Private 202719 James Plummer
Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regt)
Private Plummer (previously spelt here as Plumber) is another mystery soldier about whom Mac McIntyre originally could find little information, stating "He is not shown as far as can be ascertained on the Commonwealth War graves commission system, nor 'Soldiers died' which lists those killed by Regiment.
His name appears on the memorial board in Hungerford Town Hall but interestingly he is the only one where the place of death is not shown. This would indicate that even in those early days he was a 'Mystery'."
However, Phil Wood (War Memorials of West Berkshire website), kindly contacted the Virtual Museum (July 2011) saying that
"You give Pte J Plumber in the WW1 list - the name on the memorial is actually Plummer. Doesn't help find him in the CWGC records but there are Plummers around Hungerford - Jesse born 1882 would be a good fit, he is in Hungerford in 1901 and 1911. I have tried (and failed) to find his death in the GRO indexes so it seems he either died in the war or emigrated. There was also a J Plummer in the Royal Berks Regt (no 7088) - another possible avenue to follow."
In a further email (Jul 2011) Phil Wood added:
Last Saturday I was in Hungerford and photographed the framed scroll in the Town Hall. Today I started transcribing it for my website and came across a clue that has enabled me to identify J Plummer - that he served in the Notts & Derby Regt.
He was James Plummer, son of George and Rhoda who died 18 Apr 1918 serving as a Private in the Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regt) (http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_details.aspx?casualty=1643624)
His entry in 'Soldiers Who Died' is confusing:
- Name: James Plummer
- Birth Place: Newton, Montgomery
- Residence: Wallingford, Berks
- Death Date: 18 Apr 1918 Death
- Location: France & Flanders
- Enlistment Location: Croydon, Surrey
- Rank: Private
- Regiment: Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment)
- Battalion: 2/5th Battalion
- Number: 202719
- Type of Casualty: Killed in action
- Theatre of War: Western European Theatre
In the 1891 census he and his parents are in Avington (RG12/971 f6 p5) and his birthplace is given as 'Bowling Green, Berks' - could this be in Hungerford Newtown which could then be misinterpreted from poor handwriting as Newton Montgomery?
In 1901 James is working as a plate layer in Croyden (RG13/639 f154 p20) - birthplace Hungerford. Explains his enlistment in Croyden. 1911 he is still in Croyden, a gardener, still single (RG14PN3325 RG78PN126 RD39 SD3 ED3 SN322)
I was close with Jesse - who was James' younger brother."