Private William Henry Stevens

Service Army Service No. 10816
Rank Private
Regiment:Devonshire Regiment, 8th Battalion
Date of Birth: 1890
Born Dawlish
Date of Death: 25/09/1915
Memorial: Dawlish Memorial Inscription STEVENS W.H. PTE. DEVON REGT

Service History

William enlisted in Exeter with the Devonshire Regiment as part of Kitchener's New Army. His service number is close to that of Ernest John Crideford (10811) and they may have joined at the same time, probably following a local recruiting drive.

The Western Times, Friday 29 October 1915

”Official news was received at Dawlish Monday that Privates B.Hooper, W.Stevens, and J.Dew had been killed in action.

Private W Stevens was a widower, his parents are living at Mamhead, near Dawlish, and previous to the war he was a labourer.”

Killed in Action on the first day of the Battle of Loos. He was one of eight soldiers from Dawlish who died on that day.

Association with Dawlish

William Henry Stevens was the fourth of eight children of Henry (Harry) Stevens (b.Cullompton, 1858-1941) and Sarah Jane Harris (b Luton, Nr Chudleigh, 1857-1923). Harry was an agricultural labourer and they had married in Q4, 1874 in St Thomas District.

William Henry Stevens married Elizabeth Aggett (b. Drewsteignton, 1882 – 1915) in Q3 1908 in Exeter St Thomas. In 1911 they lived at 6 Swan Court, Old Town, Dawlish. He was a carter and she worked in a laundry and they had a lodger who may have been Elizabeth’s younger brother. Elizabeth died earlier in 1915, and a death certificate will reveal the cause. It must have had a dreadful impact on William at the Front.

Devon Roll of Honour
Additional Information Commonwealth War Graves Site

Next of Kin: Harry Stevens, father
Last Known Address: 6 Swan Court, Old Town, Dawlish

Stevens panel at Dud Corner

Dud Corner cemetery, Loos

Devonshire Regt headstone unknown soldier

Free Birth Marriage Death records

Dawlish Gazette extracts from collection held by Dawlish Museum

refs via subscription sites:

Census records

Army Register of Soldiers' Effects

Army Medal Rolls Index