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James Albert Marks

Born:
1893
Died:
3 Adar 5677 (25 February 1917)

Basic Information

Unique reference:
MAR1898
Gender:
Male

Birth

Date of birth:
1893

Death

Date of death:
3 Adar 5677 (25 February 1917)
Died in combat?:
Yes
Place of death:
Mesopotamia
Cause of death:
Warfare
Burial place:
Unknown - Mesopotamia
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James Albert Marks
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War Diary of 7 N Staffords

39 Inf Bde, 13 (West) Div)
5a.m. The 13th Division to pursue the enemy. 38th Bgde as Adv Guard,
39th Bgde as Main Body - in order, Glosters, N Staffords, Worcesters, R.
Warwicks. The Battalion had breakfast at 5.30 and marched off at 6.15
a.m. There was a halt at 9 a.m. while the Adv. Gd. cleared the enemy
position G97, G99 at ASH SHARQIYAR, and again at 1.30 p.m. when the
38th Bgde engaged the enemy in his first line - a Nullah running North &
South from the bend in the river at Sq.222 B9/9 on TC 74.
At 2 p.m. the Brigade was ordered to advance and take up a position on the
right of the 38th Bgde, in order to enable them to capture the nullah. The
Brigade advanced in artillery formation N Staffords (left) Glosters (centre)
Worcesters (right) and R. Warwicks in reserve. The Battalion advanced in
two lines of companies in fours; and shortly after changed to two lines of
half companies in fours "C" (left) & "D" (right) in front line, "B" and "A"
in the 2nd line. After a rapid advance of 3 miles over rough and scrubby
ground, the objective was sighted. The Turks opened fire at 1500 yds. and
the Brigade extended, assaulting in two waves. Bayonets were fixed at 200
yds.. and the Brigade charged the last 50 yds. The enemy evacuated the
nullah just before we arrived, retiring to a very position 1,000 yards to the
west in front of IMAM MAHDI.
Touch was established with the 38th Bgde, and Companies reorganised
from right to left - "A" "B" "C" "D". About 3.30 p.m. while the nullah was
being steadily consolidated a verbal message was passed down from the
right, "Over the top NORTH STAFFORDS!". The Battalion immediately
leapt the parapet and advanced at a steady double. The Brigade was in
echelon, the Worcesters on the right being far in advance, and the Glosters
in the centre about two hundred yards ahead of us. The 38th Bgde did
NOT advance. After an advance over 1,000 yards of very rough ground
covered with tall bramble bushes, the enemy's front line was reached, and
taken at the point of the bayonet. His second line (about 50 yds. beyond)
was rushed immediately and severe fighting took place in a network of
nullah ditches, rifle pits and bushes. At the same time a heavy counterattack
developed on our left flank which was in the air. The Turks (urged
on by their Officers who exposed themselves fearlessly) pressed the
counterattack to within fifty yards of our left. But their casualties were
very heavy. At this critical moment
(a) Large batches of Turks on our right front commenced to surrender,
(b) Ammunition was giving out,
(c) The artillery ceased their barrage fire on account of fading light.
The Turks however wavered at this point and commenced to fall back. The
number of prisoners taken by us numbered 300 including five officers,
while the Glosters and Worcesters took another 200 including several
officers. We held on until darkness had fallen and then fell back on the 1st
position. After reorganisation our casualties were found to be
OFFICERS KILLED - FOUR. 2nd Lieuts R.McDOWELL M.C.,
J.MARKS, D.A. MYER and Act/Capt B.E.ATKINS
OFFICERS WOUNDED - TWO. Act.Lieut.Col W.C.RATCLIFFE, 2nd
Lieut H.E.ROSE
BRITISH OTHER RANKS. KILLED 27
WOUNDED 81 TOTAL 142
MISSING 34
During the night 25th/26th the Turks carried off three of our wounded
(treating them quite kindly) of "A" Coy. and took them several miles on a
bullock cart. Just after dawn however our Cavalry were seen pursuing,
whereupon the Turks abandoned the cart & the wounded men, who were
evacuated through the Cav FA.
Feb 26th
The 40th Bgde took up the pursuit, and we marched at 9 a.m. with the 39th
Bgde. to a bivouac on left bank Tigris opposite BHGAILAH. Lt Col LEY
arrived and took over command of the Battalion about 7 a.m. The
battlefield was cleared by salvage parties, but we buried the officers and
many men before leaving.

Basra Memorial, Iraq - Panel 34.

[Source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission 1998]
Commemorated on the Basra Memorial, Iraq - Panel 34.
The Basra Memorial was originally sited within the Basra War Cemetery
but in 1997 the Memorial was moved by presidential decree. The move,
carried out by the authorities in Iraq, involved a considerable amount of
manpower, transport costs and sheer engineering on their part, but a
magnificent feat was undertaken and the Memorial has been re-erected in
its entirety.
The Basra Memorial is now located in the middle of what was a major
battleground during the Gulf War.
The Memorial consists of a roofed colonnade of white Indian stone, 80
metres long, with an obelisk 16 metres high as the central feature. The
names are engraved on slate panels fixed to the wall behind the columns.
More than 40,000 British, Indian and West African dead who died in the
operations in Mesopotamia from the Autumn of 1914 to the end of August
1921, are commemorated on the Memorial.

Family

Siblings

HAROLD VICTOR MARKS (male)
LEONARD GEORGE MARKS (male)
ROSE MARKS (female)
JOHN MARKS (male)

Parents

Father: SIMON MARKS (male)
Mother: HENRIETTA BERNSTONE (female)

Military Record

Date discharged/death:
25 February 1917
Rank at discharge/death:
Lieutenant
Assignments
Regiment:
North Staffordshire Regiment
Battalion/unit:
7th Battalion
Campaigns:
The Battle of Nahr-al-Kalek, 1917

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London Jews in the First World War - We Were There Too

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