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Remembered Today:

Armoured Car Section


rmcguirk

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I am trying to follow the career of Capt. L. V. Owston, who transferred from the 3rd Dragoon Gds to Armoured Cars when the latter were moved to the Army in autumn 1915; he then commanded an Armoured Car Brigade in Egypt from spring 1916.

Can anyone help me decipher the following sentence from the 3rd D.G. War Diary:

"Captain Owston IN.C.O transferred to 3 C.D. Armoured Car Section."

I'm wondering what the expressions IN.C.O and 3C.D. mean – the held desk at Kew were unable to help.

Russell

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I am trying to follow the career of Capt. L. V. Owston, who transferred from the 3rd Dragoon Gds to Armoured Cars when the latter were moved to the Army in autumn 1915; he then commanded an Armoured Car Brigade in Egypt from spring 1916.

Can anyone help me decipher the following sentence from the 3rd D.G. War Diary:

"Captain Owston IN.C.O transferred to 3 C.D. Armoured Car Section."

I'm wondering what the expressions IN.C.O and 3C.D. mean – the held desk at Kew were unable to help.

Russell

Leycester Varley Owston

Link to his Medal index card is here:-

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documen...mp;mediaarray=*

Giving his unit as Dragoon Guards, so he likely transferred (as in physically moved), but "attached" (unit wise) - I've noted that with several cavalry officers commanding armoured cars in Mesopotamia, are referred to as "attended"

He has quite a few hits on Gazettes on line:-

http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/191...d-war-i/start=1

If you can sort them out in order will give the dates of his moves/promotions. With a name like his should be able to find him on census and tally in his age.

He was gazetted for DSO:-

http://www.gazettes-online.co.uk/issues/29...upplements/2190

Capt. Leycester Varley Owston, D.G.,

attd. Motor Mach. Gun Corps.

For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to

duty. He has rendered valuable service in

command of armoured cars, and his personal

gallantry has been on more than one occasion

• brought to notice.

http://www.gazettes-online.co.uk/issues/30...upplements/6765

http://www.gazettes-online.co.uk/issues/30...pplements/11827

Capt. L. V. Owston, D.S.O. (D.G.), to be

actg. Maj. 18 Oct. 1916. •

Capt. (actg. Maj.) L. V. Owston, D.S.O.

. (D'.G.), to be temp. Lt.-Ool. whilst empld.

as Machine Gun Qff. 31 Aug. 1917.

http://www.gazettes-online.co.uk/issues/31...supplements/308

MACHINE GUN CORPS (INFANTRY).

The" undermentioned relinquish the temp,

rank of Lt.-Col. on reduction of estabt.,

with effect from, the dates specified: —

Maj. &'. V. Owston, D.'S.O. (3rdD. Cfds.)

http://www.gazettes-online.co.uk/issues/30...upplements/9103

Cavalier.

Major Seymour Arthur Delme-Radcliffe, Retired,

Indian Army.

Major Walter Vyvian Nugent, D.S.O., Royal

Artillery.

Captain Leycester Varley Owston, Dragoon

Guards and Machine Gun Corps.

29 Oct. 1919.

http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/298...pplements/12645

CAVALRY.

3rd D.G.—Capt. L. V. Owston is seed, for service

with Machine Gun Corps (Heavy). 21st

Sept. 1915.

Leycester Varley Owston (b. February 1883, d. March 3, 1926)

Leycester Varley Owston (son of Hiram Abiff Owston and Elizabeth Walley Varley, of Stanningley Hall) was born February 1883, and died March 3, 1926.

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Thanks, David. Yes, there are a lot of medal cards and mentions in the London Gazette. His moves and promotions were also in the Army Lists, of course, but I’ve checked all the above.

I’m hoping someone will be able to tell me what “3 C.D.” means in the phrase “transferred to 3 C.D. Armoured Car Section”. No doubt it will be embarrassingly obvious, but the Help Desk at the British National Archives drew a blank.

Owston (pronounced Ooston) is an interesting fellow, third of the Armoured Car commanders in the Western Desert after Lt-Commander Charles Lister RNAS and the Duke of Westminster. He helped set up, and worked with, the Ford Light Car Patrols. He died of Hepatitis, contracted in India after the War.

Russell

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Russell

I think that the first part means that Owston and one non-commission officer were transferred. I have never come across the accronym CD in relation to armoured cars and wonder whether it is in fact RNACD (Royal Naval Armoured Car Division). An Emergency Squadron RNACD was formed in Alexandria in September 1915 and served with the Western Frontier Force until April 1916, when it was disbanded, and I suspect that this was the unit they joined.

