Shoeing Smith Patrick Crossan


The background of this North Irish Horseman is not known at present. Given that he held the rank of shoeing smith, it is possible that he was the blacksmith Patrick McCloskey who at the time of the 1911 Census was living at Claudy, County Londonderry, with his wife and four children.

Patrick Crossan enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 21 and 24 August 1914 (No.1026 – later Corps of Hussars No.71205). On 17 November 1915 he embarked for France with F Squadron, which at the time was serving as divisional cavalry to the 33rd Division.

In June 1916 F Squadron combined with C Squadron and the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons Service Squadron to form the 2nd North Irish Horse Regiment, serving as corps cavalry to X Corps until September 1917, when the regiment was disbanded and its men transferred to the infantry. By this time, however, it appears that Crossan had been posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment.

In February-March 1918 that regiment was dismounted and converted to a cyclist unit. This meant a 25 per cent reduction in the regiment's numbers, and it is likely that this was the time that Crossan was transferred to the 8th (King's Royal Irish) Hussars, with the rank of shoeing smith.

On 3 May 1919 Crossan was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve.