In 2014 the centenary of the outbreak of World War One, Cumnock History Group began researching the names on the War Memorial plus other men and women with Cumnock connections mentioned on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission or in the Cumnock Chronicle of the time. The research is not limited to those who died but also to men and women who served, using family history information.

The group would like to appeal to individuals with knowledge of family members for photographs of the soldier, either in uniform or not, and photos of medals or other memorabilia eg letters sent home from the Front. If you would be prepared to share these on this site, please email the web manager cumnockhistory [at] The group is willing to share any copies of documents found with the soldier's descendants.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Lieutenant A J B Milne

Second Lieutenant Alexander James Bolton Milne was born  in Lerwick, Shetland  27 July 1887 where his father was a Baptist minister the Rev Alexander Allan Milne. His mother was Janet Bolton.

In 1891 he was living with his parents in the hamlet of South Scousborough in Shetland.

In 1901 he is living with his mother in Cambuslang while his father was ministering in Hawick in the Borders. He was an only child.

He studied at both Glasgow and Aberdeen Universities and had the degrees MA and BD (Bachelor of Divinity) so it seems he was following the path of his father until war intervened.

Here is his entry in the Aberdeen University Roll of Honour

He was a distinguished student as this prize list from the Aberdeen Evening Express 19th March 1915 illustrates.

He served with the Gordon Highlanders. He was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant on the 3rd Dec 1915 according to the London Gazette

Aberdeen Journal - Thursday 30 August 1917
Killed in action on Aug 22 1917, Alexander James Bolton Milne, 2nd Lieutenant, Gordon Highlanders, aged 30, beloved son and only child of Rev AA Milne and Mrs Milne, Crofthope, Old Cumnock, lately of Cambuslang.

He was killed in action on the 22nd August 1917 in France and is buried at the White House Cemetery, St. Jean-Les-Ypres and is remembered on Cumnock War Memorial.

From the Aberdeen University Review 197-1918
Alexander James Bolton Milne (Divinity, 1914- 15), Second Lieutenant, Gordon Highlanders, was killed in action in France on 22 August. He took his Arts course at Glasgow University, and attended the Divinity Hall at Aberdeen for three sessions. While in Aberdeen, he was assistant to Rev. A. M. Snadden, John Knox Parish Church, and was also a student missionary in the East Parish under Rev. George Walker. He joined up when he had completed his divinity course in the spring of 1915. Lieutenant Milne was the only son of Rev. A. A. Milne, Crofthope, Old Cumnock, Ayrshire, and late of Cambuslang Parish Church, and was thirty years of age. 

His parents were living in at Crofthope in 1917 in Cumnock. In the 1915 valuation roll Crofthope House is at 132 Barrhill Road, one of 4 properties next to each other owned by Mrs Annie Hope wife of Thomas Henderson, merchant of Logan. Rev Milne is in another one of her properties at no 126. Did he move or has it been recorded wrongly?

Cumnock Connections tree

Footnote July 2017:  Contact from a researcher on Shetland thanking me for having found the photo of Alexander.

Update 22 Sep 2018

Found in CC by B Grierson Sep 2018

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