LA FERTE-SOUS-JOUARRE MEMORIAL 

Seine-et-Marne

France

 

General Directions: La Ferte-sous-Jouarre is a small town 66 kilometres to the east of Paris, located on the main road (N3) running east from Paris. The Memorial is situated in a small park on the south-western edge of the town, on the south bank of the River Marne, just off the main road to Paris, The Memorial Register is kept at the Town Hall.

 

La Ferté-sous-Jouarre Memorial to the Missing

Names are listed on the memorial by Regiments in order of precedence, under the title of each Regiment by rank, and under each rank alphabetically.

The La Ferté-sous-Jouarre Memorial commemorates 3,740 officers and men of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) who fell at the battles of Mons, Le Cateau, the Marne and the Aisne between the end of August and early October 1914 and have no known graves. The monument is constructed of white Massangis stone and surmounted by a sarcophagus onto which military trophies are laid. At the four corners of the pavement on which the monument stands are stone columns supporting urns which bear the coats of arms of the four constituent nations of the United Kingdom. The memorial was designed by George H. Goldsmith, a decorated veteran of the Western Front, and unveiled by Sir William Pulteney, who had commanded the III Corps of the BEF in 1914, on 4 November 1928.

Close to the bridge on both banks of the river stand the stone columns which make up the 4th Division Royal Engineers Memorial. The columns are surmounted with the flaming grenade of the Royal Engineers and mark the spot at which British sappers constructed a floating assault bridge under German artillery fire on 9 and 10 September 1914.

 

7508 Private

Harry Harrison

1st Bn. Black Watch (Royal Highlanders)

15/09/1914.

Resident of Burnley, Lancs.

7941 Private

James Berry

1st Bn. Black Watch (Royal Highlanders)

15/09/1914, aged 31.

 

Husband of Elizabeth Berry, of 61, Abbeyhill, Edinburgh. Born Burnley.

9292 Private

James Cuerdale

1st Bn. Royal Fusiliers

27/09/1914, aged 30.

Resident of Master Street, Burnley. A foundry worker in civil life.

 

A letter sent to his "Young lady" after his death read;

 

"You must excuse me writing to you, but it was the wish of your young man. He was a friend of mine, and we had previously agreed that if either of us was shot, the other should, if possible, inform the deceased's relative.

It is now my painful duty to inform you that on Friday September 27th, while we were making an attack, he got shot. I was also shot, but was more fortunate than him. You must excuse me not writing before, but I got wounded in the arm and was unable to write. Yours Sympathetically

Private H. Thomas

(3rd Northern General Hospital, Sheffield)

9851 Private

John Barlow

(Served as George Holden)

2nd Bn. Lancashire Fusiliers

13/09/1914, aged 28.

 

Son of Thomas and Bettie Barlow, of 28, Townley St., Brierfield, Burnley; husband of Emily Barlow, of 3, Kepple St., Burnley.

 

He was a cotton colour weaver in civilian life.

 

Believed at the time to be the first "Burnley" casualty of the Great War

 

8654 Private

John Fetigan

(Served as John Smith)

30/09/1914

Resident of 11 Castle Street, Burnley.

 

43069 Gunner

William Brierly

80th Bty. 15th Bde. Royal Field Artillery

26/08/1914, aged 27.

 

Originally from Nelson, Lancashire, he lived in London with his wife. He was shot in the back, the bullet exiting his body and hitting another soldier in the eye.

1732 Private

Wilson Farrar

2nd Bn. Lancashire Fusiliers

26/08/1914, aged 24.

Son of George and Hannah Farrar, of 30, Burdett St., Accrington Rd., Burnley.

The British Expeditionary Force at the Battle of the Marne.

By the beginning of September 1914, the German Imperial Army had swept through much of Belgium and north eastern France and was fast approaching Paris. By 3 September, the British and French forces had been retreating south west for over two weeks, German victory was a definite possibility, and the Allied Commander, Général Joffre, prepared to launch a major counter offensive. As night fell on 5 September, the men of the British Expeditionary Force began to halt approximately 40 kilometres south east of Paris and their gruelling retreat was at an end. For the next two days, British I, II and III Corps advanced north eastward, encountering only minor resistance from the German forces in the area, which had reached the limit of their advance and were now carrying out a tactical retreat. On 8 September, British infantry brigades advancing toward the Marne came under heavy machine-gun and artillery fire from German units in La Ferté sous Jouarre and on the north bank of the river where they had formed a bridgehead. The British withdrew, began bombarding the German positions, and by mid-afternoon had entered the town in force. Both of the local bridges had been blown, but the Royal Engineers immediately began to construct a floating bridge, over which III Corps crossed the Marne on 10 September and joined I and II Corps which had crossed the river further to the east the previous today.

