Author Topic: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.  (Read 3823 times)

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« on: January 11, 2016, 10:54:49 AM »
9986 Pte. Joseph Arthur Morris : 18th Manchesters

This soldier was my mother's cousin and whilst serving with the 18th Manchesters was taken prisoner on the 14th December 1917.  He was repatriated to the UK in extremely poor health on the 9th December 1918.

I wonder, please, if it is possible to learn where he was made a POW and also, please, to ascertain in which camp he was imprisoned?   PhilipG.

Offline charlie

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,626
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2016, 11:51:04 AM »
Philip
He was taken prisoner on 14.12.1917 at Zillebeke, wounded by artillery fire in the left foot. He is recorded on a list dated 20.02.1918 from Dülmen where he had been transferred to from Lüttich. He is also on a list dated 22.01.1918 from Limburg. His NoK is given as Mr T Morris, 5 Stanley St, Heaton Park, Manchester. He was born on 22.08.1894. He is recorded as serving with A Coy at the time of capture.

In all probability he was never in the PoW camp at Limburg. The camp was also used to register PoWs who were undergoing hospital treatment, in this case presumably in Lüttich, prior to being assigned to a permanent camp.

The first enquiry made to the Red Cross as to his whereabouts, which was received on 30.01.1918, received a negative reply. His family was informed that he was a PoW on 09.02.1918.

Charlie
« Last Edit: January 11, 2016, 07:55:46 PM by Charlie »

Offline mack

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 8,723
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2016, 05:00:26 PM »
hiya Philip.
another member[wendyg] was enquiring about joseph some years ago,if you type in his service number in the search engine,that will bring up the threads,he was a distant cousin,she also mentions two other cousins,8983 Edward woolfenden[17th batt] and 85722 joseph,hulse guest

mack ;D

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2016, 06:40:31 PM »
Charlie & mack,

Thank you for your excellent help concerning my query.  I wonder if the War Diary would reveal in what military operation the battalion was undertaking on 14.12.17. Perhaps someone has access to this document?  PhilipG

Offline Tim Bell

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,883
    • Grandad's Journey
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2016, 07:39:27 PM »
Phillip,
My grandfather's cousin was fatally wounded on the same day and died as a prisoner of war. On this date, the 18th Battalion were involved with the defence of a German assault and unsuccessful counter-attack in the Polderhoek sector of Ypres.  The War Diary reported 11 Other Ranks killed, 39 wounded and 69 missing in the action.   ICRC records indicate Alfred was posted to A Company.  These men occupied the right side of the Battalion front and were overwhelmed in the initial German assault at 6am.  The War Diary notes the German infantry using grenades to quell the British defence. 

Remembering Lance Corporal 1095 Alfred Ridge.  Hijacking the post with a war diary extract and photo taken from the trench positions.  Not sure where Zillebeke fits.

Tim
Will check out the CWS link
Following one Platoon and everything around them....
http://17thmanchesters.wordpress.com/about/

Offline charlie

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,626
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2016, 08:02:12 PM »
Philip
I inadvertently uploaded the wrong PoW list from Dülmen, I have now corrected this. In view of Tim's information it would seem that he was wounded by a Hand-grenade rather than artillery fire. A Grenade could be either an artillery shell or a Hand-grenade in German.

Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,883
    • Grandad's Journey
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2016, 08:30:17 PM »
A Company of 18th Bttn had at least 6 of the CWS Manchester Casualties. 3 from each of I & II Platoons.  There are similar groups of numbers, but not necesarily enlisting together and the Departments don't seem to produce a pattern (yet?). C.I.S. was listed separately on the Memorial.
Following one Platoon and everything around them....
http://17thmanchesters.wordpress.com/about/

Offline mack

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 8,723
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2016, 09:35:39 AM »
Philip
I inadvertently uploaded the wrong PoW list from Dülmen, I have now corrected this. In view of Tim's information it would seem that he was wounded by a Hand-grenade rather than artillery fire. A Grenade could be either an artillery shell or a Hand-grenade in German.

