Abbeville, on the Somme River northwest of Amiens, was a strategic Allied communications and hospital centre in WW1. In spring and summer 1918, Abbeville was the target of German air raids. In the early morning of 30 May 1918, Abbeville and Doullens were hit. At Abbeville, a bomb hit a protection trench, killing nine women in Queen Mary’s Army Auxiliary Corps (QMAAC). The victims were buried with military honours in Abbeville Communal Cemetery Extension.
- Mary McLachlan Blaikley (domestic worker) age 20
- Beatrice V. (Trixie) Campbell (domestic worker) age 20 … “In remembrance of dear Beatrice, beloved by all who knew her.”
- Margaret Selina Caswell (Officers’ Club waitress) age 22 … “The dearly loved daughter of Fredrick & Mary Caswell. Safe in the arms of Jesus, safe on his gentle breast.”
- Catherine Connor (domestic worker)
- Jeanie Grant (postal clerk) age 22 … “A dear wee Scotch lassie who feared the Lord and honoured the King.”
- Annie Elizabeth Moores (cook) age 27 … “She hath done what she could. Mark XIV.8.”
- Ethel Francis Mary Parker (Officers’ Club waitress) age 21 … “In honour lived, for honour died.”
- Alice Thomasson (domestic worker) age 21
- Jeanie HL Watson (domestic worker) age 25 … “Father in thy gracious keeping, leave we our loved one sleeping.”
This photo of the funeral procession is in the Australian War Memorial collection.
Six other service women are buried in the same cemetery:
- Edith Agnes Baker, Staff Nurse, South African Military Nursing Service, died 6 Nov 1918, age 28 … “Sleep on, dear one, beside the boys whose lives were given for us.”
- Beatrice Violet Moore, Worker, QMAAC, died 13 Mar 1919, age 21
- Nellie Teresa O’Neill, Forewoman, QMAAC, died 16 Nov 1918, age 28. Mentioned in despatches.
- Emily Ada Pickford, Civilian, member of Lena Ashwell’s Concert Party, YMCA, drowned in a car accident, 7 Feb 1919, age 38
- Edith Fanny Rowe, Worker, YMCA, died of cerebro-spinal-meningitis, 28 October 1916, age 43 … “Blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God.”
- Kitty Walcroft, Worker (telephone operator), QMAAC, died of influenza, 14 Feb 1919, age 24 … “Not lost but gone before.”
Welcome to more new followers. I look forward to your comments and hope you enjoy the journey.
October 21, 2018 at 16:41
Edith Fanny Rowe came from Exeter, Devon, UK. Her father had been Mayor of Exeter in 1902. Her name appears on the war memorial of St Matthew’s church, Exeter
October 21, 2018 at 20:23
Thank you for dropping by, and for the additional information. Background details about many of the women workers is hard to track.