James Rodgers (1892–1916)

Able Seaman

Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Bristol Z/4322; hms Black Prince

Derbyshire Courier 10 June 1916

James Rodgers

The Fritchley-born Rodgers brothers, Amos, George, James plus Frederick Wragg, were the sons of William and Harriet Rodgers. Frederick Wragg was born to their mother, Harriett Wragg, in 1886 before she married William Rodgers in 1889. William and Harriett were to lose three of their sons.

James was born in 1892 and worked as a miner before joining the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve. He was killed at the Battle of Jutland on 31st May 1916, aged twenty-four, aboard HMS Black Prince along with the whole ship’s company. The ship exploded, killing thirty-seven officers, eight hundred and fifteen men and five civilians. As well as being on the Crich memorials he is remembered on the Sawmills Memorial and the Plymouth Naval Memorial.

Crich Church Memorial Plaque

James is on the memorial plaque to the fallen in St Mary's Church, Crich

Crich war memorial

James is inscribed on the north face of Crich war memorial


Amos, James and Frederick Rodgers are remembered on the Sawmills Memorial

Saw Mills war memorial

Sawmills memorial in the Village Hall

RNVR Medal Roll
1914-15 Star, Victory and British War Medals ; killed in action at the Battle of Justland

Derbyshire Times
10 June 1916
Anthony Bowmer of Crich Carr, who has been in the Navy for about five years, and whose age was 22, is reported as having gone down in the North Sea fight on the 31st of May; also Jim Rodgers, son of Mr William Rodgers of Bull Bridge, who joined the Navy since the war broke out, went down in the "Black Prince".

Derbyshire Courier
10 June 1916
An official notification from the Admiralty received by his father on Wednesday states that Able Seaman James Rogers, of Bull Bridge, Crich was supposed to have gone down with HMS Black Prince when she was sunk in the naval battle. Seaman Rogers was 24 years of age. In civil life he was a miner and worked at Haslam’s Colliery, Hartsay, joining the Navy on 28 September last. His younger brother George is with the forces in France, and his brother Amos is at Salonica, while his half brother Fred Wragg is in a Guards regiment somewhere in France. Seaman Rogers was the next youngest son of Mr Wm Rogers.

HMS Black Prince

HMS Black Prince

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Initials J
Nationality United Kingdom
Rank Able Seaman
Regiment/Service Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve
Unit H.M.S. "Black Prince."
Age 24
Date of Death 31/05/16
Service No Bristol Z/4322
Additional Information Son of William and Harriett Rodgers, of Bull Bridge, Ambergate, Derby
Casualty type Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference 19

War Graves Certificate for James Rodgers in WW1



1901: Fritchley

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
William Rodgers Head 39 General labourer Fritchley
Harriet Rodgers wife 36   Crich
Amos Rodgers son 11   Fritchley
James Rodgers son 8   Fritchley
Annie Rodgers daughter 7   Crich
Mary Rodgers daughter 5   Crich
George W Rodgers son 3   Fritchley
Emily Rodgers daughter 6 mo   Fritchley

RG13 piece 3231 folio 12 page 15

1911: Fritchley

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
William Rodgers Head 48 Lime burner Fritchley
Harriett Rodgers wife 46   Crich
Fred Rodgers son 25 Labourer in quarry Crich
Amos Rodgers son 22 Engine driver Fritchley
James Rodgers son 19 Miner underground Fritchley
Annie Rodgers daughter 17 Hosiery worker Crich
Polly Rodgers daughter 15 French polisher Crich
George Rodgers son 13   Fritchley
Emily Rodgers daughter 10   Fritchley

RG14PN20983 RG78PN1251 RD436 SD4 ED12 SN169