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Capt Arthur de Bells Adam (MC)
1885 - 1916

CPL David Wallace Crawford
1887 - 1916

Lce-Corpl John Joseph Nickle
1894 - 1916

Pte 17911 Morton Neill
1897 - 1916

Lieut Edward Stanley Ashcroft
1883 - 1918
Lieut Edward Stanley Ashcroft

Pte 26885 James Alfred Cannon Shimmin

  • Age: 19
  • From: Douglas IOM
  • Regiment: The King's (Liverpool Regiment) 20th Btn
  • K.I.A Sunday 22nd October 1916
  • Commemorated at: Thiepval Memorial
    Panel Ref: P&F1D8B &8 C.

James Alfred Cannon Shimmin was born on 04th January 1897 in Douglas, Isle of Man and was the son of Margaret Shimmin. 

The 1911 Census shows the family living at 15 Walton Hall Avenue Walton Liverpool. His mother, Margaret is a widow aged 45, born 1866 and has no occupation listed and was a resident of the Isle of Man. Her widowed mother Ann Dawson is aged 88, born 1823 in Ireland. She has three children living with her, Thomas aged 18, born 1893 and is a Shipping Manifest Clerk, Louis aged 16, born 1895 is a African Merchant’s Clerk and James aged 15, born 1896 is a Grocers Assistant. The three children were all residents of the Isle of Man.  There was a domestic servant named Hannah Graham aged 15, born 1896 living at the address.

He enlisted in Seaforth, Liverpool and was serving in the 20th Battalion, The King’s Liverpool Regiment as Private No 26885 when he was killed in action on the 22nd October 1916 aged 19.  A letter sent to his mother advised that James was buried but this grave was either lost or was subsequently destroyed as he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, France.

He was killed by a shell that also killed his friends Pte 38487 Edward Crebbin and Pte 36883 William Joseph Cowin.
In the Isle of Man Weekly Times, on 11th November 1916: 

“Mrs. Boddan has received the following letter with reference to the death in action of Private J. A. Cannon Shimmin (or Boddan):-
“Prees Heath, Whitchurch, Salop.

Dear Mrs. Boddan,  

It was with deep regret that we heard of the death of your nephew Jimmy.  He was a great friend of ours, as you know.  From the time we left home til he left, with Cowin and the boys, he lived in the same hut as us, and we became almost as brothers.  He was a typical Manx soldier, courageous to the back-bone, and with the others, we feel certain, he would take his part as good as, if not better than any. Perhaps you do not know that, when the draft was picked, he was not in it, but he volunteered with another to go, so that he could take his place with his comrades in the firing line.  This alone speaks for itself, for it takes a brave man to volunteer.  He was a good lad in every way.  Always tolerant, he was always ready to go out of his way to do a good turn, and while he was here we made a friendship which even death has not severed.  It is some little consolation to know that he had no pain, that his death was instantaneous and, moreover, that his own especial friends buried him, the lads he would have wished to bury him, with whom he has lived, and fought the last battle. We cannot say all we would like to, in this short letter, but suffice it to say that he was a soldier, and a man.  Extending to you our deep sympathy, trusting God will help you in your great sorrow.  
Yours sincerely,
C. Kinrade
W. F. Anderson“

James is commemorated on the following Memorials:

St Thomas C. of E. Church, Douglas,

Douglas Roll of Honour

Manx National War Memorial.


Killed On This Day.

(104 Years this day)
Monday 27th November 1916.
Pte 51893 James Arnold
38 years old