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The E.J. Boys Archive

Last amended 5.6.2011. Minor edits 17.2.14, 12.4.14.

1388, Private William JACKSON — 13th Light Dragoons

Birth & early life

Born at Killeslandrow, Co. Cavan, c.1834.


Enlisted at Dublin on the 9th of June 1849, by "Special Enlistment," and to serve in the Band.

Age: 14 years 9 months [sic].

Height: 4' 9".

Trade: None.


Attained the age of 15 years and on to "Man's pay" on the 8th of January 1850.

From Private to Corporal, 20th of November 1855.


Entitled to the Crimean medal with clasps for Alma, Balaclava, Inkerman and Sebastopol and the Turkish medal.


Life after service

Death & burial

Died in the Regimental Hospital in Dublin (most probably in the Royal Barracks) on the 16th of April 1859.

He left no will, and had £6/5/4d. in his "credits".

Extract from the burial records of the Military Cemetery, Dublin, held by the Representative Church Body Library:

Page 155. Entry No. 2104, William Jackson, 13th Light Dragoons. aged 24 years. Cause of death "Phthisis Pulmonalis". Died 16th January 1859 — Buried 18th April 1859. Officiating Minister, Robt. C. Halpin.

In 1994, Mr Robert Cudmore of Monkstown, Dublin, a former member of the 4th/8th Hussars, provided a photograph of his stone and a copy of the inscription on it. Now very worn, it reads:

"Sacred to the memory of Corpl. William Jackson of the 15th [sic] Light Dragoons, who departed this life 16th April 1859. Aged 24 years. He served through the whole of the Crimean campaign. This tribute of respect is erected by his brother Non-commissioned Officers."

In an accompanying letter he said that:

"The church served Arbour Hill Barracks which is next door and the Royal Barracks across the road. The Royal Barracks was renamed Collin's Barracks when the Irish Army took it over in 1922 and occupied it until recently, claiming also that it was the oldest occupied barracks in Europe. It is now being converted to a national museum.

Arbour Hill Barracks was later the old detention barracks for both the British and Irish armies, but is now a civilian prison. The Army has retained the church, but the churchyard is maintained by the Office of Public Works, who look after it well. Most of the headstones have been moved and re-erected along the boundary walls. I assume these had been set up without proper foundations and had leaned over, some headstones still remaining in their original positions."

How the regiment on his stone came to be recorded as being the 15th Light Dragoons cannot now be ascertained. An error by the stone mason perhaps, with the stone not being erected until after the regiment had left Dublin in early August of 1859 and not being stationed in that city again until the 1890s it could well be that nobody knew of it — or bothered.

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