Author Topic: William Frederick Trotter Smith  (Read 6944 times)

Offline Geoff Southern

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William Frederick Trotter Smith
« on: April 16, 2016, 09:32:52 AM »
I am researching my Uncle, William Frederick Trotter Smith and would like to find his service record and any other information regarding him.

Information from his Wedding record suggests that he was born in 1903/4.

He married Jessimond Southern at St.Peter's Church, Woolton Liverpool on 12th March 1929. I have several wedding photos showing him in the uniform of a Lance Corporal in the Manchester Regiment (with the Fleur-de-Lys cap badge). The entry in the wedding book states that he was living in Ashton-under-Lyme at the time. His best man, who is also in the uniform of the Manchester  Regiment, was named as Herbert Thomas Burns.

His first Daughter was born in the third quarter of 1930 and her birth was registered in Elham, Kent, when he was presumably stationed at Shorncliffe.

I have a Regiment Christmas card which he sent to my Auntie Min in presumably 1930/1. The cover has a Fleur-de-Lys on it together with 63 in roman numerals and also has Moore Barracks, Shorncliffe printed on it. Inside are two photo prints entitled:- 'Presentation of the Regiment to HM the King' 16th May 1930 and 'Army Boxing Championship 1929-30, Runners-up'.

I have a photo(s) of an army band, marching, and marked on the back is Shorncliffe 13th September 1931.

On the 6th January 1932, his second daughter, Anne Christina Smith aged three months, died on HMT Dorsetshire in the Red Sea. She was born in the fourth quarter of 1931, her place of birth was Shorncliffe, Kent and her birth was registered in Elham, Kent. Presumably the troopship was on its way to India.

A photo shows my uncle with two other soldiers, the back of the photo is marked 'India 1932'. He is wearing shorts and a white vest which has the letters 'HQ' on it.
I also have two photos showing Manchester Regiment Soldiers with their Pith helmets and the Fleur de Lys badge is clearly visible.

Several photos relate to Khartoum, showing buildings, sand storms etc...one is dated 30-6-1933.

His Son was born in 1935, and his birth was registered in York in the third quarter of 1935. Presumably he was based at Strensall near York at this time.

Entries in a family diary show that he was in the UK on the 9th Feb 1935 and 26th December 1936 visiting Liverpool from York.

Another photo shows his Wife, Jess with my two cousins on a beach. The back of the photo is marked 'Scarborough 1938', the occasion was, I believe an army family outing.

I have scanned the Christmas card and photos and can email them to you if required.
Can anyone help, please?

Offline charlie

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2016, 08:00:20 PM »
Hello Geoff,
Welcome to the forum. You can obtain your Uncle's service record from the MoD, the forms can be downloaded here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/requests-for-personal-data-and-service-records

Please feel free to post any photos here on the forum, photos are always welcome. Details of how to upload photos can be found here

http://themanchesters.org/forum/index.php?topic=682.0

Charlie


Offline Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2016, 12:15:41 PM »
Hi Charlie,
Thanks for allowing me to join the Forum..
The problem is that I don't know my Uncle's date of birth (I can only estimate it to be 1902/3), his date of enrolment in the Manchester Regiment, and his date of death. From the evidence in my first email, I would think that he was a member of the 2nd Battalion, but otherwise I know very little.
Would the MOD be able to help in this situation? I am certainly going to try your suggestion.
I have attached a photo from his wedding in 1929, to maybe help identify the Manchester Regiment Battalion.
Thanks for your help,
Geoff.

Offline charlie

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2016, 05:55:10 PM »
Hello Geoff,
Thanks for posting the picture of the happy couple.

The enlistment rolls for the period 1920 - 1942 are available at the Regimental Archives, which will if he is listed, give you his service number. As long as you are able to quote his service number to the MoD, they should have no trouble finding his record.

