Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
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12238   Rifleman George Knox McKinley
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Dated added: 30/12/2015   Last updated: 18/09/2021
Personal Details
Regiment/Service: 4th Battalion, New Zealand Rifle Brigade (New Zealand Army)
Date Of Birth: 10/10/1892
Died: 03/10/1916 (Died of Wounds)
Age: 23
Summary      
George Knox McKinley was the son of James and Mary Jane McKinley. He was born on 10th October 1892, one of at least eight children, all born in Dungannon. By 1911, George was working as a linen lopper. He emigrated to Australia about April 1914. He then moved on to New Zealand where he worked as a farm labourer. He enlisted in December 1915. Rifleman George Knox McKinley was serving with the 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade when he died of his wounds in France on 3rd October 1916.
Rifleman George Knox McKinley
Further Information
George Knox McKinley was the son of James and Mary Jane McKinley. James McKinley and Mary McMahon were married on 22nd November 1881 in the district of Armagh.
George Knox McKinley was born on 10th October 1892. He was one of at least eight children, all born in Dungannon.
Known family: James McKinley, Mary Jane McKinley, Eliza Lillie McKinley (born 29th December 1883), Ruth McKinley (born 15th May 1885), Agnes McKinley (born 8th June 1887), Mary McKinley (born 19th February 1889), Robert John McKinley (born 30th October 1890), George Knox McKinley (born 10th October 1892), Fredrick McKinley (born 6th May 1894), Henrietta McKinley (born 30th December 1895).
The 1901 census lists George Knox as age 8 living with the family at house 1 in Geraghty's Lane, Dungannon, County Tyrone. George's father was a rope maker.
The 1911 census lists George Knox as age 18 living with the family at house 3 in Geraghty's Lane, Dungannon, Tyrone. George was working as a linen lopper at Messrs. Dickson's factory, Dungannon.
George emigrated to Australia about April 1914.
He then moved on to New Zealand where he worked as a farm labourer.
1915
George McKinley enlisted on 15th December 1915 at Trentham Military Camp, near Wellington in New Zealand. He gave is next of kin as his sister, Mrs Gordon Price, Post Office, Waipawa, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand.
George Knox McKinley New Zealand information
Rifleman George Knox McKinley joined the 11th Reinforcements of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in December 1915 and by April 1916 he was in camp near Wellington.
1916
From the Tyrone Courier dated 6 April 1916:
Private George Knox McKinley, whose photo is given this week, is the second son of James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon. He had emigrated to Australia two years ago, and joined the 11th Reinforcements of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in December last and is at present in camp near Wellington, where the photo was taken. He had formerly been employed at Messrs. Dickson's factory, Dungannon.
Rifleman McKinley embarked for France on the Mokoia or Navua on 6th May 1916 with the 3rd Re-enforcements to "G" company, 3rd Battalion
George McKinley and two comrades were sitting outside a dug-out when a shell exploded, which killed his companions and left Rifleman McKinley severely wounded.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 7th November 1916:
Private George McKinley, New Zealand Infantry, officially reported wounded in action on 3rd October, is a younger son of Mr James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon. His relatives received no tidings from him since the end of September. Prior to emigrating to New Zealand, he was in the employment of Messrs Dickson & Company, Milltown Weaving Factory, Dungannon. His elder brother Robert is also at the front with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force.
From the Tyrone Courier dated 9 November 1916:
Mr James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon, has received intimation that his son, Private George McKinley, New Zealand Infantry, was wounded in action on 3rd October. Prior to emigrating to New Zealand, he had been in the employment of Messrs. Dickson's Milltown Factory.
From the Mid Ulster Mail dated Saturday 11th November 1916:
Mr James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon, has received official intimation that his son, Private George McKinley, New Zealand Infantry, was wounded in action on 3rd October, but although the soldier was in the habit of constantly writing home, no communication has been received from him since the end of September. Prior to emigrating to New Zealand, he was in the employment of Messrs Dickson & Company, Milltown weaving Factory, Dungannon. His elder brother Robert is also at the front with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force.
On 3rd October 1916, Rifleman McKinley and two comrades were sitting outside a dug-out when a shell exploded, which killed his companions and left Rifleman McKinley severely wounded. He died of his wounds before reaching an aid post.
Rifleman George Knox McKinley was serving with the 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade when he died of his wounds in France on 3rd October 1916. He was listed as serving with the 4th Battalion at the time.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 28th December 1916:
Private George McKinley, New Zealand Infantry, son of Mr James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon, died of wounds.
From the Tyrone Courier dated 4 January 1917:
Mr James McKinley, Union Place, Dungannon, has received intimation that his son, Private George Knox McKinley, New Zealand Infantry, has died from wounds received. It appears that he and two comrades had been sitting outside a dug-out when a shell exploded, which killed his companions and mortally wounded Private McKinley. Prior to emigrating to New Zealand, the deceased had been in the employment of Messrs Dickson and Co, Dungannon. His elder brother, Robert, is also at the front with the New Zealand Force.
George’s brother, Robert John McKinley, also served with the New Zealand Army. He survived the war.
Memorials
George K McKinley has no known grave and is commemorated on a panel in Caterpillar Valley Cemetery in the Somme.
George Knox McKinley is also commemorated on the family plot in Drumcoo Cemetery, Dungannon (see below). The plot lies along the left hand wall (nearest Coalisland), half way down – when entering from the Coalisland Road entrance.
George Knox McKinley on grave surround
The CWGC record Rifleman George Knox McKinley as the son of James McKinley of Union Place, Dungannon, County Tyrone, Ireland.
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Relevant Dungannon Area Locations
No Location Region Location Notes Longtitude Latitude
1 Geraghtys Lane, Dungannon. Dungannon Central Census listing in Geraghty's Lane 54.504913 -6.770933
References and Links
No Link Reference Map Doc
1 1901 Census lists McKinley family Lists George Knox as age 8 living with the family at house 1 in Geraghty's Lane, Dungannon, Tyrone
2 1911 Census lists McKinley family Lists George Knox as age 18 living with the family at house 3 in Geraghty's Lane, Dungannon, Tyrone
3 Archives New Zealand Military documents (20 no) of George Knox McKinley
4 FindAGrave.com Photo of George Knox McKinley's panel inscription
5 New Zealand Cenotaph Robert John McKinley - Brother of George Knox McKinley
6 New Zealand Cenotaph Details of George Knox McKinley
7 NZ War Graves Project Details of George Knox McKinley
Dungannon District's War Dead Acknowledgements 2015-2021