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joerey

ARMY SERVICE CORPS 620 COMPANY

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joerey

I have discovered that my great grandfather served in the First World War and was in the Army Service Corp (Special Reserve Category C) motor transport section, it appears that he served with 620 company . He was a bus driver in London so would hazard a guess that he was serving in one of the Omnibus Companies. His name was William George Sawyer and his service number was 3370. He was in France from 12/8/1914 until 13/8/1915. I would love to find out about his unit and where in France they were, possibly find some pictures of the unit or maybe find pictures of cap badges etc.

Here is a small extract of his service records could somebody point me in the direction of his unit please and where i could find out some details of it.

willamsawyerww1.jpg

Any help would be greatly appreciated

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Ron Clifton

Hello joerey

620 Co ASC was not formed until Dec 1915: it was based at Regents Park Barracks and acted as the postal delivery unit for London, as 28th Local Auxiliary MT Coy.

There were seven Aux Omnibus Companies in France but I note that your ggf entered France in August 1914, which means that he must have been with one of the existing pre-war MT cos. The most likely candidates, assuming that 620 is a mis-reading, seem to be either 60 or 62 Cos, which were the Ammunition Parks for 1st and 2nd Divisions. None of the bus companies had even been formed at that time, the first two being 90 and 91 Cos in late 1914.

Ammunition Parks had a somewhat mixed history, being subject to many re-assignments between formations, but basically (at least for the first year of the war) they were Lines of Communication units, carrying gun and rifle ammunition forward from railheads to the horse=drawn Divisional Ammunition Columns which would take them on to the front line.

373 Co was otherwise known as 11 Aux MT Co and was based around Beds, Herts and Essex.

Ron

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sotonmate

joeray

Welcome to the Forum !

I have searched the National Archives site for the unit 620 Company ASC,using various derivative titles and came up with nothing for 620 !

As your subject went to France among the first groups I checked the make-up of all Divisions into Theatre from August 1914. The only Company with any similar number was 619 which went to Egypt/Palestine/Syria. That was titled "619 Mechanical Transport Company Army Service Corps",from Dec 1915,but no others in that sequence. All I can think is that it came under GHQ umbrella. I was hoping to refer it's Diary to you so that you can see what occurred duirng his service. I hope someone else has better luck than I.

The cap badge will be a great deal easier to find I am sure. ASC are in various websites.

Sotonmate

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joerey

Thanks for the help, I had noticed he was he was 373 CO at ST Albans. But i think i have been misreading this document as it appears that was in 620 CO for a short period in 1916, I think now that i have taken a closer look at it possibly he spent his time in France with 373 CO if that was possible?

.

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Ron Clifton

No, 373 Co did not go abroad either. If he served in France it must have been with another company, and as he served there from Aug 1914 the company number must have been between 44 and 78.

Ron

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Chris_Baker

He's a Special Reservist.

Attested to join the SR 25 June 1914

Mobilised 5 August 1914

To France 12 August 1914, unit unknown

Looks like he came back to England 4 August 1915

Posted to 373 MT Coy ASC 14 October

Posted to 620 Coy June 1916

Discharged having served his agreed term in the SR 26 June 1916

He would then have been eligible to be re-enlisted as a conscript. Was he?

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joerey
He's a Special Reservist.

Attested to join the SR 25 June 1914

Mobilised 5 August 1914

To France 12 August 1914, unit unknown

Looks like he came back to England 4 August 1915

Posted to 373 MT Coy ASC 14 October

Posted to 620 Coy June 1916

Discharged having served his agreed term in the SR 26 June 1916

He would then have been eligible to be re-enlisted as a conscript. Was he?

Cant find any record if he re-enlisted so i dont really know.

I am confused as the documents i have found relating to him state he was in France from August 1914 to August 1915, but only mention 373 Comp and 620 Comp which he served with on his return to England.

Why would his service record not state what company he went to France with? Is it possible he was with B.E.F. in France?

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Chris_Baker

The paper suggests he was with the BEF and it is a pity it does not give his unit. The army admin was not always 100% in these matters.

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Chris_Baker

It pays to check all sources. Here is his medal index card (interesting, by the way, to see that very few Sawyers have yet appeared on Ancestry's presentation of these cards).

The writing is not easy, but I believe he was serving with 1st Divisional Ammunition Park ASC.

post-1-1226309295.jpg

Also interesting to see that he was awarded the Silver War Badge.

You now simply have to check his entries in the medal and badge rolls!

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joerey

Wow thank you i searched Ancestery for this and couldnt find it. Where did you find it?

Thanks so much for finding it

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Chris_Baker

National Archives. Where you now need to go to see the rolls!

