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Joseph William Robson (1895-1918)

Seaham born miner served in the 10th Durham Light Infantry

Joseph William Robson was born in Seaham in 1895. His father was Shotton born coal miner John George Robson who was born in 1865. His mother was Sarah Jane Robson nee Colam who was born in 1868 in Wales. Joseph’s parents married in 1885 in the Easington registration district. Joseph was one of nine known children with five sisters and three brothers. In 1901 the Robson family were living in Felling. In 1911 they lived at 25 Staverdale Street, Dawdon and Joseph was working as a coal miner.

Joseph attested on 7 October 1914 in Stanley, at which time his family were living at 24 West Street, Stanley. He became a private in the 10th Battalion Durham Light Infantry (DLI) with the service number 20528. He disembarked in France on 21 May 1915. Joseph was treated for 17 days for mild myalgia from 29 February 1916 and spent time in No 6 Convalescent Depot, Etaples, France.

Joseph was severely wounded in July 1916 with a gunshot wound to the head leading to a fractured skull. He initially received treatment at the No. 6 General Hospital at Rouen where he underwent surgery. He returned to England on 6 September 1916 where he was treated at the Richmond Royal Hospital. Following treatment here, Joseph was transferred to the 3rd London General Hospital where a report describes the severe extent of his injuries. He was suffering from paralysis on his right side, along with fits and problems with his speech. A medical board found him to be permanently disabled in March 1917 and Joseph was discharged as no longer fit for service on 6 April 1917.

Joseph died the following year in the Royal Infirmary, Sunderland on 31 October 1918. He was buried in Stanley New Cemetery and is remembered at St. Andrew’s Church in Stanley.

Joseph William Robson was awarded the 1914-15 Star, the Victory Medal and the British War Medal for his service in World War One. He was also awarded the Silver War Badge, awarded to those who had been honourably discharged from service through illness or disability. Joseph’s older brother John also died during the war. He died of wounds in March 1916 whilst serving with the Northumberland Fusiliers.

Civil Parish: Stanley

Birth date: 1895

Death date: 31-Oct-1918

Armed force/civilian: Army

Residence: Seaham Colliery (Birth Place)
Felling (1901 census)
25 Staverdale Street, Dawdon (1911 census)
24 West Street, Stanley (Service Records, 1918 Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Religion: Church of England

Employment: Coal Miner (1911 Census, Service Records)

Family: Parents: John George Robson (b 1865), Sarah Jane Robson nee Colam (b 1868)
Siblings: Rebecca Jane Robson (b 1887), John George Robson (b 1890), Thomas Edward Robson (b 1893), Mary Ellen Robson (b 1898), Lily Robson (b 1900), Harry Robson (b 1903), Florence Robson (b 1906), Elizabeth Robson (b 1908)

Military service:

Durham Light Infantry
10th Battalion

Medal(s): 1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal
Silver War Badge

Memorial(s): New Cemetery, Stanley (grave 7 C 237)
Book of Remembrance 1914-18, St Andrew’s Church, Stanley

Gender: Male

Contributed by David D, Stanley, Co Durham

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