Lieutenant Russell Hill

Service Army
Rank Lieutenant
Regiment:Gloucestershire Regiment
Date of Birth: 1897
Born Dawlish
Date of Death: 24/11/1920
Memorial: Dawlish Memorial Inscription HILL R. LT. GLOUCESTER REGT.

Service History

Russell Hill can be traced in the Officer records at Kew which show that he joined the Territorial Force for four years’ service at Camden Town, London on 19 January 1915 at the age of 18 and was attached to the 7th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment. He was promoted from Private to Lance Corporal on 27 March 1915 but reverted to Private on 27 July 1916. He was appointed to the Somerset Light Infantry on 15 August 1917 as a Lance Corporal.

He had applied for a Commission on 29 March 1917 when he showed his previous occupation to have been a clerk and his present address to be Hut G2 M Company, 3rd Somerset Light Infantry, Crownhill huts, Plymouth. He gave his previous Territorial service as 8 months as a Private and 1 ½ years as a Lance Corporal Motor Cyclist with the 7th (Cyclist) Reserve Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment.

He was posted to No XII Officers’ Cadet Battalion on 7 September 1917. He was discharged from the Territorial Force to a Commission as 2nd Lieutenant in the Gloucestershire Regiment, 3rd Battalion, on 18 December 1917. The report in the Dawlish Gazette of 27 November 1920 shows that he was gassed at the Front at some point, and from this developed tuberculosis.

He relinquished his Commission on completion of Service on 19 October 1920 but to retain the rank of Lieutenant and this was posted to the London Gazette on 1 February 1921. It appears that he was receiving treatment for tuberculosis during the period August 1920 to his death, partly while in Army Service. (GRO death ref 1920,Decc, N.A.,vol 5b, p 122)

His father submitted a Certificate to the War Office on 14 January 1921 that his son, Russell Hill, had died on 24 November 1920.

Association with Dawlish

Russell Hill was the younger brother of James Henry Hill (1891-1917)(q.v.). They were the great grandchildren of John and Ann Heel/Hill. The surname appears spelled Heel in 1851, but later census entries adopt the spelling Hill.

Henry Hill (1845- ) and Elizabeth Cox (nee Coombes) married in the Zion Chapel, East Teignmouth on 22nd May 1870. Both Henry and Elizabeth were born in Dawlish. Elizabeth was then a widow, born to James and Eliza Coombes in Dawlish ca 1846.

Henry and Elizabeth Hill had a total of nine children all of which survived to the 1911 census, by which time they had been married 41 years. The children were all born in Dawlish and were:

Henry John Hill 1867-1921 married Bessie Dawe (see below)

William T Hill 1870- became an Ostler (1891)

Charles Henry Hill 1873- married Amy Nixon and they had six children

Frederick J Hill 1876- became a Telegraph Messenger, G.P.O.

Thomas Hill 1878- moved to London, Shoreditch,

Albert J Hill 1880- became a butcher’s assistant (1901)

Lily Hill 1882- became a laundress (1901)

Ethel Hill 1885- “ “

Arthur Hill 1887-

Their eldest son, Henry John Hill (1867-1921) married Bessie Dawe (1860-1953) on 30 August 1890 in the parish Church, Dawlish. Bessie was the sister of Clara Kate Blackmore, nee Dawe (1863-1932), who was the mother of Charles Henry Blackmore (1890-1917) q.v..

Henry and Bessie lived at 7 Badlake Hill and Henry John Hill was a house painter and Bessie a dressmaker. Russell Hill was born in the first quarter of 1897 at Badlake Hill. They had five children but only three in all survived to the 1911 census:

James Henry Hill, 1891-1917, (q.v.)

Frances Edward Hill (1894-1970) and

Russell Hill (1897-1920).

In 1901 Henry John and Bessie Hill were living at 8 Hatcher Street and ten years later were at Stuart House, 31 Strand, with Frances Edward Hill, now a plumber, and Russell, still at school.

(a more complete family profile is shown in Documents - life story)

Devon Roll of Honour
Additional Information Commonwealth War Graves Site

Next of Kin: Henry John Hill, father
Last Known Address: Stuart House, 31 Strand

Hill family grave in Dawlish Cemetery

Gloucestershire Regiment badge

Officer record at National Archives, Kew

Dawlish Gazette extracts (see Documents)

Free BMD refs

James Henry Hill (1891-1917)(q.v.)

Refs from subscription websites:

Census data

Birth, marriage, death refs