GILL, Joseph aka James Gill PALMER

No.7925, Corporal, James Gill PALMER
Aged 24

2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on 22nd January 1916

James Gill PALMER was born in Hawstead in 1892 (2nd qtr 1892 Thingoe 4a:757) son of Susan Ann PALMER. His mother married Walter GILL in qtr 3 1892. It is not known why he appears as Joseph on the memorial and in one census,, but this is almost certainly the right man.

1901 census...Aged 8, as Joseph, he was at Hawstead Green with his father Walter GILL [44] blacksmith born Whepstead; his mother Susan [37] born Depden; brothers George [4] and Arthur Barzillai[9 months]; sister Rosa Ellen [2]. All the children born in Hawstead. A brother Harry Barzillai was born in 1894 but sadly died in 1895

1911 census...He was at Barrosa Barracks, Stanhope Lines, Aldershot, a Lance-Corporal in the 2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. His parents, brother George and Arthur and sister Rosa were still at Hawstead Green. Of Susan's 5 children, 4 survive.

He married Ada Rose CLARKE in 1915 [18-6-1893] later of Sapiston Heath She married George HUDSON in 1919 in Swaffham

He enlisted in Bury St.Edmunds
The 2nd Suffolks were at The Bluff, near the Ypres-Comines canal. On the night of 21st/22nd the Germans exploded a mine, estimated to be around 6-7 tons of gunpowder, blasting a crater 60 x 40 yards and 40 feet deep. The SE face of the Bluff was carried away, ammunition boxes were blown hundred of yards and surrounding trenches caved in. Many men were buried several feet deep. Around 100 men were killed, buried alive or wounded. Survivors quickly set out to defend the crater, but the Germans made no attempt to attack.
23 of the 40+ dead are named on the Menin Gate, unsurprisingly they were never found, or identified. The Bluff, just east of St Eloi, was simply a mound of soil, about 3 feet high from when the canal was dug.

James Gill Palmer is commemorated on the Menin Gate, Ypres panel 21

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details