The Manchester Regiment Forum

The Great War => 1914 - 1918 => Topic started by: CarolineBoo on December 13, 2017, 12:14:25 AM

Title: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 13, 2017, 12:14:25 AM
When my mother died earlier this year, I found my grandfather's war diary amongst her papers.  He was called Frank Whitehead and was from Shaw near Oldham.  He was with the Manchester Regiment.  He started his diary on December 8th, 1917 while in Marseilles waiting to ship out to Salonika.  He wrote in it every day until the end of the war.   

I have photographed and transcribed the diary and, with my nephew, have been researching around the things he wrote about.  We have created a blog called A Year of War.  It contains the diary entries and our research findings. There are some entries that were difficult to interpret and some questions that we haven't found answers to.  I hope that the blog will be interesting to this Forum and that some of you might be able to help plug the gaps in our understanding and knowledge. 
Best regards, Caroline

The link is http://ayearofwar.com
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: Tim Bell on December 13, 2017, 07:33:12 AM
Hi Caroline,
You have done great work and I look forward to seeing more diary entries.
Please can you tell us the Battalions Frank was with at each stage.
I realise my blog looks rather clumsy when I see the structure you've used!
Well done, welcome and I hope the forum can assist.

Tim
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on December 13, 2017, 08:07:25 AM
 Hello Caroline


Welcome to the forum.
Hopefully someone will be able to help with any questions you have.
What a great blog you and your nephew have done and as it has to
do with a soldier of the Manchester's it will be a very welcome addition
to the history of the Regiment.

Thank you for sharing

Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: Wendi on December 13, 2017, 08:35:10 AM
Welcome Caroline  ;D

How wonderful you saw fit to honour your Grandfather's Diary in such a beautiful way.

I look forward to seeing your queries, and hope we can help filling in some blanks.

Wendi
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 13, 2017, 11:57:40 AM
Caroline,

Welcome to the Forum.

It would seem likely that this soldier would serve with the 13th Bn. Manchester Regiment.    The battalion left for Salonika in October/ November 1915 and returned to France in 1918, arriving at Abancourt 11th July 1918.   Later it was absorbed into the 9th Manchesters.  PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 13, 2017, 01:35:06 PM
Thanks so much for your encouraging comments and offers of help. 

The Battalion is one of the things we have been struggling with:

On the inside cover of Frank's diary he wrote "Private Frank Whitehead, 304092, C Company, 8th Reserve Battalion, Manchester Regiment, Filey".   He did his training in summer 1917 at Filey and a couple of other camps around there. 

He doesn't mention any Battalion again in his diary. Our research however led us to believe, as Philip suggests, that he was with 13th - as he does move to France in July 1918. 

Any insights gratefully received!

Best regards
Caroline

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on December 13, 2017, 01:52:59 PM
Hi Caroline

He was in the Manchester's but at some stage he transferred
into the Cheshire Regiment with a service number of 69441.

He was entitled to the British and Victory Medals.

Later he was given a SWB badge due to being unfit for active service.

He was in the 13th Bn and then in the 9th Bn but his medals were
issued by the Cheshire Regiment.

Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on December 13, 2017, 02:08:47 PM
I don't know the answer but someone else may know.

In the medals roll there are a lot of 13th/9th Bn soldiers
that had their medals issued by the Cheshire Regiment.

Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 13, 2017, 02:15:05 PM
Caroline,

The Official History of the Great War reports:    "The most formidable, the almost unconquerable foe was malaria."   Perhaps this was the reason for the SWB.   PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 13, 2017, 02:25:23 PM
This is really interesting!

Frank had rheumatic fever in Salonika and was in and out of military hospitals / field ambulances in Salonika and then in France.  Just after the war ended his unit was in Belgium and he was sent on home leave. The rest of his unit was marching off to be part of the occupying force in Germany. His diary ends the day he gets back to Shaw. 

Perhaps he was then invalided out while on leave?  Would he have been transferred to do more war work with the Cheshires at that point?  He never mentioned leaving the Manchesters - and was always very keen on being with the 'Shaw lads'.

After the war he had various operations in London and Manchester - ultimately having his knee cap removed and his leg fixed.  He walked with a cane for the rest of his life.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on December 13, 2017, 02:31:28 PM

The information I've given you is from his
Medal Index Card and the Medals Rolls both
can be found on Ancestry.

Timberman 
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 13, 2017, 02:34:50 PM
Thanks so much for all this information.  It is incredibly helpful of you.   I use Ancestry but failed to find any of this!
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on December 13, 2017, 02:40:18 PM
I did struggle with the medal roll until I put in the
Cheshire Regiment, that were I found a lot of
13th/9th Bn soldiers.

Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 13, 2017, 08:46:44 PM
Welcome to the forum Caroline.

The 9th Bn War Diary entry for 08.05.1919 records that 27 Other Ranks, retainable personnel and volunteers for the Army of Occupation, were transferred to 1/6th Bn Cheshire Regt. His late discharge date of 04.11.1919 would suggest he was one of the retained personnel.

Charlie


Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 14, 2017, 09:38:12 AM
Caroline,
Your Grandfather was not conscripted, having volunteered under the Derby scheme he was mobilized.
From the Long long trail:

„Men who attested under the Derby Scheme, who were accepted for service and chose to defer it were classified as being in “Class A”. Those who agreed to immediate service were “Class B”. The Class A men were paid a day’s army pay for the day they attested; were given a grey armband with a red crown as a sign that they had so volunteered; were officially transferred into Section B Army Reserve; and were sent back to their homes and jobs until they were called up.“

Charlie

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 14, 2017, 10:15:42 AM
Caroline,

The Macedonia campaign by the British Salonika Forces has been described as "the sideshow that ended the war".   Clearly, their contribution to the war effort was hardly known.   Their battle casualties numbered some 23,000, whilst their non-battle casualties were just over 481,000, of which figure 198,000 were cases of malaria.

Upon their return to France, the battalions were asked if they had done any fighting and if they had been "over the top".    The BSF appear to have been a forgotten army - cf. the British 14th Army in WW2. PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 14, 2017, 01:07:03 PM
Thanks so much for all your insights and corrections.I had no idea that Frank stayed in the Army until the end of 1919 or that he was transferred to the Cheshire Regiment.

I am so pleased that he didn’t join the Cheshire’s until mid-1919  -  Both because he was really keen on being with ‘the lads from Shaw’ and (selfishly) because I thought you might toss me out of this wonderful and knowledgeable forum on the Manchesters!

