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.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

John Nicol

John Nicol was born in Catrine about 1892.  He died on 19 March 1917 in France.  On Cumnock War Memorial he is remembered as Sergeant John Nicol. His war grave is in the Faubourg d'Amiens cemetery in Arras.

Glengyron Row, Cumnock
Terrance Nicol             34 b Dalry
Jane Nicol             35 b Auchinleck
Mary Nicol             12 b Auchinleck
John Nicol             9 b Catrine
Briget Nicol             4
Jennie Nicol             2
Terrence Nicol             11 Months
rest born Cumnock

On Cumnock Connections tree


This is his record on CWGC

Update 3 Sep 2015
I have heard from the grandson of John Nicol. It seems that John had a son James with Maggie Logan. They weren't married. Andrew Nicoll writes:
When his Dad died in March 1917 Jim's  paternal grandmother, Jane Nicol, took young Jim  off his Mum and brought him up herself in the family home at Glengyron Row with Grandad Terry, until her death in 1919. I attach her death certificate with a few details. Apparently the notion of young Jim not being brought up a Catholic was too much for the Nicol family.
After Jane died according to my Dad he left Grandad Terry, who was a miner, and he was passed from auntie to auntie and various homes around Cumnock/Auchinleck. They were mining families, and another mouth to feed was not  easy to accommodate. He remembered late in his life, after he had married and had a son ( me),  a lady who used to come up and chat to him on his way home from school some days, and pass him the occasional bag of sweets which was a huge treat at the time. The penny eventually dropped who she was, forty years too late. He never, ever looked for his Mum.
He was a bright youngster however, did well at primary school and ended up at St Aloysius in Garnet Hill, Glasgow  travelling up every day on the train.  He did well academically, spent  a few years training to be a Jesuit before giving  up ideas of the priesthood, moving to England in the mid 1930's, working in Fleet Street, serving in 5 Black Watch in WW2 and eventually having a post war career as a Fleet Street journalist and Parliamentary lobby correspondent to retirement in 1979. He lived on to 1998. 

I already had Maggie Logan on the tree. Her father was a coal miner in Townhead St. In 1911 census she was a table maid at the Hotel Royal in the Square. How sad for Maggie to lose contact with her son.

Andrew (and his late father Jim) never had a photo of John until he found this post. 

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