top of page

The Lewiston Daily Sun - Nov 18, 1915

A Hero from Stalybridge

Far away from dear old England

On Belgium's sandy plain

I knelt by a wounded comrade,

And called him by his name

He had been struck by shrapnel

I gently raised his head

"Come Jack, you will be better, soon,

Cheer up, my lad" I said.

He looked at me, and sweetly smiled,

Then answered with a sigh,

"I'm going home to glory,

but I'm not afraid to die;

What is yon that I can see

Just beyond the ridge,

It looks to me, in the distance

Like dear old Stalybridge.

And everyone seems happy,

For it is a Sunday night.

Oh, how they cheered us when we left,

To go and bravely fight.

Hush listen, can you hear them?

Is it someone singing?

An no, it's St Paul's bells I hear!

They are sweetly ringing.

My dear old father and mother,

They are safe in heaven.

But to my sister Mary

See that my watch is given:

Write and tell her how it happened,

How, faithful at our post.

We fought like true British soldiers,

And charged the Kaisers host:

Say how the treacherous Germans,

So cunning and so deep,

Thought to steal upon us,

Thinking we were asleep.

But, just as they reached the top,

There came a beaming ray of light,

God in his mercy sent it,

To show they were in sight.

I gave the alarm and away we went,

Amid the shop and shell.

And while I tried to save the guns,

I badly wounded fell.

I wish that I could see her,

And clasp her hands once more,

But tell her not to weep for me,

I'm only gone before.

The her that I died happy,

Trusting in Jesus love,

And the I hope to meet her,

In God's bright home above,

He clasped my hand so tenderly,

"Goodbye" he slowly said,

He smiled at me, then closed his eyes

Poor Jack, yes, he was dead.

I covered him with my tunic,

Then knelt upon the plain,

And asked God to guide us.

Bring us safe home again.

At break of day we dug his grave,

And there he sweetly sleeps at rest

A hero from Stalybridge.

The write of the above poem, Miss Anne Chadwick, is a cotton mill operative in the town of Stalybridge, Cheshire, England and may be termed the town's local poet.

Before the outbreak of the present European war she had been particularly interested in St Paul's Church, Baden Powell Boy Scouts. Many of the older Boy Scouts, being of age, joined the Kitchener army. Many of the St Paul's boys are not on the firing line in Belgium, northern France and the Dardanelles. Many of them will never return to their believed St Paul's. They fill unknown graves on the battlefields of Belgium, France and Dardanelles.

Her home town of Stalybridge went to work to fit up a temporary hospital to receive the brave and wounded soldiers coming back to England. This splendid patriotic woman was determined to do her but for the hospital. She wrote the above poem "A Hero from Stalybridge". It was printed on a leaflet and sold a a penny, (2 cents) each. Sufficient money was received from the sale to enable Miss Chadwick to purchase and install in the Early Bank hospital two of the modern and up to date beds for hospitals, costing twenty pounds ($100). These beds being of a superior kind and the most comfortable have been occupied by the severest cases of wounded soldiers from different battlefields and different nations.

Miss Chadwick is a tireless worker, never thinking of self and rest. In a private letter she says "Where the British flag flies there is freedom and liberty. Shall ti come down and the German flag take its place? Never, if I can help it. " And it is for the end that this noble woman is working night and day and she prays to God to give the allies victory.

England has many just such women, they say. They are doing their bit, but the bits they are doing fill might big wants that are sorely needed at times.

A Friend of the Allies.

bottom of page