I agree it must have been strange fighting in a war zone that was largely discounted and ignored both during the war and afterwards.  I don’t know if any of you have read Lena Ashwell’s book, ‘Modern Troubadours’, she was the suffragist, actress and impresario behind the professional concert parties in WWI.  When she and her party visited Malta to tour the hospitals and perform concerts - she has a lot of interesting things to say about the soldiers stories from Salonika and how they would rather be on the Western Front.  The link to her book, free to download,  is https://archive.org/details/moderntroubadour00ashwuoft

As part of my research I also read the Manchester Guardian archives and The Times - it is amazing how little reporting there was about the war in Salonika.  Though in fairness, much of the time it was more skirmishes than battles and more air fighting than ground combat. It also seemed as though the British role was to distract the Bulgarians while main assaults were conducted by the French and others - but that might be unfair.

Thanks again.  By the way, from tomorrow, we are starting to post Frank’s diary entries daily - on their 100th anniversary of being written.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 15, 2017, 07:33:04 AM
Caroline,
 I was interested in your mention of Lena Ashwell and her book.   My father was in Egypt in WW1 (Lancs. Fus.) and brought back a photograph of Lena and her concert party.   She is wearing the rig of an Acting Petty Officer Royal Navy.     You will be aware that Siegfried Sassoon attended one of her concerts in Kantara and the performance inspired his poem "Concert Party (Egyptian Base Camp)".   I like to think my father was also in the audience at that time.  PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 15, 2017, 07:59:29 AM
Caroline,
Re the missing word in the entry for 10 Dec, he was assigned to „44 Mess“. I‘m sure Philip can explain better than I can the administration on board a ship.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 15, 2017, 02:20:18 PM
Charlie
Thanks for letting me know about 44 Mess.  I will correct it.  Thanks also for 'conscripted' v ' mobilized' - I have already corrected that one! 

Do you know if  there is online access to the Battalion War Diary?  This would be great as we get more into the story and Frank goes to the front line.
Thanks again!
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 15, 2017, 04:36:56 PM
Caroline,
The 13th Bn‘s War Diary for its time in Salonika has not been digitized, it is only available to view at the National Archives.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: Wendi on December 15, 2017, 05:33:26 PM
Hi again Caroline  ;D I see the chaps are doing you proud!

Just an addition to Charlie's comment regarding the war diary. You can via their website ask TNA for a quote to send you a copy of the War Diary for the dates in question or (my be cheaper) to ask a researcher to copy them for you.

Wendi
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 16, 2017, 08:01:29 AM
I‘ve not used the service myself but users on the GWF seem very happy with the service he provides. He would appear to be a lot cheaper than TNA.

http://www.filephotoservice.co.uk/home/4593169540

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 16, 2017, 01:18:12 PM
Caroline,

I have referred to the Official History of the Great War (Vol.2) - Macedonia - covering a period 8th December 1917 to June 1918 when the 13th Manchesters returned to France.   The battalion is mentioned only once in that volume and that is in connection with the transport arrangements involving the battalion's return to the Western Front.  This included the use of the Greek port of Itea as a point of departure, followed by transport by sea, the carrying vessels being of French registration, with the eventual arrival at the Italian port of Taranto.   Rail travel followed. The description of the move indicates "how crippled the Army was with malaria".

It would seem that the 13th Manchesters may have carried their sick men with them to France.   However, one battalion - not named - had to send some 273 men into hospital within a few days of their arrival in France.   It would be interesting to see what the battalion's War Diary reveals.  PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 16, 2017, 04:13:16 PM
Philip,
The 13th Bn WD records the following on 31.07.1918:

„The health of the Battalion has been good until the last fortnight. During the first week of which the sick parade numbered about 40 daily. They suffered from chills and colds due to damp and change of climate. During the last week about 35% of the Battalion has been suffering from a kind of influenza.“

The battalion strength is recorded as 26 Officers and 803 OR, which would make the 35% about 290.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 16, 2017, 05:06:19 PM
Charlie,

Thank you. PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 17, 2017, 01:27:55 PM
I wonder, please, if I may comment on some of the matters noted in this excellent thread and blog?

I wonder whether or not this soldier was correct in using the prefix "H.M.S" in respect of the troopship Kashmir?  I draw upon my WW2 experiences of travelling thousands of miles at His Majesty's expense aboard commandeered liners.   I take, for example, the Mauretania.  This ship was utilised as a troopship, but bore the prefix "H.M.T.", being an abbreviation, I believe, for "His Majesty's Transport".   I cite another example - "H.M.T. Isle de France".

Mention is made of changing the guard aboard ship.  In my experience in WW2 there was no room whatsoever for such an activity.   Sentries were posted at various places below deck and in my case were regularly supervised at officer level.   Among many inconveniences of travel by troopship during wartime was the need to alter the ship's clocks.   This always seemed to be effected at midnight.  Thus, for example, if the ship was steaming westwards, the clock could be stopped at midnight for one hour and an unfortunate on the First Watch would have an extra hour of duty to undertake.    Was there a good side to travel in WW2 aboard a troopship?   Yes, white bread and eggs.  I wonder if Frank found ship's food to be good and plentiful?  PhilipG.                               
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 17, 2017, 07:13:17 PM
Hi Caroline

I posted these photos in 2010:
http://themanchesters.org/forum/index.php?topic=4993.0

I was given them at the Surrey branch of the WFA when I was a member, your more then happy to use them, and if you PM me your email I will send you the part of the 13th war diary you are looking for.

Roy
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 19, 2017, 11:33:38 PM
All
I continue be amazed at the knowledge of this forum and your generosity.  Thank you.

It is an interesting point about HMT v HMS.  I have seen both used in the articles I have read.  If the consensus is for HMT I am happy to change in the blog (though obviously not in the transcript of the diary).  Thoughts?

Perhaps I have overegged the changing of the guard.  I assumed, possibly incorrectly, that it would involve the change over process. Later in the diary he also mentions 'quarter guard' duties.  When I read up on this term - everything indicated that 'quarter guard' is formal or ceremonial.  This didn't always fit with Frank's description.  Perhaps he was using these terms incorrectly and he was really on sentry duty?

The time changes you mention in WWII are interesting because there is a pre-printed page in Frank's diary that gives the times of different countries to GMT in minutes rather than hours (the exception was North America).  Apparently it was only after WWI that time zones using complete hours were introduced globally.  I am hoping to put these pre-printed pages into the blog with some explanatory text - but still trying to figure out how best to do this.

The photographs Monsster provided are an incredible resource and I am still working my way through them.

