Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

Depot to front


Guest Desmond6

Recommended Posts

Guest Desmond6

My grandfather joins the Royal Irish Rifles in mid-1915, local paper has him joining 20th RIR. I know this was a training-up unit providing replacements for the RIR. However, I can't find which btn. he eventually served with. Would it follow that because he was from 'central Antrim' he would have ended up in the 12th Royal irish Rifles which contained a majority of men from this area?

Apart from the PRO - which I can't get to - any tips on how to find out? He was captured in March 1918 in the German offensive. Local paper records he was missing, then, three or four weeks later the news of his POW status is published but it doesn't give his actual unit - just RIR.

I would be keen to find out if he would have been in action on July 1st and with which battalion.

Any help greatly appreciated. His name was George Thompson from Galgorm Street, Ballymena, Co. Antrim. At the time of his capture he was a lance-corporal.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 months later...

Further to this post: I now know that men who joined two and three months after my grandfather were involved in the Battle of the Somme.

Given the fact that he was in the army prior to these men, is it fair to guess that he was there as well? I'm coming up against a brick wall on this one.

MICs not up to T yet and, as I say, the PRO is a no-go.

Any help appreciated Des

Link to post
Share on other sites
Annette Burgoyne

Hi Des

I can't help you with the unit your grandfather joined, but knowing your interests, I can guess he would have been in the 36th Div. Our fav. Divisions were in very close contact during the fighting of March 1918. The 36th Div. retired into the 20th Div.'s lines on the 22nd, before taking up another line further back, who knows may be your grandfather passed by my great uncle.

Good Luck with your search

Annette

Link to post
Share on other sites

Annette - what a wonderful thought!

If he'd been wounded earlier in the war, the old newspapers would have given his Btn. number but by this stage details like that are no longer appearing - a sign that the old 'pals' types were now totally submerged in the 'anonymous army'?

Des

Anyone tell me how much it costs for a PRO searcher? Off-forum replies if you like.

I know the percentage 'hits' are not good and that Thompson is an awfully common name with out a regt. no. etc.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Description Medal card of Thompson, George

Corps Regiment No Rank

Royal Irish Rifles 18/403 Private

Date 1914-1920

Catalogue reference WO 372/19

Sorry couldn't it rid of the white space!

Would this be my grandad's serial number. He was listed as joining 18th RIR in May/June 1915? My mistake in first post when I said 20th.

here's the paper account:-Joined since the outbreak of war - 15th Royal Irish Rifles - Pte. Adam Thompson, Galgorm Street; Seaforth

Highlanders - Pte. William Thompson, Galgorm Street; Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders, Pte. Wilson Thompson,

Galgorm Street; 18th Royal Irish Rifles, Pte George Thompson, Galgorm Street.

Still hoping for a PRO researcher.

post-1-1095110761.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

18/4032 would have been his regimental number, which confirms his first enlistment into 18th Bn.

The only way to confirm his postings to battalions once he had landed in France is to look up the medal rolls. There is a code for them on the MIC, but they are original documents and there is nothing for it but a look up at the National Archives.

And of course it would be worth looking for his service papers too.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Re Chris Baker's advice :-

Any kind pal able to do this? Recommendation for professionals? Might as well go the whole hog now!

Des

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...