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Verrico2009

2/6 North Staffordshire

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Verrico2009

I was interested to note from the attached older thread that there is a war diary for my Great Uncle's battalion (http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=63711&hl=north+stafforshire).

Nothing whatsoever is known in the family about his service and, indeed, he was discharged under Para 392 XVI KR as "sick" in early March 1917 and his MIC states that he was "re-submitted on List TF 254 before his name was erased therefrom". We've been fortunate in piecing things together from his naturalisation papers and a few papers at the Pensions Office but they don't shed any light on where he was for the short time he served. It looks as though the papers may say "home" but if it's possible to find out for certain I'd be very keen to have confirmation of their movements.

He looks so proud in his uniform (as seen in my avatar) and I'd assumed that like his brothers he would have seen service in Italy (although perhaps he came to England to escape national service at home), which would have course been a different affair and nothing could prepare them for the horrors of WW1. He volunteered rather than waiting to be called up - of course he may have felt it was inevitable, but I'm not sure as a registered alien he would have been conscripted.

It would be good to get more of an idea of what his service entailed. I will be going to Kew at the end of March so could look it up if they hold a copy of the diary, but in the meantime any help much appreciated.

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stubriscoe

Mr Verrico,

The 2/6th Battalion North Staffs were in Ireland from April 1916 until December 1916, along with the rest of the 59th Division.

They moved to Ireland to suppress the Easter Rebellion, returned to England ~December 1917, and then to France in February 1917. As the time in Ireland was "Home Service" there is no Battalion war diary for this period.

The war diary has pages for January and February 1916 (they were almost sent to France then), then starts in February 1917.

The 1st line transport sailed Southampton to Le Havre 23/02 - 24/02, and the rest of the Battalion sailed Folkestone to Boulogne 25/02.

The February war diary covers 1 1/2 pages, and the March diary 2 pages.

If you want I can transcribe the pages and email them to you. Please PM me an email address if you would like this.

On my website I have transcribed the 2/6th South Staffs war diaries. This Battalion was in the same Brigade, so the movements are similar. There is also a page on the Division headquarters location.

Division HQ

2/6th SOUTH Staffs war diaries

Regards,

Stuart

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Verrico2009

Very interesting, thanks Stuart. "Home" makes perfect sense if he was originally sent to Ireland. I look forward to reading the 2/6 South Staffs papers for the time in question.

Gaetano's MIC gives his date of discharge as 2 March 1917 and I would be extremely grateful if you could transcribe the relevant pages. I would like to see them, but most of all it will be of interest to his great-granddaughter for whom all this is helping to provide a fuller picture of him. I'll send you my email address.

Many thanks.

Louise

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Rample
On 1/30/2010 at 20:37, stubriscoe said:

Mr Verrico,

The 2/6th Battalion North Staffs were in Ireland from April 1916 until December 1916, along with the rest of the 59th Division.

They moved to Ireland to suppress the Easter Rebellion, returned to England ~December 1917, and then to France in February 1917. As the time in Ireland was "Home Service" there is no Battalion war diary for this period.

The war diary has pages for January and February 1916 (they were almost sent to France then), then starts in February 1917.

The 1st line transport sailed Southampton to Le Havre 23/02 - 24/02, and the rest of the Battalion sailed Folkestone to Boulogne 25/02.

The February war diary covers 1 1/2 pages, and the March diary 2 pages.

If you want I can transcribe the pages and email them to you. Please PM me an email address if you would like this.

On my website I have transcribed the 2/6th South Staffs war diaries. This Battalion was in the same Brigade, so the movements are similar. There is also a page on the Division headquarters location.

Division HQ

2/6th SOUTH Staffs war diaries

Regards,

Stuart

 

Hi Stuart,  apologies for dredging this post back up but days of google searching tells me you are the nearest to an oracle on what I am trying to find out. 

 

My father is in ill health and as part of sorting his few heirlooms he has handed me down his father's first world war medals.  His father never discussed his service with him short of saying he saw many atrocities. I've managed to use the engravings on the medals to track down basic details.  His name was Pte Ernest Frost , #203870, with the 2/6th Battalion North Staffs.  I would love to give my father more information and allow him to know a little more about his father before he himself passes.

 

I've tried the above links which seem exactly what I'm looking for, but receive a database error/server problem when clicking on them.  Do you or anybody have this information still on hand?

 

Kind regards, Karl 

 

 

 

 

 

ya1.jpg

ya2.jpg

Edited by Rample
failed image upload

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kenf48
5 hours ago, Rample said:

 

Hi Stuart,  apologies for dredging this post back up but days of google searching tells me you are the nearest to an oracle on what I am trying to find out. 

 

My father is in ill health and as part of sorting his few heirlooms he has handed me down his father's first world war medals.  His father never discussed his service with him short of saying he saw many atrocities. I've managed to use the engravings on the medals to track down basic details.  His name was Pte Ernest Frost , #203870, with the 2/6th Battalion North Staffs.  I would love to give my father more information and allow him to know a little more about his father before he himself passes.

 

I've tried the above links which seem exactly what I'm looking for, but receive a database error/server problem when clicking on them.  Do you or anybody have this information still on hand?

 

Kind regards, Karl 

 

 

Hi and welcome to the forum.

