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Remembered Today:

King Visits grave


Tom Tulloch-Marshall
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Cataloguing some photos found in French archives and wondered if anybody could throw any light on this one. Its clearly George Vth looking at the grave, and the stones on the burial show, from top to bottom, -

A maple leaf

46 (I think)

RIP

1917

post-108-0-72912600-1347738396_thumb.jpg

So, if correct, 46th Bn Canadian Infantry (“The Suicide Battalion”), 10th Brigade, 4th Canadian Division. Anybody recognise the photo or have any more detail as to the who / where / when ?

Tom

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[quote name='Tom Tulloch-Marshall' timestamp='1347738429'

So, if correct, 46th Bn Canadian Infantry (“The Suicide Battalion”), 10th Brigade, 4th Canadian Division. Anybody recognise the photo or have any more detail as to the who / where / when ?

Tom

Tom,

This photograph was taken during King George V's visit to The Front, including Vimy Ridge and the Somme battlefield, July 3 - 14, 1917.

Here is a link to a film which recorded the visit, and in the very opening sequence of the film, where King George V removes a souvenir from a dugout, you can see all those persons shown in your still photograph, which include General Currie and General Fanshawe, same steel helmets with the chin straps at the back of the neck, same uniforms, same armband, same equipment and straps over the shoulders.

Here is the film link, just copy and paste - then scroll down to the film screen and press the play button -

www3.nfb.ca/ww1/wartime-film.php?id=538497

The caption for the film is as follows :-

" Visit of King George V and Queen Mary to France 3-14 July 1917. The King tours Vimy Ridge and the Somme battlefield. At Albert the King knights two Corps commanders, General Currie of the Canadian Corps and General Fanshawe, and decorates a number of French officers. The King goes on to visit Australian 5th Division headquarters. The Queen visits the South African hospital at Abbeville. The King continues his tour of Vimy Ridge and the Somme area. Finally, the King, Queen and Prince call in at the Duchess of Sutherlands hospital prior to leaving for Britain from Calais. "

Regards,

LF

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LF – Interesting link, thanks. Certainly looks like the correct visit.

Given the obvious Vimy 1917 link to the 46th Bn I’m now wondering if the view in post #1 is a grave, or is it a memorial to the division ?

Anybody recognise it ?

Tom

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Tom,

Here is a photograph of another Canadian Vimy memorial to the 2nd Division, and although there is no comparison in size, with the 2nd Division's memorial being vastly larger in size, the format of the memorial with the use of stones to form the images of the Canadian Maple leaf, RIP, the number of the Division and the date, suggests that in your original photograph, the King is viewing a memorial marker to the Canadian 46th Division, rather than a Canadian soldier's grave.

Regards,

LF

post-63666-0-91856700-1347827005_thumb.j

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LF - in post #5 I managed to elevate 46th Battalion to become a Division :wacko: (which I now correct), but that aside I think I agree with what you say - post #1 is probably showing a unit memorial rather than a soldier's grave.

Tom

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Cataloguing some photos found in French archives and wondered if anybody could throw any light on this one. Its clearly George Vth looking at the grave, and the stones on the burial show, from top to bottom, -

A maple leaf

46 (I think)

RIP

1917

post-108-0-72912600-1347738396_thumb.jpg

So, if correct, 46th Bn Canadian Infantry (“The Suicide Battalion”), 10th Brigade, 4th Canadian Division. Anybody recognise the photo or have any more detail as to the who / where / when ?

Tom

Sorry to go off on a tangent, but what I find strange about this photo is that George Saxe-Coburg und Gotha is wearing a cloth hat, while the brass hats are wearing tin hats. Why the inconsistency? If there was any threat, one would think they would have put a tin hat on George also?

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Hi Wexflyer,

I thought the King had changed the family name to Windsor by that time, however as to your question, I don't think it likely that the King was in any immediate danger and would have worn the same attire as his senior generals. It would also be normal that the King would not carry a sidearm (revolver).

khaki

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Hi Wexflyer,

I thought the King had changed the family name to Windsor by that time, however as to your question, I don't think it likely that the King was in any immediate danger and would have worn the same attire as his senior generals.

khaki

This visit predates the name change, so George Saxe-Coburg und Gotha he was. As for wearing the same as the senior generals, that is my point - he was not.

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I have looked at many photographs of King George V visiting The Front, and have yet to see a photograph of him wearing a British Brodie steel helmet, that probably being his personal preference, although as khaki pointed out, I am sure it was considered that he was not in any danger at the time. I am also sure that a King's Brodie helmet was being carried by one of his Aides, just in case.

