C.,Canada, died of gas poisoning in France on 17th April, 1918, aged 44 years.

Alfred was born in Madagascar in 1874 and attended Bootham School from 1889 to 1890.

The February 1908 issue of “Bootham”, the school magazine, reports on the annual football match between the school and the Old Scholars.  Alfred was a member of the Old Scholars Team, which the report tells us was very strong. (The score was 19-1!)

The same issue of “Bootham” included, in the “Marriages” section:

 “JOHNSON—MACKENZIE.—On the 28th December, 1907, at Inverness, Scotland, Alfred William Johnson (1889—90), of Canada, to Mary Lillian Kyttie Mackenzie, of Inverness.”

The October 1909 issue of “Bootham” contained the following Birth announcement:

“JOHNSON.—On the 31st August, 1909, at Balquhidder, Kamloops, British Columbia, Mary Lilian Kythe, wife of Alfred William Johnson (1889-90), a son.”

His son was named Harry William Mackenzie.  The March 1912 issue announces another birth:

“JOHNSON.—On the 28th December, 1911, at Balquhiddar, Kamloops, B.C., Mary Kythi, wife of Alfred William Johnson (1889-90), a daughter, who was named Kythi Lucy.”

 By 1916, Alfred has joined the War.  “Bootham” reports under “War Lists”:

“Under Military Discipline :— Johnson, A. W., Second Lieut., Seaforth Highlanders.”

The “Across the Months” section of “Bootham”, June 1917 includes the following:

“LIEUT. A. M. JOHNSON, R.E., Forest Group, rose from Private in the Infantry by way of the Pioneers (Seaforth), into the R.E., and is now in charge of a group in the First Field Survey Company. He took to golf before the war, and says that it has beaten football and cricket to a “frazzle edge,” in fact to a “Fare ye well,” as the Yankees say.”

Then in 1918, the May edition of “Bootham” reports:

“Deaths

JOHNSON.—On the 17th April, 1918, of wounds received on the 9th, Alfred William Johnson (1889-90), of Victoria, British Columbia, aged 44 years.”

The July 1918 edition of “Bootham” includes the following “In Memoriam” piece:

“ALFRED WILLIAM JOHNSON (1889-90). We heard with deep regret of his death. One of his best friends sent these words: “One of the noblest souls I ever knew. Such devotion to duty! Three years as a Trooper in Strathcona’s in Africa and now the supreme offering for us made in France. “He was Captain in the Royal Engineers, Field Survey Department, and died from gas poisoning on April 17th.”

And then in the December 1918 issue of “Bootham”:

“In Memoriam:

ALFRED WILLIAM JOHNSON (1889-90) was born 1874. His parents were Wm. and Lucy Johnson, missionaries to Madagascar, who in 1895 were murdered in a riot there. He was at Ackworth, and afterwards at Bootham. In 1890 he went into business at Sheffield, but his disposition was quite unsuited to such a life, and in two years’ time he went out to Canada. He had a rough and varied experience there, sometimes prosperous, sometimes “down on his luck” for several years. At length he qualified as a surveyor and obtained a Government appointment on the N.W. survey. In 1899 he volunteered for service with Strathcona’s Horse and fought right through the South African War. In 1908 he married Mary L. K. Mackenzie, of Inverness, whom he had met in Canada. He settled in Kamloops, B.C., where he built a delightful home. Two children were born. In 1915 he came to England and, although over military age, persuaded the authorities to give him a commission in the Seaforth Highlanders. He was later transferred to the Pioneers and given a captaincy. He did very efficient work in range-finding and in mapping positions of enemy guns. He was killed by gas in the great German attack in April. After his death he was awarded the Military Cross.

He was as tough as whipcord. He never had a doctor. His character was just like his physique. He always knew his opinion and never minded stating it. He read widely, was a wonderfully graphic and humorous letter writer, never failed to make himself welcome in jovial company. On the deeper things of life he was very reserved, but he had a very real vein of poetry, which he sometimes failed to conceal. He was intensely British. Above all else he was loyal to old friends and associations. His home life was about as perfect as can be. J. H. D.”

 Captain Alfred William Johnson is buried at Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France.

 

 

In Memoriam: Donald Gordon Clark

Photograph of Donald Gordon Clark in uniform.

Donald Gordon Clark

Donald Gordon Clark of Aberdeenshire died of wounds received in France on 13th April 1918, aged 25 years.

