Private Davies worked for the Co-operative Insurance Society (CIS) in Manchester for four years before enlisting in the army, and was said to be a very promising worker. He joined the Manchester Regiment as a private in November 1914, and after some training was sent out to the Dardanelles in mid-June 1915. He was probably sent as part of reinforcements to earlier attacks in Gallipoli after the Allies had taken heavy casualties during their earlier assaults.
Regrettably, on 31 July 1915, Davies was killed as a result of wounds sustained in action earlier that day. He was aged only 21 when he was killed. The news of his death was considered to be a great tragedy by those who had worked with him in the society. His death was reported in the Co-operative News a month later.
Co-operative News, 21 August 1915, page 1129.
WWI co-operative voices
This post is part of ‘WWI co-operative voices’ which shares the stories of co-operative workers and members during the conflict. In order to mark the centenary of the WWI, the Rochdale Pioneers Museum is staging an exhibition entitled ‘From shop floor to front line’ and the accounts of these soldiers, shop workers and conscientious objectors will run alongside it. They are tales of death, duty and of those who chose not to fight.
Through ‘WWI co-operative voices’ we will be releasing new posts about these individuals throughout the duration of the exhibition (due to open mid-May 2015 and run until May 2016). Read about the co-operative movement’s involvement in a war that shook the world by selecting a name from the column on the left. You can also follow us on social media for regular updates.
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We wish to thank the Heritage Lottery Fund for supporting the ‘From shop floor to front line’ exhibition and project.