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The World War 1 Forum (Page 128)

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Posted by: Howard {Email left}
Location: Colchester
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 7:25 PM
I know my grandfather Charles Thomas Howard served in WW1 and I believe he must have served in the Essex Regiment as he was from Colchester. My grandmother once told me he had been a marksman and that he had signed up underage. I am wondering if there is any way I could trace his records? He sold his medals so we have no idea of his service number. His birth records and death records show his first and middle names reversed, so I'm thinking he probably did this when he signed up underage? Is there any hope? Thank you for any advice.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 8:07 PM

There isn't much hope without knowing his regimental number and regiment. It would be wrong to assume he served in the Essex Regiment. Essex provided its share of men for the others Corps of the Army as well as being a garrison town for many regiments during the war. The reversal of forenames is quite common in family records. The army identified a man by his surname; initials, regimental number and regiment. In general, only a man's individual service record contained a full name with sufficient biographical detail that can be used in a blind search. That detail would include his year of birth, which in this case would have been miss-stated. Therefore the only search criteria among the surviving records would be his parish of birth and his address at the time of his enlistment. His next of kin may have been identified. Only about 40 per cent of such records have survived, so you would be fortunate to find the relevant records but it is worth a search.
There are no immediately relevant surviving records for Thomas Charles Howard or Charles Thomas Howard, so searches would have to be made using both forenames on their own.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Howard
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 9:24 PM

Dear Alan,

Thank you so much for getting back to me so quickly and thank you for pointing out that he may well have been in another regiment.
I know his parish and address at the time of enlistment, as my family didn't move around much for many generations. Would I search the National Archives with that information?
Unfortunately my dad doesn't know or remember anything about his dad's service, but I am hopeful we may be able to find an old picture with something to go on, as I really don't want to give up the search.
I know he also served as an air raid warden during WW2, but I don't suppose there are records for them are there?
Thank you again for your great and quick response.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 9:38 PM

Dear Howard,
If you post the details of your grandfather I can have a look tomorrow and see if the records have survived. His date of birth might be useful just in case.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Howard
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 10:21 PM

Dear Alan,

Thank you so much for your kind offer.

He was actually born Thomas Charles Howard on the 11th June 1899 and he lived at Crockleford Heath in the Parish of Ardleigh in what was then Tendring District of Colchester, Essex. He was Charles Thomas Howard on his death certificate.

Thank you so very much.

My very best wishes.
Reply from: Howard
Date: Tuesday 5th March 2013 at 1:14 PM

Dear Alan,

I have just found out from my uncle that my grandfather was in the Buffs, which i hope will help narrow the search now. I looked it up on Wikipedia and found this bit of info which I found quite remarkable:

The two Howards

The Buffs obtained the name of "The Buffs" officially in 1744 while on campaign in the Low Countries. The 3rd Regiment was then under the command of Lieutenant-General Thomas Howard. At the same time, the 19th Regiment of Foot were commanded by their colonel, the Honourable Sir Charles Howard. In order to avoid confusion (because regiments were then named after their colonels, which would have made them both Howard's Regiment of Foot), the regiments took the colours of their facings as part of their names - the 19th Foot became the Green Howards, while the 3rd Foot became Howard's Buffs, eventually being shortened to simply The Buffs.

Thank you again for your kind assistance.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Tuesday 5th March 2013 at 4:00 PM

Unfortunately, no individual service record has survived for Thomas Howard. There is an Army medal rolls index card for a Thomas Howard who served in the East Kent Regiment (The Buffs). He qualified for the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. As he did not qualify for the 1914-15 Star for service overseas before December 31st 1915, he did not serve overseas until some date after January 1st 1916. There is no biographical information associated with the card so it is not possible to state that this card relates to your grandfather. It is not possible to say in which battalion of the Buffs he served so it is not possible to state his wartime service.
Kind regards,
Alan

Posted by: Glyn Collin {Email left}
Location: Wakefield
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 3:11 PM
Hello Alan
Is it possible to tell me which battles my Grandads brother took part in?
He joined KOYLI and was transferred into CONNAUGHT RANGERS he was in FRANCE in the 5th Batt 22 Mar - 24 May 1916
and again with the 6th Batt 22 Nov - 2 Aug 1917.
I can't find much information, comes up with Galipoli?.
In October 1916 he was in the 3rd Battalion then posted to 16th Infantry Base Depot before going into the 6th.
He was discharged sick in October 1917, we know he was sent to Ireland before discharge to recouperate even though he was from Yorkshire.