Donald was born at Echt, Aberdeenshire in 1892 and attended Bootham School from 1905 to 1908.  He played in 2nd XI Football and Cricket teams, was school Librarian, and a member of the committee of the school Debating Society among others. He enjoyed carpentry and in the school Christmas Exhibition of 1907 he won the Workshop prize for his Garden Seat. He also won prizes in school tournaments for Aquatics, Fives and Athletics.

In 1908, his “Bene Decessit” entry in the school magazine, “Bootham”, read:

“DONALD G. CLARK leaves from the Upper Schoolroom to enter his father’s bank.”

He was a member of the Institute of Bankers in Scotland.

Donald joined the Army soon after the outbreak of War. “Bootham” of March 1915 reports:

“Bootham School War Lists.

(1) Under Military Discipline:—

CLARK, D. G., 6th Bn. Gordon Highlanders. Lieutenant. Wounded.”

A year later, “Bootham” of  March 1916 reports:

“Bootham School War Lists.

Under Military Discipline :—

Clark, D. G., Capt., 6th Bn. Gordon Highlanders.”

and in  “Across the Months”:

“D. G. CLARK, Gordon Highlanders, went to France in November, 1914. He was wounded at Neuve Chapelle (March 13th, 1915) on the head and thigh, and was in a London hospital for about a month. He was promoted Captain in September, 1915, and rejoined his regiment in France in October. Writing February 26th, he says he is in a ” soft pinch. ” “

“Bootham” of May 1918 reported that Donald was still with the Army:

“O.Y.S. War-time Service Lists.

Old York Scholars serving in the Navy and Army.

Clark D. G., Capt., Gordon Highlanders.”

However, this was followed in July 1918 issue of “Bootham” with the following:

“Bootham July 1918

Deaths

CLARK.—On the 13th April, 1918, killed in action in France, Donald Gordon Clark (1905-8), aged 26.”

 Donald Gordon Clark was awarded the D.S.O. and the Military Cross and Bar.

His entry in “Bootham” of  April 1919 reads as follows:

“In Memoriam

DONALD GORDON CLARK (1905-8),Capt. 6thBatt. the Gordon Highlanders (M.C. and Bar; D.S.O.), died of wounds received in action, April 13th, 1918.

Donald Clark’s contemporaries at Bootham have all heard with deep regret of his death, and looking back upon school days they will preserve a memory of him as a good comrade, manly, cheerful, loyal.

After leaving school he had settled down to prepare for his life’s calling, occupying leisure time with work in the Territorials, but in the fateful August of 1914 he put aside the prospects of a quiet life and entered the Army. Through his application and merit he was quickly promoted. Some of us who met him at Bootham two years ago are not likely to forget his quiet way as he told us of experiences and escapes.

Here are words of his commanding officers and of others associated with him in the last days: ” His fine leadership and disregard of danger ” . . . ” his men would go anywhere with him.”

” His absolute fearlessness, wonderful endurance and devotion to duty were beyond any words of praise of mine.” And this, too, from another officer: ” He understood the wants of his men, and attended to them before he minded his own. Many a time he has cheered on some lad with his mouth organ or a good story.”

To read of these lives and of their passing is to invest with fuller meaning the motto of our School, and to enrich the inheritance which is ours to hand on. “

Captain Donald Gordon Clark is buried at Etaples Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France.

In Memoriam: Charles Norton Levin

Photograph of Charles Norton Levin in uniform

Charles Norton Levin

Charles Norton Levin, (also known as Carl) of Gosforth, Northumberland, was killed in action in France on March 21st 1918, aged 27 years.

He was born at Newcastle-on-Tyne in 1891 and attended Bootham School from 1904 to 1908. At school he was in 1st XI cricket team and was interested in Natural History, in particular shells.  Charles joined the school’s Natural History, Literary and Polytechnic Society early in his time at Bootham and in the report of the Society’s Christmas Exhibition of 1905, printed in the school magazine, “Bootham” in February 1906, we read:

“The Exhibition of Natural History work is on the whole better than last year, and we may feel satisfied that the slight revival noticeable then has continued during the past 12 months. ……In Conchology there are four small collections by C. N. Levin, D. Eliott, Pumphrey, and Ashby, all of whom have kept note books, and should do well next year.”

