Samuel Pedrick Rogers was born in Salcombe the son of John Adams Rogers and Elizabeth Rogers of Portlemouth.
In the 1911 census he was working as a farm labourer in 1911 at Stokeley Farm, Stokenham. His aunt, Anna Adams Rogers, lived in Back Street, Modbury. By the time of his death in 1917, both of his parents had died and it is believed that his aunt may have petitioned to have his name added to Modbury’s memorial as he would have had no home address.
Joining the Army as a Private in the 9th Devons, Samuel was killed on 19th June 1917 aged 23.
In 1916 the Battalion moved to the Somme area. The Somme remained a relatively quiet sector until the offensive began on 1st July 1916. On that morning the 9th led the attack towards Mansel Copse, where well-placed machine guns, whose crews had survived the preliminary bombardment, cut down hundreds of advancing men.
Two companies of the 8th Devons followed and met the same fate. By noon survivors of both Battalions were scattered across the battlefield. At 1530 hours the final company of the 8th Devons were ordered forward. Their commander, Eric Savill, realising what had happened to the other companies of both Battalions, found a route that avoided the machine guns and was able to occupy a stretch of German trench.
On the 2nd July, the 8th Battalion beat off a German counter-attack and were able to advance. On the 4th the Padre of the 8th Devons, Capt Crosse, buried 160 officers and men of both Battalions at Mansel Copse, erecting a plaque: “The Devonshires held this trench. The Devonshires hold it still”.
In 1917 they fought in flanking operations around Bullecourt during the Battle of Arras from 9 April to 16 May before moving to Flanders for the 3rd Battle of Ypres which started on 31 July.
|Next of Kin:||Son of John and Elizabeth Rogers of Portlemouth|
|Died On:||19 June 1917|