Joseph Johnston Lee, Journalist and Poet (1876-1949)


Joseph Lee was a Dundee journalist who gained recognition as a war poet and artist. In 1914 he joined the 4th Battalion of the Black Watch. Two books of his war poems and sketches, Ballads of Battle and Work-a-Day Warriors were published while he was at the Front.

In 1917 he became second lieutenant in the 10th Battalion of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps and later that year he was captured near Cambrai. His experiences while a prisoner in camps at Karlsruhe and Beeskow are described in his book A Captive at Carlsruhe.

After the war Lee married Miss Dorothy Barrie, a well known viola player. The couple went to London and Lee became sub-editor on the News Chronicle. For a time he took lessons at the Slade School of Art. After his retiral in 1944 he returned to Dundee, where he died in 1949.

Lee’s other published works were poems, Tales O’ Our Town and a short play Fra Lippo Lippi.


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Designed by: Matthew Davis