 Charles became Curator of Conchology in the Natural History Society in 1906 and kept this role right through to 1908.

“Bootham” magazine of June 1906 reports on activities during the previous school term:

“EXCURSIONS.

On the first Saturday of the term a small party visited Askham Bog, only to find the ponds much flooded and covered with half an inch of ice, so that only a few common shells could be obtained. Two visits towards the end of March were much more successful, though the ponds were still flooded; a number of shells, water-beetles and other aquatic creatures were obtained and have added much to the interest of the aquarium in the Natural History Room kept by C. N. Levin. The development of some frog-spawn found at Kirkham Abbey has been watched from day to day.”

As Curator, Charles contributed the report on Conchology to the Seventy-third Report of the school Natural Hiistory, Literary and Polytechnic Society, January 1907.

“CONCHOLOGY.

Much more work has been done this year than in 1905. Three fair sized collections have been made. C. L. Ashby shows a good collection of land and freshwater shells, consisting of fortythree species. A similar collection of forty-one species has been made by B. Pickard. C. N. Levin has added thirty-four species to his previous collection of freshwater and sea shells. The Ouse and Askham Bog have been the most productive fishing grounds for freshwater specimens; while the majority of the land shells were found at Castle Howard, which is also a very good hunting ground. C.N.L.”

“Bootham” of February 1908 includes The Seventy-fourth Annual Report of Bootham School (York) Natural Hlstory, Literary and Polytechnic Society, January 1908 :

“The Ornithological reports of E. B. Marriage, C. N. Levin, K. H. Brooks, B. Pickard, and R. B. Graham deserve mention They were the result of keen observation and much industry.”

“C. N. Levin and R. B. Graham both contributed valuable papers dealing with the Ornithology of the Lake District”

Conchology report:

“C. N. Levin, who has now taken up land as well as sea and freshwater shells, has obtained twenty-two new species, while B. Pickard has added to his collection twenty new species and twenty-one new varieties. The study of varieties seems to be quite new to Bootham collectors, and it is hoped that it will be continued. Great enthusiasm has been shown by collectors, and collecting tools, although cumbersome, have been carried round with great diligence. The chief hunting grounds in the neighbourhood of York have been Askham Bog, the Foss, Castle Howard, and Coxwold.”

and

Natural History Diaries:

“The number of diaries on Natural History subjects in the Show this year is greater than in any year since 1899. Of these 17, no fewer than 12 deal almost entirely with Ornithology, and all but one are illustrated. Apart from H. L. Green’s, which ranks first, and is mentioned in the Report for the O.Y.S.A. Exhibition, four of these stand out considerably ahead of the rest, namely those by Marriage, Levin, Pickard, and Graham. After careful consideration, C. N. Levin and R. B. Graham are bracketed first, for whilst Graham’s book is more readable, Levin has several original illustrations, including two photos, of nests and a useful summary.”

 In 1908, Charles was also Curator of Microscopy. He won prize for Microscopy in the school Christmas Show of 1907.

By spring 1908, Charles was in the school second XI football. The term’s football report states “Levin has been the best back”.

The June 1908 issue of “Bootham” reports that Charles was among a large number of Senior boys who passed the University Extension Examination in Modern History.  His last school cricket report stated:

“C. N. LEVIN.—Much to be commended for careful practice and consequent good progress as a steady batsman. Fair left-hand bowler.”

Charles went on to study Law and was a member of the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Incorporated Law Society.

Photograph of Charles Norton Levin

Charles Norton Levin

“Bootham” of June 1915, “Across the Months” suggests that Charles Levin was serving in the War in some capacity.

“ONLY a few additions have been made to the list of those serving their country in His Majesty’s Forces. . ………; C. N. Levin is somewhere in something”

By the March 1916 edition of “Bootham”, Charles Levin’s situation was confirmed.

“Bootham School War Lists.

Under Military Discipline :—

Levin, C. N., Second Lieut., 21st Northumberland Fusiliers (2nd Tyneside Scottish), France.”

“Bootham” of June 1917 reports, in “Across the Months”:

“C. LEVIN writes from France, where he has been for 17 months Light Trench Mortar Batt. Sec-Lieut, with acting rank of Captain.”

It was reported in the London Gazette of 1st January 1918 that Charles Levin had been awarded the Military Cross.

