Archibald (Archie) (Maclachlan - CWGC) MCLACHLAN
Rank: Private
Number: 50387
Unit: 4th Battalion King’s (Liverpool) Regiment
Date of Death: 15 October 1918
Age: 32 (based on 1901 Census information)
Cemetery: Hautmont Communal Cemetery, Nord, France

Archie was born in Stockport in 1885, the son of William (a cotton weaving manager) and Mary. The 1901 Census showed the family living at 20 Didsbury Road, Heaton Mersey and Archie was the youngest of four children. His older siblings were Bertha (then 23), Peter (21) and Robert (19). As was common with successful middle class families, the McLachlans employed a live-in general servant - 20 year old Mary Burgess. Archie was working as a clerk for a firm of cotton weavers. It's not known if he had changed jobs by the time of the Great War, but the Manchester City Battalions Book of Honour records that an A McLachlan worked for William Briggs Ltd, Cannon Street, Manchester. It is not a common name and this may well have been Archie.

Regimental records show that Archie died of wounds he had received in action. It's not known when he was injured but it seems he must also have been taken prisoner. Hautmont was in German hands for the whole of the War except for, literally, a few days at the beginning and end. It was used by the German army for the burial of prisoners who died in German hospitals.

During the course of researching Archie's story, it was noticed that the records of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission showed his name to be MacLachlan. It has now accepted that this is an error from many years ago and it has now corrected the information on its on-line records. In due course, the inscription on Archie's gravestone will also be changed but this will not be until the stone is due to be replaced. This may be some years way.

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