Galloway’s Great War - Galloway sailors lost at the Battle of Jutland

Signalman Henry Armstrong was kiled at the Battle of Jutland
Signalman Henry Armstrong was kiled at the Battle of Jutland

The Galloway Gazette continues its series of articles about The Great War and, this week, the aftermath of the Battle of Jutland, which took place on May 31st 1916.

News of local casualties from the great sea battle between the British and German Navies off the coast of Denmark appeared in print a fortnight later.

The Galloway Gazette, June 10th, 1916

SIGNALMAN FEARED LOST

Amongst those who are presumed to have been lost in the sinking of the HMS Invincible in the battle of Jutland is a very promising Newton Stewart lad, Signalman Henry Armstrong, the eldest son of police Sergeant Armstrong, Newton Stewart.

Henry Armstrong was 18 year old and had joined the Navy 15 months before his death. Previously he had worked in Newton Stewart where he was a member of the Boys’ Brigade. He had visited his parents just two weeks before sailing with his ship.

Some years before, Henry had a narrow escape from drowning in the Kirk Pool of the River Cree and had to be rescued by another member of the Boys’ Brigade, Samuel McGowan. A few months before Henry’s death, Samuel also gave his life for his Country, having been killed in action at Gallipoli.

Also serving in the navy on HMS Hannibal was Henry’s younger brother John, who worked in Newton Stewart Post Office before joining up.

CASTLE DOUGLAS BOYS DROWNED

It was also feared that three Castle Douglas youths had gone down in the battle - Stokers A Middleton and R White, of the Indefatigable, and Stoker Young of the Invincible.

Middleton was one of five brothers all serving in the forces. Four other brothers were in the army, two of which had been wounded. The eldest son William had been wounded three times and was then convalescing at home.