“Bootham” of May 1918 reports Charles as still with Light Trench Mortar Battery:

“O.Y.S. War-time Service Lists

Old York Scholars serving in the Navy and Army.

Levin, C. N., Capt., Light Trench Mortar Battery.”

And in same issue “Across the Months”:

“CARL N. LEVIN (1904-8) was slightly wounded. He calls it a tiny scratch ‘ ‘ that would not even have got me off Meeting.’ ‘ He is close to ” Bootham Trench. “”

However, the July 1918 issue of “Bootham” magazine reports:

“DEATHS.

LEVIN.—On the 21st March, 1918, killed in action in France, Carl Norton Levin (1904-8), aged 27.”

and the same issue has:

“In Memoriam

CARL NORTON LEVIN (1904-8). His father received the Whitsuntide card and wrote that Carl was reported missing March 21st. “It is to be feared that he was killed in action on that date.” His conduct was gallant and able, and the affairs of his Battery were left by him in excellent order. He was clearly looked up to by the officers and men of the Battery with very great regard.”

Captain Levin of the Northumberland Fusiliers is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France.

“LEVIN, Capt. Charles Norton, MC, 21st (Tyneside Scottish) Batallion, Northumbrian Fusiliers, attached to 102nd Light Trench Mortar Battery. Died 21st March 1918, Somme, Western Front, aged 27.”

In Memoriam: Eric Herbert Bigland

Eric Herbert Bigland died near Ypres on 5th January, 1918, of wounds received in action, aged 24 years.

He was born at Middlesbrough in 1893 and joined Bootham School in the Summer Term of 1908.  He left Bootham in 1910.

At Bootham he was in the 2nd XI Cricket and 2nd XI Football.  He also played Fives and won the “Middle Schoolroom” class tournament in Autumn 1909. He won the mile race in Athletics in 1910, with a time of just over 5 mins 16 secs.

The school magazine, “Bootham”, of March 1910 tells us:

“E. H. Bigland has used the forge in making a useful garden seat like those made for the field a year ago.”

Eric won a Workshop prize for this seat in the school annual Christmas Exhibition.

When he left school, “Bootham” of May 1910 reported in the Bene Decessit section:

“E. H. BIGLAND has been a member of the School for two years. He played for the 2nd XI. at football and cricket, being a good goalkeeper. He won the mile race in the Sports this year.”

Eric enlisted in the Army.  The March 1916 issue of “Bootham” published War Lists of those Old Scholars serving in various capacities and for those “Under Military Discipline” it shows:

“Bigland, E. H., Corporal, B Co., 7th Bn. Yorkshire Regt., British Expeditionary Force, France.”

Then in “Bootham” of June 1917, in “Across the Months”:

“E. BIGLAND. Wounded, July 1st, 1916, at Fricourt. Wounded at Beaumont Hamel, January 12th, 1917, left arm smashed, wounded in both legs. He writes from hospital at Bexhill, “I am going on fine.” “

However, “Bootham” May 1918 reports under “Deaths”:

“BIGLAND.—On the 5th January, 1918, of wounds in action, Eric Herbert Bigland (1908-10), of Middlesbrough, aged 24 years.”

Private Eric Herbert Bigland is buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

In Memoriam: Christopher James Alexander

Photograph of Cchristopher James Alexander in uniform

Christopher James Alexander

Christopher James Alexander of Croydon, Surrey, died in Flanders on 5th October 1917, aged 30 years.

Christopher was born in 1887 and attended Bootham School from 1900 to 1904.  He took a keen interest in many aspects of Natural History while at school, was very observant of wildlife, and this interest lasted throughout his life.  As well as studying birds and plants, in 1902 the school magazine “Bootham” reported that he had won the school natural history prize winner for lepidoptera.  The Natural History Society report for Autumn 1902 as reported in “Bootham” tells us:

“Entomology Report, Lepidoptera:

“C. J. Alexander, the most prominent worker in this subject, spent a great deal of time last term over watching and drawing his insects during their development, and their changes from one stage to another. This term, he has spent a couple of hours every Saturday afternoon in weighing his crysalids and plotting a curve, showing their rate of decrease. He has also added largely to his collection, having reared an Alder Kitten from a caterpillar found just before it turned. He has taken Lesser Lutestrings at sugar and a Buff Arches as it was fluttering round an arc-lamp. These three were all obtained in Kent.”

