Lance-Corporal William McKenzie 

You can find out more about the residents of Moss Side Hospital when the exhibition Moss Side and the Great War Remembered opens on Sat 6 October. See more here.

Admitted: 04/06/1915

Regiment – 4th Seaforth Highlanders, E. Company, (Territorial, Ross Highland)

Reg No: 1850

Age: 27

Service: 6 years

Discharged: 14/07/1915 (on furlough)

William McKenzie was admitted to Maghull Military Hospital on June 4th 1915.  His case papers are relatively brief but we learn that he was 27 years old and had been in military service for 6 years.  As the 4th Seaforth Highlanders was a territorial unit he possibly enlisted initially in the reserves.  He arrived in France with his regiment in November 1914, and it is noted that his health had been good but in December, he suffered frostbite. He was hospitalized in early January 1915 but where and the reason for this are not specified. During April and May William McKenzie had been at Fort George, the depot of the Seaforth Highlanders, near Inverness, where he had been drilling but was unable to do some route marches, and from here he was sent to Maghull.

It is difficult to ascertain why William was at Maghull. The report states that his memory was good as was his attention.  There was no evidence of shell shock nor was he displaying nervous or irritable behaviour, or any other notable emotions.  Dr Rows does note that William McKenzie “has had not much fighting”. On 14th July 1915 Lance-Corporal McKenzie was deemed to have “steadily progressed and is now fit for discharge” which he was with the customary 1 month’s sick furlough.

William McKenzie’s military records do not seem to have survived, what further information we can glean comes from British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920 which shows that he was discharged on February 3rd 1916.  He received the Victory, British and 1914 Star, but why he was discharged is not recorded on his Medal Index Card.

There were 11 William Mckenzies who were awarded the Silver War Badge but none tallied with our William Mckenzie’s regimental number or enlistment and discharge dates.  Nor does he appear in any other Military records, service, pension or disciplinary, online at, Findmypast or Forces Records.  However according to a Geograph collection of photographs of WW1 Great War Centenary – Drill Halls the 4th Seaforth Highlanders, E. Company drilled at Ullapool, Ross and Cromarty.  Even with this information, it is difficult to pinpoint where William came from, McKenzie/Mackenzie is a common name in the Highlands and the births of 6 William Mackenzies  were registered in the Ullapool area between 1885 and 1890. Consequently we have no information about his family background.


Written by Pat Stanistreet


Edited by Amy Walling, Manchester Metropolitan University


Posted on 5 October 2018 under Uncategorized

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