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CWGC database - when started/completed


punjab612
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Hi Pals

When was the CWGC database compiled. My family history society is coming across several instances of widows who have remarried and their new married name being recorded on the CWGC commemoration. My guess is that it was the early 20's but would like confirmation on this.

Thanks

Peter

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From what reference I have found it was after 1920 bur before 1924 - I couldn't count on the veracity of this though it does appear to along the right sort of time period.

Craig

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Peter, I've always believed that by the end of March 1921 most of the original lists were completed. But with the cutoff date of 31st August 1921 I would imagine that by the end of that year would be a more accurate completeness

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Peter,

I can't help you with a definitive date but I have recently been trawling through the registration cards for a number of Canadians who were buried in the UK. The cards were compiled by the Canadian military authorities and as a general rule, they were forwarded to the IWGC in July 1921. Similarly at this time the Australian authorities were issuing a second and final letter to NoK asking for details for headstones.

Phil

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Some interesting notes from Longworth's ' The Unending Vigil'

The whole project entailed the formation of three card indexes - alphabetical by name, alphabetical by country and regimental - to ease the task of reference for individual enquirers. These required 3000 drawers, which, piled four high, stretched a distance of 450 feet - one indication of the immensity of the task.

Disregard or innefficiency lengthened the process of compiling the lists of dead in Ceylon. They were not finished until 1928 and it took five years more for all the graves to be marked. In Australia and New Zealand the work was protracted even longer, but for quite different reasons. They would not accept the Commission's interpretation of the Charter's definition of a war grave. In 1922 it had decided that war graves should be restricted to soldiers and sailors of all parts of the Empire who had died from 'wounds inflicted, accident occuring, or disease contracted while on active service', during the period 4th August 1914 to 31st August 1921. But a Dominion could make another definition in respect of its own dead if it paid the extra cost. Both Australia and New Zealand took advantage of this, granting the honour of a war grave to any serviceman or ex-serviceman who died after 1921 as a result oif the war. Thus although in 1925 there were only about 600 war graves in New Zealand there were over 2700 by 1933, all maintained by the Department of Internal Affairs independant of the Commission's control. By that time the Australian Department of Defence, which carried similar responsibilities, had recognised over 3000 more war graves than the Commission would have done.

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....July 1921. Similarly at this time the Australian authorities were issuing a second and final letter to NoK asking for details for headstones.

The print date for the second issue of (UK) NoK final verification forms asking for details/corrections to headstones and also for cemetery register entries (ie. the one upon which the CWGC would gleen the details for its database) was April 1923. I don't know whether there was ever a third print at a later date.

Dave

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