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Person Details
North Camp, Aldershot, Hampshire
George was the son of Joseph Mee and his wife Ann (nee Fox). His father was born in Quarndon, Leicestershire, in about 1840 and his mother in Shelford, Nottinghamshire in 1850 (A/M/J Basford). They were married in 1867 (A/M/J Nottingham) and had at least five surviving children: Ada Eliza b. abt 1871 (Calcutta, India), Joseph b. abt 1876 (Aldershot), George b. abt 1878 (North Camp, Aldershot), Charles Norris/Norris Charles (k/a Norris) b. 10 May 1879 (A/M/J Radford) and Francis b. 1881 (A/M/J Radford). It is probable that Joseph was a veteran of the Indian Mutiny and served in India after his marriage since his only daughter, the eldest child, was born in Calcutta. His two eldest sons were born in Aldershot so it is likely that he did not leave the army until after the birth of his second son, George. By 1881 Joseph (42) was a framework knitter. He and his wife Ann (32) were living at 7 John Square, Sneinton, with their four children Ada (9), George (6), Joseph (4) and Charles Norris (1). Their fourth son, Francis, was born at the end of the same year. In 1891 the family was living at 12 North Street, Sneinton. Joseph was now a hotel porter and Ann was working as a lace clipper. Four of their five children were at home on the night of the census: Ada (19) who was in the hosiery trade, Joseph (14) a bobbin hand, Charles Norris (12) and Francis (9). George’s sister Ada Eliza married Albert Bolton in 1891 (O/N/D Nottingham). She and Albert had at least three children: Norris Charles b. 5 or 6 March 1895 and baptised on 31 March 1895 (Normanton St Giles, Derbyshire), Kate b. 1896 (A/M/J Basford) and John b. 1898 (A/M/J Nottingham). At the time of the birth of their first child in 1895 Ada and Albert were living at The Barracks, Derby; Albert was a drummer in the 1st Derbyshire Regiment. In 1901 they were living in Nottingham but Albert, who was at home on the night of the census, was still in the army as he was described as a soldier 'on furlough'. Ada (29) was working as a shirt maker 'on her own account'. They now had three children, Norris (6), Kate (4) and John (3). Ada died in 1906 (O/N/D Nottingham) at the age of 35. George’s younger brother Charles Norris married Mary Annie Whiteley in 1901 (O/N/D Nottingham). In 1911 they were living at 28 Lyndhurst Road Sneinton Nottingham; they had no children. They probably emigrated to Newmarket in Canada before the outbreak of war and according to the notices of Norris' death had three sons. Mary must have returned to England as the CWGC record, compiled after the war, gives her address as 39 Massey Street, Blue Bell Hill, Nottingham. It is likely Joseph Mee senior was severely injured in a road accident in 1893 while at work (see 'extra information') and this may have contributed to his early death at the age of 58 in 1898 (O/N/D Nottingham). George’s youngest brother Francis enlisted in the Sherwood Foresters in October 1902 on a 12 year engagement (3 years with the Colours, 9 years in the Reserve) and was mobilized on 5 August 1914. He served in France from 19 September but was taken prisoner the following month on 20 October and not repatriated until 3 January 1919. He was demobilized on 30 March the same year. He qualified for the 1914 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. Francis had married Clara Hannah Chapman at Sneinton parish church on 6 July 1907 and in 1911 they were living at 19 Upper Eldon Street, Sneinton. Francis (29) was a leather dresser. He and Clara (26) had two children, Mary Annie (3) and Ada Florence (4 months). However, it appears that Ada Florence died in infancy as his updated Army Service Record gives the names of only three children: Mary Annie b. 3 May 1908, Eva(?) b. 16 December 1912 and Frederick b. 6 April (year illegible but possibly 1914). It is likely that by the time Francis was mobilized the family was living off Walker Street, Sneinton. When Francis enlisted in 1902 he named his mother, married sister and brothers Joseph and George as his next of kin. At the time Ada was living at 5 Kelly Court, Colwick Street, Sneinton, and his mother and two brothers at 81 Newington Street, Sneinton. The notice in the local paper in 1917 of Charles Norris’s and George's deaths show that Joseph as well as Francis served in the war. George’s mother, Ann Mee, died in 1902 (O/N/D Nottingham) shortly after her youngest son Francis enlisted; she was 53 years old. George was unmarried but lived with a Mrs Sarah Reed who completed a form for the army in 1919 listing his surviving blood relatives. She named George's two surviving brothers, Francis and Joseph, and herself as his 'dependant' together with her two children by him, Annie Mary Reed and George Henry Reed. Sarah and the two children were living at 3 Pleasant Terrace, Upper Eldon Street, Sneinton. George’s nephew, Norris Charles Bolton, his sister Ada's eldest child, also served in the war initially in the South Notts Hussars (1990) and later in the Machine Gun Corps (164431 Corporal). It is likely that he was in the Territorial Force prior to 1914 as at the time of the 1911 Census when he was 18 years old and a farm labourer he was recorded in Newcastle Upon Tyne (Jesmond St Andrew) with the Special Reserve Royal Field Army. He survived the war and married Florence A Briggs in 1919 (A/M/J Nottingham). He died in 1974 (Dec Nottingham) at the age of 79.
