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Remembered Today:

Peter Barton quoted as saying there are more mass graves


topsey1234
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I have just looked at http://www.smh.com.au/interactive/2009/nat.../interview.html which I picked up from the "Research vs Publicity" thread which features an interview with Peter Barton.

The web site quotes Peter as saying:

“Until I visited the archives in Munich, we had only looked at the battle through the prism of the Commonwealth archives. In fact it was the German resource that gave us a completely different narrative and different account and contained far more than anybody ever expected.” And further research also needs to be done to pinpoint grave sites that are at the moment just vague locations — “north of this road, south of that point ... research in Germany and Geneva is far from complete. We are still at the beginning of the research evolution.”

The audio interview I heard on the web site mentions another 35 mass graves.

Very interesting, but will the CWGC be prepared to carry on after the process at Pheasants Wood is complete?

Richard

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The research is ongoing; it has never stopped. We’re currently trying to establish the whereabouts of other gravesites at Fromelles (referred to in the German documentation) and whether or not they were recovered after the Armistice, removed to a different location by the Germans – or if they are still there.

With regard to whether or not the CWGC would be prepared to carry on this process, I do not believe that the decision would be theirs to make. If we can supply the evidence to show that other graves (mass or otherwise) are still in existence, then the matter will be taken further. It’s worth pointing out that a mass grave could mean anything from two sets of remains upwards and shouldn’t be viewed as being another Pheasant Wood. Anything on that same scale would be extremely unlikely.

V.

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Jeremy Banning has added a detailed explanation by Peter Barton into the Red Cross Archive in Geneva here:

Red Cross Archive

V.

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I am pleased that Fromelles now exists as a template for the treatment of any further mass graves discovered. As Victoria says the authorities now can't say " Several hundred unrecovered sets of remains. Impossible." They will have to investigate.

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G'day Richard et al,

If I am correct it was stated during the interview that there cannot be a headstone (or words to similar effect) for every fallen (missing?) soldier.

Am I right?

If so, why not?

Regards

Pop

(Sean McManus)

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Jeremy Banning has added a detailed explanation by Peter Barton into the Red Cross Archive in Geneva here:

Red Cross Archive

V.

On reading the article I then realised this discovery of the Red Cross records are clearly the source of many many further investigations, not just at Fromelles.

"They deal with the capture, death, or burial of servicemen from over 30 nations drawn into the conflict; personal effects, home addresses and grave sites cover page after page."

"The records could potentially reveal the whereabouts of individuals whose remains were never found, or never identified. Grave after grave in the World War I cemeteries mark the last resting place of an unknown soldier."

Does any one know if the digitisation work has started or if the Red Cross have given an update on the conservation work?

I do also wonder if the CWGC have decided to do any work cross referencing with their own records?

Richard

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Does any one know if the digitisation work has started or if the Red Cross have given an update on the conservation work?

According to the link given in post #3:

"A spokeswoman for the Red Cross said the archives were not kept secret but that she could understand if they were not widely known about in the United Kingdom. She said the Red Cross is starting to put the records onto digital storage this autumn, which it aims to complete by 2014. Anyone wishing to inquire about the records can call the Red Cross in Geneva on 00 41 22 73 46 001 and ask for the archives department."

Roel

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According to the link given in post #3:

"A spokeswoman for the Red Cross said the archives were not kept secret but that she could understand if they were not widely known about in the United Kingdom. She said the Red Cross is starting to put the records onto digital storage this autumn, which it aims to complete by 2014. Anyone wishing to inquire about the records can call the Red Cross in Geneva on 00 41 22 73 46 001 and ask for the archives department."

Roel

Save your phone bill. The digitisation not started yet but will be very soon. I am afraid that it will be 2014 before you will be able to make any use of this magnificent archive.

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Save your phone bill. The digitisation not started yet but will be very soon. I am afraid that it will be 2014 before you will be able to make any use of this magnificent archive.

QUOTE (CarltonLM @ Nov 13 2009, 01:59 PM)

This is the best info I could find on the International Red Cross web site. Presently up to a six months wait and a cost of 200 Swiss Francs.

http://www.icrc.org/eng/contact-archives

- no mention of the digitisation process.

However a further search on their web site reveals:

http://www.icrc.org/web/eng/siteeng0.nsf/h...08?opendocument

key point is:

"Reports on all ICRC activities, registers of official decisions and legal and operational correspondence have been stored since 1863 in the ICRC’s archives. In June 2007, UNESCO added the archives of the International Prisoners of War Agency (1914–1923) to its Memory of the World Register, in testimony to “the extent of human suffering during the First World War, but also of pioneering action to protect civilians”. The extensive programme launched by the ICRC in 2006 to restore and digitize these archives is to be completed in 2012."

UNESCO's web site entry on this is:

http://portal.unesco.org/ci/en/ev.php-URL_...ECTION=201.html

The register highlights its international importance.

http://portal.unesco.org/ci/en/ev.php-URL_...ECTION=201.html

Richard

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