Archibald Charles Mark Walsh was born on 3rd February 1892, the youngest of three children to Henry Alfred Walsh and his wife Ann. Henry had a distinguished military career, and his sons – Archibald and his older brother Theobald – seemed destined to do the same.
Henry’s service took him around the world, and, by the time Archibald was born, the family had settled in Devon. In tracing the family’s life, however, an unusual quirk arises around the turn of the century.
In 1901, the majority of the Walsh family disappear from census records. For someone like Henry, this would not be unusual; his career took him overseas, and it is likely that records were lost or destroyed.
However, Archibald and his sister Gwladys do appear in the records. They are set up in a seafront villa in the Kent town of Hythe, Gwladys is listed as both a school pupil and the head of the household – at the age of 14 – and the two siblings are living there with a governess, Mary Porter.
By the time of the next census, Cadet Walsh had followed his father into the military. He was a student at the Military Academy in Woolwich, and the following year achieved his commission, becoming a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Horse Artillery.
When war broke out, Archibald’s regiment were shipped off to the Western Front. In March 1915, he was caught up in the Battle of Neuve Chapelle, and was badly wounded.
Shipped back to England for treatment, he was admitted to the Hall-Walker Hospital for Officers in Regents Park, London. Sadly, Second Lieutenant Walsh’s injuries were too severe, and he passed away on 18th March 1915. He was just 23 years old.
Brought back to Taunton, near his family home, Archibald Charles Mark Walsh lies at rest in St Mary’s Cemetery.