 

Stuart last visited the forum in 2016, the good news is that since the last post on this thread was in 2010 the war diaries have been digitised and as you seem to have access to Ancestry the diary from July 1917, when they first went to France is here 

 

Alternatively you can download them from TNA

http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/results/r?_srt=1&_ep=WO+95/3021&_dss=range&_ro=any&_hb=tna

 

You may also find it useful to look at the parent site The Long Long Trail (link top right) in particular the pages on the Territorial Force

http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/the-territorial-force/ and researching a soldier

 

You will see he was renumbered along with the rest of the TF in March 1917, as that is the only number shown on his medals which relates to overseas service then he did not enter a theatre of war until after the renumbering.  Close numbers suggest mobilisation around February 1917.

 

Ken

 

Edited by kenf48

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clk

Hi Karl,

 

It seems that his number was issued from the block allocated to the units of the 5th Battalion - see here. When I did a 2038** near number search the men appear to have been mobilised/joined in late July 1917 to mid August 1917. The nearest I got was 203866 Turner, who was mobilised on 15th August 1917. Having joined up, men would have moved at different speeds before ending up in the field with a front line unit. To give an example of the kind of timescale that Ernest may have been subject to:

 

203828 Wilshaw

Mobilised 02.08.1917

Posted 5th Reserve Battalion (i.e. 3/5th) 11.08.1917

Posted 12th Bn (at the Infantry Base Depot) 12.02.1918

Posted 2/6th Bn 14.02.1918 

 

Regards

Chris

 

Edit:

17 hours ago, Rample said:

His name was Pte Ernest Frost , #203870, with the 2/6th Battalion North Staffs

 

Rather than the 2/6th, I note from the medal roll image you posted that Ernest served with the 9th Battalion in the field. Their war diary is here at the National Archives, or here on Ancestry. They were 37th rather than 59th Division.

Edited by clk

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Rob Sethna

Hi 

I’ve recently been reading some of these threads and posts with interest . My Grandfather H. H. Pickford enlisted in the North Staffordshire regiment at the outset of the war . At some point during 1916/17 he got a commission and for a period attended the officer training academy at Keeble in Oxford . Ultimately we know he was wounded in action in August 1918 and did not we believe return to the front line before the Armistice .  I would be very interested to learn or understand where I might find and information about the movements of his battalion the 2/6th . And in particular any actions that they specifically were involved in ? I have numerous pictures and a specific letter written to my grandfather by a fellow officer in 1953. Detailing the 12 to 24 hours of events around the time my grandfather was wounded and would be happy to share details if of interest .  
 

thanks 

Rob 

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clk

Hi Rob,

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

Might he have been Howard Henry Pickford?

 

image.png.aaabf6b16a09f6757f4568276dd383b7.png

Image sourced from Ancestry

 

Regards

Chris

Edited by clk

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Rob Sethna

Hi Chris 

Thanks for your reply and time .

 

and wow yes . That is indeed my Grandfather . Interestingly I notice the document shows 2/5 battalion and we have photos etc detailing 2 /6 battalion . I’m guessing transfers etc would have been relatively commonplace ? 
 

Rob 

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clk

Hi Rob,

 

I think that the card may be incorrect. I think that it would be unusual for a man to have been commissioned, then returned to his originating unit. What I do think that you can be pretty certain about is that he was commissioned in late March 1918 as per the index card, and as recorded in the London Gazette, and in the Army Lists.

 

image.png.9df9a3fc9f26e93d1e5d47a4640d5bd0.png

 

image.png.a5f52e98436f3e638377bda6f2de61f5.png

image.png.8808e55a78cbcc035dad1068264fa33a.png

 

image.png.1c37d5fed151c1bfe9fce448a42b4df2.png

Images sourced from the London Gazette - link

 

image.png.da9876c38a1fda8ae9e7b632978bfd70.png

 

image.png.39f22532a166744403b0ec1a878a3430.png

 

image.png.605a87dc74d1d6724f6b7aff141475c4.png

Images sourced from the National Library of Scotland - link

 

Rather than speculating about his service history, and trying to piece things together, I would be tempted to get a copy of his (probably heavily weeded) service file from the National Archives - see here. If you can't get there yourself, I understand that file copying services (such as this one) are very competitive in cost compared to getting one sent to you by the National Archives themselves. Once you have that, you should be able to cross reference to the appropriate Battalion war diaries which are available as downloads from the National Archives for a modest fee. Their search page is here. If Howard did originally serve with the 2/5 North Staffs, he may have been with them in Ireland prior to the unit being sent to France. There isn't a diary for that time.

 

Regards

Chris

 

 

 

 

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Rob Sethna

Hi again Chris 

 

Yes this all makes sense and I will certainly do as you suggest . The dates of March 1918 for the commission do on re checking fit with some of the pictures of him officer training in very late 1917 and early 1918 ! Also re the battalion question I have a picture of him in Dublin ( attached  ) Howard is the first soldier on the right at the front seated .  And just for interest I’ve attached. A picture of him after his commission . My mother his Daughter is still alive at 90 and understandably thinks and talks about her father a lot these days . She will be thrilled to see the documents you have attached and to be able to fill in some of the gaps . She is unfortunately unable to remember what happened to his service medals . But that’s not too important really . 
 

thanks

rob 

A3435E51-03BE-4455-9E15-D3D410EB9E62.jpeg

3746A978-0003-4BB9-89A0-EB1EDA57A6DC.jpeg

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