SAMUEL AUSTIN ADNITT was born in Yelvertoft, in 1886, to Thomas Adnitt, a shepherd, and his wife Elizabeth.
In the 1901 census Samuel Adnitt appears to be living with his mother, Elizabeth, now married to another shepherd, Frederick Smith. Presumably Samuels father died sometime between 1886 and 1901 and his mother remarried. The family are living in West Haddon with Eli Smith, Frederick’s son, who is just one year older than his stepbrother, Samuel. In the 1911 census Samuel is working as a groom and the whole family living together in West Haddon.
Samuel enlisted in the Second Northamptonshire Regiment as Private number 16754 in December 1914 and served in France from April 15 1915. He was awarded the Victory, British and Star medals.
The Northampton Mercury dated 18 January 1918 gives details of his service although includes a mistake, publishing that Samuel was the son of Mr and Mrs Eli Smith. Whereas in fact Samuel Adnitt was the stepbrother of Eli Smith. The article continues “Private Samuel Adnitt of West Haddon has been awarded a parchment certificate for gallant conduct and devotion to duty by the General Officer of the Division. It reads ” During operations near Passchendaele this man carried messages under very heavy shell, machine gun and rifle fire to the front line in a very exposed position, with snow on the ground and a very bright moon. This man on previous occasions has shown conspicuous gallantry in carrying out his duties as company runner. Signed W.D. Heneker, Major General Commanding. Private Adnitt enlisted three years ago last December, and was only in England training for 4 months before he was sent to France.
Northampton Mercury 26 July 1918 “Adnitt, Private, Samuel, son of Mrs Smith, West Haddon, wounded and prisoner of war he was recently awarded a parchment certificate for gallant conduct and devotion to duty.