Glenfarg War Memorial Project

Arthur Forbes Robertson

Private S/12635 1/6th (Perthshire) Battalion (Territorial) Black Watch (Royal Highlanders), attached to 153 Trench Mortar Battery

Born 4 May 1892 Scone, Perthshire.
Died 20 July 1918, France.

Arthur Robertson was one of the numerous children of John and Mary Ann (née Morrison) Robertson who married on 15 November 1878 in Scone, Perthshire – the 1911 census records that, having been married for 32 years, they had 13 children, 12 of whom were still living at that point: the latest child, Grace, born when her mother was aged 49.

Arthur was born at Scone on 4 May 1892: the 1891 census shows the family living at 1 Butterhole Cottage, Scone, father John Robertson an estate labourer. At that point there were eight children in the household.

By the 1901 census the family, including Arthur aged 8, was living at Back Road, Arngask (Glenfarg), Perthshire; there are still eight children in the house, as another four have been born and the eldest four (who appeared on the 1901 census) are not recorded now.

The 1911 census shows the family at Rowan Cottage, Arngask (Glenfarg), Perthshire: father John aged 61 a wire fencer, and Mary aged 58, with eight of their children and one grandson. Arthur, aged 18, is working as a baker's van man.

It is not known when he might have enlisted, neither does his medals index card record when he entered the theatre of war, but he joined the 1/6th (Perthshire) Battalion (Territorial) of the Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) which was raised in August 1914 which landed at Boulogne, France on 2 May 1915. On 12 May it became part of the 153rd Brigade of the 51st (Highland) Division.

At the time of his death on 20 July 1918, Arthur Forbes Robertson was attached to the 153rd Trench Mortar Battery. He was killed in action near Epernay, Marne, France and buried in a battlefield grave, alongside a comrade from the same unit, Pte 202429 T. Todd, killed on the same day (same time?). When these graves were 'concentrated' in 1920, the two comrades were exhumed and reburied in Marfaux British Cemetery, Marne, France.

Marfaux was captured by the Germans in May 1918, and retaken, after severe fighting, on the 23rd July, by the 51st (Highland) and 62nd (West Riding) Divisions and the New Zealand Cyclist Battalion.
[CWGC cemetery description]