Author Topic: 20177, Sergeant Joseph Nelson, 22nd Service Battalion, Manchester Regiment  (Read 10304 times)

patnel

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Hi Folks

I am new to the forum after having very recently found my Great-Grandfather's old Soldiers' Small Handbook (Army Form B.50).

I've had a long and keen interest in military history, but only recently in the last 2-3 years getting more involved with the Great War, and the Pals battalions especially.  We never knew much about my Great-Grandad, other than "he survived WWI and demobbed a sergeant" - that was it ! All my grandparents have passed away and it was never a subject talked about when I was younger.  The fact we knew little about him (or any family members who may have been involved) kept my interest at a sort of arms length, so to speak.  Seemingly not having someone "close" involved, or at least not knowing what it was they did during the war, maintained a detachmentfrom getting too deeply involved.  I wanted to, but it seemed intrusive.

But having very, very recently come across his handbook, stashed away in a old box, my Great-Grandad has almost suddenly become alive, especially having read Michael Stedman's book on both the Manchester and Salford Pals, which were read almost in anticiaption of some long lost news being found.

It would seem from his handbook, that my Great-Grandad Joe was 29 the day he joined up, which was 27th November 1914.  He was living in Beswick and had a wife and 4 children, which included my Grandad Joe.  The book, signed on 13th September 1915 by a Major TA (or FA) Williamson (??) says his army number was 20177, that he seems to have been a Sergeant in A Company, 22nd Service Battalion, the Manchester Regiment, which I know to be the 7th City Pals.

My quest for more information on his war record can now start in earnest and if anybody has information they can share, or point me in the right direction, I'd be most appreciative.  Can anyone who has perhaps already looked into the 22nd Manchester's shed any light on A Company ??  Does anyone know what section and/or platoon a Sergeant Joseph Nelson may have been involved with ??  Are there any photos ?? Do 22nd Battalion diaries exist ?? I don't even know if he was a front line soldier or not.  I know that in 1916, A Company was involved in the June 2nd night raid on Bulgar Point in front of Mametz village, which was then the target of the 22nd Manchester's advance on that fateful day 4 weeks later.  I also know that they suffered perhaps the most casualties out of all the Manchester Pals on July 1st, some 472 being listed as killed, wounded or missing.  I'd just like to find out a little more about my Great-Grandad Joe's involvement.

If anyone can help, I look forward to hearing from you,

Many Thanks, Patrick

patnel

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Hi Migky (and any others)

Thanks for the very swift reply !!   At the risk of seeming naive, what does this mean exactly and were's the best place to go from here ?? Is it likely he was transferred out of the 22nd Manchester's ??  Should I presume to "follow" his labour corps identity number 487008 to find out more ??  Or will his original 20177 guide me ??

Cheers, Patrick

Offline mack

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hiya patrick.
your GGF,was the platoon serjeant,in the III platoon,A.company,theres also a picture of him,with his platoon,on page 314 of the book of honour,but we dont know which of the three serjeants he is

can someone post the picture for patrick.

mack ;D

migky

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HI Mack, sorry did you mean this on?

http://i39.tinypic.com/5k0hm8.jpg


Migky ;)
« Last Edit: June 01, 2009, 04:36:48 PM by Migky »

Offline mack

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HI Mack, sorry did you mean this on?

http://i39.tinypic.com/5k0hm8.jpg


Migky ;)

thats the one micky.
patrick may be able to pick him out from this picture

mack ;D

Offline Wendi

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Hi Patrick and a warm welcome to our forum !

Is it likely he was transferred out of the 22nd Manchester's ??  Should I presume to "follow" his labour corps identity number 487008 to find out more ??  Or will his original 20177 guide me ??

The Medal Index Card (MIC) that Migky posted for you is a record of the Roll on which the record of his medals is held at The National Archive.  In your case it may not tell you anymore than you already know, as you have his Battalion etc., (themonsstar maybe able to check for you)

The MIC confirms him as Sergeant and a possible Territorial but again I'd need one of our chaps to confirm this for you..... he entered France on 11th November 1915, with the Manchesters.  The most lightly cause of transfer to The Labour Corps is injury/illness which caused his to be stood down until recovered, many men then re-entered and were posted to the Labour Corps as not fit for front line service.

Wendi   :)
"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

Offline Wendi

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Oh, one final thing.  He was "Z" Classed (Demobbed to the Reserves) 12th April 1919

Wendi  :)
"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

patnel

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Hi Wendi

thanks for the comments.  Is there any way to discover date of transfer into, and perhaps back out of, the labour corps ??  Or find out definitively the cause of any transfer ?? 

Must admit, this is all a bit overwhelming, all this amount of info about someone ........ and so quickly !!

Cheers, Patrick

Offline Wendi

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Thanks Patrick, we try !!!......

