Thomas John Ellis was born in 1883 in Treflach, the youngest son of stone mason John and his wife Elizabeth. John and Elizabeth who's family had been re housed after the flooding of the valley near Llanwddyn to create Lake Vyrnwy had three children, another son called Griffith and a daughter called Harriet Ann.
By 1911 Thomas John had started a career as a grocer and was living and working in Minsterley. The rest of the family continued to live at Glanaber in Treflach then a small cottage but now a bungalow with fantastic views across the valley towards the Berwyn Mountains. At some point prior to the outbreak of war Griffith the eldest son had emigrated to Australia.
Military Record including Regimental and Battalion Information
Thomas John Ellis enlisted in the Montgomeryshire Yeomanry in Nov/Dec 1914.
His first army number was 2789. Where he was based in the UK for training we cannot be sure but it is likely that he was in A squadron whose headquarters was in Llanfyllin but with a drill station in Trefonen.
In Mid November 1916 he was transferred to the 4th Reserve Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers a territorial Unit with a new army number of 11778 and shortly afterwards on the 7th December 1916 he is posted to France. Here he is assigned to an Infantry Base Depot where on the 13th December he is posted again this time to a Regular Army Unit, the 2nd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers as number 55192.
Thomas had been in the front line for a relatively short period of time but the weather had been particularly cold and at times very snowy. The war diary for the time of Thomas's death records there was a lot of illness due to the cold weather and sadly Thomas died of pleurisy on the 22nd February 1917 according to his Soldiers Effects Register.
His elder brother Griffith who had emigrated to Australia was also involved in World War 1. He had joined the Australian army and was badly wounded at the massacre at Gallipoli.
Memorial and War Grave Information
Private Thomas John Ellis
55192 Royal Welsh Fusiliers
is buried at Bray Military Cemetery, Bray-Sur-Somme, France.
"He Giveth His Beloved Sleep"
are the words that adorn his gravestone
The newspaper cutting below is how the Border Counties Advertizer recorded news of his death on the 21st March 1917