Also, can I ask if soldiers medals were sent out automatic or did they have to apply for them? Grandad didn't have his and
my Dad was in Korea & Malaya and only got his when he was called up for Suez, the CO got them for him for a parade
otherwise he wouldn't have them. Grandad said he had posted them home and weren't recieved but he was home in 1919 and the
medals weren't awarded until 1920 & 1922 which dosn't add up.
Thank you Best wishes Glyn
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 6:33 PM

Dear Glynn,
Gallipoli had been evacuated by 7th January 1916 with most soldiers moving to Egypt. In March May 1916 the 5th Battalion Connaught Rangers was at Salonika with 10th Division where the British Army was preparing defences in Macedonia. They were not involved in any major offensives in that period.
The 3rd Battalion of any regiment did not serve overseas and was the training and depot battalion in the UK. Men who were in hospital were often administered by the regiment's third battalion while they were away from their unit. Perhaps he had been returned to the UK as sick?
Posting to 16th Infantry Base Depot indicated he returned to France. All men returning to France passed through a base depot. 16 IBD was established at Etaples for the 16th Division. It was the training ground from which men were dispersed to their units at the front.
The Battles of the Somme 1916 had ended on November 18th 1916 and the BEF prepared for the winter in the trenches and billets; with training in the Spring of 1917. Units took their turns at being in the front and being out of the line on rest. From November 1916 to August 1917, the 6th Battalion Connaught Rangers was in France with the 16th Division. Apart from day to day defensive routine their only major offensive engagement between November 22, 1916 and 2 August 1917 was the Battle of Messines in June 1917.
Campaign medals for the First World War were issued automatically. The medals were posted to the man's recorded address. If they could not be delivered by the Post Office they were returned to the local Infantry record office where they were kept for a year or so before being returned to the War Office Medals Section for destruction. After the Second World War and the Korean War men had to apply for their medals which were despatched later once their service had been verified by what had then become the Army Medals Office.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Glyn Collin
Date: Tuesday 5th March 2013 at 3:03 PM

Dear Alan
thank you for all the information, it makes things a bit clearer, this brother enlisted 1-9-14 and didn't get to France
till May 1916, whereas the younger brother didn't join while Feb 1915, was in France by June 10 and killed Oct 1. Confusing!
Thanks again Best wishes Glyn
Posted by: Jeremy Thornton {Email left}
Location: France
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 8:39 AM
Alan,

I hope that you do not think this is an imposition as it is not related to the First World War but could you please look at the following for me as the only way for me to look at the 1901 & 1911 is to take out a subscription as I live in France.

The eldest of the 8 brothers of my grandfather Vernon Thornton was called Robert Benjamin Field Thornton born on the 5th Feb 1862 in Dewsbury West Yorkshire to Robert Thornton & Louisa Ann Field. I believe that he married someone called Clara who was born on the 23rd Feb 1846 so she was 16 years older then him? They moved away to live in Durham and I would like to know what the wifes maiden name was, did they have any children and what was his trade. It is strange that he moved away as he was the eldest son and so would have automaticaly inherited the family rag auctioneers buisiness.

