Private Alexander Purves

Private Alexander Cowe Purves, 1st/4th ( Border ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action on Gallipoli on 12th July 1915 during the ” Charge ” on the Turkish trenches at Achi Baba Nullah, aged 20. He was the son of John and Margaret Purves of Charterhall, Duns and is commemorated on the Helles Memorial, Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey. Before the war he had been employed as a gamekeeper with Col. Trotter of Charterhall Estate. His father also worked there as a gardener. That day became known as the ” Black Day of the Borders” as only 70 unwounded men answered evening roll call out of the over 700 Officers and men who had begun the attack. Both  Colonel J. McNeile from Bowden  and his Adjutant Captain J. Land from Melrose were posted missing presumed killed. The photograph shows Achi Baba marked with a cross. This ” hill ” dominated the battlefield and was never captured. The second photo shows the Borderers going over the top and attacking at Gallipoli.

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