I have been on the National Archive and downloaded the 13th & the 9th in France.  By chance I am in London early in 2018 and have requested the 13th documents for Salonika.  I plan to photograph them.  The ones I have seen courtesy of the Forum are incredibly valuable.  Frank is on the front early in 1918 so it will be interesting to find out what the military purpose of some of his forays into no man's land etc are.

Another question if I may - you mention Frank having SWB on his medal record.  What does SWB mean?   There is a reference beside the tag - is this something I can use to find more specific information?

Thanks again!
Caroline
http://ayearofwar.com
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 20, 2017, 07:58:54 AM
Hi Caroline,
I tend to agree with Philip as to whether the Kashmir was HMS or HMT. I‘m not an expert on Naval matters but HMS are warships rather than Transports etc.

SWB is the abbreviation for Silver War Badge. It was issued to servicemen who were no longer fit to serve through wounds or illness.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_War_Badge

http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/soldiers/how-to-research-a-soldier/campaign-medal-records/records-of-the-silver-war-badge/

Charlie

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 20, 2017, 06:36:36 PM
Hi Caroline

If you are coming to London and visiting the National Archives let us know as I could meet up there and give you some help with your research.

Roy
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 21, 2017, 11:24:24 AM
In the matter of whether or not a Royal Navy ship should carry the prefix "H.M.S." or "H.M.T." is not easy to ascertain. For instance, it would appear that the Otranto was entitled to the prefix "H.M.S." as it was originally commissioned as an armed merchant cruiser, only in later years to operate as a troopship.

Further confusion followed.  I researched the WW2 commandeered  Belgian trawler "Rubens", a Royal Navy vessel attacked and sunk in February 1941 by a Focke Wulf 200 Condor, an attack in which all hands were lost, including my friend.  I note that this vessel is sometimes given the prefix "H.M.S." and at other times "H.M.T." which is, I presume, intended to indicate that the letter "T" stands for trawler!

Unless absolutely certain of a ship's status, I tend always to take the easy way and describe such vessels as say, "HM trawler 'Rubens' or in the case of submarines, as an example, ' HM submarine L.21'."    PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 21, 2017, 07:07:48 PM
I also looked up ships prefixes on wikipedia  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ship_prefix It said that HMT was Hired Military Transport for UK ships and was now retired as a prefix.  Seems weird when HM (apart from this one instance) always stands for His/Her Majesty e.g HMHS  is His Majesties Hospital Ships.

Any advice gratefully received:
You will notice that a couple of Frank's recent diary entries have question marks in them - both my inability to read as well as understand what he has said.

Does anyone know a good way of looking up soldiers from WWI?  I use Ancestry.co.uk and also the National Archives - but it seems that without their number and regiment - it is almost impossible.  Frank names a lot of 'Shaw lads', family members and other soldiers he served with in his diary and I am drawing a blank trying to trace them.
Best Regards, Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 21, 2017, 08:48:08 PM
Caroline,
I understand from your previous posts that the „Shaw lads“ were serving alongside your Grandfather in the 13th Bn, post their names perhaps someone will be able to indentify them.

Re the abbreviation „2.R. & DA.“ in the entry for 21st Dec. I think that it is not an abbreviation but the Pennant numbers of the 3 „Torpedo Boats“ - 2., R. and 0A. (I‘m pretty sure it is not DA the D in Dec is too different). Which would make 2. the Ortolan or Slaney and 0A. the Canterbury, unfortunately R. is not listed.

http://www.naval-history.net/WW1NavyBritishShips-Dittmar6PendantNos.htm

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 22, 2017, 12:47:06 AM
Charlie, Thanks for your suggestion.  Here are the names of the soldiers Frank mentions serving with. Any information on any of them - gratefully received.

Lieutenant Rowe (said goodbye just after arriving in Salonika)
Dickinson (no first name) from Shaw
Bob Prenty
Charlie Wild
David Hallsworth
Jack Serlook (not sure about surname).  Frank really likes him & says he is 'more a Christian than many self-professed Christians')
Harry Oliver (Shaw)
Patrick Garret
Harry Taylor
Joe Harrison
Lieutenant Walwork
Joe Cheetham (from Shaw)
Lieutenant Barbie or Parker?
Charlie Caithness
GH Thompson
Staff-Captain Fox - 6th Battalion?
W Tompkinson died in hospital Sept 8th 1918
George Dryson (from Shaw), Sergeant Gordon & Lieutenant Fazacilay killed Oct 9th 1918
2nd Lieutenant Hobbs killed Oct 10th 1918 (had Frank's water bottle)
W Hilton
Lieutenant Smith & Richards both killed Oct 19th, 1918



Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 10:05:21 AM
W Tomkinson

Pte William, 5098, 13th & 9th Bns, died in hospital in France 07.09.1918, from Hulme Manchester, an original member of the 13th Bn.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/269052/tomkinson,-/

Perhaps someone can make out what is entered in Soldiers Effects, I‘m not sure if its the name of the hospital or what he died of.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 10:22:02 AM
Sgt Gordon

6011 Sgt William Gordon MM, 13th and 9th Bns, KiA 08.10.1918, an original member of the 13th Bn.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1742920/gordon,-william/
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 22, 2017, 11:19:00 AM
Charlie,

W.Tompkinson. May I offer Lobar pneumonia. PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 12:03:05 PM
Charlie,

W.Tompkinson. May I offer Lobar pneumonia. PhilipG.

Yes, thank you Philip

George Dryson

36609 Pte George Dyson (no r), 13th & 9th Bns, KiA 08.10.1918, his War Gratuity indicates he  enlisted or was mobilized in June 1916.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/588184/dyson,-george/

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 22, 2017, 12:33:45 PM
Lt. Fazacilay.
I offer 2nd Lt. Jospeh Fazackerley   13th Manchesters. DOW 24.10.18. Buried Mont Huon Military Cemetery. Le Treport.   PhilipG.

Previously 2480 Pte 1/5th Bn Liverpool Regt, renumbered 200615 in 1917, to France 21.02.1915, discharged to Commission 29.05.1917
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 12:43:14 PM
Lt Smith

2/Lt Henry Smith, previously 2495 Pte H Smith Notts and Derby Regt, went to France 01.03.1915, discharged to Commission 29.5.1917, Commissioned into 13th Bn, KiA 19.10.1918.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/324345/smith,-henry/
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 02:17:22 PM
Lt Richards

The only Lt Richards I could find in the CWGC records is 2/Lt W E Richards, 3rd Bn Royal Sussex Regt, who died of wounds on 11.12.1918. 3/Royal Sussex Regt was a Depot/Training Bn which remained in the UK throughout the war. It is quite possible that he was Commissioned into the Royal Sussex Regt and was attached to another Regiment.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/660490/richards,-/

2/Lt Hobbs

Lt Richard John Walmsley Hibbs, formerly 9392 Pte Hibbs, Inns of Court Officer Training Corps, Commissioned into 22nd Bn Manchester Regt, to France 20.01.1917, KiA 08.10.1918 with the 9th Bn.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/588201/hibbs,-richard-john-walmsley/

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 03:01:10 PM
Bob Prenty - 304090 Pte Robert Prenty 13th and 9th Bns later 69509 Cheshire Regt.

