Private James Shiel

Private James Shiel, 1st/4th ( Border ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action, aged 18, at Gallipoli during the “Charge” on the Turkish trenches at Achi Baba Nullah. He had been born in Melrose to Mary and the late James Shiel of Dingleton, Melrose and is commemorated on the Helles Memorial, Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey. Before enlisting in October 1914 he had been employed as a gardener. He fell in what became known as the “Black Day Of The Borders”. Out of over 700 Officers and Other Ranks who took part only 70 unwounded men answered the Roll Call that evening. Few towns and villages had not lost at least one or more of their sons that fateful day.  The first photograph shows Achi Baba, the objective, marked with a cross. This “hill” dominated the battlefield and was never captured. The second shows The Borderers going over the top at Gallipoli and the third shows the battlefield in 1922.

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