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  • Photograph courtesy of the 'The Sedberghian'
Person Details
Known as Harry, he was the son of John and Ada Johnstone of 'Fairmead' Derby Road Risley Derbyshire. John was a senior solicitor and one time president of the Nottinghamshire Law Society. Harry was the brother of 2nd Lt William McCall Johnstone, who was killed in action on 13 Feb 1916, John Gordon Johnstone and Herbert Alan Johnstone. Harry's fiancée, Marjorie Hooley of Risley Hall, was the youngest daughter of ET Hooley, the "Splendid Bankrupt".
Educated Sedburgh School, 1904-1908. He was a member of the Nottingham Rugby Club, Nottinghamshire Rugby RFC, the Nottingham Rowing Club and Nottinghamshire Golf Club.
21 Mar 1918
32650 - CWGC Website
Royal Field Artillery
152nd Bde. Royal Field Artillery. Henry Archer served in France from 8 January 1916. He had been promoted to Major by the time he died, leading his men in the appalling Second Battle of St Quentin, where the RA was sent forward to secure German machine gun nests but got surrounded. Most of the Battalion he was leading perished. He was initially reported missing but later presumed killed on 21 March 1918. He is buried in Wancourt British Cemetery (grave ref VIII.A.5)
The tnree brothers, Henry, William and John, are commemorated on (WMR 53194) Risley War Memorial, entrance to All Saints Churchyard, Derby Road, Risley, Derbyshire DE72 3SU Henry Archer Johnstone - CWGC headstone personal inscription: 'Also in memory of Second Lieutenant William McC. Johnstone Royal Field Artillery 13 February 1916. Aged 24 buried at Erquinghem and Serjeant JG Johnstone 28th Battn. Canadians May 1922. Age 34' William McCall Johnstone - CWGC headstone personal inscription: 'Also in memory of Major Henry Archer Johnstone killed near Bullecourt March 21st 1918. age 28. And Serjeant JG Johnstone 28th Battn. Canadians May 1922. Age 34' Nottingham Evening Post, 2 April 1918: ‘The Roll of Honour. Another Batch of Local Officers … Killed. Major Harry Archer Johnstone of the RFA, who was killed in action on March 21st, was educated at the Nottingham High School and at Sedbergh and in August 1914, rejoined the Notts RHA as a gunner, receiving his commission in the RFA early in 1915. Always a keen sportsman, he was a member of the Nottingham Rowing Club, the Notts Rugby FC and the Notts Golf Club. His brother, Llieut. W Johnstone, also of the RFA, was also killed in action early in 1916.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Obituary in 'The Sedberghian' (see photograph): 'HA Johnstone, Major RGA. Harry Johnstone came to Mr LeMarchand’s House in 1904 and left in 1908. He was one of a family of brothers whose most conspicuous trait was intense loyalty, not only towards each other, but also to their School and House. The more intimately one knew them the more was their loyalty disclosed. Harry came to see the write of this notice on the morning of his last day in England, and it was fine to hear him talk of the days at Sedbergh. His old fondness for the place had, if possible, increased, and he shared the same enthusiasm when speaking of his life as a soldier. While at School he won the High Jump and the Quarter Mile. He was an excellent runner with an easy and graceful style, and appeared to be able to go on running for hours. But he had a weak sprint, or he might have won the Wilson Run in which he finished second. He gave his life in the great March offensive, and his many friends – enemies he had none – will deplore the loss of a true man, with the heart of a child.’ The names of HC Johnstone (Gunner RHA), W Johnstone (Gunner RHA) and Allan Johnstone (Sherwood Foresters) were included at the bottom of a printed list of members of the Nottingham Rowing Club who were on the Active Service List as at November 1914 under the heading, ‘Three sons of our late esteemed member John Johnstone are serving with the Colours.’ The list was inserted in the NRC Minute Book. (Nottinghamshire Archives, ref. DD/865/1/10, NRC Minute Book 1912-1919). Photographs of 21 members of the Rowing Club, including Major HA Johnstone, who died in the war are held in Nottinghamshire Archives (Ref. DD865/65/1-21) Henry left effects £932, administration to his mother.
Remembered on


  • Photograph courtesy of the 'The Sedberghian'
    Henry Archer Johnstone - Photograph courtesy of the 'The Sedberghian'
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