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joerey

Ive checked the archives and came up with the same results as you,

I have searched http://www.1914-1918.net/ASC_MT.htm and cant find any details of 1st Divisional Ammunition Park.

But the Silver War Badge interests me it does state in his medical records that he was in hospital for a short period with eczema, which i talked to a Dr friend of mine and he says that it is something that he could of picked it while on military duty.

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per ardua per mare per terram
...cant find any details of 1st Divisional Ammunition Park...

The page you looked at is only for Motor Transport. The 1st Division was a fighting unit and he was part of their support.http://www.1914-1918.net/1div.htm

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joerey
The page you looked at is only for Motor Transport. The 1st Division was a fighting unit and he was part of their support.http://www.1914-1918.net/1div.htm

Sorry to ask a stupid question that it seems likely that he was in 1st Divisional Ammunition Column. So he would of been transporting ammunition and supplies from from the Divisional railhead to the Divisional Refilling Point and possibley up to the front lines.

Where were the rail heads were they at the ports or further inland?

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per ardua per mare per terram

I recommend Mike Young's book on the ASC and have you looked at http://www.1914-1918.net/asc.htm? Cut to the essentials it was the Ammunition Column’s job to keep the Division supplied with ammo. As he landed before Mons, he did that through: the advance to then retreat from Mons and attempted to do so at all points untill he left including First Ypres. They had ammo to fight on the Marne and again when they advanced to the Aisne, so he did his job!

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joerey

Thank you yet again, I have looked in to buying Mike Young's book on the ASC it quite expensive so i will save my pennies or hopefully somebody may buy it for me for Christmas.

Im sure he did do his job, im proud of that. I would love now to find out where the Divisional Refilling Point and the dumps and stores of the forward units were located, time will tell im sure, but im happy too of found out that he served which is more than i ever knew about him.

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per ardua per mare per terram

You could always request it from the library.

I also recommend that you read some books on the 1914 campaign. All the points you mentioned changed regularly in that campaign! I remember accounts of the ASC making dumps on the retreat roads for men to find, but I can't remember in which book. Also remember that as a member of the old army he would also have known how to use his Lee Enfield.

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Hussey

620 Coy, Mechanical Transport, A.S.C did exist in 1917. It was based at Regent's Park, London and was set up to help handle the Army's mail, for example from the nearby Mount Pleasant main sorting office. I am currently researching Captain Guy Maynard Hazlerigg, M.C. of the S. Staffs Regt and later the ASC. He was posted to 620 Coy ASC, Regent's Park, after his return from the East Africa Protectorate on ill health grounds.

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

620 Coy ASC formed 28/12/1915. Regent's Park & Kensington Barracks. 28 Local Auxilliary (MT) Company (Army Postal Services).

I can't see W.G.Sawyer's record on Ancestry.

I wanted to see if any other ASC Companies were listed in it.

Where did the original image in Post #1 come from I wonder?

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Hussey

Thanks Dai for your information which is very helpful.

Much appreciated.

Hussey

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Curly

I don't know if any of you have already seen this photo, but I thought it would be good to share it with this forum. 

This photo of all the members of the 620 Mechanical Transport Company, Royal Army Service Corps at Regents Park, April 1919. 

Apologies for the quality, I'm looking into where I can find a scanner big enough for it.

 

Alfred Thomas Durrant.jpg

Edited by Curly

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

I'm sure it's a nice image to see full size.

What you could try is to scan it in sections, say 4 or 5, and then try some photostitching software to stitch it into one large image.

Microsoft do one for free and it's very good, called Image Composite Editor, available here: 

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/research/product/computational-photography-applications/image-composite-editor/#

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Curly

Huge apologies for the long wait for this photo. A kind friend, Joe Picarella, has rescanned and split the photo into 5 segments for me, so hopefully you will be able to see so much more detail and more importantly spot your ancestors.

 

To recap this photo of all the members of the 620 Mechanical Transport Company, Royal Army Service Corps at Regents Park, April 1919. 

 

A big thank to Joe and hope this image brings joy 

 

ED RASC photo 1 of 5.jpg

ED RASC photo 2 of 5.jpg

ED RASC photo 3 of 5.jpg

ED RASC photo 4 of 5.jpg

ED RASC photo 5 of 5.jpg

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

I've successfully stitched together the above 5 images into one image of 4612 x 800 px, in a 2MB file.

Annoyingly, on uploading it here, the site reduces it to 1200 px wide, which is disappointing.

 

A lovely image though Curly, thanks for posting.

A full size image won't upload from the gallery either.

Must be a maximum image dimension somewhere then.

Oh well.

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

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