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Remembered Today:

King's Shropshire Light Infantry service numbers


Tinhat47
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I'm doing a some research on a bit of a puzzler. He's Spr. Thomas HARRIS. He apparently enlisted with the Royal Engineers but was later shifted to the KSLI. According to his MIC, he was discharged for being "sick" (A.O. 11 of 10/8/1917) and the dates 29/5/16 and 7/2/18 are written above it, I assume to mean his time of service.

The mystery is that his KSLI service number is 5240. Isn't that low for a transfer that late in the war? It sounds like an old territorial number, but as he didn't enter the war until 1916 and he didn't rate a Star, I'd figure that would be after the service number reorganization. Any ideas and perhaps clues as to which battalion that no. 5240 might indicate?

post-42401-1252772399.jpg

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Matt

Looking at the evidence on the card it appears that the Regiment/Corps order is wrong, I believe it should be 5240 KSLI followed by 260333 Royal Engineers.

My reasons?, firstly the medals are issued off of the Rolls of the last unit served with, in this case the Royal Engineers (RE/101 B132 etc.) and secondly he was discharged from a Royal Engineers unit as again the SWB is on a RE Roll (List RE/152).

Regards

Steve

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Ahh! I should have known that!

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Hi Matt

As Steve says he was K.S.L.I. then R.E. Going by his K.S.L.I. number and the date 29-05-16, I can place him as T.A. and he may have lived in Clee Hill - Ludlow area at time, I only say that because a couple of lads next to his number came from this area and called up on 29-05-16 (just wondering if R.E. number 260333 belonged to a Quarrying Company ?).

Annette

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Silly me I should have had a closer look at other two men close to Thomas's number because one of them, Pte. Martin of Knowbury, Shropshire, also as R.E. No. 260331 and was with 323rd (Q) Coy R.E. but he had been trans to 3/4th Queen first then returned to K.S.L.I. and given new number and then trans to R.E., this may also be the case for Thomas Harris and the medal card as not recorded this ? A have Pte Martin's service papers and will look up dates of transfers but this will have to wait as I off out now.

Annette

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Wow Annette! Looks like you've blown the doors off this case!

From Ernest Martin's MIC, it looks like they reversed his RE and KSLI service as well.

The RE numbers would make sense for the 323rd Company, as I have a man with the number 226640 who was in the 333rd Company.

Looking forward to what Pte. Martin's papers can reveal.

I love this site!

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Hi Matt

In my first post I had guessed that Thomas may have been from Clee Hill, I can know confirm he live at Alpine Drive, Clee Hill (his brother ? Joseph lived at same address). I used to live opposite one of Thomas' sons and the other live a few hundred yards away (well I think they were his sons, I know their uncle was Joseph).

I have found 11 K.S.L.I. men who trans. to R.E. who fall in same number range as Thomas Harris, do you want details of all of them ? plus I have service papers of three of them. I will just post dates for Pte. Martin but if you want more just ask.

Enlisted at Clee Hill, Shropshire 04-12-1915

Called up into K.S.L.I. on 29-05-16 with No. 5238 & joined 2/4th K.S.L.I.

Trans. to 3/4th Queens 16-12-16 & given No. T/204913

Rejoined 2/4th K.S.L.I. on 13-02-17 & given No. 203784

Trans. to R.E. on 26-02-17 & given No. 260331 later renumbered WR/28996

Posted to 323rd Coy on 25-02-17

Posted to F/F on ??-03-17 (papers are not very clear)

It is hard to say for sure if Thomas Harris also trans. to the Queens like Pte. Martin but I am sure he was called up on 29-05-16 and that he also joined the R.E. on or near 26-02-17.

Annette

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Amazing how much information can come from a seemingly uninformative MIC. Annette, that's amazing that of all these men, that you lived near his relatives! If you could send over Pte. Martin's papers, that would be great. Thanks again for your knowledge and research!

Looks like Thomas Harris was born in 1893.

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Hi Matt

I am not sure if I am breaking copyright by sending you Pte. Martin's paper, I'll have to check but in mean time I'll send you info. on the other man.

Hi Neil

I can't look up his parents at moment, his papers are on my other computer but I can tell you he lived at 1 Scott's Lane, Knowbury, and is related to Edward & Benjamin Martin, who both lost their lives in the war. There are lots of Martin's on and around the Hill, not sure which ones are related, there may be more in my datebase who are related to Ernest.

Annette

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Thanks!

I wonder why Pte. Martin's papers aren't on Ancestry ... did they forget to add his or did he have copies from before the originals were destroyed?

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Hi Matt

Pte. Martin's papers are on Ancestry, search under military put Martin in last name and knowbury in keyword brings up Benjamin twice, Edward & Ernest Martin.

Annette

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... just wondering if R.E. number 260333 belonged to a Quarrying Company ?).

Sure does - he joined 323 Q Coy on 21st February 1917, from KSLI Yarmouth, unlike all the other KSLI chaps who joined at the same time who were KSLI, Shrewsbury. Not sure which KSLI Battalion that would make it.

I think that the MIC indicates that he also served with 325 Q Coy (based on the pencilled scribblings) - and he probably transferred from one company to another at Buxton.

Cheetrs,

Dave

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