Private Samuel Thompson


Samuel Thompson was born on 27 June 1884 in Mill Street, Newtownards, County Down, the fourth of seven children of baker Samuel Thompson and his wife Ruth (née Hutcheson (or Hutchinson)). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at 7 Boyne Street, Belfast, with his widowed mother, two of his siblings and a nephew, and working as a general labourer. He later worked as a lamplighter.

On 30 July 1914 Thompson married Margaret Atkinson in St Thomas's Church of Ireland Parish Church, Belfast. She died, however, nine months later.

Thompson enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 16 November 1915 (No.1896). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve camp before embarking for France in 1916 or 1917, where he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st or 2nd North Irish Horse Regiments.

It is probable that Thompson fell ill and returned to the UK to recuperate. On 23 October 1917 he was discharged, being 'no longer physically fit for war service' (paragraph 392 (xvi), King's Regulations).

In 1919 Thompson received a £50 grant to assist him to establish a business venture. In January 1921 he took a position on the Belfast War Pensions Committee. By 1921 he was working as a lamplighter and living at 23 Prospect Street. On 4 February that year he married widow Martha Gibson (sister of his first wife) in St Thomas's Parish Church.

Thompson lived at 23 Prospect Street for the rest of his life, working as an inspector. He died there on 18 March 1966 and was buried in Belfast's Dundonald Cemetery.