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The 9th Warwickshire Battalion: The 13th (Western) Division in 1914-19


LCpl Lee Cope
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Hello again folks,

Another ancestor of mine who fell somewhere in Mesopatamia. His name is on plack 9 amongst The Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the Basrah War Memorial.

Name: George Cope

Birth Place: Warton,

Warwicks Residence: Hinckley, Leics

Death Date: 30 Jun 1916

Death Location: Mesopotamia

Enlistment Location: Nuneaton, Warwicks

Rank: Private

Regiment: Royal Warwickshire Regiment

Battalion: 9th Battalion

Number: 12665

Type of Casualty: Died Theatre of War: Asiatic Theatres

I've found the war diaries for the 9th and 10th Battalion The Royal Warwickshire Regiments during WW1 and will be reading them tonight once I've ordered them from the National Archives.

George was Edward Keighly Cope's uncle and I'm thinking that George Robert Isaac Cope was possibly near Sheikh Sa'ad during the withdraw of the besieged garrison at Kut al Amara (March 1916 - February 1917) and died in the months before the capture of the Hai Salient (25 January - 5 February 1917). Possibly from wounds, but with no service record I cannot be sure.

Did the relief attempt of Kut al Amara run into June 1916? Because according to this it didn't http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siege_of_Kut So maybe George did die 2 months later of wounds suffered during the seige of Kut al Amara?

1916

  • The last Turkish attacks at Helles, 7 January 1916

On 8-9 January 1916, the Division was evacuated from Helles and by 31 January was concentrated at Port Said. The Division held forward posts in the Suez Canal defences.

12 February 1916 : began to move to Mesopotamia, to strengthen the force being assembled for the relief of the besieged garrison at Kut al Amara. By 27 March, the Division had assembled near Sheikh Sa'ad and came under orders of the Tigris Corps. It then took part in the attempts to relieve Kut. After these efforts failed and Kut fell, the British force in the theatre was built up and reorganised. The Division took part in the following, more successful, operations:

1917

  • The Battle of Kut al Amara, December 1916-February 1917
  • The capture of the Hai Salient, 25 January - 5 February 1917
  • The capture of Dahra Bend, 9-16 February 1917
  • The passage of the Diyala, in the pursuit of the enemy towards Baghdad, 7-10 March 1917

At 10.30am on 11 March 1917, D Squadron, 1/1st Hertfordshire Yeomanry and the 6th (Service) Bn, the King's Own were the first British troops to enter Baghdad, which fell on this day.

During the rest of March and April 1917, operations were undertaken to consolidate the position won at Baghdad, by pushing north across Iraq. As part of "Marshall's Column", the Division fought at Delli 'Abbas (27-28 March), Duqma (29 March), Nahr Kalis (9-15 April), crossed the 'Adhaim (18 April) and at Shatt al 'Adhaim (30 April).

It also fought later in the year, in the Second and Third Actions of Jabal Hamrin (18-20 October and 3-6 December 1917), and finally at Tuz Khurmatli (29 April 1917).

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Hello folks,

Yesterday I visited the Warwickshire Fusilier Museum in Warwick as we were investigating our George Cope who died in Mesopotamia.

These attachments are from the War diary of the 9th Battalion during the time of Georges death to disease.

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  • 4 years later...

Good day. I’m currently researching the war service of my wife’s grand-father who also served with the 9th Royal Warwickshire Regiment : Pvt Leonard E Clarke 3328. He survived the war despite being wounded in (we think) early/mid February 1917. I’m trying to find out more, so if there’s any light you can throw on what the Bn was doing over that period it would be very helpful. Many thanks.

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The detailed war diary of the battalion covering this period can be downloaded for the princely sum of £3.50 from the National Archives website. It goes by reference WO 95/5159/1.

Edited by Chris_Baker
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