There are photographs of King George V wearing other British military helmets, and also one of him wearing a German officer's helmet when he and the Kaiser wore each others Nation's uniforms at a family wedding.

It was believed that King George V and his family were finally convinced to abandon all titles held under the German Crown and to change German titles and house names to Anglicized versions in March of 1917, when a heavy German aircraft named the ' Gotha G. IV ' crossed the English Channel and bombed London. Gotha being part of the name of England’s royal family, Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and an unfortunate association with the German aircraft and the bombing of London.The Royal Proclamation changing the Royal Family name to ' Windsor ' was issued on 17th July, 1917.

LF

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  • 4 years later...

Was it a mandatory requirement for British subjects to abandon German 'titles' and honors, or was it personal choice. Were there any persons who retained them and were there consequences for having done so?

 

khaki

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Queen Mary's brothers, the Duke of Teck and Prince Alexander of Teck, became the Marquess of Cambridge and the Earl of Athlone, and Count Gleichen became Lord Edward Gleichen. The Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, who was also the British Duke of Albany, a grandson of Queen Victoria, remained in Germany and presumably didn't use the latter title a lot.

 

Prince Maurice of Battenberg had already been killed by then, and is buried in Ypres under that name. I think that the other Battenbergs had already changed their name to Mountbatten, including Prince Louis who had been forced out of the post of First Sea Lord, before the declaration of 1917. Sir Stanley von Donop had come under similar criticism as Master-General of the Ordnance. Various other officers with German (or German-sounding) names also changed their surnames, but I don't think there was any legal obligation to do so for anyone who wan't royal.

 

The German and Austrian Emperors were thrown out of the Order of the Garter but apparently were not formally deprived of their honorary colonelcies of British regiments (1 DG and 1 D, I believe).

 

Ron

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29 minutes ago, Khaki said:

Was it a mandatory requirement for British subjects to abandon German 'titles' and honors, or was it personal choice. Were there any persons who retained them and were there consequences for having done so?

 

khaki

Hope I'm right, but the Royal family would not be regarded as subjects, whereas, I am. And rightly so me Lord:)

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The Royal Family are all subjects, except the reigning Sovereign.

 

Incidentally King George V also changed some of the other rules relating to the Royal Family, including use of the title "Royal Highness".

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6 minutes ago, Ron Clifton said:

The Royal Family are all subjects, except the reigning Sovereign.

 

Incidentally King George V also changed some of the other rules relating to the Royal Family, including use of the title "Royal Highness".

Thanks for that Ron.

That put's me even lower:)

 

Gary.

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On 9/17/2012 at 16:14, Lancashire Fusilier said:

I have looked at many photographs of King George V visiting The Front, and have yet to see a photograph of him wearing a British Brodie steel helmet,

 

Does these fit the bill?

http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205193163

http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205237707

http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205237706

 

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18 hours ago, Khaki said:

Was it a mandatory requirement for British subjects to abandon German 'titles' and honors, or was it personal choice. Were there any persons who retained them and were there consequences for having done so?

 

khaki

Ultimately, under the Titles Deprivation Act 1917 several British peerage titles held by Germans were removed https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Titles_Deprivation_Act_1917 (though this did not formally take effect until 1919).  The king had personally removed a number of people from the Roll of the Order of the Garter as early as 1915.

 

Relinquishment of German titles by the Battenbergs/Mountbattens was given effect by various Royal Warrants promulgated in the London Gazette of 9 November 1917 starting on this page https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/30374/page/11594 (the warrants run on for several pages, and some are actually dated July 1917)

Edited by David_Underdown
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7 hours ago, michaeldr said:

Does these fit the bill?

Very good, Michael.

Re. the Daily Mail post card, post 17- I find the figure in the distance haunting.

Kath.

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Well spotted Kath:

the coloured, newspaper version, does indeed make that figure on the skyline look haunting

 

The B&W version is here http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205072386

but in that one the figure looks less ethereal (also note that the press have cropped out Rawlinson)

Judging by the PoW's stance, the party is about to leave, and this brings me to the thought that this shot

http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205077678 was taken a little earlier, when we see that the skyline held a few more onlookers.

Edited by michaeldr
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  • 2 weeks later...

Almost as if it is the ghost of the dead soldier! I wonder if that is what the artist who tinted the photograph intended.

Edited by Gardenerbill
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Thank you for those links, Michael.

Very useful background to my postcard.

Bill, it's surprising the figure was not edited out!

 

Kath.

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2 hours ago, Kath said:

it's surprising the figure was not edited out!

 

Hi Kath,

 

It's also surprising what has been 'edited in' 

Your coloured version has lettering seen on the cross which was not picked up by either of the B/W versions

 

regards

Michael

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