I appreciate any help that you can give.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 6:30 PM

Dear Jeremy,
I don't usually do look-ups for general family history, but I shall make this an exception as it appears that Robert did stay with the family firm and remained in Dewsbury.
In the 1881 census he was recorded as a 19 year old auctioneer living with his parents at Eightlands Road, Dewsbury. In 1891 he was recorded as a 29 year old "Auctioneer rag sales" living with his parents at 3 Eightlands Road, Dewsbury.
On September 27th 1894 Robert Benjamin Field Thornton, 32, bachelor, auctioneer, of Eightlands Cottage, married Clara Dawson, aged 30, spinster, of Market Place, Dewsbury, daughter of the late Samuel Dawson, printer, deceased. They were married at the Parish Church (All Saints') Dewsbury. The witnesses were Arthur Fearnsides, Julia Thornton and Thom. Maynard Walker.
In the 1901 census Robert and Clara were recorded living as a couple at 8 Mallinson Street, Dewsbury. Robert was an auctioneer and an employer. The 1911 census recorded Robert and Clara were living at a house in Briestfield Road, Dewsbury. Clara was 47. They had been married 16 years and had had no children. Also at the address was Mary Jane Rodley, a widow aged 61 who was a sick nurse. Note the presence of a sick nurse, as the death of a Clara Thornton, aged 47, was registered at Dewsbury in the April-June quarter of 1911 (GRO Deaths, Dewsbury, Apr-Jun 1911 Vol 9b page 389).
Clara Dawson was born on February 23rd 1864, the daughter of Mary Ann and Samuel Dawson, bookseller and stationer. She was baptised at All Saints' Church, Dewsbury on March 27th 1864 by the Rev James Webb.
The marriage of a Robert B F Thornton and Elizabeth Watson was recorded at Durham in July-September 1912. (GRO Marriages Durham Jul-Sep 1912 Vol 10a page 751).
Robert Benjamin Field Thornton of 48 Headfield Road, Savile Town, Dewsbury died at "Allandale" Heysham Road, Morecambe, Lancashire on 14th August 1929. Probate to Elizabeth his widow and Julian Thornton auctioneer.
The website Findmypast.co.uk offers pay as you go credits from £6.95 (Euro 8) for 60 credits valid for 90 days.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Jeremy Thornton
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 8:14 PM

Alan,

Brilliant, thank you very much this has solved many uncertainties which I have been unable to resolve here in France.
Posted by: Frances {Email left}
Location: Portsmouth
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 9:46 PM
Hi, we're planning to see the battlefields at the Somme this summer, what is the best area to stay in? what are the best things to see?
Thank you
Posted by: Brian {No contact email}
Location: Howdon
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 8:16 PM
Dear alan i wonder if you could help me again.i am trying to trace my grandfather robert wrights war record the only imformation i have is his enlistment document, he joined the 43rd regiment at tenby 21st december 1870 aged 18 years having previously served in the 3rd surrey militia until discharge he signed up for twelve and signed to do another twelve his number on the document appears to be 1451 i think he served in india for a number of years and may have married whilst serving their coming back to england about 1888 any more information would be greatley appreciated
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 9:49 PM

Dear Brian,
Robert Wright's full service record is available free to visitors to the National Archives at Kew, Surrey. It is available to download online from the Findmypast.co.uk website (pay as you go charges apply: 30 credits required). I am not allowed to transcribe it for you on this forum as that would be a breach of the Findmypast.co.uk subscription terms and conditions and copyright law. Robert served with the 43rd (Monmouthshire) Regiment of Foot which became a Light Infantry regiment and in 1881 was re-titled The Oxfordshire Light Infantry. The regiment served in Burma and India from 20th September 1872. Robert returned from India in 1889, having been injured in an accident. Back in England, on discharge from hospital, he served out his time in the 2nd Battalion The Bedfordshire Regiment. He did not have a "war record" as such, as the British Army in India had a peacetime role policing the Empire at the time Robert was overseas and they were involved in only sporadic disturbances. Visit:
http://www.sofo.org.uk/

Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Brian
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 11:18 AM

Thanks again for your time and effort alan the information you gave was very helpful i shall go forward with it once again many thanks yours sincerely b f wright

Posted by: Bella {No contact email}
Location: Esher
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 5:39 PM
Dear Alan,

Just in case have left a message following your reply to Mr. Thornton, France.

Bella
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 9:48 PM

Thanks, Bella.
Alan
Posted by: Jeremy Thornton {Email left}
Location: France
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 10:51 AM
Alan,

I wonder if you can help me again. Whilst writing up the information I have gathered about Vernon & Julian Thornton, I now find that there was another brother called either Herbert or Hubert Thornton who died in 1916. This date makes me wonder if he also served in the Frist World War and was a casuality? He was born in 1873 in Dewsbury West Yorkshire. His parents were Robert Thornton and Louisa Ann Field. Prior to the war he would have been working in the family business, Robert Thornton & Sons Rag Auctioneers located in Dewsbury.