David Hailsworth - 304086 Pte David Russell Hallsworth, 13th & 9th Bns

Jack Serlook - 304099 Pte John Sherlock, 13th Bn and 45692 Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

GH Thompson - 14057 Pte George Henry Thompson, 13th & 9th Bns
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 05:25:15 PM
Captain Fox

two served with the 2/6th Bn, Charles Henry & Gilbert Wheaton. Do you have a date or more information that may help to establish the correct one.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 22, 2017, 09:10:17 PM
Lt Walwork

Lt, later Captain, Ernest Wallwork
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 23, 2017, 09:06:22 AM
C Wild - 304082 Pte Charles Wild 13th & 9th Bns

Patrick Garret - probably 352113 Pte William Garrett 9th Bn and 69781 Cheshire Regt. How many Garretts are not known as Pat!
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on December 23, 2017, 11:54:18 AM
Caroline,

The 9th battalion Manchester Regt. was part of 199 Brigade of the 66th (2nd/East Lancashire) Division, the other components being the 5th Connaught Rangers and the 18th King's.    At 8 am on the 8th October 1918, the battalion took part in an attack on the large village of Serain.     This village is adjacent to the Riqueval to Le Cateau road (D932).

The village was attacked by the 5th Connaughts and the 9th Manchesters accompanied by 8 tanks.   It was obvious that some fierce fighting ensued, for the capture of the village was not reported as complete until 7 pm.

It would seem that it was in this battle that Gordon, Dyson and Hibbs were killed.  PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on December 23, 2017, 03:57:14 PM
You guys are absolutely amazing!  Thanks so much for these incredible insights.

I have put in the information about the pendants into the comments for the post of 21st Dec 1917 - so I could give you some of the credit which you thoroughly deserve.

Hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a very happy New Year.
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 24, 2017, 07:10:22 AM
Dickinson

39126 Pte Samuel Goodwin Dickinson, 13th & 9th Bns and 69504 Cheshire Regt. Lived at 24 Blakelock St, Shaw.


Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 24, 2017, 09:27:59 AM
1-9 Jan 1918
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 24, 2017, 09:30:14 AM
Next
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 24, 2017, 12:49:43 PM
The Fox Brothers
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on December 24, 2017, 12:50:58 PM
The Others Fox :o
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 27, 2017, 07:40:09 PM
Caroline

W Hilton

There are two possibilities for this man but it may be possible to identify the correct one by the diary entry dates.

13349 Pte William Hilton, 13th Bn, from Clayton, an original member of the Battalion, posted to the UK 08.06.1918.

28933 Pte William Hilton, 13th & 9th Bns, from Ince, joined the 13th Bn 18.01.1918.

Both men's service records have survived.

Are you aware that your Grandfathers brother served as 16237 Pte William Belford Whitehead with East Lancashire Regt?

Charlie


Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on December 28, 2017, 02:08:09 PM
Joe Cheetham - probably T4/214730 Pte Joseph Cheetham, Army Service Corps. Enlisted 10.12.1915, served in Salonika where he contracted Malaria, lived at 154 Milnrow Rd, Shaw.

Joe Harrison - 5950 Pte Joseph Robert Harrison, 13th Bn, later 45654 2nd Bn King‘s Shropshire Light Infantry.

There are too many possibilities for Harry Taylor. Are you sure about the surname Caithness?, I can‘t find anything in the military or census records. Reference to the Bn War Diary may help identifying Lts Rowe and Barbie/Parker. I have also drawn a blank on Harry Oliver.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on January 01, 2018, 10:54:09 AM
Happy New Year!

Charlie, you mentioned William Whitehead - he was actually Frank's nephew.  Frank was the youngest child and his eldest sister (Elizabeth)was born in 1861 - she was 27 when Frank was born. So a lot of his nephews and nieces were around his age.

I do have some more family members that I would like to trace - many of whom crop up in the diary. Any insights gratefully received.

Harold Greenhalgh born in 1897 (Frank's nephew and in Salonika when Frank was there)

His nephews (sons of his eldest brother Sam Whitehead):
William b1898 (who you have already found)
Harry b1895
Albert b1893

Nephews (sons of his eldest sister Elizabeth who married a man with the surname Allen who ran off to America leaving her with the children):
John Thomas Allen b1884
Joseph F Allen b1894

Frank's other brothers were (not sure if they were too old for service and I don't know if they had any children):
Joseph Whitehead b1873
Harry Whitehead b1876

My grandmother's brothers (she was a Sutton, her family were all from Shaw) also served and are mentioned in the diary:

Abram Sutton was with the 27 King's Liverpool (I have 108 as the first digits of his number).  He was originally at the A Company Sidestrand Camp near Cromer in Norfolk.  I think he might then have been deployed abroad from references Frank makes to him.
 
Fred Sutton 388973 with the BSF (818 Divisional Employment??).  I know from family history that Fred went onto Russia (to fight with the White Army??)  He had a terrible time and would never talk about it.  I see that some troops after Sept 1918 victory in Salonika did move onto Russia but don't know much more than this.  Do you know what Divisional Employment means?

Best regards
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on January 01, 2018, 02:16:23 PM
Caroline,
William B Whitehead served with the 8th & 6th Bns East Lancashire Regt.

Fredrick Sutton had previously served as 45026 South Wales Borderers. A Divisional Employment Company belonged to the Labour Corps. The Companies were manned by Soldiers who either through wounds or sickness were not fit enough to serve on the front line. His transfer to the Labour Corps suggests that he was either wounded or suffered from some longer term illness.The Companies were responsible for running all sorts of things from Cinemas & laundry to clothing stores. Themonsstar is the man to answer questions about the Labour Corps. 818 Divisional Employment Coy was a part of the 27th Division. The Division moved to Russia in late 1918 early 1919

http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/order-of-battle-of-divisions/27th-division/

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on January 01, 2018, 08:24:13 PM
Abram Clegg Sutton

Enlisted 10.12.1915 so a Derby Scheme volunteer, discharged 14.07.1919. Discharged as no longer fit to serve due to illness and awarded SWB number B/275513. He was discharged as 035219 Pte, Royal Army Ordnance Corps.

