Author Topic: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt  (Read 169 times)

Offline Arthur Cooks lad

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L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« on: January 13, 2018, 07:40:05 PM »
Hi, I'm looking up my Grandad's cousin, who was killed in the German offensive starting 21st March 1918 around Villeret.

He is listed as dying on 31st March, but by then the Bn was much reduced in numbers (3 Officers and 107 OR's from what I've seen), and being relieved by the 18th Division, moving back to Gentelles, Longeau, and on to Pissy.
Is it likely he was killed in the action on or post 21st, and if so, why would his death not be recorded on the date?

I see from the War Diaries on Ancestry that the March Diary, and other records were lost in battle.

He is remembered on the British Memorial at Pozieres

Can anyone please advise if the recorded date of his death is probably correct, or recorded as 31st, as they didn't know when he went missing?

A second query would be to advise where I could find when he was made L.Cpl?

Many Thanks
Bill

Offline charlie

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2018, 09:34:36 AM »
Hello Bill and welcome to the forum.

Soldiers Effects records his death as being accepted as being between 21 & 31.03.1918. In short nobody knew. The CWGC seems to have no set way of recording such deaths, some are recorded between given dates and some, as in this case, the death is recorded as being the last date he could have been alive.

His service record would have recorded his promotion but as you probably know, it hasn‘t survived.

Charlie

Offline PhilipG

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2018, 10:09:57 AM »
Bill,

May I also welcome you to the Forum.    I note that the publication - Soldiers Died in the Great War - lists this NCO as being Killed in Action and the date given is 31st March 1918. PhilipG.

Offline Arthur Cooks lad

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2018, 11:47:30 AM »
Thank you Charlie and Philip for your responses.

I understand from reading the March War Diary (re-written from memory on 6th April by the CO Capt Anderton, - The previous Leader Major Whitworth having been wounded on 26th, and later died of wounds) that the German Advance appears to have been very violent, and with so many casualties, there must have been little time to recall who had been killed (or even taken prisoner) each day.  I looked at POW records, and Arthur wasn't there, though many Manchesters were.  I'm happy to stick with 31st as the last day he could have been alive.

I hadn't seen the "Soldiers Effects" part in Ancestry, and it is helpful to see that Arthurs Aunt Sarah received almost £17, and a War Gratuity of £8.10.  Please could you explain these? - Was either some sort of Pension?
It also shows that this was approved on 21st January 1922 - which seems very late.  Again, is there any reason for this?

Your knowledge of where to look, and of these processes, is admirable

Many Thanks for your help


Regards,
Bill

Offline charlie

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2018, 02:57:37 PM »
Bill,
I can‘t help much with the sums of money, only that the War Gratuity was a one off payment. I would suggest the date of January 1922 was down to the sheer numbers involved.

Charlie

Offline PhilipG

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2018, 10:22:47 AM »
Bill,

Re-reading your thread, I was reminded of a book entitled "Moments of Memory" written by the son of the Prime Minister, Herbert Asquith, who was also called Herbert, concerning the retreat of his artillery battery during the German Offensive of 21st March 1918.   It is of particular interest to those involved with the history of the Manchester Regiment, for this gunner officer served at Manchester Hill as a Forward Observation Officer.   Inevitably, his battery was forced into a fighting retreat until the German advance was held near Amiens.

What took my attention in his account of the withdrawal was that, on occasion, during the retreat, some of the battery's shells were "set at figure fuze O so as to burst near the muzzles in case the Germans tried to reach the guns".     As you remark, the German advance appears to have been very violent.   PhilipG.

Offline Arthur Cooks lad

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2018, 04:56:23 PM »
Thanks for the tip-off, I'll look what I can find out.

I've looked at War Diaries for March for 2/5th, 2/6th and 2/7th Manchesters, and it's clear the 199th / 66th were all in it together.  I'll keep looking as its proving really interesting!

I am now looking to see where and when Arthur enlisted - I've found a mention of Prince of Wales South Lancashire Regiment number 5196 in other records, but that's not helping me yet!
I'm trying to look through 177k Ancestry Attestation records, but not a simple task!

Thanks all for the help

regards,
Bill

Offline Arthur Cooks lad

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2018, 05:06:19 PM »
Just found a link to the book you mentioned

https://archive.org/details/momentsofmemoryr011518mbp

Asquith was around 2-4 Km south of "my" Manchesters, whose track I can follow through the War Diaries.  Interesting read nonetheless

Thanks!

Offline Arthur Cooks lad

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L/Cpl Arthur Cook - Attestation Records?
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2018, 05:12:34 PM »
Hi,
I'm researching Lce Cpl Arthur Cook, reported to have joined:
South Lancs (Prince of Wales) Rgmt number 5196, in 1916?
then to 2nd/8th Bn Manchester Regiment 302719, where he was made Lce Cpl
then in Feb'18 re-organisatioon in N France moved to 2nd/6th Bn Manchester Regiment - killed in Spring Offensive round Villeret Sector E of Amiens, NW of St Quentin - late March 1918, remembered on Pozieres Memorial

Can any one advise about where and when he would have joined up, or where I could find the enlistment record (attestation?)

thanks,
Bill
« Last Edit: January 18, 2018, 07:37:54 PM by charlie »

Offline charlie

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2018, 07:49:00 PM »
Bill,
As I previously indicated, Arthur Cook's attestation/service record was destroyed in the 1940 Blitz. The medal rolls record that he first served overseas with the 4th Bn South Lancs Regt, whether with the 1/4th or 2/4th is not recorded. His War Gratuity indicates an enlistment or mobilisation date of September 1916.

Have you tried the archives of the local newspapers? There may be an obituary.

Charlie

Offline PhilipG

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2018, 10:56:59 AM »
Bill,

I write in connection with this soldier's enlistment in the Prince of Wales's Volunteers (South Lancashire) and note that he enlisted in September 1916, and I note also, that there is doubt as to whether or not he served with the 1/4th or 2/4th battalion of that regiment.   

My suggestion is that he went overseas with the 2/4th battalion, following a comment in their Regimental History as follows:  "By the end of 1916 the 2/4th Battalion was ready and eager to take the field and at midnight on the 15th February 1917 entrained at Frimley Station for Folkestone with a strength of 31 officers and 799 other ranks."   By the 24th February the battalion was in the trenches in the Armentieres area.     As regards the 1/4th battalion, this unit was a Pioneer Battalion and had been overseas since the 3rd February 1915.   PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

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Re: L Cpl Arthur Cook 302719 2nd/6th Manchester Rgmt
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2018, 11:14:59 AM »
Bill,

I see that the battalion mentioned above was, prior to entrainment, stationed at Frith Hill Barracks.  PhilipG.