On 15 March 1918, John Jackson, aged 55, of Hart Road, Wednesfield, appeared before the South Staffordshire Stipendiary Justice Commissioners at Wolverhampton, charged with being an absentee under the Military Service Act. He stated that he had been a conscientious objector from his youth and “had always been against these things from the very start”. The informant and witness, Lieutenant Allport, had called Jackson up, and received a number of letters in return, and extracts from one of them were printed in the Express & Star:
“Our letter-box is not an ash-tip for your refuse. If you have any you keep them. I have lit my pipe with them till I am sick…I don’t waste my breath with murderers. You treacherous scamp; you dirty dog; you dirty murderer. Go and wash yourself from your iniquity and murder and bloodshed. Kindly remember in future I have no business with murderers. Don’t you blow no more soap-bubbles here, as I don’t reckon to take any notice of fools; and your wickedness is not desired.
Jackson was fined £2 and remanded to await a military escort. He faced the Military Service Tribunal at Wormwood Scrubs and was sentenced to 1 year in prison with hard labour. He does not appear to paid his fine, however. A note appears next to his entry in the court register, a transcript of which is as follows:
“Numerous letters have been written with unsatisfactory results the later 9/9/19: ‘As this man was discharged a Conscientious Objector” his a/c was bit credited with pay therefore I am unable to comply with your request to remit £2 fine.’ I propose to pursue this matter no further.”
I have so far not been able to find out any further details including family background about this man.