I cannot find anything to suggest that he ever served overseas. The 27th Bn Kings Liverpool Regt was a Home Service Bn formed at Sidestrand in April 1918. As far as I can tell he has no medal entitlement.

Charlie


Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on January 02, 2018, 11:26:15 AM
Caroline,
I refer to your mention of the British Army in Russia in 1918 & 1919.  (Fred Sutton).  This it appears, concerned the revolution in Russia in 1917 and the need for ultimate interventions by the Allies; interventions being made in Murmansk and Vladivostock.     

It is interesting to note that the regiments involved chose to include these interventions in their Battle Honours.   For example, the King's Liverpools (17th Bn) - Archangel 1918-1919 and the Hampshires (9th Bn) - Siberia 1918-19, Archangel  1919.    PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: sphinx on January 02, 2018, 04:37:58 PM
Not forgetting the 1st Garrison Battalion The Manchester Regiment who were there also.

regards
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on January 02, 2018, 07:12:19 PM
The 27th Division served in south Russia with its HQ initially at Tifilis. Strangely enough no army units were awarded a Battle Honour for South Russia only the RAF.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on January 03, 2018, 11:14:42 AM
Sphinx,

Of course you are absolutely right.   The 1st Garrison Battalion was at Vladivostok having taken over the Middlesex Regiment's base.    There seems to be doubt as to whether or not some of the Manchesters were ultimately attached to the "Die Hards" and then given Middlesex Regiment numbers.

In the event, it would appear that it was decided not to include "Siberia" in the Manchester Regiment's Battle Honours list.   PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on January 03, 2018, 11:47:26 AM
Charlie,

Thank you and I note your remarks.   An item came up in research concerning South Russia, in which it put forward the information that the 1st Brigade RFA served in the region of Batum (Black Sea area) and Tblisi (Tifilis).  Mention was also made of the 17th Field Coy. R.E. and 82nd Field Ambulance reaching Batum and detachments being sent to Poti which was north of Batum.   From what you say it seems quite unfair that these units were not afforded the Battle Honour "South Russia".   PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: sphinx on January 03, 2018, 12:38:34 PM
Hello,

Here is a shortened (pictureless) version of an article I wrote for the OMRS Journal a couple of years ago re John Robinson whose medals I own.
You may find it of interest with the Russian aspect.

John Robinson b. 18.9.1882 at Bootle, Liverpool. By 1904 John had relocated to Manchester & was living at 24 Ellesmere Street, Hulme & working as a dock labourer at Salford Docks for the Manchester Ship Canal Co. On 6.9.1904 at Manchester he enlisted in the 6th Militia Bn. The Manchester Regt as Pte 135 & on 24.10.1904 attested for the regular Bn’s of the Regt at Ashton-u-Lyne.  He became Pte 224 & was posted to the 4th Bn at Cork.  In 1906 he was transferred to the 1st Bn in India.  On 11.12.1913 he transferred to the Army Reserve. 

He was recalled to the Colours on 5.8.1914, & posted to the 2nd Bn in France.  On 23.11.1914 at Ypres he was slightly wounded & evacuated back to 2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester. When fit he joined the 1st Bn in France on 25.3.1915 & on 11.12.1915 embarked for Iraq. A/Cpl on 11.10.1916 & instructor in musketry. On 6.2.1917 transferred to a Prov. Bn “B” at Bangalore & was A/Sgt on 12.3.1917.  He returned to the 1st Bn in Iraq on 4.6.1917 & on 15.1.1918 he joined Dunsterforce bound for Persia.  By 17.8.1918 the Force was at Baku & a school for the instruction on MG’s was set up there.  Due to an overwhelming force of the Turkish Army they withdrew by boat on 14.9.1918 & Dunsterforce was ended. 

He then went to India, leaving there on 23.11.1918 for Vladivostok, Siberia, Russia to train the White Russians. There was a training school, including a Musketry range, for 'White' Russian army officers & NCOs on Russian Island, near the port of Vladivostok &  John was one of the Musketry staff there.  The work of the British Army Instructors was very important to the Russians & he was awarded the MSM as a tactful & capable instructor doing excellent work showing much keenness, energy & initiative in the construction & up-keep of ranges & targets, under difficult conditions.  Through his ingenuity & origination, many sound appliances have were consummated.  His sound forethought & practical work was greatly instrumental in raising the standard of training at the school. The MSM was the only one awarded to the whole of the Manchester Regt for Siberia. He returned from Russia on 2.1.1920 to the Depot, Ashton.

On 27.4.1920 he was posted to the 1st Bn in Ireland but was soon attached to  Norperforce, operating in N.W. Persia until 21.4.1921 receiving the GSM 18 with the single clasp “N.W. PERSIA”, another unique medal to the Regt. He is also entitled to the 1914 Star Trio. In 1920 he was renumbered as 3512193 & returned to the Depot on 28.8.1921 before joining the 2nd Bn in India on 29.9.1921.  On 9.7.1923 he was attached to the Auxiliary Force India as a Staff Sergeant Instructor with the 1st Bn, The Great Indian Peninsula Railway Regt, Bombay Bn.  On 7.8.1923 he was awarded his ALS&GC Medal & on 3.12.1925 he returned to the Depot.  On 20.12.1925 after 21 yrs & 58 days he was discharged from the 2nd Bn. He received a pension of 37s 1/2d for life from 8.12.1925 & resided at 53 Nelson Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester.

regards
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on January 03, 2018, 01:15:06 PM
Sphinx,

Very interesting, indeed. Thank you.   PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on January 20, 2018, 11:26:15 PM
Hello
Thanks so much for the wonderful information on those serving in Russia - John Robinson's story was particularly fascinating.

I thought you might be interested in a couple of things I have been up to regarding Frank's Diary and hopefully bits might be useful to some of you.  (Probably about time I tried to give something back to this wonderful Forum!)

Thanks to themonsstar, I had a successful day at  the National Archive and photographed the 13th Battn. War Diary for Jan-June 1918.  I now have a good resolution set of photographs (including maps and sketches) that I would be happy to share.  I am also part-way through transcribing them if that is useful to any of you (Jan & Feb finished).

Now that Frank is with the 13th on the Dojran Front - the Battalion diary and his are dovetailing very well.  I am including both in the daily posts.  I also have a digital copy of the map that is used by the Battalion and referenced in its diary.  It is held by McMaster University in Canada (strange as I live here too).  A link to that map will appear in the post on Tuesday, though I can send earlier if useful.