Charles M

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Charles,

Yes, of course!!! I’m sure you’re right about 1 NCO. Thank you.

Regarding 3CD, you’re probably right about that, too -- that the initials stand for Car Division as they do in RNACD. My understanding is that most of the RNACD’s cars were transferred to the Army in August 1915; and Owston transferred from 3rd Dragoon Guards to Armoured Cars in September 1915. I first find him in Egypt in March 1916, commanding a Light Armoured Car section in the W Desert, but I don’t think he ever served with the RNACD.

1. Charles Lister (of the Emergency Squadron) was clearly in the RNACD;

2. The Duke of Westminster was, I believe, with the RNACD in France, but transferred to the Army before taking his No. 2 Squadron to Egypt early January 1916;

3. Capt Owston was in the W Desert at least for the rest of the Sanusi Campaign, probably longer.

Thank you again for your help.

Russell

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Hello Russell

Each cavalry division formed an Armoured Motor Battery of the Motor Machine-Gun Service. Since 3rd DG served with 6 Cav Bde, 3 Cav Div throughout their service in France, I would say that 3CD is 3rd Cavalry Division. (Battery/Section may have been a contemorary distinction.)

I will have a look through my records of the MGC in Egypt and post again if I find anything useful.

Ron

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Ron,

That’s very interesting information; it would also explain the “3” in 3CD. I’ll try to follow it up to confirm.

Many thanks.

Russell

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Ron

This is intriguing. While I certainly agree that 3 CD could stand for 3 Cav Div, I was not aware that each cavalry div formed its own armoured car section. There is no mention of it in Anglesey's History of the British Cavalry and my extensive research of some years ago on British armoured cars did not reveal anything on this. I would be most grateful for your sources on it.

Alternatively you could be thinking of the Motor Machine Gun batteries of the MMGS, which were equipped with motorcycles with Vickers carried in sidecars. 3 Bty MMGS was in France from early 1915, but, as I understand it, these btys were usually corps troops.

Russell

My understanding is that the Emergency Sqn remained in RNAS hands until early 1916 to allow time for training soldiers in armoured cars. During this transition period it seems logical that some Army personnel were posted to it, but did not transfer to the Royal Navy.

Charles M

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Thank you, Charles. That makes sense -- also tallies with the following from WO 33/760 (Telegrams: European War: Med) .

“11 March 1916. Personal for two Armoured Motor Batteries being prepared for service in Egypt to replace RNACD personnel.”

Regards,

Russell

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Charles / Ron

I think I’ve found the answer to my query about 3 C.D. Armoured Car sections. See following excerpt from:

http://www.rrec.org.uk/Cars/Rolls-Royce_Ar...s_in_Action.php

“During the first week of October it became evident that Antwerp would have to be given up, and the armoured cars were given the task of harrying the Germans who were approaching the escape route to Ostend. By the middle of October, the fluid nature of the line of German advance was changing as ‘trench warfare’ took over. Consequently, the demands for the services of the RNAS cars lessened, but No’s 5, 6, 8 and 15 Armoured Car Squadrons continued to work with the 3 rd Cavalry Division as the long and desperate fight for Ypres dragged on into the early summer of 1915.”

Thank you for your help, both of you.

Russell

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  • 2 years later...

Hello, My name is Liam and found this posting and thought you my be interested in an item I have recently been given. My parents good friends have been hassling them to get me round to move a pair of military boxes from their garage. One box is a wooden I think ammunition trunk with 1944 stamped into it but the other is a bit more special- it is a wooden painted black box (about the size of a large 12 bottle wine box) it is heavy but unsure it's use!? The part that I thought you may be very intrested in was the large gold writing on the front that reads "L.V.Owston Esq 3rd Dragoon Guards" the box and writing are certainly 100 years old. This must be the same solider that you talk of in this forum and thought I would make contact and leave you my email address liamcoleby@hotmail.co.uk and my phone number 07590480898 in the hope that you will make contact and I could send you pictures of the box etc. look forwards to your reply Liam

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Hi liam may not be the best idea with phone number and e mail on open view.If you make 5 posts on the forum you can avail of the private message feature and contact and be contacted by other mwembers.You have it seems made an interesting discovery.john

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liam i have sent you a pm.john

Liam and John,

Thank you both for bringing this item to my attention. Liam, I've sent you an email to follow up.

Regards,

Russell

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