Piper killed at Atbara

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Piper killed at Atbara

Postby dewhirstj » 05 Sep 2016 12:30

Hello, fellow members.

I am researching the Battle of Atbara, in particular three of the British fatalities: Private John Devlin and Lieutenant Paul Gore of the Seaforth Highlanders, and Piper Stewart of the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders.

The latter is presenting a problem, as I cannot identify him clearly. Apparently the original memorial in Sudan lists him as Piper F. Stewart, but a memorial in the Highlands calls him Piper Peter Stewart, while a contemporary account names him Piper James Stewart.

Can anyone point me towards the correct option?

Thanks
Jon
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby Derbys » 05 Sep 2016 13:56

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Hi Jon
There is a Atbara memorial in the centre of Inverness which records 3260 Piper J. Stewart - is this possibly your man ?
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby Derbys » 05 Sep 2016 14:06

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Apologies for poor photo - not sure if this will appear better. Chris
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby Derbys » 05 Sep 2016 14:26

Some more, if they are of interest. Chris
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby crimea1854 » 06 Sep 2016 16:08

According to the medal roll a 3260, Piper J Stewart, is shown as deceased, with his medal being sent to a Miss G Stewart, 6 Bruntsfield Gardens, Edinburgh.

Martin
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby dewhirstj » 06 Sep 2016 17:48

Very useful information, gentlemen. I think these confirm the source which named him as James Stewart, and ties in with a postcard at Achiltibuei Piping School which also looks like a J (it could have been an F). I can now proceed with research accordingly. Many thanks.
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby Ron Abbott » 17 Sep 2016 09:27

dewhirstj wrote:Very useful information, gentlemen. I think these confirm the source which named him as James Stewart, and ties in with a postcard at Achiltibuei Piping School which also looks like a J (it could have been an F). I can now proceed with research accordingly. Many thanks.



According to an article in the Aberdeen Journal of 26th April 1899, there is a bagpipe tune named after him, 'Piper Stewart of Atbara'.

Purportedly composed by the Pipe Major of the Govan Burgh Police, presumably either Pipe Major Drysdale or Pipe Major Hutcheon given the date parameters but more likely to have been the latter given that he composed a number of tunes, was ex Scots Guards and had served in the Egyptian campaign and had also composed a tune called, 'The Cameron Highlanders Advance on Atbara'.

The tune written in Piper Stewart's honour does not appear to have been commercially published. However, the tune. 'The Cameron Highlanders Advance on Atbara' has been published and is in the Henderson's Tutor for the Bagpipe and Collection of Music.

There is also a tune called, 'The 1st Seaforth's Advance on Atbara', published in Logan's Highland Collection of Bagpipe Music (book no. 4). It was composed by Henderson Taylor (of Reay).

The following (medal for sale/auction in May 2016) may be of interest : -

https://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auct ... fb00b57f4c

Some of the military records of Piper James Stewart are accessible via findmypast.

p.s....the last time I was at Achiltibiue (about 15 months ago), the staff told me that the piping school was closing down. Good if it's had a reprieve.
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby BobsYourUncle » 21 Dec 2016 20:41

Here is the entry for Piper James Stewart, Queen Own Cameron Highlanders, No 3260, in R H Crawford's Pipers of the Highland Regiments 1854 to 1902, at page 245. Crawford drew on many compiled sources in order to create his entries, and worked to give as complete information as possible from the service records and other records available for each piper who served in each regiment during the period in question. Clearly, Crawford had access to his last letter home to his Aunt in Dundee, quoted in Crawford's entry for him. Crawford also refers to a photograph of James Stewart presented to the Regimental Museum by the Edinburgh Branch of the Regimental Association. You should not fail to ask for information about Piper James Stewart from the Regimental Museum, as they are likely to have other information, possibly including the Pipe tune written in his honor.

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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby jonathandewhirst » 23 Dec 2016 11:58

This is very useful. Thank you very much. :)
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Re: Piper killed at Atbara

Postby Ron Abbott » 30 Dec 2016 07:03

jonathandewhirst wrote:This is very useful. Thank you very much. :)


I have just come across an excellent article about him. It is in the 14th April 1898 edition of the Dundee Courier.
Names him as Piper James Alexander Stewart and mentions him as having been in his 26th year, and that he joined the Camerons in 1892. Tells about his parents, his sister and his grand-uncle, who had apparently served with the 93rd at Balaclava.

It also refers to his last letter home from Kars-el-Nil Barracks, Cairo.

There is a sketch with the article of the pipers in the battalion, who are also named as Pipe-Major Grant. Pipe-Major McFarlane (of the 2nd Battalion), as well as Pipers Swan, Graham, John Hay, Graham, Lobban, John MacKenzie and another Piper surnamed MacKenzie.

The author of the article alleges that Stewart was playing the 'March of The Cameron Men', when (quote), "pierced by several bullets, he dropped dead".
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