If you are unable to get to the archive, the archivists will help if they can.

http://www.tameside.gov.uk/archives/manchesterregiment

Charlie

Offline Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2016, 08:48:32 AM »
Hi Charlie,
I have emailed the Archivists at Thameside as you suggested, thanks.
In my first email I mentioned that I had a photo of my Uncle seen with the letters HQ on his vest.
William Frederick Trotter Smith is the middle of the three soldiers.
I also have a group photo of Manchester Regiment Soldiers showing some with the same identification.
Am I right in thinking that this is an insignia worn by members of 'HQ' company or platoon?
If so, does the HQ company have special duties?
Thanks again,
Geoff

Offline Robert Bonner

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2016, 10:03:26 AM »
Geoff.
Headquarter Company contains all those responsible for the efficient administration and running of the battalion such as the cooks, drivers, signallers, sanitary men,orderly room clerks, education staff, armourer, tailors, cobbler, barber, Quartermaster's staff and most important of all the pioneers.  Quite a responsibility for the poor HQ Company Commander.
Robert

Offline Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2016, 08:52:47 AM »
Hi Robert,
thanks for the information regarding HQ company. This all helps to build a profile of
my Uncle's life in the Regiment.
I applied to Thameside for information regarding his army records and have just received
an answer. The Archivist found two soldiers with names beginning 'William Frederick' in the
1920s, but sadly they said that neither of them was my Uncle.
They said that there were many with the Christian name 'William', but that it would take
too long for them to check them all. Maybe I will try to visit the library and start working
through the names, if this is allowed.
Is it possible that the Regimental museum would have lists of soldiers who were transported
on the troopships 'Dorsetshire' or 'Nevasa' in the early 1930's, particularly 1931?
I have attached another Manchester Regiment Group photo which may be of interest...
Thanks again,
Geoff

Offline sphinx

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2016, 01:43:35 PM »
Geoff,

The enlistment Books are copied onto microfilm and are easy to read.

You will need to start c. 1918 upto 1929 and book a reader for a few hours.

If they let you have the original books they all have indexes at the rear which would make the searching much, much quicker, but I dont know if they do any more.

regards

Offline Wendi

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2016, 02:59:50 PM »
Hi Geoff,

With regard to his birth I can only find one in the date range you mentioned

William Frederick T Smith
Registration Year:    1901
Registration Quarter:    Apr-May-Jun
Registration district:    Gateshead
Inferred County:    Durham
Volume:    10a
Page:    1005

click here for information to apply for the birth certificate, an as you will be able to provide both parents names, they will not issue you with the certificate if the information does not match.

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 Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2016, 02:54:49 PM »
Hi Sphinx and Wendi,
Thank you both for your help. I have been in contact with the Archivist at Thameside and hope to visit there soon.
Wendi thank you for researching his birth details, for some reason I missed the birth entry you found..
I have visited my 92 year old relative and she remembers Uncle Fred and family leaving on a troopship bound for
Burma in the early 1930s, so I have been trying to research the movements of the 2nd Battalion in the 1930s.
Also I may check through the London Gazette books at Liverpool Record Office,
Thanks again,
Geoff

Offline mack

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2016, 08:51:38 AM »
hiya Geoff.
the man that wendi found joined the royal navy as a boy seaman on 9-7-16 till 16-3-17,his full name was William,frederick trotter smith,he was posted to HMS ganges,born 2-3-1901 gateshead,there was a comment in the comments column that said"traced to the depot of the Cheshire regiment".
he had brown hair+blue eyes

mack ;D

Offline Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2016, 09:59:45 AM »
Hi Mack,
thank you for the information.
There is then a possibility that my Uncle enlisted with the Cheshire Regiment and was later,
in the 1920s, transfered to the Manchester Regiment.
If that was the case, I presume that his name wouldn't be in the Manchester Regiment
enlistment records or would it?
thanks again,
Geoff

Offline sphinx

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2016, 10:16:57 PM »
No it would not be in them.

the Cheshire Regiment will have enlistment books though.  There museum is in Chester.

regards

Offline Geoff Southern

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2016, 09:44:24 AM »
hi sphinx,
thanks for your help.
I will look at the Cheshire Regiment site and perhaps their museum in Chester,
Geoff

Offline Wendi

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Re: William Frederick Trotter Smith
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2016, 02:07:15 PM »
hiya Geoff.
the man that wendi found joined the royal navy as a boy seaman on 9-7-16 till 16-3-17,his full name was William,frederick trotter smith,he was posted to HMS ganges,born 2-3-1901 gateshead,there was a comment in the comments column that said"traced to the depot of the Cheshire regiment".
he had brown hair+blue eyes

mack ;D

Excellent work Mack, as usual!!!
"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