Author Topic: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl  (Read 3102 times)

Offline Wren

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Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« on: February 06, 2019, 01:39:59 PM »
I have recently discovered that I had a Great Uncle, Arthur Wilkinson, who died on 25 April, 1917.  I have found various documents, possibly through your website, thank you, relating to his time in the Manchester Regiment – his grave in France, including headstone, a letter he wrote to his friend’s parents advising them of their son’s death, British Army WWl Medal Rolls, a UK Army Register of Soldiers Effects, and I believe the MM award. 

I think I am right in saying that at his time of death, he had reached the rank of Lance Corporal.

However, I was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction to find any further information on Arthur, such as enrolment records etc.  I realise that I am lucky to have found the details I already  have, but any further advice would be very much appreciated.

Wren

Offline PhilipG

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2019, 04:25:27 PM »
Wren,

Welcome to the Forum.   I see that your relative's name is reported in "Soldiers Died" as dying of wounds - I would suggest during the Battle of Arras in April 1917.  I also note that this NCO enlisted in Salford, noting too, from  the "Book of Honour", that he was previously employed by Rylands & Sons Ltd. in their New High Street premises in Manchester.   PhilipG.

Offline charlie

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2019, 09:20:41 PM »
Hello Wren, welcome to the forum.
Your Great Uncle‘s war gratuity of £12 indicates that he enlisted in September 1914.

Charlie

Offline mack

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2019, 10:08:12 PM »
enlistment date 3rd September 1914

mack

Offline Wren

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2019, 08:08:51 AM »
Thank you so much for the additional information you have supplied.  As you have probably gathered I am quite new to ‘war records’, however, I have found your site a mine of information.

Having searched my family history for several years now, I can appreciate how much work has gone into producing such a site, and I would like to say a big thank you to all involved.  I will now be able to give Arthur his place on the ‘tree’ as I feel it’s the very least I can do.

Wren 

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2019, 01:31:46 PM »
Arthur is shown on the Roll of XI Pln of C Coy http://themanchesters.org/forum/index.php?topic=4651.0
His MM was in London Gazette of 21/1/1917.  This was most likely relating to action in the later part of the Battle of the Somme - possibly at Flers on 12/10/1916. His mate Henry Kay Evans was killed there and Arthur has written to Henry's Mother https://17thmanchesters.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/letter-1.jpg  John Kenyon also received an MM in early 1917. https://17thmanchesters.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/manchester-evening-news-friday-13-april-1917-dcm-mm-jpg_thumb.png
Grave photo here https://17thmanchesters.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/lance-corporal-a-wilkinson-8976.jpg
It's almost certain he was wounded near Heninel on 23/4/1917.  See the record here http://www.themanchesters.org/Arras%20and%20Ypres.htm
Arthur's mother received his Pension of 7/. She was Louisa Southern of 21 Walter Street, Regent Road, Salford.
There are 7 Death Notices in MEN 17/5/1917.  Family members are noted, but nothing extra beyond died of wounds 25/4/1917.  The MEN family Notice of 25/4/1918 says Arthur was in Machine Gun Section.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2019, 01:57:51 PM by Tim Bell »
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Offline Wren

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2019, 07:57:38 PM »
Thank you so much for the links you have provided Tim.

I have already started reading through the accounts of battles, and will be checking maps for locations. 

The link to the photo Tim, which appears to include Arthur – is there any particular format that you know of whereby I could try and pinpoint him, ie: front row at start of list, as that would be really wonderful.  Of course it’s a long shot, but I thought I would ask, as I would love to see him.

Whilst I am very happy to have gathered all this information, I would much sooner Arthur had come home safely and died of old age in England.

Arthur also had an older brother, Alfred, born about 1881 and according to my sister, who too was killed in the war, but I haven’t even started on him yet.

Once again many thanks.

Wren

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2019, 08:46:20 PM »
Hi Wren,
The Pln photos are great, but the rolls offer no explanation of the order of the names.
You should visit Heninel. The landscape offers little explanation for its traumatic history. Vimy, The Somme and Ypres have more immediate places to understand our past. A walk from Maricourt to Montauban and Triangle Point keeps me affixed to the heritage. Things like Arthur’s letter are also enthralling.
Tim
« Last Edit: February 08, 2019, 07:24:59 AM by Tim Bell »
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Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2019, 02:17:11 PM »
Alfred served as a Sgt in RFA.  He was still alive in 1939.
In your intitial post you mentioned the MM records.  Please can you explain more?
T
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Offline Wren

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2019, 06:25:02 PM »
Hi Tim,

Thank you for the information on Alfred Wilkinson - I will certainly follow this up when I have all Arthur's details logged correctly.

As far as I can see, there is only one reference to the MM for Arthur, and this is on the Ancestry site under the heading of UK British Army Recipitents of the MM 1914-1920.  I have copied the details and attached.  There is no actual record to view, just the documented details that do all seem to match. 

I am wondering if the details of this record have been taken from Arthur's Monument Inscription which does say MM, of course I could be way off the mark - remember, I'm new to all this Tim (wink)

Wren

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2019, 07:38:52 AM »
Hi Wren,
Arthur's MM is confirmed in the London Gazette too.  I was just just wondering if you had a personal document about the Award.
T
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Offline PhilipG

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2019, 10:19:56 AM »
Wren,
In respect of the award of the Military Medal to this soldier, may I make a suggestion?     I have referred to the book - First (City) Brigade The Manchester Regt. A Record 1914 -1918, re the 17th battalion.   In that book reference is made to the attack "upon a system of trenches in advance of Flers" to be undertaken on the 12th October 1916.   "The attack took place at 2.5 pm without artillery preparation until 5 minutes before zero when an intense bombardment opened".     Alas, a very heavy enemy artillery barrage and machine - gun fire ensued and wave after wave of the attacking troops was decimated, only a few wounded getting back before dark.   

The battalion's casualties amounting to the loss of 12 officers and 213 other ranks were reported.   Perhaps bravery by your relative in that attack resulted in the award to him of the MM. 

PhilipG.

Offline Wren

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Re: Wilkinson Arthur 8976 - 17th Battalion WWl
« Reply #12 on: February 10, 2019, 12:27:11 PM »
TIM  I understand now what you were meaning - sadly no, no documentation, no medal, nothing at all on Arthur.  Indeed, it wasn't until a couple of week ago that I knew he existed, but thanks to your website, I now have quite a bit of information on him. 

I looked up the Roll of Honour publication in the MEN and see that Arthur had a fiance, Ethel.  It's things like this that bring home the reality of it all.  In his Mother's announcement, it mentions that brother Alf (Alfred) at that time, publication 1918, was serving in France, so at least I have a starting point for Alfred,  along with what you have told me.

Philip  Thank you for your information.  The dates you mention coincide with the time Arthur wrote to his friend's Mother - his letter was dated 16 October, 1916.  Perhaps Arthur tried to save his friend - although I suspect that there was so much going on, it could have been anything.  Nevertheless, its helpful to read such accounts.  Thanks again.