12-year-old was youngest WWI British soldier

Published on November 2nd, 2009 | by Admin

1
tenches

A 12-year-old boy who fought at the Battle of the Somme is youngest known British soldier to have served in the First World War.

Mr Maher had told a recruiting officer that he was 18 to enable him to join the 2nd King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment in 1917. But his true age was revealed when he broke down in tears under shellfire and was hauled before an unsympathetic officer.

Mr Maher, who died aged 96 in 1999, remembered: “I was locked up on a train under guard, one of five under-age boys caught serving on the front being sent back to England.

“The youngest was 12 years old. A little nuggety bloke he was, too. We joked that the other soldiers would have had to have lifted him up to see over the trenches.”

Tags: , , , , , ,



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Follow me on Twitter!   Subscribe to my RSS feed!
     
  • Question of the Moment

    History in the making. November 8, 2016.

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...
  • Like us on Facebook

  • Art Artifacts Bones Burials China Construction Egypt Egyptians England Food & Drink Fossils Humans Italy Medieval Remains Romans Scotland Shipwrecks Technology Tombs Turkey Underwater WWII
  • Archives