Art section report:

“C. J. Alexander’s ” Moths,” coloured to perfection,” “

He won the Natural history prize for entomology.

In 1903 Christopher was curator of entomology, microscopy and zoology in the Natural History Society.

“Bootham” of  May 1903 reports that at a meeting of the Natural History Society on February 18th::

“C. J. Alexander followed with a very clear discourse on Fertilization of Orchids, illustrated by diagrams on the black board.”

And later:

“The last meeting of term was occupied by a debate. The motion, “That the collection of eggs involves no real cruelty,” was put before the meeting, in a joint paper, by Horan and C. Milner. C. J. Alexander followed with a good paper in opposition. “Do the birds have emotional and mental feelings and sufferings?”—in some cases probably; why not use Photography and careful observation, to obtain the same end as collecting? The motion was lost by 16 to 5.”

And then the October 1903 issue of “Bootham” tells us, in the Natural History report:

“At a later meeting C. J. Alexander had a good comparison of last year’s flowers with this. On the whole, flowers were earlier this year than last, a mid-April frost giving two distinct sets of flowers. C. J. A dealt in the same way with migrants, which were early this time, though they may not have been so much noticed owing to the cold stopping their singing.”

Moving on to the March 1904 issue of “Bootham”, we are told in the Natural History report:

“A new feature of our Meetings in the Autumn Term was a series of “10 minutes” talks on the various branches by the curators, arranged with the idea of increasing the general knowledge of the Club, whose members are perhaps rather too much inclined to exclusive study of one subject. The first of these short talks was given by C. J. Alexander, on Botany, an able lecture, with the usual fine blackboard drawings added thereto. A photograph of the same gentleman’s illustrations to an Ornithological “10 minutes” is reproduced in this number.

Photograph of blackboard with C J Alexander's drawings of birds

C J Alexander’s illustration of birds for ornithological lecture

By this time, Christopher had joined the committee of the Natural History Society.

In the Inter-Schools Diaries Competition of 1903, Christopher won first prize in the Natural History Section with his diary of Botany and Entomology. In the school Christmas Exhibition some of the diaries were commended, especially those of the brothers C. J. and H. G. Alexander in Natural History.

Also in “Bootham” of March 1904, the Ornithological section reports:

“C. J. Alexander has been making careful notes on the times birds sing. He has discovered that the Hedge Sparrow and Wren sing from October to mid November, and that the Thrush and Missel Thrush start about when they end, while the Robin sings all the time.”

The Art section reports:

“There has been more originality in the drawings this year than last. C. J. Alexander, G. Leckie and A. Hamilton being the chief. The best exhibit of original paintings was C. J. Alexander’s caterpillars, chrysalids and moths, which were coloured to perfection.”

and goes on to say:

“Quite the most beautiful coloured drawings were those of moths, butterflies, and chrysalids, and a spray of Blackberry, by C. J. Alexander. Very minute and exquisite in painting, they also showed accurate observation of form, and deserved careful mounting and naming.”

Selection of moth and caterpillar paintings by C J Alexander

Selection of moth and caterpillar paintings by C J Alexander

The report of the Old Scholars Natural History Exhibition tells us:

“The one competitor is C. J. Alexander, of Tunbridge Wells. He presents a voluminous and very careful diary illustrated with unusual ability and extending over three years; with great variety of observation, especially in the fields of Entomology, Ornithology, and Botany. …………..They have decided to award to C. J. Alexander an exhibition of £5, and to remind him that according to the rules they will be glad to give consideration to his future work at the end of July.”

Pictures of birds by C J Alexander, one in colout

Pictures of birds by C J Alexander

In 1904 Christopher was curator of botany, entomology, microscopy and zoology in the Natural History Society.

The Autumn Term report for the school tells us:

“The end of Term brought the customary “charades.” The turn this time was for “Vice Versa,” short, but immense fun throughout. The difficult parts of “Paul ” and “Dick Bultitude” were well sustained by C. J . and V. W. Alexander”

Christopher was doing well at school and the School Term report tells us:

“The Term closed with the reading out of places, showing C. J. Alexander to be top of the School.”

In “Bootham” of May 1904, we learn that in the Natural History Society:

“C. J. Alexander held the office of President for the Term”

And the Natural History Society report:

“During the holding of the Quarterly Meeting in York in January, a very interesting meeting of the Natural History Society took place……… Another most interesting feature of the meeting was the imitation of the songs of birds by C. J. Alexander, the winner of the Old Scholars’ Natural History Exhibition. The songs of several of our common wild birds were so faithfully reproduced that a thrush actually began to answer him from the playground.”

