Black ’47, the darkest year of the Great Hunger had a lasting impact on the town of Belfast. People were dying at an astonishing rate, with many streaming into Belfast to seek work and food. Money, however, could not save you from the ravages of the dreaded famine fever which killed indiscriminately. One such fever victim was Lt. James Trevanion Bettesworth who died aged 24.
Bettesworth was a Lieutenant in the 36th Regiment Foot, and Aid de Camp to Major General Bainbridge, Clarence Place. James was originally born in England but was stationed in Belfast, with his family living in Dover.
James was buried on 18th November 1847 in Platform F Grave 52, Clifton Street Cemetery. However, he did not rest there long. He was saved the indignity of being ‘snatched’ by the resurrectionists, but nevertheless he was exhumed from this plot on 31st May 1848. Whether this was to allow his body to return to his family in England or for some other reason? The burial register does not state.