Private 19134 Charles Edwin Nutting

Killed in Action on Saturday, 22nd January 1916, age 24.
Commemorated on Panel 21 of Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

2nd Bn., Suffolk Regiment. 76th Brigade of 3rd Division.
Formerly 25000 Corps of Hussars.

Son of Edward and Mary Ann Nutting, of 3, Adventure Place, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent.
Born: Tipton, Enlisted: Stoke-on-Trent, Resident: Stoke-on-Trent.

First landed France & Flanders, 6th July 1915.
Medal entitlement: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.
Soldier's Papers at National Archives did not survive.

Commemorated on the Hanley War Memorial.
Commemorated here because identified as Tipton on 'Soldiers Died in the Great War'.

Link to Commonwealth War Graves Site: www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/919194/

Genealogical Data

1891 Census
14a Lewis Street, Tipton, Staffs.
Edward Nutting (20, Blacksmith, born Tipton), his wife Mary Ann (20, born Tipton), and their only child: Charles E. (2 months, born Tipton).

1901 Census
65 Coppice Street, Tipton, Staffs.
Edward Nutting (30, Blast Furnace Man, born Netherton), his wife Mary (30, born Great Bridge), and their 5 children: Charles E. (10, born Great Bridge), Florence R. (9, born Tipton), James H. (6, born Tipton), Elsie E. (3, born Tipton), and John W. (10 months, born Tipton).

1911 Census
59 Leonard Street, Burslem, Staffs.
Edward Nutting (40, Labourer at Furnace, born Dudley), his wife Mary (40, born Great Bridge), and 8 of their 10 surviving children of 11: Charles E.(20, Taker-off in Pit, born Tipton), Mrs Florence Ruth Harrison (18, born Tipton), Elsie (13, born Tipton), John William (11, born Tipton), Albert Edward (8, born Tipton), James Thomas (5, born Tipton), George (3, born Smallthorne), and Florence (1, born Burslem).
Also their son-in-law Joseph Harrison (22, Colliery Loader, born Scotland), and their grandson Joseph Edward Harrison (5 months, born Burslem).
Also Edwin Oakley (68, Visitor, Widower, Retired Fishmonger, born Great Bridge), and William Oakley (30, Visitor, Ironworks Forge Labourer, born Great Bridge). Edwin and William Oakley were Mary Nutting's father and brother.

Personal Data

Charles Edwin and James Henry Nutting were brothers. They were born in Tipton, but the family had moved to the Burslem area around 1907. They were both previously in the Corps of Hussars, but both transferred to the 2nd Suffolks, having similar numbers, and both landed in France on the 6th July 1915.

At the time of the 1911 Census Mrs Mary Nutting's father and brother, Edwin and William Oakley, were also living with the Nutting family in Leonard Street, Burslem. WIlliam Oakley was also to lose his life during WW1 serving with the Royal Garrison Artillery, on 3rd September 1918.

Charles Edwin and James Henry Nutting and WIlliam Oakley (their uncle) are all commemorated on the Hanley War Memorial which stands opposite Hanley Town Hall. Additionally there is a plaque inside the entrance to Hanley Town Hall containing the names of fallen soldiers.

After Charles's death, his outstanding army pay and allowances amounted to £3/11/0d (3 pounds and 11 shillings); this was paid to his father, Edward, in June 1916. His War Gratuity was £5/10/0d (5 pounds and 10 shillings ), this was also paid to his father in September 1919. The value of the War Gratuity suggests that Charles had enlisted in approximately August 1914.

Action resulting in his death

During the third week in January 1916, the 2nd Suffolks were in the vicinity of Hill 60, a few miles to the south-west of Ypres. The miners, who were tunnelling in front of the Bluff, an artificial mound close to the Ypres-Comines Canal, became aware that the enemy were counter-mining. On the night of the 21st-22nd, just after the battalion had returned to the line, a terrific explosion occurred. The ground shook violently, and an immense column of earth shot up in front of the Bluff.

Men in the trenches next to the canal were buried several feet deep, all surrounding trenches, as well as the system of tunnels within the Bluff, collapsed completely. Major General-Aldine, commanding the 3rd Division, reported: "About 2.00 am on the 22nd of January, 1916, the Germans exploded a mine under the trenches held by this battalion in front of the Bluff, close to the Ypres-Comines Canal. The charge in the mine is estimated to have been between six and seven tons of gunpowder, which formed a crater measuring roughly sixty by forty yards, and forty feet in depth. Nearly a hundred men were killed, buried alive or injured by the explosion. In spite of the unexpected nature of the attack, and the hour at which the mine exploded, the troops maintained their coolness, quickly occupied the crater and prepared to meet an attack which, however, the enemy did not think fit to make."

44 men from the 2nd Suffolks were killed on 22nd January 1916 including Charles Nutting. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Menin Gate, Ypres.

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