Christopher left Bootham School in July 1904 and his “Bene Decessit” entry reads:

“C. J. ALEXANDER, of Tunbridge Wells, entered the School in September, 1900, and is now top of the School and a Reeve. In December, 1903, he was awarded the Old Scholars’ Natural History Exhibition. In June, 1904, he obtained the London University School-Leaving Certificate with distinction in French. In July, 1904, he was placed first in the Upper Senior by the Examiners of the Universities of Liverpool, Manchester, and Leeds, and was awarded the Bootham Leaving Scholarship of £50. He goes to study Agriculture at Wye College, near Tunbridge Wells.”

In “Bootham” of February 1905, in the Annual Report of the Bootham School Natural History, Literary and Polytechnic Society, we read that:

“We are glad to learn that C. J. Alexander, last year’s winner, took and passed both the new Zoology Paper at the London Matriculation and also the Natural History Papers in the Victoria University Preliminary Examination, both examinations requiring, in addition to book work, a practical knowledge of field work.”

In this issue we also learn that:

“CHRISTOPHER J. ALEXANDER (1900—4) has been awarded a 1st class Entrance Scholarship in the South Eastern Agricultural College, Wye.”

“Bootham” of February 1909 reports:

“CHRISTOPHER J. ALEXANDER (1900-4) has passed the B.Sc. Examination, Faculty of Science (Agriculture), South-Eastern Agricultural College.”

Christopher J. Alexander became County Instructor for Insect and Fungoid Diseases under Berkshire Education Committee in 1910.  In 1911, he moved to Rome to be Rédacteur at the International Institute of Agriculture.

The March 1913 issue of “Bootham” contains the following:

“NORMAN D. RAE, Neuchatel (1907-1910) ……… was at home for Christmas, as was also C. J. ALEXANDER (1900-1904), who was reminded by the last BOOTHAM to send thanks for our “card from O.S., which, of course, I was delighted to get; it came several days later than I had expected, and I had a horrid fear that I had been forgotten. ” He also endorses Frith’s views given in the last number, and concludes with the suggestion that any O.Y.S. visiting Rome can find him at the International Institute of Agriculture, Villa Umberto I., any day between 8.30—3.00. [Does he finish work at 3.00? If so, we are envious.—Ed.”

The March 1914 issue of Bootham, in the Bootham Oversea section reports:

“C. J. ALEXANDER (1900-1904) now treats “Rome as if it were London and lives out at Albano; it necessitates leaving at 6.56 a.m., but I find I easily get used to that (we believe we are right in giving his hours at the Institute as 8.30 a.m. to 3 p.m.) . I amuse myself in the train on the way down (Albano standing at 1,250 feet) by holding a thermometer out of the window. A short distance from Albano the line tunnels through to the inside of the crater, about half way up the slope above the lake, and keeps round inside (with one station) for some way; then out through another tunnel to Marino. Along the lake the temperature is markedly higher, no doubt owing to the lake water, which I think hardly goes below 50 deg. F. in winter; on the north slope at Marino it is much cooler again, but still a good deal higher than down on the more or less level Campagna. In the late autumn I several times got a difference of 14 deg. F. between the part above the lake and the minimum on the Campagna. “”

 By the December 917 issue of “Bootham” magazine, C. J. Alexander was serving in the War.  He had returned to England in 1916 to join the Army.  The “Across the Months” section reports:

“THE attention of Old Scholars is drawn to these two of our Dumber whose relatives are very anxious about them: CHRISTOPHER J. ALEXANDER (1900-04) was “pretty badly hit” —face, stomach, hand, and knee—in the Passchendaele fighting on October 4th. He was still conscious when put into an ambulance car, after which there is no trace of him. His name and number are Pte. C. J. Alexander, 24732, (Queen’s) Royal West Surreys. If any Old Scholar could give any further news of him it would be most thankfully received.”

It wasn’t to be good news.   The May 1918 issue of “Bootham” lists under “Deaths”:

“ALEXANDER.—On the 4th October (or soon after), of wounds, in Flanders, Christopher James Alexander, B.Sc. (1900-4), of the International Agricultural Institute, Rome, aged 30 years.”