The bad news  :-\  The German Bombing on London in 1940 destroyed 60 to 70% of all WW1 soldiers papers.  The surviving papers are known (generally) as the burnt documents, they are currently being scanned and made available on the web via Ancestry.  Pension records are another source which survived, as did all the Medal Index Cards.

These documents are all held by The National Archives and can be searched in person, or by a researcher at Kew. 

Migky found your GGrandfathers MIC on Ancestry, so I'm assuming that he did not see any other papers for him, but as we are in a transitional period between the actual papers at Kew and a full on-line archive it's really not possible for me to advise you further, until the on-line archive is complete, or you visit Kew.

I hope at least some of the above makes sense!

Wendi  :)
"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

patnel

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Hi Wendi et al

Many thanks for your comments, they did make sense, but left me with a couple of further queries that hopefully could be clarified by someone.

May I assume that if my GGF records were part of the ones that were destroyed in WWII then there's little chance of finding out any more about his war record ?  And hence his transfer into (and possibly back out of ??) the labour corps. Would battalion war diaries (and I'm not sure whether there are any for the 22nd Battalion/7th City Pals) offer some info ?  I'm thinking of approaching the Regimental Museum/Tameside council to see if there are any diaries available for research, does anyone know if any such diaries exist ?

If his records weren't destroyed, could I hope that there may be a chance that they're still in system, waiting to be being transferred on-line ?  And if so, how do I confirm this ?  Is it a case of approaching the National Archives and "simply" asking the question ?  I assume from your comments that an individual can arrange to visit Kew and search in person, or arrangements can possibly be made for someone there to do so ?

Sorry for all the questions, perhaps there is a website or book which someone could point me in the direction of that contains everything I'd need to know to start delving a little deeper.

Cheers, Patrick  :)

Offline Wendi

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May I assume that if my GGF records were part of the ones that were destroyed in WWII then there's little chance of finding out any more about his war record ? 
  You may assume this  ;)

If his service record survives, it may surface.  Ancestry are also uploading pension records, and some of the service records are appearing there, but they say they have done all the "N's"  :-\ so until it's all finished, the answer is vague
I assume from your comments that an individual can arrange to visit Kew and search in person, or arrangements can possibly be made for someone there to do so ?
You assume correctly !!! http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/ and if you can't visit yourself our man at Kew is themonsstar, whose rates are very reasonable  :D

I have asked Capt. Robert Bonner (Rtd) to reply regarding the Museum, a member of our forum, and is associated with the Museum.

Wendi  :)

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

patnel

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Hi Wendi

Cheers for the pointers, as you've possibly guesssed  ;) I'm new to all this and your help is proving invaluable  ;D

I'll perhaps drop themonsstar a line to see what's what wrt Kew.  As for Capt Bonner, I've come across his name more and more over recent days as I've delved into matters surrounding the Regiment.  Was on the Museum's website today and had a more thorough look than before.  Saw quite a bit of info is available, more than I thought, details of publications, etc, and a lot with Capt Bonner's name associated with it.  Was going to drop them a line but I'll perhaps wait to see if the Captain gets back to me first, may even pop over to A-u-L this weekend as its only the other side of town from me.

Anyway, thanks again, you're a star !! :)

Offline Wendi

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Anyway, thanks again, you're a star !! :)

Believe me Pat when I tell you, these boys taught me all I know about The Manchester Regiment, and more.

I'm delighted that you have found help here, that's what it's all about!

Wendi  :)
"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

Offline 1954gladiator

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Hi Patrick
My grandfather survived WW1 & finished his war service in 1918 in the 22nd Bn (7th Pals); having enlisted in 1916 as a Royal Fusilier (City of London) before being transferd to the Manchester Regiment 20th Bn (5th Pals).  See his stories on this site A44510 A.Cpl Stanley Gilbert Gordon Vince.

I went to the NA at Kew (get a Reader Ticket on line before hand or when you arrive - it lasts for 3 years) & found my grandads war service record on microfilm with great staff help there.  War diaries exisit for both the 20th & 22nd Bn's. I also went to the Ashton under Lyne Library -a diary exists there for the 2Oth Bn; but not the 22nd Bn;! However, do visit the Museum of Manchester Regiment at Ashton if you can as the Regiments History is there for all to see & lots of exhibits that will help enhance your enjoyment of your grandads story

Do go to Kew & Ashton yourself!

Clive  
« Last Edit: June 04, 2009, 10:41:10 AM by greatbeanbags »
What we do in life echoes in eternity!

Offline Robert Bonner

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Within the Regimental Archives held in the Local Studies Library under reference MR1/3/1/48 is a typescript account of the 22nd Battalion  Manchester Regiment - service in France, Belgium, Italy and Egypt 1915-1918.  Available for all to read.

         
Robert