Charlie
the germans started their attack on the 18th battalion at 6am it was preceded by very heavy trench mortar fire on the front and support lines as well as shelling of the back areas especially battalion HQ,you are probably right about his wounding by shell

mack ;D

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2016, 12:25:01 PM »
First of all, may I say a "thank you" for your interest in this soldier.

Arthur Morris is listed in the "Book of Honour" as being in Platoon No.1 of the battalion's "A" Coy., and although he is reputed to be on the appropriate photograph elsewhere in the book and despite the fact that I knew him from the early 1930's onwards, I have been unable to identify him.   I have, however, a posed photograph of him in his "tram guard" uniform.

Elsewhere in the "Book of Honour", he is listed in the Roll of Honour appertaining to the CWS Ltd., by whom he was employed.  I last saw him when I visited him in the late 1950's when he was an official of the CIS in Manchester.

There is no doubt that he had a "hard war", but nevertheless was proud of his connection with the battalion - fighting alongside friends.  As regards the men sent to replace these friends, he could at times be a little scathing.

His connection with "Warehousemen & Clerks" continued it would seem, by his arranging for his son becoming a pupil at Manchester Warehousemen and Clerks' School at Cheadle Hulme in Cheshire.   Joining the RAF in 1943, his son became an Air Gunner and when flying in a Lancaster bomber subsequently lost his life.  PhilipG.

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2016, 10:06:30 AM »
Tim Bell,


As you know, Polderhoek and Zillebeke are on opposite sides of the Menin Road and indeed, some distance apart.  I wonder, please, if you would kindly confirm that the battalion's War Diary states that the 14th December 1917 skirmish took place at Polderhoek. Regards, PhilipG.

Offline Tim Bell

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,883
    • Grandad's Journey
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2016, 01:25:06 PM »
Phillip,

We're definitely referring to Polderhoek.  Have a look at the 17th Bttn report to see that they supported the 18th on this day athttp://www.themanchesters.org/Arras%20and%20Ypres.htm Polderhoek

Theres a  great map of the area here https://ltphilipward.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/gheluvelt-polderhoek-stirling-castle-clapham-jtn-bodmin-copse-sheet-28-ne3.png
Following one Platoon and everything around them....
http://17thmanchesters.wordpress.com/about/

Offline mack

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 8,723
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2016, 09:30:15 AM »
hiya Philip.
heres a extract

left swan chateau,relieved bedfords in left front line in the polderhoek sector,moving via shrapnel corner-zillebeke and track G.relief completed at 11pm

front line.
A.coy on right
B.coy in centre
C.coy on left
D.coy in reserve
battalion HQ at the tower

mack ;D

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2016, 03:52:09 PM »
Tim Bell & Mack,

Thank you to both of you for your information re this interesting matter.

To summarise.  On the one hand it has been established that the battalion was in the line in the Polderhoek area and in the German attack suffered casualties, including 69 posted as missing, which must have included Pte. Morris.

On the other hand, Charlie has kindly established that Pte Morris was captured at Zillebeke.  As is often the case, at this length of time, we are again in the realm of conjecture.

Can it be assumed, that when the relative question was posed, the answer given was "Zillebeke", as in the night march to the front line, that would be the last readily identified location the troops would recognise as they took track G to the front line?   Opinions wanted, please.  PhilipG.

Offline charlie

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,626
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2016, 07:29:21 PM »

Can it be assumed, that when the relative question was posed, the answer given was "Zillebeke", as in the night march to the front line, that would be the last readily identified location the troops would recognise as they took track G to the front line?   Opinions wanted, please.  PhilipG.

Philip,
I think you are quite correct, the answer to the question "where were you captured" would get the response "near x", "x" would be good enough for the German records. A good example of this would be those of the 16th and 17th Bns captured on 21st and 22nd March 1918. Over 95% are recorded as being captured at St Quentin which we all know was not possible.

Charlie

Offline PhilipG

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,660
Re: Pte J.A.Morris : 18th Bn.
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2016, 03:57:18 PM »
Charlie,
 I'm glad you agree.   I found it to be an interesting bit of research, taking me back some years to my time in the Zillebeke area - Aristocrats' Cemetery, Valley Cottages, Hedge Street Tunnels etc. Thanks again. PhilipG.