James' membership form


On this day, 100 years ago an IMechE member was killed in action.

William Douglass James: 25th September


James' membership form
James’ membership form

Graduate Member since 1911.

At the outbreak of war he was apprenticed to South Staffordshire Waterworks.

Wartime posting(s) was/were, Sapper, Royal Engineers, 1st (Welsh) Field Company.

Killed in action, Loos, France.

Note: war record states died 5th at Gallipoli but a family member has verified that he died in France on the 25th. The confusion is likely to have arisen from a misspelling of his name (one ‘s’ on Douglass and hyphenated surname) on an official record.

1915 Obituary 

WILLIAM DOUGLASS JAMES was born at Yelverton, Devon, on 23rd September 1892.

He was educated at Plymouth College, and in 1909 passed the Intermediate B.Sc. examination in Engineering.

In 1910 he started his apprenticeship with Mr. A. E. Douglass, M.Inst.C.E., of the South Staffordshire Water Works Co., and in October 1911 went to Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he took the Engineering side and in 1914 he left, having obtained a second class in the Mechanical Sciences Tripos.

He was proceeding as pupil to the Engineer-in-Chief of the Mersey Docks and Harbour Board when war was declared, and he as a member of the O.T.C. was given a commission in the Royal Garrison Artillery as special reserve.

He was killed in action in France on 25th September 1915, at the age of twenty-three.

He became a Graduate of this Institution in 1911.

Institution First World War Honour Roll

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Archive, Institution of Mechanical Engineers


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