Thank you in advance for any information that you can provide.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 4:21 PM

Dear Jeremy,
The death of a Herbert Thornton born in 1873 was registered at Dewsbury as a civil death in the third quarter of 1916 (GRO Deaths Dewsbury Oct-Dec 1916 Vol 9b Page 843). The National Probate Calendar recorded he lived at 1 Eightlands Cottages, Eightlands Road, Dewsbury. He had married Marion Smith on 5th July 1913 at St John's, Dewsbury. On his marriage certificate he was described as an engineer of Eightlands Road, whose father, Robert was a rag auctioneer. In the 1901 and 1911 censuses he was recorded as a millwright (corn mill engineer). His brothers, Goldwin and Percy were rag auctioneers. Herbert Thornton died on December 30th 1916 at Dewsbury. There was no comparable death in "Soldiers Died in the Great War" or the CWGC Debt of Honour. The amount of biographical information contained in military records is variable and there is no military record for Herbert or Hubert Thornton that positively identifies him.
Goldwin Thornton, of Eightlands Road, died 4th May 1919 at Dewsbury. Probate was granted to Percy and Julian Thornton, rag auctioneers. There are no obvious military records from the First World War for the three eldest brothers: Goldwin, Percy and Ernest. They would have been in their forties at the outbreak of war in 1914 when the recruiting age was initially set at between 19 and 30 years-old.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Bella Esher
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 5:35 PM

Dear Alan, I always read your msg. board and when you have given me endless information, there are very often addresses involved which I tend to google; sometimes they are there, sometimes have been demolished but if the buildings are still standing, it's great to copy and add to history. I was curious with an enquiry from a Jeremy Thorton in France and googled the address. The address 1 Eightlands Cottages, Eightlands Road, Dewsbury shows a commercial property for sale £190.000 (you couldn't get a small flat in my area for that much) consisting of several old cottages which have now been converted to office accommodation. Being a little presumptious I thought Mr. Thorton might like to have this information (unless of course, he has it already.

Kind regards, am still researching!

Bella
Reply from: Jeremy Thornton
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 5:42 PM

Bella,

Do you mean this is the price today?

Jeremy Thornton
Reply from: Bella
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 7:06 PM

Dear Mr. Thornton,

It would seem so but just to make sure, google the address and it will come up. If the price is right are you buying?!

Regards, Bella
Posted by: Michael Tench {Email left}
Location: Shrewsbury
Date: Saturday 2nd March 2013 at 11:01 AM
Hi, I am trying to find service records/details of Samuel Powell who I believe served in the Sherwood Foresters and had the Reg, No. 1223 when discharged in 1916. I think he enlisted before WW1. I would be grateful for any help in finding any information or pictures of him.
Thanks
Michael
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Saturday 2nd March 2013 at 5:22 PM

Dear Michael,
No individual service record appears to have survived for Samuel Powell so it is not possible to state his service. He was discharged through sickness on June 2nd 1916 when he had been serving as a corporal in the 2nd/8th Battalion The Sherwood Foresters (Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment) and the 29th Provisional Battalion. He had enlisted in the Army on 20th November 1911.
The 2nd/8th Battalion Sherwood Foresters was a wartime-only battalion which was raised at Newark on 11th September 1914. It was initially raised to provide second line reserves for the first line 8th Battalion Sherwood Foresters which was a pre-war part-time Territorial Army battalion based at Newark. The second 8th Battalion trained at Luton and Watford until April 1916 when it went to Ireland. The 2nd/8th Battalion was sent to France on 26th February 1917.
Soldiers of the Territorial Force had enlisted for home defence only. At the outbreak of war they had to sign an "Imperial Service" agreement changing their terms of enlistment to include service overseas. Those who were not fit enough or declined to serve overseas remained in the UK and from June 1915 were employed in Provisional Battalions intended for coastal defence. The 29th Provisional Battalion was formed in June 1915 from the home service men of the Sherwood Foresters' four Territorial battalions. In 1917 the battalion was on coastal defence duties at Walton on the Naze and became known as the 21st Battalion Sherwood Foresters.
As Samuel Powell enlisted in 1911 he would have either have served in a different regiment prior to the 2nd/8th Battalion being created in 1914, or he may have enlisted in 1911 into the part-time Territorial Sherwood Foresters, possibly with the 1st/8th Battalion. His four-digit regimental number 1223 was typical of but not exclusive to the Territorial Army, suggesting he had enlisted in the Territorials. He did not serve overseas and did not qualify for any medals. He was awarded a Silver War Badge for being discharged through sickness as no longer physically fit for war service.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Michael Tench
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 9:50 AM

