While walking through the woods along Lobster Cove in Annisquam on the Washington Street side, I came across this memorial. I don’t imagine most people have ever seen it, or know that these are memorial woods. It is a memorial to 3 soldiers – John Gossom, Eric Lingard and Bertram Williams, “who gave their lives for their country in the World War”.
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8 thoughts on “Annisquam Soldiers Memorial Wood”
I came upon this monument myself a month or so ago, and was amazed that anything was down there! Tried to find any info online about it but came up blank….left me a bit sad. Glad that you’ve posted this so others will know as well.
Mike O. in Bayview
For a brief account of Eric Lingard’s heroic wartime service, see page 207 of my new book of Gloucester history, “On Opposite Tacks: When Artist John Sloan and Capt. Solomon Jacobs Crossed Wakes in Wartime Gloucester.”
Members of the Annisquam Leonard Club clean up that site, and those woods, every spring.
– Chet Brigham
Thanks Chet; that’s nice to know. It seems such a lovely spot but one that not many people would know of, enjoy or be aware that a memorial existed. Do you know when it was created, by whom and how long the plaque has been there?
I agree with Mike, it does seem a little sad that a memorial exists that no knows about or the history behind it.
Some additional information was provided by Ann McKay: The “woods” were set aside by the Lingard family in memory of Eric. His sister Olga lived on Bennett Street (north) for many years. She also owned nearly all of the woods on that side of Washington Street.
Agreeing with Ann McKay, I had always heard that Olga commissioned the monument in honor of her brother. That stretch above Lobster Cove used to be known as The Pines, before hardwoods took over.
To summarize what I say about Ensign Eric in my book, in August of 1918 he took part as a pilot in a bombing action against a German U-boat shelling barges off Chatham. Two months later he went as gunner on another flight dispatched to defend a steamer also under U-boat attack. Their plane was forced down at sea in a storm, and Eric, with one arm holding a wing, kept his unconscious flying partner afloat for 27 hours until they were rescued. But Eric caught pneumonia that proved fatal.
Thanks Chet – now that gives some great background and meaning to the memorial. Do you know anything about Gossom and Williams?
Sorry, I can’t help out on Gossom and Williams, except that Gilbert Gossom, who lived on Washington Street near Dennison, said when we were kids that John Gossom was a relative of his.