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2/5th Bn Lincolnshire Regt. POW...Help Please!


Old Yeoman
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Hello, I have recently obtained the service record of my Great Grandfather who served with the 2/5th lincs, I know from this that he went from Ireland to France with 59 Div and from historic accounts here on the internet and elsewhere that 59 Div ended up at the front in the Somme area around March 1917 I can follow his battalions movements up until his capture on the 21st of March 1918 ( the battle of St Quentin I think ) ...the problem is the writing on his records has become pretty much unreadable over time and I cannot read the name of his place of capture it begins with 'B' and is 8 or maybe 10 characters long, also his place of internment is very faint, the first letter is possibly 'F' but is pretty smudged then 'REIDE' or 'RAIDE' this word is 10 to 12 characters long - I know this is a very long-shot any feed back at all will be great - Many thanks for reading this....

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Hi Yeoman,

He was captured, along with quite a few other 2/5th lads at Bullecourt. The only two POW's that I have noted the place of internment, was Freiburg and Limburg. If you care to mention your GF's name, I or some other pal may be able to decipher it?

Hope this helps,

Steve.

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Many Thanks Steve - I had suspected Bullecourt but the writing is faint and the power of suggestion takes over, if you know what I mean.

His details are : 241932 Private William Thomas Morris

thank you......Kind Regards.....Paul.

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I have also noticed on his 'Statement of Services' card he has two Army Numbers 5951 (crossed out ) & 241932 - can someone explain why this is ..thank you.

.

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Not at home so can't check specifics but all the territorial battalions were Re-numbered in 1917 and the men given 6 digit numbers.

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Hi Paul,

ss002...is right there. Your GGF's original number was the four digit one. The Territorials were renumbered (march 17) a few weeks after their arrival on the western front. The reason was to differentiate between the (in the Lincolns case) two TF battalions, the 4th (south of the county, based Lincoln) and 5th (north, Grimsby). Originally both battalions were issued the same sets of four digit numbers, so there would be a 5951 in the 4th battalion as well. I think the main reason for the change was to do with confusion caused in casualty returns. All 4th battalion men were renumbered with a six digit number with a prefix 20****, all 5th battalion men with the prefix 24****.

I'm sure that you are aware that the 2/5th was the second line battalion? There was a 1/5th as well who went out in March 1915. The 2/5th were formed in 1914 from those who did not sign the Imperial Service Obligation (willing to serve overseas). Those who did became the 1/5th. Only a small number did not sign, so there was a recruitment drive across north Lincolnshire in an attempt to bring the 2/5th up to strength. This drive produced between 5 and 600 men. The remainder were made up from men from outside the county. The 1/5th and 2/5th became independent of each other. A 3/5th battalion was created later which became the reserve battalion, did not serve overseas and simply provided replacements to both of the other battalions.

I see that your GGF was from Clapton. There were quite a few Londoners in the battalion, spread across all of the companies. There were also a large group of recruits from the Teesside area. I also notice that GGF was 31 when he enlisted. The majority of the London lads were 'older' recruits, which suggests to me that they were 'Derby Scheme' men (see the Long Long Trail for an explanation). I will have a look at his service record later to check this and see if I can decipher the POW camp for you,

Regards,

Steve

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Steve , thanks for all the good info' , yes he was a mature soldier, I will read up on the Derby Scheme.

Interesting that there were other Londoners in the Bn, I appreciate all of the help and look foward to finding the out the name of the POW camp if you can decipher it.

Regards Paul..

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post-6536-0-87733600-1344080089_thumb.jp

I think the place is Friedrichsfeld

Steve.

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I think you could be right, its not spelt quite the same though .

Paul.

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Bloody good effort Steve! You could be right there, I gave up. Actually I think now that GGF may have been conscripted.

S

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Hi Paul,

Simply because the enlistment forms for the Derby scheme men that i have seen have two dates. The first is the date that they signed up, the second for when they were called up. Conscription for married men was introduced in May/June 1916 and as GGF has only the one signature date on his enlistment form (Sept 1916) I think that he would have been a conscript. I'm pretty sure, but could be wrong!

Steve.

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Possible photo of 2/5th Battalion if interested.

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hello toofatfortakeoff - I have PM'd you, regards Paul.

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Hi Steve - Yes GGF's enlistment date was 16th Sept 1916 so that makes sense, thanks for the feed back.

regards Paul.

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