Lance Corporal James Waugh


James Waugh was born on 23 June 1889 at Tonaghbane, Cootehill, County Cavan, the last of ten children of farmer William Waugh and his wife Eliza (née Johnston). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at Tonaghbane with his widowed mother and two of his siblings, and working as a coachman.

Waugh enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 6 and 16 July 1915 (No.1708). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve camp before embarking for France in 1916 or the first half of 1917, where he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st or 2nd North Irish Horse Regiments.

In August-September 1917 the 2nd NIH Regiment was disbanded and its men, together with some surplus to the needs of the 1st NIH Regiment, were transferred to the Royal Irish Fusiliers, an infantry regiment. Most, including Waugh, 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 five days later. Waugh was issued regimental number 41221 and posted to D Company.

He probably saw action with the battalion at the Battle of Cambrai in November and December 1917.

Waugh was one of the many posted as missing following the 9th (NIH) Battalion's fighting withdrawal from St Quentin from 21 to 28 March 1918 during the German spring offensive. It was later learned that he had been captured. He remained a prisoner until the end of the war.

Following his repatriation, on 2 April 1919 Waugh was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve. He was granted a pension due to rheumatism and swelling in the feet.

Waugh lived at 6 Baden Powell Street, Belfast and worked as a tram-driver until 17 November 1920, when he enlisted in the Royal Irish Constabulary (No.75614). He served in County Down until he was discharged when the force was disbanded on 25 May 1922.