This issue also contains an entry for Christopher in the “In Memoriam” section as follows:

“CHRISTOPHER J. ALEXANDER first came to Bootham at the time of the Scarborough exile, after the fire, and he left in 1904, having- won the N.H. Exhibition and the Leaving Scholarship. He played his part in all that was best in the life of the School, especially in the N.H. Club. He joined in the great exploration of “heaven” by No. 8 Bedroom, and was a perfect Mr. Bultitude in ‘ ‘ Vice Versa.” But perhaps his character was best revealed in a simple act of courage, freely criticised at the time. One of our American gym. Masters —kindest-hearted of men—had spent a year with us, and none of us treated him very well; Christopher, in making a presentation to him when he left, frankly confessed our fault. All through his life, shy and modest as he was, when the occasion came, both in speech and action he showed the same outspoken integrity.

At Wye Agricultural College, and for five years at the International Institute of Agriculture at Rome, he devoted himself to many kinds of scientific work, and especially found increasing delight, even to the last week of his life in Flanders, in observing birds. During his eighteen months in the Army he was able to give his best, that had before been hidden from most, to all the other men. They have written with real affection and concern since he was hit, on October 4th, but all they could tell us has only led us to the surmise, now at last confirmed by the War Office, that he must have been killed after he was put in the ambulance.

The only “Old Scholars” he ever got to was in 1914.  When by good fortune he got back to his old company in France last September, after having been in England with a broken leg, he wrote that it seemed quite like getting to York at Whitsuntide.  Like many more, he will not again be with us in the flesh, but we know that his spirit will be among us when we meet.”

The Bootham School Register records that Christopher was killed by a shell whilst being conveyed in an ambulance after being wounded.

An obituary for Christopher was published in the journal “Ibis”, the International Journal of Avian Science, in April 1918, see https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1474-919X.1918.tb00784.x .

Private Christopher James Alexander of The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) is buried at Hooge Crater Cemetery, near Ypres, Belgium.

In Memoriam: Lawrence Edmund Rowntree

Photograph of Lawrence Edmund Rowntree

Lawrence Edmund Rowntree

Lawrence Edmund Rowntree of Scalby, Scarborough, was killed in action in Flanders on 25th November 1917, aged 22 years.

He was born at York in 1895 and was a grandson of Joseph Rowntree, the Quaker chocolate manufacturer and social reformer of York.  He attended Bootham School from 1907 to 1912.

Lawrence took part in many activities whilst at Bootham.  He was a member of the Junior Essay Society and gained mentions in Aquatics reports.  In the Conchology report of the Natural History Society report (“Bootham” magazine, February 1909):

“This subject has attracted no fewer than ten collectors during the year, and several of them have made really good collections. ………L. E. Rowntree’s collection contains 14 new species. Collectors have been very energetic over their work, diligently carrying shell-scoops on all excursions. Many places have been visited, amongst others Askham Bog, Castle Howard and the Foss.”

In the Archaeological Diaries report of the Natural History Society report (“Bootham”, March 1910):

“With two exceptions, there are no original photographs, and in most cases we should have liked to see more illustration, either in pen and ink sketches, or pencil drawings.

L. E. Rowntree’s mouldings are very effective. We think that all who take up archaeology ought to make a particular study of this branch of the subject, for mouldings are to a right understanding of the different periods what factors are to algebra—often the shortest and best clue to a difficult problem.We should like to encourage more of this in the diaries for another reason. Many of us are not artistic, and cannot “make a picture,” but we can copy a moulding fairly accurately, and can draw a section of a pillar or string course, so as to make a valuable addition to our diary.”

In 1911, Lawrence was a curator of Astronomy and a librarian for the school Natural History Society.

By The 1910-11 season, Lawrence was playing football in the school second XI and had joined the committee of the Senior Essay Society.

“Bootham” of November 1911 reported that Lawrence, amongst others from Bootham, had gained the bronze life saving medal at an examination at the St George’s Baths.

By 1912, Lawrence had become a Reeve at Bootham, equivalent to a prefect.

Lawrence joined the school fire brigade.  “Bootham” magazine of November 1912 reported that in the school term of summer 1912:

“A fine display was given by the School Fire Brigade under the captaincy of L. E. Rowntree.”

Photograph of Bootham School Fire Brigade, 1911.