Hi Alan,
Many thanks for this information. I did not know he had enlisted in 1911 as he was a miner before that in the 1911 census. He did not appear to carry any injuries and so it was always a surprise that he was discharged for sickness - maybe shell shock ? but he started a gymnasium in the years after the war and ran a hotel too. I don't suppose it is likely there would be any photographs of him if he joined as early as 1911?
Many thanks for your help.
Michael
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Sunday 3rd March 2013 at 12:59 PM

Dear Michael,
The Army did not photograph individual soldiers in the early part of the 20th Century. Group photographs may have survived at the Regimental Museum but they rarely name soldiers, so you would need to be able to recognise him.
http://www.wfrmuseum.org.uk/sf_museum.htm
The most common source of photographs is within private family collections. The local newspaper may have reported his death with a portrait photograph borrowed from the family.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Michael Tench
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 8:31 AM

Thanks very much Alan,
At least I can check out local newspapers now and see if anything was recorded.

If I may, would you be able to have a look to see if my mothers elder brother's record survives please. His name was William Thomas Goodfellow and he was in the KSLI and I know received the Mons Star and told of fighting through the Great War and then going to Mesopotamia 1918/20 before leaving the army sometime in 1920. I think he may also have been transferred to a rifle brigade. He is believed to be a Company Serjeant Major at retirement but his surviving children know very little about his service and it would be wonderful to visit them - now in their late 70's and 80's and show them details of their father. His eldest son has died and his medals have vanished and so we don't know his numbers etc. but he enlisted they believe before WW1.
Your help would be very much appreciated. Thanks. Michael
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 6:25 PM

Dear Michael,
It is not possible to make a positive identification of William Goodfellow in the King's Shropshire Light Infantry as there was more than one man with that name who served with the regiment during the war. The most likely Army medal rolls index card showed a William Goodfellow who served with the 1st Battalion KSLI (10125) and the 2nd Battalion Monmouthshire Regiment (268245) before being transferred to the Rifle Brigade (213235). He qualified for the 1914 Star with Mons clasp. As William Thomas Goodfellow served after the war his service record may be held by the Ministry of Defence. The MOD will release certain amounts of information about a deceased person depending on whether you are the direct next-of-kin, or not. You can apply for a search using the different application forms for next-of-kin, or with permission of next-of-kin, or as a general enquirer. See:
http://www.veterans-uk.info/service_records/service_records.html

Click on the link and then look for "Service records - requests for service records of deceased service personnel and home guard" in the left-hand column.
You will need proof of death (copy of death certificate); the soldier's date of birth or service number; and next-of-kin's signed permission (unless you are the direct next-of-kin), known as form Part 1. You then need a completed form Part 2 (search details), and cheque for payment. The next-of-kin form (Part 1) is for completion by the next-of-kin of deceased service personnel (or enquirers with the consent of next of kin). The Part 2 form is entitled: "Request forms for service personnel Army" A cheque for GBP 30 should be made payable to "The MOD Accounting Officer" and sent to Army Personnel Centre Secretariat, Disclosures 2, Mail Point 515, Kentigern House, 65, Brown Street, Glasgow G2 8EX Scotland with all the paperwork.
Searches take several months to complete.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Michael Tench
Date: Monday 4th March 2013 at 6:38 PM

