Private Sampson Kirkpatrick Trotter



Sampson Kirkpatrick Trotter was born on 31 December 1887 at Muckross, Ederney, County Fermanagh, the fifth of eleven children of farmer John Trotter and his wife Catherine (nee Armstrong). By 1911 he was living with his parents and four siblings at Muckross and working on the family farm.

Trotter enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 20 December 1912 (No.771). He embarked for France on 17 August 1914 with A Squadron, seeing action on the retreat from Mons and advance to the Aisne. According to family recollections, he had a horse called 'Dolly' from the farm at Muckross, which served with him throughout the war.

On 27 January 1915 he was admitted to No.3 Casualty Clearing Station at Hazebrouck, suffering from influenza. Eleven days later he was admitted to No.4 Stationary Hospital at Rouen. It is likely that he was then evacuated to the UK for convalescence.

When Trotter returned to France he was probably posted to C or F Squadron of the North Irish Horse. These squadrons joined with the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons Service Squadron in June 1916 to form the 2nd North Irish Horse Regiment, serving as corps cavalry to X Corps until September 1917, when the regiment was disbanded and most of its men were transferred to the 9th (Service) Battalion, Royal Irish Fusiliers – renamed the 9th (North Irish Horse) Battalion.

Trotter, like most, was transferred on 20 September. He was issued regimental number 41320. His subsequent experiences are not known at present, but the 9th (NIH) Battalion saw significant action at the Battle of Cambrai in 1917 and in the German Spring Offensive and the Allied Advance to Victory Offensive in 1918.

He was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve, on 11 March 1919.

Trotter joined the Royal Ulster Constabulary 1 October 1922, serving in Londonderry, Antrim and Fermanagh, before retiring on 30 December 1959. He married Carolina Stirling on 6 January 1931. He died in Belfast City Hospital 19 May 1970 and was buried in Roselawn Cemetery.

Private Trotter's name is included on the roll of honour in the Drumkeeran Church, Tubrid, Kesh, County Fermanagh.


Sampson Trotter's brother, Thomas Jonas Trotter, also served in the war, with the North Irish Horse.


Shown below are Trotter's medals, discharge certificate, leave ration book and an obituary.







Images 1-5 kindly provided by Private Trotter's son, Sam. Image 6 sourced from the Find A Grave website.