I have been (slowly) reconciling some of the hand drawn sketches in the Battalion diary with this map - fascinating! 

I also did a bit of digging on a former commanding officer of the 13th (1916-17) Lt Col AFC Maclachlan DSO and came across a plaque in his local church of Newton Valance in Hampshire.  It was commissioned by the Officers of the 13th.  I attach it here.

Best regards
Caroline

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: themonsstar on January 25, 2018, 03:32:54 PM
Here is GRO 1011 Salonika 23rd April 1917

Cheers Roy
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on January 25, 2018, 06:58:47 PM
Roy
Thanks so much for sending GRO 1011.  Having read it - it sheds such light on the Battalion War Diary.  Do you think most of the Officers and other ranks under this GRO were in hospital?
Best regards
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on January 29, 2018, 03:32:58 PM
Hi
I wonder if anyone could help me interpreting some remarks in the 13th Battalion War Diary?

When describing action on certain days in Feb (when Battalion is again on the front lines) 'our artillery only registered'.  This phrase comes up a few times, does anyone know what it means?

Another one in reference to work to be undertaken - 'screen strengthening'. What would a screen be and how would it be used? 

'bombproof dugouts to have two exits' - while this makes sense does anyone know why they decided this then?  Was it a local decision or broader instruction?

Early in February, the diary becomes obsessed about 'quantities of fat returned' being much less than previously.  The notes go on about Australian and African meat having less fat and the lack of bacon and eating of rabbits.... Any idea why this was monitored? Was fat used for something?

Thanks
Caroline

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on January 29, 2018, 04:13:29 PM
Caroline,

Registration is when a gun seeks out a target before an operation, the range and direction are noted so that the target can be re-found quickly when the attack takes place.

A screen would be used to restrict the enemy‘s view of something - a road, a building, a gun emplacement etc. It‘s a very basic type of camouflage, see the photo here

https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205312368

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on January 30, 2018, 08:08:35 AM
Caroline,

Re fats etc.   From what you write it would appear that this was possibly part of the Army's salvage campaign where fats would be put to good use in respect of the war effort.    PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on January 30, 2018, 08:59:53 AM
Caroline,

Fat was used in the manufacture of explosives in ww1.

Nitroglycerin was used extensively in W.W.I as a high explosive. It is a colourless, oily, and unstable liquid that decomposes with explosive violence when heated or jarred.

Nitroglycerin, is made by reacting glycerol  with concentrated nitric and sulphuric acids.

Glycerol is present in the form of esters (glycerides) in all animal and vegetable fats and oils.

You learn something every day, I didn't know this so thank you for asking the question :)

Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: george.theshed197 on January 30, 2018, 10:18:55 AM
Let us keep keep our fingers crossed that some "yoik" cannot read this lot  !!!

George
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: timberman on January 30, 2018, 11:21:31 AM
Sadly George it's all freely available on the internet.

I just googled fat used in ww1.


Timberman
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: george.theshed197 on January 30, 2018, 12:06:36 PM
Yes !
I just did also - Hey ho.
George
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on January 30, 2018, 02:24:10 PM
Hi
This yoik is very grateful for all your info!

I have another, probably dumber question....

I was looking for more info on the commanding officer for the 13th -  JFB Morrell - and came across the Monthly Army Lists (on-line at the National Library of Scotland)
http://digital.nls.uk/british-military-lists/archive/106295693

This provides a list of all Officers by Regiment and Battalion each month.  What confused me was that the 13th Officer list runs for the whole of 1918.  Despite the fact that the 13th were absorbed into the 9th from August 14th.  The 9th (as it appears in the list) remains a Territorial Force for the duration - although according to the BWD it drops the (T) in August. 

I know the Lists were rather out of date as Morrell didn't appear until May 1918 though he had taken over at the turn of the year.  However, from the Officer list - it is clear that they were the ones who served in France from July.  Morrell was still writing and signing the BWD until February 1919 - though from mid-August 1918 as the 9th Bn, Manchester. They appear to have only taken on two Captains and one 2Lt from the 9th.

I suppose in summary I don't really understand what the 'absorbing of Battalion' means or why it happened - apart from 66th Division orders.  Can any one shed any light please?  Why the change happened?  Was it anything more than a name change? Was the 9th (T) Bn already in France?  Why wouldn't the 13th absorb the 9th - if the Officers and troops stayed largely the same?

Thanks
Caroline

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on January 30, 2018, 08:47:13 PM

I suppose in summary I don't really understand what the 'absorbing of Battalion' means or why it happened - apart from 66th Division orders.  Can any one shed any light please?  Why the change happened?  Was it anything more than a name change? Was the 9th (T) Bn already in France?  Why wouldn't the 13th absorb the 9th - if the Officers and troops stayed largely the same?

Hello Caroline,
There is no such thing as a dumb question!  :)

After the battles of March 1918 the 66th Division and its component units, along with the rest of the army had suffered massive casualties, so much so that the Division had been reduced to a training cadre and needed to be reformed. There were more Infantry battalions than there were soldiers to fill them so therefore some battalions were disbanded and their remaining soldiers posted to the battalions that were to remain. This is what happened to the 13th Bn.

Up till February 1918 there had been a 1/9th Bn and a 2/9th Bn, again due to losses and lack of replacements they were amalgamated to form the 9th Bn. Both of the battalions had been in France since 1917, the 1/9th had previously served in Egypt and Gallipoli. The reason the 13th Bn was disbanded and the soldiers posted to the 9th Bn was probably that it was the junior infantry battalion in the division.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on February 01, 2018, 01:08:01 PM
Thanks Charlie!  I had failed to notice the 1/9th and 2/9th in my trawl of the Monthly Army Lists.  I am going to go back and look at them now.  It is interesting too that in post-war information on Morrell (Jan-Aug CO of 13th and then CO of 9th till Feb 1919) - he was always noted as the CO for the 13th and not of the 9th (even though the 9th arguably saw more 'action' in France under his leadership - with the battles in October 1918).  Do you think that is because his leadership of the 9th included fewer months of war time and the battalion strength was declining?

Also, I was reading about the structure of the BSF and didn't see any mention of the RAMC within its structure.  Was the RAMC regarded as an independent structure?  If not, do you know how it tied into the BSF hierarchy and into the Army more generally? 

