Private George Cairns

Private George Alexander Cairns, 1st/4th ( Border ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action at Gallipoli on 12th July 1915 during ” The Charge ” on the Turkish trenches at Achi Baba Nullah, aged 18. He was the son of James and Catherine Cairns of Whitton, Morebattle and Monklaw, Jedburgh and is commemorated on the Helles Memorial, Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey. He had been born in Hownam and had enlisted in Kelso. That fateful day became known as the “Black Day of the Borders” as at evening roll call only 70 unwounded men answered their names out of the over 700 Officers and Other Ranks who had begun the attack. Both the Colonel and his Adjutant were killed. The author’s Great Uncle, Corporal Jim Murray from Coldstream was wounded and spent 6 weeks in hospital in Alexandria before returning to Gallipoli or “the Pen” as he called it. The first photo shows Achi Baba, the objective, marked with a cross. This ” hill ” dominated the battlefield and was never captured. The second shows the Borderers attacking at Gallipoli and the third shows the battlefield in 1922.

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