Author Topic: Regimental Numbering  (Read 3286 times)

whizzbang

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Regimental Numbering
« on: January 18, 2011, 05:43:45 PM »
Hi all,

I'm hoping someone can help me understand my Great Uncle's regimental number from the Great War. On his medals and medal card his number is 57209 and he was with the 1/6th Manchesters. However, from the Manchester.org site and the Army Service Numbers site I see that soldiers of the 1/6th battalion were issued service numbers between 250001-275000. I note that his number fits in this range if you ignore the "2"  ???

I also understand that lower sequential numbers were issued before and early in the war until the blocks of numbers were issued. However, from the Army Service Numbers site the 1/6th was only at 5618 in September 1916 - it is impossible that +50,000 soldiers joined the 1/6th ahead of my uncle and before the numbering was changed to the 250001-275000 block!!

I am wondering if the number reported on my uncle's medals was simply shortened by dropping the "2"???

Any help would be appreciated!   

Cheers, Ian.
 

Offline harribobs

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2011, 06:56:02 PM »
Ian

we have done a little work on service numbers, i would suspect that his number was issued in late 1915 and this block of numbers applied to all battalions in the regiment

the re-numbering of the territorial men affected men who had a four digit s/n, so he wasn't included in that action

chris
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whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2011, 05:20:53 PM »
Thanks Chris.  My Great Uncle would only have been 16 or 17 in late 1915 but I suppose that's not impossible given the pressure to recruit soldiers at that time. If you have any reference info it would be greatly appreciated. Cheers, Ian.

Offline harribobs

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2011, 07:43:01 PM »
there were some blocks issued later than that in 1917, for some reason they were held back, it's possible that was the case.
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Offline mack

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2011, 11:41:02 PM »
hiya ian.
his number isnt part of the 1917 re-numbering system for the territorials,hes most likely to have been with the training reserve,along with thousands of other 18yr old servicemen,their regimental destination would have been unknown to them until they finished their training,once their training is completed,they would then be allocated to the regiments that needed reinforcements at the time,and then issued their numbers.

this is just a basic example of what i mean.

a 1000 men who have completed their training in england with the training reserve,are sent to the 30th infantry brigade depot at etaples,they are then given further training,once completed,drafts from these men,are sent to whichever manchester battalion needs replacements the most,your uncle could have ended up in any of the manchester batts,but at the time,the 1/6th were the battalion who had priority on the next draft

mack ;D

whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2011, 04:32:13 AM »
Hi Mack,

Thanks for that info - based on what you wrote I did a bit of reading about the Training Reserve and the Military Service Act on the "Long, Long Trail" site. So if I understand correctly, as a result of the Military Service Act of 1916 (Session 2), my uncle would have been conscripted as soon as he turned 18 in 1917 (I have to check his exact birthdate). There was no more volunteering once the Act was in place as it made volunteering redundant. He would then have been assigned to a Training Reserve battalion until he was sent to France. I gather that initially, conscripts had no choice of which regiment they served (and were thus unlikely to serve in their local regiment) with but that changed later in the war so that there was some alignment between TR units and the various regiments they reinforced:

Men who were posted to the TR battalions were not allocated to any particular regiment when the time came for them to be posted. So from this time on it is not safe to assume that a recruit would serve with his local regiment. Later, from May 1917, this arrangement was itself altered when the units of the TR became Graduated and Young Soldier Battalions and were once again aligned with specific regiments. (quote from Long, Long Trail)

Since my uncle was from the Manchester area and served with the Manchester Regiment it may be that this alignment was in place at the time.

Thanks again - this info has led me down an interesting path and I'm learning something! :)

Cheers, Ian.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2011, 04:48:19 AM by whizzbang »

Offline mack

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2011, 08:57:50 AM »
hiya ian.
herbert is named on the war memorial in hale,hes also on st peters church memorial,hale

mack ;D

whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2011, 01:26:37 PM »
Hi Mack,

Will have to get over to Hale/Manchester soon (I live in Toronto, so a bit of a long trail ;)). Herbert grew up in Hale and it would be nice to see those memorials. I did make it out to Flesquieres in France several times where he is buried. Also want to see the Manchester Regiment museum.

Thanks again!

Ian.
 

whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2011, 06:44:27 PM »
It's confirmed, I'm going to Blighty this summer! 

Many things on the travel itinerary but the Manchester Regiment Museum, Hale Memorial and St. Peter's are top of my list (maybe not for the rest of my family but I'm driving ;)).

Any other Manchester Regiment related "must-sees" in the area?

Cheers, Ian.



Offline spingo

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2011, 07:35:32 PM »
Evening Ian, if you follow this link http://www.carlscam.com/index.html it will take you to Carl's Cam site and a picture of the WWI memorial in Hale and the names of the men who are honoured. (Click on photos of memorials at the top of the page then scroll down to Hale). My grandfather William Thomas Spragg was also KIA on that day serving with the 11th Manchesters in operations near Cambrai, could it have been the same action?

regards Spingo
« Last Edit: April 18, 2011, 07:41:27 PM by spingo »

Offline Wendi

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2011, 10:10:03 AM »
Hi Ian !

Send forum member "Robert Bonner" a Personal Message, he is Chairman of the Regimental Museum, and will be only too pleased to know that you are visiting the Museum.

I'm sure you will enjoy your visit and luckily Manchester is big enough for the family to find something to interest them http://www.visitmanchester.com/  ;)

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

whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2011, 12:51:47 PM »
Evening Ian, if you follow this link http://www.carlscam.com/index.html it will take you to Carl's Cam site and a picture of the WWI memorial in Hale and the names of the men who are honoured. (Click on photos of memorials at the top of the page then scroll down to Hale). My grandfather William Thomas Spragg was also KIA on that day serving with the 11th Manchesters in operations near Cambrai, could it have been the same action?

regards Spingo

Thanks Spingo - what a great website!

I'm sure it was the same action - September 27 was the start of the big assault against the Canal du Nord during the "Hundred Days" offensive.

Cheers, Ian.

whizzbang

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Re: Regimental Numbering
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2011, 12:52:35 PM »
Hi Ian !

Send forum member "Robert Bonner" a Personal Message, he is Chairman of the Regimental Museum, and will be only too pleased to know that you are visiting the Museum.

I'm sure you will enjoy your visit and luckily Manchester is big enough for the family to find something to interest them http://www.visitmanchester.com/  ;)

Wendi  :)


Thanks Wendi!