2nd Corporal James Esplie DANIELS


Regiment/Service:
Royal Engineers
Unit:

Service Number:
81642
Date of Death:
4 January 1919 - Died (Home)
Age:
44
Cemetery / Memorial:
Cemetery Reference:
West of Church.



Personal History:


James was born in the June quarter 1876, the son of William (Coach Proprietor) and Emily Daniels of 55 Park Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester. He had five younger siblings, Frances M., John W., Emily H., Edith H. and Eva G. (1881 Census RG 11/3922 and 1891 Census RG 12/3236). In 1891 the family lived at 14 Grove Street, Manchester and James was working as an "Apprentice Decorative Artist". 

In the June quarter 1897 James married Ada Jane Lloyd and in 1901 (Census RG 13/3669) they were living at 8 Rushton Street, Didsbury, Lancashire and James was employed as a "House Decorator and Paperhanger".
The family moved to Buxton about 1905 and in 1911 (Census RG 14/21234) was living at 56 King's Road, Fairfield. James and Ada had four children, James Esplie, Andrew King, Maria Constance and Marcus Lloyd. (James' son Andrew was killed in action on the 20th July 1918 - see Footnote below)

At the time of James' death, 'The Buxton Advertiser' reported that the family were living at 'Woodleigh', King's Road, Fairfield. It went to say that the: "Deceased will be much missed in Fairfield, where he was well known and highly respected. He had formerly been in the employ of Mr. H. Amos, the painter and decorator, of Fairfield."

Military History:
James' Service Papers have not survived the Second World War bombing and at the moment little is known about his military history. His Medal Index Card shows he entered France on 9th November 1915, and by comparing Service Numbers he must have enlisted about April 1915.

He is listed in the CWGC records as having "Died at Home" - not of wounds, but the permutations are many, and more than likely he returned home ill (maybe even the influenza epidemic rife at the time) and finally succumbed and was buried in his local churchyard at Fairfield.

James' funeral took place at 2.00 p.m., Saturday, 11th January 1919, at St Peter's Church, Fairfield. In reporting the details 'The Buxton Advertiser' reiterated that James: " had served in the Army for about four years, part of that time being spent in France." It added: "What makes the death doubly hard is the fact of his coming safe through the perils of the battlefields of France, only to pass away at home." 'Safe' through the War would further suggest that James died of illness rather than wounds or other War related injuries.


Footnote:
· James' son Rfl. 60681 Andrew King DANIELS was killed in France on the 20 July 1918 and is commemorated on the Soissons Memorial.

Sources:
· 'The Buxton Advertiser' - 11 January 1919

Link to CWGC Record
Cpl. Daniels' Grave in Fairfield Churchyard
poppy