An Old Sea Dog

I missed the anniversary of the death in 1916 of Edmund OUTRAM on the first day of this month. He is remembered in St Oswald’s churchyard and on the Thiepval Memorial. Edmund was one of the thousands killed in the first hours of the Battle of the Somme.

His father, Edmund Henry, is buried in Filey and is the only publicly acknowledged recipient of the Distinguished Service Order in the churchyard.


The King bestowed the honour in August 1915 for service in the Royal Naval Reserve, as one of the captains of HMS Alsatian. The old sea dog’s progress around the North Atlantic can be followed in some detail here.


Alsatian was an Allen Line passenger ship, requisitioned by the Government, and at war’s end, she returned to more lucrative duties with the Canadian Pacific Line. Edmund Henry had other connections to Canada. A very brief notice in the Leeds Mercury, 11 January 1937, said he was a member of the Canadian Constitution of Freemasons. Here, he was “well known in local golf circles”. Another report claims that he was the nephew of the Reverend George Sandford OUTRAM who is represented on FamilySearchTree. The family trio of Edmund, father and son, and Agnes is, however,  proving elusive. I will continue searching – it is the main aim of the churchyard project to put everyone buried or remembered at St Oswald’s on the World Tree.

Some years ago there was a flurry of interest in Outrams on an Ancestry board and one of the contributors uploaded a photograph of the Captain. He is proudly sporting his DSO medal so I guess the photo was taken in 1915 and therefore, I trust, in the public domain.


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