|Glenfarg War Memorial Project|
David Duncan Reekie
Private 3583 6th (Perthshire) Battalion (Territorial) Black Watch (Royal Highlanders)
Born 6 April 1892, Mains of Huntingtower, Tibbermore, Perthshire.
David Duncan Reekie was born on 6 April 1892 at Mains of Huntingtower, Tibbermore, Perthshire, the son of George Reekie, a ploughman, and Margaret (née Davidson) Reekie.
David Reekie appears on the 1911 census, aged 18, living as a boarder and working as a ploughman at Hattonburn Farm, Orwell. On 11 December 1914 he acted as witness at his brother George's wedding to Margaret Mitchell. (George is recorded as living at Lethangie Farm, Kinross in 1919 and in 1922 at Lochelbank, Glenfarg, Perthshire).
At some point David enlisted in the 6th (Perthshire) Battalion (Territorial) Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) which landed in Boulogne, France on 2 May 1915 and became part of the 153rd Brigade of the 51st (Highland Division).
On 1 July 1916, supported by a French attack to the south, thirteen divisions of Commonwealth forces launched an offensive on a line from north of Gommecourt to Maricourt. Despite a preliminary bombardment lasting seven days, the German defences were barely touched and the attack met unexpectedly fierce resistance. Losses were catastrophic and with only minimal advances on the southern flank, the initial attack was a failure. In the following weeks, huge resources of manpower and equipment were deployed in an attempt to exploit the modest successes of the first day. However, the German Army resisted tenaciously and repeated attacks and counter attacks meant a major battle for every village, copse and farmhouse gained. At the end of September, Thiepval was finally captured. The village had been an original objective of 1 July. Attacks north and east continued throughout October and into November in increasingly difficult weather conditions. The Battle of the Somme finally ended on 18 November with the onset of winter.
David Duncan Reekie was killed in action on 30 July 1916 and is commemorated on Pier and Face 10a of the Thiepval Memorial to the missing of the Somme.
David's mother Margaret had three children before she married George Reekie: James born 3 September 1882 at Kinnaird, Cleish, Kinross; Elizabeth born 23 October 1884 at 62 Pomarium Street, Perth and William born 27 December 1885 at Henderson's Wynd, Dundee. The birth certificates of all three show no father's name, they are all registered as 'Illegitimate' and Margaret's occupation is given as, first, 'Farm servant' and then 'Domestic servant'.
The 1891 census shows James, age 8 and William, age 5 living with their grandparents James and Margaret (née Duncan) Davidson at Kinnaird, Cleish, Kinross, but there is no mention/trace of Elizabeth, who would have been 7.
The 1901 census shows James, age 19 and William age 16 living at Kinnaird, Cleish, Kinross
William (a postman) married Helen Hay on 3 June 1914, and their son George was born on 20 May 1915 at Kelty, Fife. William enlisted in 3/Black Watch Special Reserve on 10 April 1915 (service no. S/41283), was transferred to 5/Gordon Highlanders on 4 August 1918 and died of wounds in the field between 9-13 April 1918. He was buried in a collective grave near Vieille-Chapelle, France, and is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, France.
He is also commemorated on Cleish village war memorial, as is another William Davidson – William Turnbull Davidson Pte 6725 1/Black Watch – his cousin: son of David Davidson, brother of William's mother Margaret.
Isabella (b. 3 September 1889) a domestic servant, of Old Fargie, Glenfarg, married in 1909 James Steedman. She died on 10 September 1963 in Bridge of Earn Hospital, Perthshire.
Their father, George Reekie, died in 1924.