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Remembered Today:

William Bonner


gortrush
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My uncle William Bonner was a Private in the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers Reg. No. 9848. He died from wounds in France on 4th Nov 1914 and is buried in Bailleul Communal Cemetry, Nord, France. I have found his medal records but it would appear that the medals were asked to be disposed of. I have not been able to find any mention of him on any memorial or on any records. He joined the Regiment in Omagh, N. Ireland and Ireland's Memorial Records confirm the details above and state that he was born in Camus , Co. Tyrone. His brother Joseph (my grandfather) also joined the Regiment No.8474 then the Machine Gun Corps No.15247 and survived the war. I am trying to find information and particularily details on their address at the time of joining the Army and next of kin as part of researching my family history. I would also like to try to ensure that William's sacrifice is remembered in some way. Any suggestions or recommendations as to where I might try to find out more would be greatfully appreciated.

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Welcome to the forum, gortrush.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission commemorates William although I suspect you have seen this already.

See here.

CGM

Edited as I included some false information because I slipped down a line on one document I looked at.

Very sorry.

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Looks like both were pre-War regulars, William enlisting around first half of 1910 and Joseph around first half of 1906, both landed in France 23/08/1914 with the 2nd Bn.

Unlikely they'd have a home address in the 1911 Census as they'd both have been with their Bn, your best bet for NOK is the 1911 Census.

Sam

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No records for them on either 1901 or 1911 census though I did find a record for a J Bonner in Omagh Barracks in 1911 aged 25 however don't even know if this is him. I have found the Commonwealth War Graves record and have in fact visited his grave in France but I just cannot trace where they came from or their next of kin. Do you know if military records would show this info? The Inniskilling's Museum in Enniskillen are quoting an eight month delay to enquiries.

Regards and thanks.

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Don't know if this helps

2nd Battalion were in Ireland 1908 - 1910

England 1910 - 1914

From Wiki.

So unlikely to be on Irish Census if one was taken between 1910 and 1914

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Thanks, could be useful but wonder if you know where 2nd Batt might have been stationed in England in 1911? Strange cannot trace them in the 1901 census in Ireland either..

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If you know which year he was born in this could be him? 1911 Census Aldershot Barracks

Shown as born Strabane Co Tyrone. Was Strabane his registration District?

post-99311-0-74629300-1417311910_thumb.j

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There's a 9 year old William Bonner at an "Industrial boarding School" in the "Parish of Artane" near North Dublin in 1901 Census http://census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Dublin/Drumcondra_Rural/Artaine_South/1271685/

He's on page 5 of the original document with his birthplace listed as "Tyrone" http://census.nationalarchives.ie/reels/nai003677153/

An "Industrial School" was for "Orphaned, abandoned and neglected children" according to this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Industrial_Schools_in_Ireland

Sam

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Wow we could be getting somewhere, this could certainly be William. The only birth place record I have to-date is from 'Irelands Memorial Records' stating he was born in Camus, Co Tyrone which is I believe a town-land of Strabane and not far from Omagh his place of enlistment. Unfortunately I do not know his age at time of death in 1914 but I do believe he was early 20's so it fits in with both the Dublin 1901 and Aldershot 1911 census records. Does the Aldershot record give his regiment number?

I have a copy of Marriage Certificate dated Jan 30th 1913 for his brother Joseph, married in Omagh, giving his address only as Soldiers Barracks, Omagh with his Father shown as James Bonner but no other info. At least we can account for where Joseph was in 1913.

Many thanks.

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No other info on Aldershot Census.

I think Omagh was the Inniskillen's HQ/ main Depot?

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Yes, I believe Omagh was the Inniskilling's HQ. I might now try Aldershot to see if they have any records though I think it's a long-shot. Appreciate your help

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We do know that Joseph was in Omagh in 1913 as that is when he was married and I believe that he transferred to the Machine Gun Corp on 22-01-1916. Do you know if the MGC was still considered as part of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers or was it separate. I believe that his number then changed from 8474 to 15247 if he is the correct Joseph Bonner.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am still trying to find next of kin and/or home details for two ‘Bonner’ brothers from Ireland who were in the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. I have gone through all the searches available on ‘Ancestry’ plus the 1901 and 1911 census, PRONI records, etc., but cannot find them or their family. I believe that we have found them both in military census records for 1911 but I cannot trace the family. I have located their military medal record cards but no address details. I am of course aware or the Bonner/Bonnar/Bonar and Boner variations of the name.

I have ‘Ancestry’ membership and looking at other genealogy sites but I am not sure if they will have any more information than Ancestry. Does anyone have experience of difference in information held by other sites or any recommendations please, such as ‘Forces Records’ site, which might offer more?

What I know so far - Joseph Bonner, my grandfather, was born about 1886 and his brother William in approximately 1891 but I don’t know where. Both joined the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers at Omagh Barracks, N. Ireland, Joseph around 1906, William about 1910. Joseph was a Private (8474) in the 2nd Batt Royal Inniskillings but he was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps with the no.15247 on 22/01/1916. He was discharged as a Class Z Reservist in 1919. Joseph married an Elizabeth Donaldson in Omagh in 1913 but their marriage certificate simply gives his address as ‘Soldiers Barracks, Omagh’ and his father as James Bonner. After the war Joseph lived in Omagh until his death in 1957.

William (private 9848) died from wounds in France on 4/11/1914 and his military records simply say that he was born in Camus, Co. Tyrone - the only clue I have to their origins! I would appreciate any help you can offer.

Thank you

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OldSweats, You are correct, I have written to them, the Christian Brothers, but no response to-date. I also contacted the Artane Band in Dublin but they couldn't help as they have no records.

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