Sunday, March 31, 2013

WW1 Soldier: Hugh Lyndsay Patton 12/3121

Hugh was killed in Bapaume France on the 27th of August 1918 and is buried at Grevillers British Cemetery, Pas-de-Calais.

His military record at Archives New Zealand is sketchy and incomplete, it contains more correspondence between his mother and the army after the war than it does of Hugh's military service. But from the little it does contain it shows that Hugh was sent to Samoa as a young man with the Samoan Advance Party.  After 8 months, he returned from Samoa, worked briefly as a porter with NZRailways at Huntly and then joined the Auckland Regiment, enlisting at Frankton Junction and embarking on the 9th of October 1915 for Suez.

On the 27th of June 1918 in London, he was awarded the Military Medal for gallantry for reconnoitring the enemy position at Nebi Musa. Later while in England on leave he was sent to the Officers Cadet Unit and ended up as 2nd Lieutenant. For a time he was a member of the instructional staff at Sling Camp, being specially selected to train the men on Lewis machine-guns. He was then posted to France and within three weeks was killed at Bapaume aged 26yrs.

Hugh was the son of William Patton and Julia Costello. William Patton has remained an enigma, his history is still largely unknown but he was from Bangor in Ireland and was a carrier on the run from Kihikihi to Te Awamutu and Hamilton. Julia and William are thought to have married in Auckland on the 3rd of April 1885,  so said Julia on the birth registrations of their four children though the marriage has yet to be found officially.

William Dion Patton 1887 - 1967
Margaret Elizabeth (Sophia) Patton 1888 married James Millen 26th April 1916 at Kihikihi.
John James Patton 1889 - 1895
Hugh Lindsay Patton 1892 - 1918

The eldest son of William and Julia, William, also served in WW1 and returned a broken man, it was up to James Millen to help his mother-in-law see to the affairs of the family after the death of his brother-in-law. James and Sophia Millen are buried at the Te Awamutu cemetery.

Children of James and Margaret Millen.
Hugh Lyndsay Millen, born 23rd Nov 1921, died 1990.
Robert Millen, (may have been Robert Hamilton Millen born 25th March 1917, died 1984).

Hugh's mother, Julia nee Costello had an interesting history. A feisty little woman, she was born on the 31st of March 1850 at Coromandel to John and Ann Costello who had arrived via Australia from Borraschill in Tipperary, Ireland. The family lived a simple life on a Marae with local Maori near the township of Coromandel. 

On the 28th of May 1858, A.H. Spicer wrote in a letter to his mother;
Forenoon walked with Mr Preece to Costelos’ sawpit where we saw Costello and Harry Innes at work cutting up mottled Kauri. This tree is rarely met with and is a pretty furniture wood. Mr Preece says the marble is caused by disease, the tree receiving a check by cold winds when the sap is in full flow. Our course to this pit lay over low swampy land at the base of the hills at the rear or E of Stapleton and up the face of the western ridge on a spur and down a ravine the other side. Half way up the ridge commands a fine view of the Harbour through the trees. Its lake like appearance is very striking and pretty. This pit is on Maori land belonging I believe to Puhata alias Broung, a very superior native one dit of Waiheki who is said, intends settling at Coromandel. The sawyers about here appear a very improvident, intemperate race and although earning excellent wages and residing in a place where living is cheap and sawn wood plentiful are mostly housed in raupo whares nearly falling to pieces, indeed, the natives have far better domiciles.
It comes as no surprise then to find that Julia was illiterate.  She was one of nine children born to John and Ann Costello and she was number 6. The family's life on the Coromandel Peninsula was a sad one. Julia's brother Michael was drowned at a Coromandel swimming hole in 1860, William died in 1918 at Whitianga, their only casualty of the flu epidemic, the youngest, James was killed on his 21st birthday jacking logs at Tairua, the eldest, John, who never married died in 1906 at Christmas Creek, Mercury Bay, their sister, Maryanne, died in Auckland of a foot infection. Julia's sister's Margaret and Mary produced large families.

William and Julia had a successful ballot of land at the Teesdale Estate in Te Awamutu. The Public Trust disputed the ownership of this land with Julia after the disappearance or death of William, saying that they could not find their marriage certificate (and neither can I). However, Julia prevailed and then sold a part of the land to the Baptist Church there.

Hugh and his siblings grew up and went to school at Te Awamutu and Julia's obituary reads:
Mrs Julia Patton, 92yrs 27/6/1942. Died Te Awamutu, youngest daughter of John Costello, born Coromandel. Married 1884 Mr W M Patton coachdriver - lived in Te Awamutu over 50yrs, was a fluent Maori linguist, survived by son and daughter. Headstone reads: Our mother Julia Patton, relict of the late William Patton d 25/6/1942 aged 92yrs.

William Dion Pattons death notice reads:
Forrestry Unit WW1. On Feb 21st, 1967, at his residence Kihikihi, loved uncle of Bob and Hugh Millen in his 81st year, RC church & Int at Te Awamutu RSA Lawn Cemetery, All communications to 1240A Victoria St, Hamilton.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for your contribution to the Anzac Day Blog Challenge Lyn!