Born: 1881, Cavendish, Suffolk.

Died: 21st May 1902; age: 21; Died of Disease at Elandsfontein, Western Cape, South Africa.

Residence: Hardy’s Yard, Cavendish, Suffolk.

Occupation: Labourer.

Religion: Congregationalist.

Enlistment Date: 28th June 1900.


Rank: Private; Service Number: 5579.

Regiment: 28th Mounted Infantry, Suffolk Regiment, 1st Battalion, South Africa Field Force.


Clasps Awarded: Orange Free State & Transvaal + South Africa 1901 medal & South Africa 1902 medal.




1881   Factory Yard, High Street, Cavendish, Suffolk.


Joe was 3 months old and living with his maternal grandparents, aunt & great grandfather.

William Parmenter, 54, an Agricultural Labourer, born Cavendish.

Sarah Parmenter (nee Golding), 53, a Straw Plaiter, born Cavendish.

Julia Parmenter, 12, born Cavendish.

James Golding, 83, formerly an Agricultural Labourer, born Cavendish.


1891   Hardy’s Yard, Cavendish, Suffolk.


Joe was 10 years old and living with his mother, stepfather & step-siblings.

Walter Johnson, 50, an Agricultural Labourer, born Pentlow, Essex.

Elizabeth Johnson (nee Parmenter), 35, born Cavendish.

Annie Johnson, 7, born Cavendish.

Frank Johnson, 3, born Cavendish.


1901   Fort Chateau L’ Etoc, Alderney, Channel Islands.


Joe was 20 years old, a Soldier ranked Private for the Suffolk Regiment.


Soldiers’ Effects to Elizabeth Parmenter – mother.


Joe’s stepbrother, Frank Johnson lost his life in the First World War when he was instantly killed on the 26th August 1917, by an enemy shell in the “Nuns Alley” trench during operations north of Lens. Frank was ranked a Private, service number 784905, for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (Eastern Ontario Regiment), ‘C’ Coy. His grave was later destroyed in fighting, therefore Frank’s name is recorded on the Vimy Ridge Memorial, Pas de Calais, France. Frank, was a Farm Labourer, living in Winona, Ontario when he had enlisted in January 1916, at Stony Creek.


One of the notable Battles with a large loss of Suffolk life was the “Battle of Suffolk Hill” at Colesberg, Northern Cape 5th- 6th January 1900. The hill was originally called Red or Grassy Hill. The Suffolk Regiment was ordered to make a night attack on a Boer position on the heights, four companies, 354 of all ranks, set out at midnight under the command of Col. Watson. The Suffolks were met by a storm of bullets. The Colonel was amongst the first to fall, and the party later retired with 11 officers and 150+ men killed, wounded or captured.


The Boer War.

Suffolk Regiment 

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