Thanks again to you and others who found me the war records of various of Frank's fellow soldiers and officers.  I have started to use them in the posts over recent days and will use more as I go on.  It is interesting and sad to me that a couple of days ago I wrote about the 'Temporary' Officers and yesterday found an example of a soldier promoted from the ranks (2nd Lt Joseph Fazackerley) and a soldier who came up through the Inns of Court OTC (2nd Lt Richard John Walmsley Hibbs)- both of whom died in October, 1918 with the 9th.
Caroline 
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on February 01, 2018, 07:43:28 PM
Caroline,
The RAMC was a fully integrated part of the army and provided care from the front line right through to the hospitals in the UK. Each Division usually had three Field Ambulances, the Casualty Clearing Stations and hospitals etc were under Corps or Army control, orders for RAMC were issued through the divisional Assistant Director Medical Services.

The following links should be of interest to you.

The evacuation chain: http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/soldiers/a-soldiers-life-1914-1918/the-evacuation-chain-for-wounded-and-sick-soldiers/

The part of the History of the Great War, which deals with the medical services in Macedonia: https://archive.org/stream/medicalservicesg04macp#page/n3/mode/2up

A map showing the locations of the various medical units in Macedonia: http://digitalarchive.mcmaster.ca/islandora/object/macrepo:4141

Hopefully someone with more knowledge of the subject then me will be able to help you with Lt.Col Morrell.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on February 01, 2018, 09:52:25 PM
Hi
I have questions about Sgt Ralph Widdowfield 6132 of C Company, 13th Manchesters. 

He was awarded the DCM in 1917 and according to BWD went off to Officer Cadet Unit in Feb 1918 with CSM E Richardson (9359), A King (5106) & E Webb (2997721).

I assumed Sgt Widdowfield was going to become an Officer - but it looks like when he was discharged in 1920 it was either as a Corporal or Sgt.   

Would he have gone to instruct at the OCU?  Would he have failed to be commissioned as an Officer? Are there any records I can look at - I have been on Ancestry.

Any insights gratefully received.
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on February 01, 2018, 10:10:37 PM
He was Commissioned on 04.02.1919
https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/31179/supplement/2259

As well as the DCM he was also awarded the Cross of Karageorge 2nd Class

https://www.thegazette.co.uk/Edinburgh/issue/13202/page/513

Move back a page in the link to page 512 to see the beginning of the list..

Where have you found that he was an NCO at discharge?

Charlie


Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on February 02, 2018, 03:19:11 PM
Thanks for the extra info on Sgt Widdowfield. Was it standard to take so long to be commissioned after OCU training?  I thought they were trying to churn out Officers to fill the gaps.

The document I referred to in which he remains a Sgt is on Ancestry.co.uk and relates to the British War & Victory Medals - dated 1920.  Not sure the link will work but here it is:

https://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bin/sse.dll?_phsrc=rmG1&_phstart=successSource&usePUBJs=true&gss=angs-c&new=1&rank=1&msT=1&gsfn=Ralph&gsfn_x=0&gsln=Widdowfield&gsln_x=0&gskw=Manchester%20Regiment%206132&cpxt=1&cp=4&MSAV=1&uidh=6x3&pcat=39&h=4086290&recoff=5%209&dbid=5119&indiv=1&ml_rpos=16

Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on February 02, 2018, 04:23:37 PM
Hi Caroline,

Officer training took approximately 4!/2 months.

Thanks for the link. He wasn't demoted, the War and Victory Medals were issued impressed with the highest rank a soldier held in a theatre of war up to and including 11.11.1918, in his case Acting Warrant Officer Class 2. The 1914-15 Star was issued with the rank a soldier held when he first entered a theatre of war during the qualifying period for the Star, Ralph Widdowfield was a Corporal at that time.

His DCM Citation is attached.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on February 23, 2018, 03:57:28 PM
Hi
I have been transcribing the 13th Manchesters BWD and have come across the following entry in mid-March 1918.  Does anyone know whether this is describing a significant reassignment of the front line from the French to the British Army?  I haven't found any reference to it elsewhere.  Also, can anyone shed any light on what it means to become 'Corps Reserve'?
Thanks
Caroline

13th  (Service) Battalion War Diary - 18th March 1918 - No 1 Sector, Olasli
Extract from 66th Infantry Brigade Memo No 18:
'The British Front will be extended westwards to the Vardar River. The 26th Division will take over the Subsection now occupied by the French between Selimli Dere and the Vardar. The 22nd Div will extend to its left and take over the front of the front of the Right Subsection (78th Infantry Brigade) of the 26th Division. On completion of the reliefs, the tactical and administrative boundary between the Right and Left Sections will run - From the point where the road crosses the enemy’s front trenches SEL B - Selimli - Dautli (all inclusive to 22nd Division) - the work known as ‘COL POST’ (AH22) just West of Glengarry Hill (inclusive the 22nd Division) - Mamelon Vert (inclusive to 26th Division) - Baraka - Petit Commandant - Hill 162, South of Le Bicot (All three inclusive to 22nd Division) - thence to a point on the Kilindir - Karasouli Road where a track enters it from the West at Pt 1246/1747 - from their eastward along the road (inclusive to 22nd Division) to where the present boundary crosses it (point 1252/17515) - thence following the present boundary to Milovci Hill (1273/1720) and along the road running past the East of Gerbazel (both inclusive to 26th Division) - to the road junction at pt 13045/16790.
The tactical and Administrative boundary between the Right and Left Subsections will become:- The Vladaja Ravine (incl to the right subsection) from the point were it passes through the enemy trenches west of the Tongue to its junction with the Doldzeli Ravine - DD4 (inclusive to the right subsection) - the fork in the Pearse Ravine at point 1237/18285 - from this (via Osford Camp inclusive to the Right subsection) along the track from the right of Pearse Ravine and so along the La Douane -Hill 420 road (inclusive to the left subsection) to the point where this road crosses the northern boundary of the Reserve Brigade area at point 1257/1799 (Hill 420). At 24:00 hrs on the night of 17th / 18th March the two battalions of the 66th Infantry Brigade now in Army Reserve at Olasli (13th Manchesters) and Hajdarli (8th KSLI) will come into Corps Reserve.'
The Battalion therefore becomes Corps Reserve.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on February 24, 2018, 10:58:11 AM
Hi Caroline,
The extension of the British front to take over a part of the French front is nothing out of the ordinary. The move could either be for operational or logistical needs. Judging by the rest of the WD entry I would guess that the British were taking over about 1000 yards of the French front.