Bootham School Fire Brigade, 1911.
L E Rowntree second from right.

 

Photograph of Bootham School Fire Brigade, 1911, including horse-drawn fire engine.

Bootham School Fire Brigade, 1911.
L E Rowntree standing on fire engine on left at back.

Lawrence Rowntree left Bootham School in July 1912.  “Bootham” magazine tells us:

“L. E. ROWNTREE leaves from the Upper Senior after passing the Cambridge Previous Examination. He was at Bootham five years and a reeve during his last year. He played for the ist Boys’ XL at football and was on the Tennis Committee. He was an efficient secretary to the Senior Essay Society and a member of the Natural History Club Committee. In aquatics he was prominent and won the Silver Medal of the Royal Life Saving Society. For his last term he was an able and energetic captain of the Fire Brigade.”

Photograph of Bootham School Reeves, 1912.

Bootham School Reeves, 1912.
L E Rowntree front row, far right.

After studying at Haverford Quaker College, Pennsylvania, near where father was buried, Lawrence became a medical student at King’s College, Cambridge in October 1913 but left in 1914 at the outbreak of the war to join the Friends Ambulance Unit.  He trained at Jordans, the Quaker Centre in Buckinghamshire, and on 31 October set off for France led by Philip Noel Baker (another Bootham Old Scholar).  Lawrence took his grandfather’s Daimler abroad with him, to his grandmother’s disapproval.  The December 1914 edition of “Bootham” has a report on the Anglo-Belgian Ambulance Unit and Lawrence is listed under a section entitled “Dressers, Orderlies, Ambulance Drivers, Stretcherbearers, etc.”  While in France and Belgium he wrote a diary, entitled ‘A Nightmare’.  The original is in the library at Friends’ House in London, and a copy in the Borthwick Institute, York University.

The December 1914 edition of “Bootham” also reported that:

“LAWRENCE EDMUND ROWNTREE (1907-12) has passed the First M.B. Examination, University of Cambridge.”

In March 1916, “Bootham” reported that:

“The following are, or have been, working with the Friends’ Ambulance Unit :— Rowntree, L. E., Clerical Staff, York.”

During 1916, Lawrence left the Friends’ Ambulance Unit and enlisted in the Army in the Motor Machine Gun Corps, “C” Company of the newly-formed Heavy Section, later known as the Tank Corps.  He was posted to the Somme in France. All the tanks in the British Army were at Ancre in the first ever tank battle.  Lawrence was injured and while home recuperating decided to apply for a commission. He was accepted and became a 2nd Lieutenant in the 26th Army Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.  It was at the Battle of Passchendaele, the 3rd Battle of Ypres, that he was killed in action, on 25th November 1917.

“Bootham” of December 1917 reported:

“Deaths

ROWNTREE.—On 25th November, 1917, killed in action in Flanders, Lawrence Edmund Rowntree (1907-12), of Low Hall, Scalby, Yorks, aged 22 years.”

“Bootham” of May 1918 published an “In Memoriam” piece for Lawrence as follows:

Photograph of Lawrence Edmund Rowntree

L E Rowntree

“L. E. ROWNTREE.  His friends will perhaps remember Lawrence Rowntree best when he was at home.  No form of outdoor life came amiss, and he entered with equal zest into any of the many recreations he liked.  Motor-cycling was one of his great hobbies, but whatever the accident or however untoward the incident he always kept on smiling. Indeed, it was his unfailing cheerfulness, a fund of good stories, and his constant thought for others that made him such an excellent companion. -He was a Reeve during his last year at school, and, besides winning a much-contested place on the 1st Football XI., he took a prominent post in the Essay, Debating, and N.H. Societies. Many will remember the time and care he lavished on a hydroplane which he built in the workshop, but which, alas!, would not float.

Some will know John Drinkwater’s lines in “The God of Quiet ” : ” And the hate Of blood for blood, and bone for bone, can find No habitation in the quiet mind. . . . ” Probably all Old Boys have this quiet mind. Lawrence Rowntree certainly had it in a large degree, and as his friends are realising how much a part of their lives he was they are also realising how irreparable is their loss.

Died 25th November 1917.  Fell in action in Flanders.”

Second Lieutenant Lawrence Edmund Rowntree is buried in the Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery, near Ypres.  His headstone bears the inscription, Only son of JW Rowntree, Scalby.  “I believe in the life everlasting.”