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Remembered Today:

First Officer shot for desertion


OpsMajor
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I am looking for anything to do with the (allegedly) first officer to be shot for desertion. I believe he was 2/Lt ES Poole of the 11 West Yorks around December 1916. Can anyone help please.

Mike

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I am looking for anything to do with the (allegedly) first officer to be shot for desertion. I believe he was 2/Lt ES Poole of the 11 West Yorks around December 1916. Can anyone help please.

Mike

He was shot for Desertion on the 10 th of December 1916 and he was the first to be executed by orders from Filed Marshal Haig. PETER.
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He was shot for Desertion on the 10 th of December 1916 and he was the first to be executed by orders from Filed Marshal Haig. PETER.

Do you mean that by order from Haigh he was the first to be shot or he was the first shot under Haig's command?

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part of Haig's diary entry for 6 December 1916

'This is the first sentence of death on an officer to be put into execution since I became C-in-C.'

ref WO256/14

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part of Haig's diary entry for 6 December 1916

'This is the first sentence of death on an officer to be put into execution since I became C-in-C.'

ref WO256/14

Which might imply that there had been some under French's command

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Not as afar as can see, Poole was first then Lt FM Leader CEF whose sentence was commuted. Then of course Dyett.

Mick

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72nd Can. Inf. Bn.

Lt. F. M. Leader is cashiered by sentence -

of a General Court-Martial. 18 Dec. 1916.

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Thanks for the confirmation. Is there any further detail, why (e.g. shell shock?) where it was carried out and where his body was buried?

Thanks

Mike

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He's at Poperinghe New Military Cemetery

In Memory of

Second Lieutenant ERIC SKEFFINGTON POOLE

11th Bn., West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Own)

who died age 31

on 10 December 1916

Son of Henry Skeffington Poole and Florence Hope Gibsone Poole, of 2, Rectory Place, Guildford, Surrey. Born Nova Scotia.

Remembered with honour

POPERINGHE NEW MILITARY CEMETERY

I found this too ....

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/pathway...eople/poole.htm

post-7335-1255279248.jpg

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part of Haig's diary entry for 6 December 1916

'This is the first sentence of death on an officer to be put into execution since I became C-in-C.'

ref WO256/14

The wording does give the impression that Haig thought an officer or officers had been executed under French as CinC. One assumes he must have been mistaken. He goes on to say that he considers such a crime to be more serious in the case of an officer than of a man. That implies that the confirmation rate for death sentences would be higher for officers. How many officers might have been sentenced to death but commuted?

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I'm sorry but the wording doesn't imply any such thing.

Looking through the very comprehensive Oram's list no officers were sentenced to death before Poole.

Mick

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I'm pretty sure Poole had originally enlisted to serve the ranks prior to his commission.

Jon is correct. According to Putkowski & Sykes' 'Shot at Dawn' Poole was a 1914 volunteer who was commissioned in May 1915. It doesn't state with what unit he served prior to becoming an officer.

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He originally served in the Honourable Artillery Company, and had also served in the Canadian Militia. His service file survives at TNA, as well as the CM papers.

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I'm sorry but the wording doesn't imply any such thing.

Looking through the very comprehensive Oram's list no officers were sentenced to death before Poole.

Mick

Of course it does, it doesn't however mean that this is correct but unless Haig was working on a different system of English grammar it certainly implies it.

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No it doesn't.

'This is the first sentence of death on an officer to be put into execution since I became C-in-C.'

How does that statement imply there were sentences before he became C-in-C?

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Any chance you guys can start a new topic ... do you think ? :rolleyes:

I keep getting notifications to this thread ...... as I'm nosy I hate to miss something if it's to do with the original post !! :P

Annie

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part of Haig's diary entry for 6 December 1916

'This is the first sentence of death on an officer to be put into execution since I became C-in-C.'

ref WO256/14

Sorry, Annie, but just to add - Maybe Haig was referring back to previous wars in which he was involved. Wasn`t there at least one officer executed in the Boer War, Lt H H Morant?

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Thanks to everyone for all that. I am in Ypres this weekend and intend to visit POPERINGHE NEW MILITARY CEMETERY and his grave.

Mike

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