Date of birth: 1891
Place of birth: Scotland
Date of marriage: 1913
Place of marriage: Scotland
Service No.: To be confirmed
Regiment / Division: Merchant Service
Ship: H.M.S.Clan Macnaughton
Died: 3rd February 1915 aged 23 years
Death Location: At Sea off NW Scotland
Life before the war
George was born in 1891 in Edinburgh, Scotland. His parents were William born 1865 Kirkcaldy, Fifeshire, Scotland and Elizabeth who was born 1867 Montrose, Scotland. George was an only child.
In 1891 George and his parents were living at 100 Dumbiedykes Road, Midlothian, Scotland.
By the 1901 census the family had moved from Scotland to Southampton and were living at 15 Charlton Road, Shirley, Southampton. William was a Lithographic Transferrer.
By the 1911 censu, George had left home and his parents were living at 14 Vincent Avenue, Shirley, Southampton. William was a Litho Graphic Foreman Printer. There is no trace of George.
In 1913 George married Lilian E Butt in Southampton. They had a daughter Phyllis born 1914 Southampton.
Royal navy and royal marine war graves roll 1914 – 1919:
“George volunteered for the Mercantile Marine Reserve as a Steward. He died on 3rd February 1915 aboard the Clan Macnaughton. Cause of death was given as “killed or died by means other than disease, accident or enemy action”. His body was never recovered for burial. His next of kin was given as “Wife: 14 Vincent Avenue, Southampton”.
National Roll of the Great War:
“Allen, G.G., Steward, Merchant Service
Volunteering at the commencement of hostilities he was posted to H.HM. Clan Macnaughten. On board this ship he was engaged in important escort duties in the North Sea until she was sunk with all hands. He was entitled to the General Service and Victory Medals
34 Heysham Road, Shirley, Southampton”
George is Remembered with Honour on the Plymouth Naval Memorial.
After the First World War, an appropriate way had to be found of commemorating those members of the Royal Navy who had no known grave, the majority of deaths having occurred at sea where no permanent memorial could be provided.
An Admiralty committee recommended that the three manning ports in Great Britain – Chatham, Plymouth and Portsmouth – should each have an identical memorial of unmistakable naval form, an obelisk, which would serve as a leading mark for shipping. The memorials were designed by Sir Robert Lorimer, who had already carried out a considerable amount of work for the Commission, with sculpture by Henry Poole. The Plymouth Naval Memorial was unveiled by HRH Prince George on 29 July 1924.
HMS Clan McNaughton was a 4985 ton passenger cargo vessel built in 1911 and requisitioned November 1914 from the Clan Line Steamers Ltd, Glasgow, becoming an Armed Merchant Vessel. It is thought that Clan McNaughton foundered in a severe gale off the north coast of Ireland. She was in radio contact about 6 a.m. on the morning of 3rd February and reported terrible weather conditions. Nothing further was heard from her. Wreckage was found two weeks later in the area and Clan McNaughton was presumed sunk with the 281 strong crew, twenty of which were officers. No bodies were ever found.
There is some speculation that as she had a new crew who were generally unfamiliar with the vessel, and that the armaments added to the deck destabilised her, made the McNaughton vulnerable to such severe weather as was found on the day she lost contact.