He was probably a general labourer for Nottingham Corporation.
16 Sep 1916
805795 - CWGC Website
2nd Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment)
George's service record survives although badly damaged. He appears to have joined the Yorkshire Regiment (TF) on 25 May 1904 on a four year engagement and held the rank of corporal. On time expired in 1908 he joined the Special Reserve. He attested in the Sherwood Foresters Special Reserve (2550 Private) on 14 June 1908 and re-engaged in May 1914. He was appointed lance corporal on 9 June 1914 but lost his lance corporal's stripe on 21 September 1914. He was mobilized on 5 August 1914 and served in France from 11 November 1914. In March 1915 while serving in France he was awarded 28 days FP No.1 for being absent from his post on 1 March 1915 and later the same year on 25 October was awarded 10 days FP No 2 and deprived of 10 days’ pay for being absent off leave. Then at a Court of Enquiry on 24 January 1916 George was declared a deserter (from 6 December 1915). He was apprehended and 'joined (-) (prisoner) Rouen on 10 March 1916'. On 23 March following his trial on 22 March 1916, George was sentenced to five years penal servitude for desertion on active service/deserting His Majesty’s Service. Either for the purposes of the trial or following his sentence George must have returned to the UK as his conviction was 'quashed by GOC 2nd Army Authy (-) 71st inf. Bde No SC 847 (-), 2 April 1916' and George rejoined his Regiment at Chilwell Park Camp, Nottingham, on 14 August 1916. He returned to France where he was killed in action on 16 September 1916. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial (Pier and Face 10 C 10 D and 11 A). George qualified for the 1914/15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Registers of Soldiers' Effects: Mrs Sarah Reed was his sole legatee. Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Roll of Honour’, 13 September 1917: ‘Mee. Missing 1916 now reported killed, Private Norris C Mee, Canadian Highlanders, late Newmarket, Canada. Private GH Mee, Sherwood Foresters, killed in action September 13th 1915 (sic). Two brothers serving. Gone, but not forgotten. Loving mother and brothers.' (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Note: No trace Private GH Mee Sherwood Foresters KIA 13 September 1915 but see 2550 Private George Mee 2nd Bn Sherwood Foresters KIA 16 September 1916. Nottingham Evening Post, Wednesday 19 July 1893. ‘Nottingham and Notts Summer Assizes. Run over by a tram. Mee v. the Nottingham District Tramway Company. The plaintiff, Joseph Mee, an hotel porter, of Nottingham, who was represented by Mr Etherington Smith (instructed by Mr WB Smith), sued the defendant company, who were represented by Mr Stanger, and Mr T Lindley (instructed by Mr A Barlow). The plaintiff claimed damages for injuries received by being run over by a tram belonging to the defendants. In consequence of his injuries one of his legs had to be amputated, and he was unable to pursue his former employment. He worked at the Maypole Hotel, and went about with commercial travellers’ trucks. He was formerly in the army, and after serving in the Indian Mutiny he retired. In returning with his empty truck from the Midland Railway Station he was between the up and down tram lines in Carrington-street. A tram car going towards St Peter’s had stopped close to his side when a tram came down in the opposite direction. He called out to the driver to stop, and proceeded to get out of the way. The driver took no notice of his shouting but drove on to his truck, knocking him down and carrying the truck along with it clear of the other car. The plaintiff’s leg was close to the wheel of the stationary car and notwithstanding his cries the car began to move and passing over his leg crushed it. Mr E Smith contended that it was a classic case of carelessness on the part of the drivers.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk)
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