The German armies were now in full retreat to the north and east, hotly pursued by the combined British and French forces. Retreating German units fought rearguard actions under heavy rainfall throughout the day on 11 September and by the morning of the 12th they had occupied defensive positions on the high ground overlooking the northern banks of the River Aisne.

The Battle of the Marne, referred to in the French press as the ‘Miracle of the Marne’, halted the month-long advance of the German forces toward Paris and decisively ended the possibility of an early German victory. The battle also marked the beginning of trench warfare as Allied and German forces entrenched during and after the Battle of the Aisne in mid-September. By November battle lines had been drawn that would remain virtually unchanged for almost four years. The British Expeditionary Force suffered almost 13,000 casualties during the Battle of the Marne, of whom some 7,000 had been killed.

 The memorial was designed by George Hartley Goldsmith and unveiled by Sir William Pulteney on 4 November 1928.

 

Note: Names are listed on the memorial by Regiments in order of precedence, under the title of each Regiment by rank, and under each rank alphabetically.

 

Shot at Dawn: L/10061 Private Thomas J. Highgate, 1st Bn. Royal West Kent Regiment, executed for desertion 08/09/1914.

 

Shot at Dawn: 9641 Private G. Ward, 1st Bn. Royal Berkshire Regiment, executed for cowardice 26/09/1914.

 

The mass pardon of 306 British Empire soldiers executed for certain offences during the Great War was enacted in section 359 of the Armed Forces Act 2006, which came into effect on royal assent on 8 November 2006.

 

 

Casualty Details: 3739 identified casualties are recorded on the memorial

 

 

8793 Private

Henry Bryans

4th Bn. (Queen's Own) Hussars.

11/09/1914, aged 21.

Son of Samuel and Rachel Bryans, of 150, Cambrai
St., Belfast.
 

One of 5 brothers who fought in the war, two were killed; Henry and Frederick,  1 was badly wounded and the other two came through physically unharmed.

 

Picture courtesy of Robert Bryans, Great nephew of this soldier

 

 

 

8980 Private

William John Plater

1st Bn. Coldstream Guards

04/10/1914, aged 23.

Son of William John and Jane Plater, of 7 Icknield Cottage, Little Kimble, Princes Risboro', Bucks.

 

Picture courtesy of Mike Thomas, Great nephew of this soldier

 

 

 

553 Lance Corporal

Harry McGrevy

1st Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers.

14/09/1914, aged 30.

Son of Henry McGrevy and the late Margaret McGrevy; husband of Ruth McGrevy, of 94, Milling St., Teams, Gateshead, Co. Durham.

 

Picture courtesy of Theresa Newbegin, granddaughter of this soldier

 

 

 

6802 Private

John Henry Kennel

3rd Bn. Coldstream Guards

13/09/1914, aged 37.

Son of Mr. and Mrs. Kennel, of 30, Arundel Rd., Newbold Moor, Chesterfield; husband of Emily 1 Kennel, of 5, Red Lion Row, Thames Avenue, Windsor.

 

Picture courtesy of John Barker

 

 

9951 Private

Ernest Dalton

1st Bn. Royal Scots Fusiliers

23/08/1914, aged 27.

Son of Tom and Ellen Dalton, of The Cross, King's Somborne, Winchester, Hants.

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Rolison, great nephew of this soldier

 

 

10016 Private

Roy Robert Parkinson

1st Bn. East Surrey Regiment

09/09/1914

 

Picture courtesy of nephew, Derek Andrews

 

8972 Serjeant

John William Webster

"C" Coy. 2nd Bn. Sherwood Foresters, Notts and Derby Regiment

20/09/1914, aged 29.

Son of William and Jane Webster, of 20, Lewis St., Alfred St., Nottingham; husband of Mabel Agnes Bosworth (formerly Webster), of 11, Thurman St., Alfreton Rd., Nottingham.

 

Picture courtesy of Julie Deavin

 

 

L/7584 Private

John Arthur Rudge

4th Bn. Royal Fusiliers

23/08/1914, aged 36.

Husband of Charlotte Rudge, of 34, Thorne St., Barnes, London father of 1 son and 5 daughters.

 

Picture courtesy of great granddaughter Sandra Matthews

 

8559 Private

Ernest Scott

1st Bn. The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment

14/09/1914.

 

 

8865 Private

William Norton

1st Bn. Norfolk Regiment

14/09/1914, aged 19.

Listed as Missing at Missy

 

Picture courtesy of Robin Norton

 

 

 

 

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