Alexander Piggot Stephen

Military Information

  • Date of enlistment:
  • Place of enlistment:
  • Service no:
  • Rank: Lieutenant
  • Service Occupation:
  • Awards:
  • Regiment/Service: H.M. Yacht Zarefah
  • Unit/Ship: Royal Navy
  • Place of Death: Lost at Sea
  • Age at Death: 27
  • Date of Death: 08.05.1917
  • Burial Country:
  • Cemetery: Portsmouth Naval Memorial
  • Grave/Mem Ref no: Panel 27

Personal Information

  • Date of Birth: 10.11.1889
  • Place of Birth:
  • Address:
  • Occupation:
  • Mother:

    Helen Piggot Stephen, 2 Rhona Pl, Queen St, Broughty Ferry

  • Father:

    James Stephen, 2 Rhona Pl, Queen St, Broughty Ferry

  • Siblings:

    Frank, Walter McNicoll, James, Alexander & Elizabeth

  • Spouse:
  • Children:

More about Alexander Piggot Stephen

Alexander has no known grave but is remembered on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. He is also remembered on a family gravemarker in Barnhill Cemetery, Broughty Ferry and on the Grove Academy, Broughty Ferry school war memorial.

The Zarefah was originally built as the Marentanza V. In 1914 she was hired by the Royal Navy and equipped for mine sweeping duties. On May 8, 1917 she was struck by a mine from the German Submarine UC-31, 1 mile North East of Mull Head, Deerness with the loss of her 16 man crew.

Alexander Stephen   Lieutenant   Royal Navy


Navigating Lieutenant Alexander Stephen, so of the late James Stephen, blacksmith and Mrs Stephen, Rhona Place, Queen Street, Broughty Ferry, who was in command of a patrol boat, has been killed.  Deceased, who was twenty-seven years of age, held a master’s certificate, and was regarded as a very efficient seaman.

Dundee Courier 14th May 1917

Alexander P Stephen was the son of Mr James and Mrs Helen Piggot Stephen of 3 Rhona Place, Broughty Ferry. He was commissioned as a Sub Lieutenant in the Royal Naval Reserve in December 1914 and appointed to HM Yacht Zarefah. In May 1915 he was promoted to Lieutenant and, in December 1916, re-appointed to the Zarefah for Navigation Duties. The Zarefah was built in 1905 and was hired for Naval service from August 1914 and purchased outright in May 1916. The ship may have served as wireless-equipped Auxiliary Patrol Group Leader at home or in Mediterranean. On 7 or 8 May 1917 she struck a mine laid by the German Submarine UC-31 off Mull Head, Deer Ness on the Mainland of Orkney. Sixteen lives were lost and Alexander Stephen is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial on Southsea Common, Hampshire. The wreck was found in July 2002. He is listed as Royal Navy in the CWGC records.

Information supplied by Gary Thomson, additional information kindly supplied by Michael Caldwell Ian Stewart & Ian Birnie

Can you tell us more about Alexander Piggot Stephen'? Some additional facts, a small story handed down through the family or perhaps a picture or an heirloom you can share online. Contact our curator...

THANK YOU for your interest in helping the Great War Dundee project. Please complete the short form below and a curator will contact you in the next few days.

    I am writing to: