PRIVATE THOMAS HARRI JONES

No. 17392 - 19th Battalion, The King's (Liverpool) Regiment (3rd Liverpool Pals)

Thomas Harri Jones was born in Guilsfield, in 1884, to the Rev Owen Baldwyn Jones, and his wife Elizabeth. Thomas was their youngest son, and the brother of James Morris Jones (see below). The Reverend Jones was a Welsh Congregational Minister, and so the family moved extensively around North Wales and Merseyside in Thomas’ youth, as the practice at that time was for each Minister to take up a new post every five years. Sometime after 1911, but before the outbreak of war, his three unmarried sisters, Eluned, Marian and Gladys moved to run the Post Office in Montgomery, where they stayed until the late 1930s, and comments from them appear in JDK Lloyds’ A Montgomery Notebook. The post office was at that time situated next door to the Dragon Hotel, on the corner of Kerry Street and Market Square, in what is now a private residence. He signed up in Liverpool, on the 31st August 1914, almost immediately after the outbreak of the war. He was working at the time as a grocer, and living as a lodger with an aunt on Merseyside, but he gave his address as Montgomery, where his sisters were living.
It is very possible, given the date of his enlistment, that he attended a large meeting at St George’s Hall Liverpool addressed by Lord Derby, who urged men to enlist saying, “This should be a battle where friends from the same office fight shoulder to shoulder for the honour of Britain and Liverpool, you have given a noble example in coming forward. You are certain to give a noble example on the field of battle” Thomas must have been up early on the 31st, as by 10 a.m. he was one of the 1,050 men who had enlisted that morning at St George’s Hall. Lord Derby asked the thousands of men remaining in the waiting queue to leave, and return on the 2nd of September, and from these first men who enlisted on the 31st August and in early September, was formed the 19th (Pals) Battalion.
Thomas Harri Jones died of wounds, aged 29, on the 5th July 1916, having been injured in the first days of the Battle of the Somme, and he is buried at Dauors Cemetery Extension grave no II.B.1. His sister Marion placed on his headstone the Welsh words Hyd oni wawrio y dydd - (Until the day dawns) She would choose the same words for their brother, James Morris Jones, who was to die two years later, see below.

We can see in the image above his enlistment papers, although the quality is not good, we can see his occupation, his place of birth, and the place and date of his enlistment.