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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Who was Reginald Furt?


high wood

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Another problematic photograph. Reginald Furt, Turt, Turk, Turl, Furl, Flirt, I have tried every combination but cannot make any headway. The cap badge is not visible (he isn't wearing one); the uniform has leather "football" type buttons. The jacket does not have cuff rank badges so he may not be a military officer. He is wearing a medal ribbon but it is not easy to identify which one.

The photograph is dated 27th November 1914 and was taken in France as it has a "carte postale" back. Any thoughts about who he was and who he served with would be appreciated.

post-6480-1222290966.jpg

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HW

Can you add FROST to your list ? Just possible.

Sotonmate

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Frost ?

Steve.

Oops. Bit slow on that one. I was suggesting rather than questioning, Sotonmate.

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Couldn't be duplicated by a nicer gentleman !

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I have checked the MIC database on the National Archives website and I cannot find a Reginald Frost that fits the bill.

To my eyes there is something strange about the uniform. The material appears different somehow. Why no cuff rank badges so early in the war?

Could he have been serving with a non-military unit such as an ambulance unit or as a chauffer. Is he even British? How about Canadian or Australian. (I have checked the Canadian records).

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Furt could be a French surname - there are 11 entries in the French SGA - Memoire des Hommes all but 1 shown as born in Gironde (33) - but no Reginald.

No idea what he is wearing though!!

Cheers

Sue

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Furt could be a French surname - there are 11 entries in the French SGA - Memoire des Hommes all but 1 shown as born in Gironde (33) - but no Reginald.

No idea what he is wearing though!!

Cheers

Sue

Sue,

thank you for your input which has opened up a new line of enquiry. Is it possible that this man was a French interpreter attached to a British army unit? If he was it might explain the uniform. I seem to recall that interpreters were entitled to medals. I would expect this man to have a medal index card.

Simon.

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In 1881 there was a Furt family living at Spitalfields, London, with Dutch connections.

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Could the name be Furst?

"Reginald P Furst" and the way the date is notated has a certain American flavour. For that date (if there's anything in it), I guess he would have to be something like an ambulance corps volunteer or a newspaper correspondent.

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post-35119-1222335290.jpg Found a Reginald J TURL 33244 Somerset light inf-590557 Labour corp.Note the old shape of letter T.This maybe isn't your man,but check old handwiting styles,some are very different,to how we know them now.

Skipman

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Could be Chuch Army or an Ambulance Unit, as there seems to be no uniform clues at all, even the buttons, which could have helped appear to be of the leather 'football' pattern, so we may be looking at a quasi-military formation assisting overseas.

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Thats a lovely job you've done there, really brings it to life.

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[Found a Reginald J TURL 33244 Somerset light inf-590557 Labour corps]

I appreciate that it could be a T or an F.

I had found Reginald J Turl, SLI, but have rejected him as a firm possibility as the man in the photograph is not wearing the uniform of a private and the service number, 33244 was issued much later than 1914.

I am still perplexed by the uniform.

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Would an interpreter have a ribbon up in 1914? Daggers

Yes, if he had previous military service. I am not sure what wars the French had been in just prior to the Great War but probably something colonial. There is of course no evidence that he is French despite his French sounding name.

If he is British, I would have expected to see either the QSA, KSA or perhaps the IGS medal ribbon 1908-1935. The ribbon is clearly none of these as it appears to be of a single dark colour.

The uniform buttons could possibly be general service pattern. The style of the uniform is clearly based on a British Army Officer's tunic. Except of course for the lack of rank badges.

I am sure the clues are there and that deciphering the name will crack the case.

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I'll say this,

He has no regimental insignia at all a little strange this one, The first letter of the surname looks like a french '7'. My guess is that he is an imposter.... Does anyone out there think he looks like Hugh Laurie!!!

I'm going to hide now until the flack has died down.

Cheers for now

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I think you may find he is a volunteer in a Red Cross of similar ambulance unit attached to the French Army. I have several portraits of men in units like this, who are wearing very similar uniforms. Their uniforms all give the appearance of an 'officer' but they are not, of course.

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I think you may find he is a volunteer in a Red Cross of similar ambulance unit attached to the French Army.

He may be, but I don't think one should assume he is French. In 30 years in France, I have never come across a Frenchman called Reginald.

cheers Martin B

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