Corps reserve is in principal the same as Brigade or Divisional reserve only at a higher level. The units allocated to the Corps reserve would not be in the front line but held further back. They would be under control of the Corps Commander and be deployed by him where and when the situation demanded it.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on April 23, 2018, 09:07:15 PM
Hi
I am trying to track down a Sergeant Abbott (or Abbot) who served with the 13th Manchesters, possibly B company in Salonika in 1918.
He is mentioned in my grandfather's diary - as his wife has just died.
Sorry I have no additional information.  Grateful for any suggestions or help.
Best regards
Caroline
http://ayearofwar.com
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on April 23, 2018, 10:05:07 PM
Hi Caroline,
The only Sgt Abbott or Abbot I can find in the Manchesters medal rolls is 61983 Sgt Henry S Abbott MM. He was a pre-war TF member with the Queens Royal West Surrey Regt, he first served overseas with the 2nd Bn QRWS Regt with which he won his MM. Unfortunately the medal rolls do not record with which Manchesters Battalion he served with.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on April 25, 2018, 04:51:25 PM
Hi Charlie
Thanks for looking up Sgt Abbott.

I am currently looking at some information you kindly provided a couple of months ago about William Garrett of the 13th, 352113 & Cheshires as 69781.

I was almost certain that I had found out more about William.  His family seemed to be next-door-neighbours of Sarah's family (Frank's wife). Now I am very confused, as it looks like that William may have served with the 1/Hampshire and been killed in 1917 (regt # 21991) - though I cannot be certain as the name is just shown as W. Garrett.  The family has a connection with Hampshire (his younger brother Fred later signed up with the same regiment).

Do you know any more about William of the 13th that would help me track him down?  I am pretty sure from Frank's diary that he is from Shaw.  It is probably a long shot - but you seem to be able to find your way around records much better than me.
Any information you might have, gratefully received, as ever.
Best regards
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on April 25, 2018, 08:18:07 PM
Hello Caroline,
I‘ve drawn a blank with any further on 352113, as I said at the time he was only a possibilty who followed Frank from the 9th Bn to the Cheshires.

21991 William Garrett was living at 54 Farrow St Shaw in 1911. His effects were left to his mother Emma Jane, his father was Charles Garrett. William was drowned on 17.06.1917 he had also served with the 15th Bn Hampshire Regt.

I cannot find a family link to Hampshire, his mother was born in Shaw and his father in Bedfordshire. I cannot find his brother Fred with the Hampshire Regt either, where does your information come from please? Fred was 14 in 1911 so he would have been liable for military service from 1916 on.

There is another Emma Jane Garrett in the 1911 Census who lived in Hampshire but she was single and aged 45 so obviously not William‘s mother.

I seems a bit strange to me that Frank mentions William (Pat) Garrett in mid 1918 when he has been dead for nearly a year. Can I ask in what context he is mentioned.

Charlie
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on April 25, 2018, 10:12:04 PM
Charlie
I will check Frank's diary for all mentions of Pat Garrett (this is what he called him).  In mid-May, Pat & another friend Harry Taylor visited Frank - I assumed they were from Shaw. You quite correctly said this was probably his nickname.  In the meantime, I attach the Attestation papers for Fred (I found them on Ancestry).  Could Pat have been George Garrett (the eldest brother)? I couldn't find any evidence of him signing up. 

You mentioned that William drowned - would he still have been buried in a war grave if it was an accident?
Sorry I made a mistake re their connection to Hampshire (apart from both William and Fred signed up with them). I was thinking of Luton...

There is actually a strong connection between Frank and his wife with the Garrett family. The Suttons (Sarah Whitehead's family) and Garratts lived next door to one another on Farrow Street and Sarah's brother Willie married the eldest daughter, Ethel.

Thanks for all your help
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: PhilipG on April 26, 2018, 08:31:06 AM
Caroline,

Your query re drowning and subsequent burial by the CWGC.   I give an example.  J/53916 Ordy. Seaman E.S. Lawrence of HM Motor Launch 368 Royal Navy.  Drowned in the River Danube at Baja, 29th July 1919.  Buried in Calvaria Cemetery, Hungary.   (South of Budapest).   PhilipG.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on April 26, 2018, 09:32:05 AM
Caroline,
All service personnel who died in service or died post discharge due to sickness or wounds incurred during service were entitled to be commemorated by the CWGC. William Garrett is buried in Crump Trench Cemetery, Fampoux https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/302928/garrett,-/

Pat could have been George, there is a George Garrett (54944) who served with the 15th Bn Hampshire Regt (William had served with the 15th). Whether this is the „George“ is impossible to tell. Only the 10th Bn Hampshire Regt served in Salonika and there is nothing in the medal rolls to suggest that he was transferred to the 10th Bn. Then again there is nothing in the medal rolls that indicate William served with the 1st Bn. At best its a very tenuous connection.

Charlie

Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on April 26, 2018, 03:42:14 PM
PhilipG & Charlie
Thanks for your insights - invaluable as ever.

I have a new dumb question.... what is 'company guard duty'?  I have found quite a lot written about guard duty generally (e.g. in the Field Service Regulations of 1909) but nothing specific.  Grateful if you could shed any light on this.
Best regards
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: artyhughes on April 26, 2018, 04:28:23 PM
Company guard is normally a guard of a Corporal in command,a lance corporal as second in command and normally 6 soldiers or even 3,the soldiers would act as sentries and be responsible for raising the alarm in the event of an attack or activity in the area to his front.The Corporal in Command or his second in command would be awake at all times,the sentry would usually be on sentry duty for 2 hours on sentry and 4 hours on rest,the guard would be dressed and at all times and ready to react to any crisis that could develope.the guard would be visited by an officer whilst on duty,the guard would stand to as would all the soldiers an hour before dawn and an hour before sunset,this was the times that an attack was most imminent,IF the company guard was in an area from the front the role of the guard was to protect the company area,raise the alarm in case of fire and responsible for the security, conduct and disciplne of troops leaving and entering the company area if they had been out on pass or recreation.
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on April 26, 2018, 05:07:21 PM
Arty
Thanks so much.  Very useful. 
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: CarolineBoo on June 27, 2018, 10:27:24 PM
Hi
The 13th Battalion Diary for June 30 1918 mentions a CQMS Hinds who has received the Military Medal - presented by no less than General Milne of BSF just before the Battalion left for France.

I cannot find anything about CQMS Hinds - please can anyone shed any light on him?
Best regards
Caroline
Title: Re: HELLO Frank's Diary 1917-18
Post by: charlie on June 28, 2018, 08:54:43 AM
Hi Caroline,
He was 1136 Robert Hinde. He was a pre war regular with the 1st Bn. He qualified for the 1914 Star with the rest of the Bn on 27.08.1914. As well as receiving the MM, he rose to the rank of WO2. He served with the 1st, 3rd and 13th Bns.

Charlie

https://www.thegazette.co.uk/Edinburgh/issue/13195/page/365