Biography of Ordinary Seaman George Henry Rix (J/24052)
H.M.S. Cornwallis, Royal Navy
Died 25 April 1915

Sailor

  • Name: George Henry Rix
  • Date of birth: 2nd July 1896
  • Place of Birth: Ilkley, Yorkshire, England
  • Date of Birth Registration: July – September 1896
  • Place of Birth Registration: Wharfadale, Yorkshire, England

Father

  • Name: Unknown

Step Father

  • Name: Edward James
  • DOB: 1870
  • Place of Birth: Leziate, Norfolk, England
  • Occupation: Agricultural labourer

Mother

  • Name: Eliza Elizabeth Rix
  • DOB: 5 November 1869
  • Place Of Birth: Terrington St Clements, Norfolk, England
  • Marriage: 17th February 1903, Deeping St Nicholas, Lincolnshire, England

Siblings: (Name), (DOB), (POB)

  • Harriet Elizabeth Rix, 1890, Bourne
  • George Henry Rix, 1896, Ilkley
  • John William James, 1904, Tongue End (half brother)
  • Mary Ann James, 1905, Whaplode Drove (Half sister)
  • Ernest Reginald James. 1907, Bourne (Half brother)

Census

  • 1901: George is living in his grandfather house John Rix with his mother and sister in Main Road, Deeping St Nicholas, Lincolnshire.
  • As I can not find a George Rix at all on the 1911 which could be the right one, I came across a George  Ricks and says he was born in Bourne, Lincolnshire. After some research there is no George Ricks born in Bourne, Lincolnshire around the time of George Rix so I’m guessing this is him.
  • 1911: George is living with the Frisby family at North Fen, Bourne, Lincolnshire. The census gives him an age of 14 and he is listed as a farm labourer on farm.
Relatives in services

  • None found

Marriage

  • No marriage for George has been found and because of his age we can assume that he never had the opportunity to marry.

Newspaper Mentions

  • Grantham Journal Saturday 8th May 1915
    BOURNE SAILOR KILLED. – On Saturday, the sad intelligence was received at Bourne of the death of Geo. Henry Rix, of H.M.S. Cornwallis, which is assisting in the Dardanelles operations.  The communication from the Admiralty was to the effect that Rix was killed in action on Sunday, April 25th.  This is we believe the first Naval casualty affecting a Bourne household, and the greatest sympathy will go out to the distressed mother in her great trial.  Rix was not nineteen, and had been in the Navy about two years, and was well known in the town.  The Vicar of Bourne made a touching reference to the death in the Market-place.  Bourne, on Saturday night.  Another brave fellow has died for his country, saud the rev. gentleman.  Rix had done his bit to try and save the old country from destruction.  He asked those present to raise their hats as a token of sympathy with the bereaved mother.  Immediately the crowd did so in silence.  It was a touching scene.  On Sunday afternoon, a memorial service was held in the Abbey Church, Bourne, in honour of our departed Jack Tar.

 

  • Grantham Journal Saturday 24th November 1917
    BOURNE
    H.M.S. “CORNWALLIS.” – Of interest to some in the town is the book published on the “Part played by H.M.S. Cornwallis” in the Dardanelles.  On the ship served O.S. George H. Rix, of Bourne, and he was killed on 25th April, 1915, at the great landing, which is fully described in the book.  In the illustrations , there is a picture.  “After coaling ship at Skyros.”  On seeing the picture, the members of his family in Bourne picked Seaman Rix out at once from fifty or more in the group.  The Cornwallis was finally torpedoed on January 9th, 1917.  In the list of honours in the Appendix the name of G. H. Rix appears.

Military Records

Attestation Papers

  • None found

Soldier’s Died In The Great War

  • None found

Pension Records

  • Available

Medals

  • British War Medal
  • Victory Medal
  • The Star

Memorials

  • UK:
  • Bourne, Roll of Honour in Bourne Abbey Church

 

  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission:
  • In memory of Ordinary Seaman G H Rix, J/24052, H.M.S Cornwallis, Royal Navy who died on 25 April 1915
  • Remembered with honour, V Beach Cemetery

© Debra Sabri

© The War Graves Photographic Project

© The War Graves Photographic Project

Military Service Timeline

  • 25th April 1913 – 12 October 1913 H.M.S. Vivid I – boy 2
  • 13th October 1913 – 18th October 1913 H.M.S. Vivid I – boy 1
  • 19th October 1913 – 4th March 1914 H.M.S. Prince of Wales – boy 1
  • 5th Mrch 1914 – 8th April 1914 H.M.S Pembroke I – boy 1
  • 9th April 1914 H.M.S. Lord Nelson – boy 1
  • 2 July 1914 – 2nd August 1914 H.M.S. Lord Nelson – Ordinary seaman
  • 3rd August 1914 – 9th December 1914 H.M.S. Actaeon I – Ordinary seaman
  • 10th December 1914 – 25th April 1915 H.M.S. Cornwallis – Ordinary seaman

 

  • For the Landing at Cape Helles on 25 April, Cornwallis was assigned to the 1st Squadron, and she was tasked with covering the southernmost landing sites, W Beach and V Beach, along with the battleship Implacable and the armoured cruiser Euryalus, which was the flagship of Rear Admiral Rosslyn Wemyss, the 1st Squadron commander. Early on the morning of 25 April, the three ships moved into position, having taken on the men of the first three battalions to go ashore. After arriving in her bombardment location, Cornwallis transferred the soldiers to trawlers, which in turn transferred them to small boats to carry them ashore to V Beach. Wemyss instructed Cornwallis to shell the Ottoman defences until the men had landed, and then to support the landing ship River ClydeCornwallis conducted a heavy bombardment of the heights above V Beach as the British troops battled their way off the beach. By 10:00, the British troops had secured a beachhead, so Cornwallis left to support River Clyde that had been beached under heavy fire at Sedd el Bahr, but by this time, the decision had been made to refrain from landing the men stranded aboard River Clyde until nightfall, owing to the stiff Ottoman resistance. source © wikipedia H.M.S Cornwallis

 

  • This is ongoing research and will be posted when completed

Sources

  • WW1 Soldier’s Records (www.ancestry.co.uk)
  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission
  • British Newspaper Archive.

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