Alan, Thanks so much for this information - I shall apply for the details as you suggest.
Thanks again for your help and kind regards
Michael
Posted by: Rachel {Email left}
Location: Lewis
Date: Saturday 2nd March 2013 at 9:41 AM
Dear Alan,

I emailed you some weeks ago, and you helpfully pointed me in the right direction for a book I'm currently writing. I've now hit the 10,000 word mark and the plot has moved to France. I am now specifically looking at the role of pigeons in the war. I know that Alfred Osman set up a Pigeon Carrier Service, and have trawled the internet for details. Is this an area you are familiar with? I am looking to see where training of these pigeon handlers would take place (in the UK), and if there are any other good sources you could recommend? The American story of Cher Ami keeps cropping up, but I was looking for similar British tales of pigeon success. Thank you for your time

Rachel
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Saturday 2nd March 2013 at 5:22 PM

Dear Rachel,
The definitive work on the Royal Engineers Carrier Pigeon Service is Osman's "Pigeons in the Great War: A complete History of the Carrier Pigeon Service During the Great War" (London 1928). A more recent "Pigeons to Packhorse" by Alan Harfield is available for less than five pounds.

At the outbreak of the war the British did not have a pigeon service and the first birds were given by the French to the BEF's Intelligence Corps for carrying coded messages. By May 1915, the BEF's II Corps was using pigeons to send messages to higher formations from Battalion headquarters or pigeon posts in the trenches during battle. The original pigeons were birds that had been bred and trained by their civilian owners. The Royal Engineers were responsible for communications during the Great War and pigeons were an effective and efficient replacement for broken telegraph wires. The birds were kept in reserve until telegraph communications were broken and then employed to carry coded messages. In June 1915 the Carrier Pigeon Service of the Royal Engineers was allowed to recruit 60 pigeon specialists who would have been men already experienced in keeping homing pigeons in civilian life. The remainder of the handlers would have been trained on the job in France and Flanders. The men who looked after the birds were dubbed "pigeoneers" but by the end of the war their official title was "Loftsman". In 1915 the First Army had 202 birds at 15 pigeon stations. By 1918, each of the five Armies in France and Flanders had 1 motor Mobile Pigeon Loft, 14 horse drawn lofts and three fixed lofts. As the service expanded in 1916, the mobile lofts were introduced and the service again expanded in 1917 when artillery Forward Observation Officers and tank crews were provided with messenger pigeons.
When the birds were taken into the front line there was a danger they would be over-fed or spoiled by being treated too much like pets. The most common route was to carry a message from a Battalion HQ to a Brigade HQ, a flight of about 10 or 20 minutes. The pigeon loft was sited next to the HQ's communication office. Soldiers appreciated the use of the birds as it reduced the need for someone to act as a runner across the battlefield.
At the end of the war there were 400 men attending 150 mobile pigeon lofts.
Kind regards,
Alan
Reply from: Rachel
Date: Friday 8th March 2013 at 10:46 AM

Dear Alan,

Thank you so much for your response- have ordered the book!

Rachel
Posted by: Jeremy Ardley {Email left}
Location: Australia
Date: Friday 1st March 2013 at 6:30 AM
I am looking for information on my Grandfather Charles Smith.

He enlisted in WW-I well under-age. He served in the Horse Artillery as an Other Ranks.

He was awarded the Military Medal and I believe he was mentioned in despatches more than once.

I would like if possible to find the citation for the MM and the text of the Despatches.

Thanks in advance for any assistance.
Reply from: Alan Greveson
Date: Friday 1st March 2013 at 3:03 PM

Dear Jeremy,
It is not possible to identify Charles Smith without knowing his regimental number as the name occurs frequently. The citation for the Military Medal was generally given to the soldier at the time and was the only copy, although unit war diaries or headquarters records may record the award. It would be necessary to know which unit(s) he served in and then commission research at the UK National Archives. The official publication "The London Gazette" listed the awards of the Military Medal by name, regimental number and home town. The Gazette also listed those who were Mentioned in Despatches as well as the Despatches themselves. The Mention was a list of names appended to a commander's despatch.
http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/search

Kind regards,
Alan

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