Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
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23667   Private George Shields
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Dated added: 30/12/2015   Last updated: 01/05/2020
Personal Details
Regiment/Service: 7th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (British Army)
Date Of Birth: 07/09/1897
Died: 01/07/1916 (Died of Wounds)
Age: 18
Summary      
George Shields was the eldest son of Hugh and Alice Shields. He was born in Ballinderry on 7th September 1897. He was one of seven children. By 1911, the family had moved to Coagh. His father was a scutcher and his mother was a spinner in the local mill. Private Shields went to the Front in France on 1st February 1916. He was a despatch rider. Private George Shields died of wounds on 15th June 1916 in France.
Further Information
George Shields was the eldest son of Hugh and Alice Shields. Hugh Sheals married Alice Bradley on 24th July 1894 in the district of Magherafelt.
George Shields was born in Ballinderry, County Londonderry on 7th September 1897. He was one of seven children, six surviving.
The 1901 census lists George as age 3 living with the family at house 11 in Ballinderry, Salterstown, County Londonderry. Hugh Shields was a labourer.
The 1911 census lists George as age 13 living with the family at house 24 in Urbal, Coagh, Tyrone. George had left school and was working as a shop assistant. His father was a scutcher and his mother was a spinner in the local mill.
Family: Hugh Shields, Alice Shields, Martha Shields (born 6th October 1895), George Shields (born 7th September 1897), Joseph Shields (born 1st February 1900), Mary Shields (born 12th July 1902), Maggie Shields (born 23rd February 1905), Hugh Shields (born 18th November 1906).
George Shields enlisted in Omagh on 1st June 1915. He was living in Coagh at the time.
Medal card
Private Shields went to the Front in France on 1st February 1916. He was a despatch rider.
Private George Shields died of wounds on 15th June 1916 in France. He was just 18 years old.
From the Mid Ulster Mail dated Saturday 1st July 1916: Private George Shiels
Newspaper Report
7th Inniskillings, son of Mr Hugh Shiels, Urbal, Coagh, has died of wounds received in action at the Front in France. He joined on 1st June 1915, and went to the front on 1st February last, where he was a despatch rider.
Private George Shields is buried in Philosophe British Military Cemetery Mazingarbe, France.
Only one other man was killed in the battalion on that day, James Barrett. He lies close to George in grave 27. James came from Londonderry and was the husband of Mary Barrett of Abbey Street.
The CWGC record Private G Shields as the son of Hugh and Alice Shields, of Ballybeg, Coalisland, Co. Tyrone.
Read more
Relevant Cookstown Area Locations
No Location Region Location Notes Longtitude Latitude
1 Urbal, Coagh Coagh Parents from Urbal, Coagh 54.645242 -6.621962
2 Ballinderry, Salterstown Coagh Census listing in Ballinderry 54.655832 -6.561948
References and Links
No Link Reference Map Doc
1 1901 Census lists ' Sheals' family Lists George as age 3 living with the family at house 11 in Ballinderry, Salterstown, Londonderry
2 1911 Census lists Shields family 1911 census lists John as age 13 at house 24 in Urbal, Coagh, Tyrone
3 FindAGrave.com Photo of Private George Shields' grave
4 National Archives UK Medal card can be purchased here
5 War Graves Photographic Project Photo of Private George Shields' grave can be purchased here
Cookstown District's War Dead Acknowledgements 2010-2021