Highlanders (Black Watch), 9th Btn
Rank & Number: Private, S/4513
Born: 23 May 1891; West
July 1950; Paisley Infirmary
Other: Brother of Alfred, Hugh,
James & John Burden Brother-in-law
of McEwan Downie
GEORGE BURDENwas born 23 May 1891 in West Kilbride, to parents Thomas, a gamekeeper,
and Catherine Cooper Murray (who married in
Symington on 30 Dec 1881). He was christened in Fairlie Free Church on
25 Jun 1891. He died of a perforated ulcer
on 05 Jul 1950 in Paisley Infirmary, (aged 59,
married to Jean Young Torrance, railway station master (army pensioner), of 40
Stock Street, Paisley).
On 1st June 1927 at Turf Hotel, Darvel,
George (36, railway clerk, of Barrmill) married Jean Young Torrance.
Parents Thomas and Catherine at Glenside
the 1901 Census, George, aged 10, is living Glenside, West Kilbride with
parents Thomas (41, b. Kirkoswald, gamekeeper) and Catherine (39, b.
Symington), and siblings, Thomas (19), James (14), Jane (12), Catherine
(8), Hugh (5), May (3) and Alfred (6m)
In the 1911 Census, aged
19 and an apprentice gardener, he is living Glenside, West Kilbride with
parents Thomas (50, gamekeeper) and Catherine (48, m 30 years, 12
children), and siblings Hugh Paton (15,
postman), Mary Ann (13), Alfred Parker (10), Violet (9)
and Margaret (5
SERVICE DETAILS Named
in the Largs & Millport Weekly News Roll of Honour printed 21 Nov 1914 and
the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald Roll of Honour in Dec
1914 (Burdon, Pte. G., Glenside, Fairlie, Black Watch), the Largs & Millport Weekly News reported on 12 Sep 1914 that he
and his brother Hugh had enlisted that week.
He was severely wounded at the Battle of Loos in Oct 1915, and spent
five months in hospital recovering from the effects of an explosive
bullet. The bible he had been carrying
in the left hand pocket of his tunic was reported to have saved his life by
diverting the bullet from his heart, and the bible was later displayed in a
collection of war trophies in the window of C.H. McNair & Sons, Fairlie. His medal index card shows entry into theatre
of war on 14 Jul 1915, France. He was
awarded the 1914-15 Star and the British War and Victory medals, and was
discharged on 2 Mar 1919.
from the Largs & Millport Weekly News:-
12 September 1914 Two
brothers George and Hugh Burden joined the army this week, and a sturdy farm
servant named Johnstone only waited until the harvest was secured and then
rushed off to enlist in the Black Watch.
Who’ll be next?
9 October 1915 Another
young Fairlie man, Private George Burden, Black Watch, is reported to have been
wounded during the last big fight.
16 October 1915
Burden, Glenside, this week received official intimation that his son, Private
George Burden, was severely wounded in the chest and back. He is lying in hospital in Rouen, France.
30 October 1915 Private
George Burden, Fairlie, who was wounded in the big fight a month ago is now in
hospital in Liverpool suffering from the effects of an explosive bullet which
went right through his body. His father
and mother have left on a visit to see him.
13 November 1915 Quite
a collection of war trophies on view this week in Messrs. C.H. McNair &
Sons window, Fairlie. These include a
Bible which undoubtedly saved Pte. G. Burden’s life. He was carrying it in the left hand pocket of
his tunic when he was struck with a bullet which passed right through him,
being fortunately however diverted from the heart by the Bible.
4 March 1916
George Burden, Black Watch, who was severely wounded at the Battle of Loos, is
at home for short furlough and looking pretty fit after his long spell in
hospital. 17 November 1917 Private
George Burden arrived home on leave from France at the beginning of the
week. He has been in the thick of the
fighting more or less for about three years.
Early in the war he was seriously wounded, returning to the front on his
recovery. He is looking fit and is in