Private Samuel Ernest White


Samuel Ernest White was born on 11 November 1890 in Main Street, Strabane, County Tyrone, the fifth of ten children of ironmonger (also described as hardware merchant) James White and his wife Matilda Anne (née Moody). At the time of the 1901 Census he was living at Bowling Green, Strabane, with his parents and seven siblings. He and may have emigrated to the United States around 1910 as did his brother George Albert. Both, however, were back in Ireland by 1914.

White enlisted in the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons Service Squadron between 13 and 19 October 1914 (No. UD/50). On 6 October 1915 he embarked for France with his squadron, which was then serving as divisional cavalry to the 36th (Ulster) Division.

In June 1916 the Inniskilling squadron joined with C and F Squadrons of the North Irish Horse to form the 2nd North Irish Horse Regiment, serving as corps cavalry to X Corps. In August-September 1917 the Regiment was disbanded and its men, following training at the 36th (Ulster) Division Infantry Base Depot at Harfleur, were transferred to the Royal Irish Fusiliers, an infantry regiment. Most, including White, were transferred on 20 September and posted to the 9th (Service) Battalion – renamed the 9th (North Irish Horse) Battalion – joining it in the field at Ruyaulcourt. White was issued regimental number 41145.

No information has been discovered about his service with the 9th (NIH) Battalion through the latter part of 1917 and during 1918, but he probably saw action with the battalion at the Battle of Cambrai in November and December 1917, and perhaps also during the retreat from St Quentin from 21 to 28 March 1918.

On 24 February 1919 White was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve. In April 1922 he emigrated to Canada, sailing from Liverpool. He died in Toronto on 6 August 1964.


One of White's brothers, George Albert White, also served in the war, in the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons Service Squadron.


Strabane Cemetery


Images sourced from the Find a Grave website.


This page last updated 7 February 2023.