Lance Corporal James Samuel Coulter


It is likely that this North Irish Horseman was the James Samuel Coulter born on 9 August 1893 at 120 Percy Street, Belfast, the fifth of seven children of Royal Irish Constabulary sergeant Francis Coulter and his wife Annie (nee Clements). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living with his parents and four siblings at 25 Dundela Avenue, Belfast, and working as a linen apprentice.

Coulter enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 25 or 26 January 1915 (No.1419 – later Corps of Hussars No.71382).

In the first half of 1915 Coulter embarked for England with F Squadron, where they awaited orders for France. On 12 July, however, he was one of about two dozen men of the squadron who volunteered for service as Military Mounted Police with the 54th (East Anglian) Division, which was under orders to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force. They sailed from Devonport on HMT Manitou on 29 July 1915, joining the landing at Suvla Bay between 10 and 16 August.

At the end of the year the campaign at Gallipoli was abandoned, the men of the North Irish Horse leaving in December. They arrived in Egypt the following month.

Records suggest that Coulter left Egypt for the UK on 24 January 1916, and four months later embarked for France, where he was posted to the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment. He was wounded in action during the German spring offensive in March 1918.

Following his recovery he was attached to the Military Foot Police, and was formally transferred to that regiment near or soon after the end of the war (No. P/16869). On 19 March 1919 he was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve.

After the war Coulter worked as a warehouseman and a wholesale departmental manager. He died on 9 March 1968 at the Musgrave and Clark Clinic, Belfast.