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alantwo

HMHS Assaye - Look Ups

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alantwo

There are nine Admissions and Discharge Books for HMHS Assaye held by the National Archive for the Gallipoli campaign which I have photographed. The hospital ship evacuated casualties from Cape Helles, Anzac and Suvla Bay, including my Grandfather. I believe they are the only records of this type held by the National Archive and although there are only nine books they hold over 6000 names of Other Ranks casualties; with brief details of Name, Regiment, Rank and injuries etc. A few medical operations were also carried out on board which are also briefly listed by type and the outcome. The casualties are mostly British, Irish and Anzac though I have, for example, found an entry for the Zion Mule Corps and one Turkish Prisoner of War who is not named, only the injuries being cared for. If death occurred whilst on board this is also recorded and in rare instances the Latitude and Longitude are given of the burial at sea.

Given the total number of casualties, 6000 is only a very small number, however if any forum member believes they may have an interest in a casualty on HMHS Assaye, please let me have as much known information as possible and I will take a look. Please remember that these are not digitised records and I will need to look through them by hand, which may take some time. To narrow down the options a little I’ve listed below the approximate dates when the ship was taking casualties on board.

Kind regards

Alan

30th July to 6th August 1915.

16th August 1915.

23rd August 1915.

26th August and 27th August 1915.

8th September 1915.

20th September and 21st September 1915.

2nd October to 4th October 1915.

24 November to 27 November 1915.

8th December to 10th December 1915.

18th December to 20th December 1915.

2nd January to 6th January 1916.

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frev

Hi Alan

I realise that these books are about the casualties - but I was just wondering on the off chance (never hurts to ask) - whether there is any mention of the nursing staff - especially Mary Ann (Bessie) Pocock, who was the Matron of the Assaye from July 1915 to January 1916.

Also, is it possible to let me know which of the above dates were taking on casualties from Anzac?

I'll understand if it's too much hassle to trawl through the many pages - but I'll be eternally grateful for anything you can offer.

Cheers, Frev

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alantwo

Hi Frev

Good to hear from you.

The main dates when Anzac casualties were taken on board appear to be 23rd August, 26th and 27th August, 8th September and 2nd October to 4th October, but there are odd occasions when an Anzac name is recorded within other dates. For example two 6 Australian RFA casualties are listed on 5th August.

The only medical staff mentioned are those that undertook the operations and acted as anaesthetist and sometimes they changed places. The surgeons in no particular order were Lieut. P H Berry. Lieut. P H Williams, Lieut. M H Caine, Capt. N Duggan, Maj. Crosthwait, Capt. Hall, Lieut. Moore and C-Surg. Footner. I regret that none of the nursing staff are mentioned. Matron Pocock and her nursing staff did a good job though, I'm living proof.

A random example of the kind of information given for an operations is as follows:

Index No: 3291.

Corps: 11 AIF.

Regtl. No: 2359.

Rank and Name: Pte Cavanagh F O.

Disease or Injury: GSW elbow and back.

Anaesthetic (though the persons name is usually given): Lt Rigby.

Name of Operator and Date: Lt Williams 5/10/15.

Progress of Case: Nothing written.

Discharged: To England 20/10/15.

Remarks: Removal of shrapnel.

I hope this is of interest.

Kind regards

Alan

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frev

Thanks Alan

It is of interest.....and every little bit helps!

Cheers, Frev

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Bennett

Hello Alan,

Do you know if similar admissions & discharge documents exist for HMHS REWA, which was on station off Gallipoli from June 29, 1915 to the end of August? Thanks Ralph

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alantwo

Hi Ralph

As far as I’m aware the Discharge and Admissions Books for HMHS Assaye were the only ones kept after the war as a representational sample of the type, the rest being destroyed.

I’m not sure whether this will help but I’ve found HMHS Rewa mentioned in a few war diaries which are below. If I find any others I'll add a post.

Embarkation Officer (Mudros) War Diary

Mudros 28th June

REWA Sailed for Gaba Tepe for wounded

Mudros 30th June

REWA Hospital Ship left for Alexandria

Mudros 5th November

REWA Hospital Ship arrived from Malta

Mudros 10th November

REWA Hospital Ship arrived from Suvla

Mudros 8th December

REWA Hospital Ship sailed today for Salonika

13th Casualty Clearing Station War Diary

Walkers Ridge, 5th October, 9.45pm

H.S. Assaye left at 3.30pm. H.S. Rewa arrived

Walkers Ridge, 7th October, 9.30

Rewa left this evening, 20 cases evacuated, 18 sick (1 Officer), 2 wounded.

Walkers Ridge, 27th October

Evacuations carried out today cases from 1st Aust. C.C.S. and 16th C.C.S., H.S. Rewa and Somali arrived

Walkers Ridge, 30th October, 9.30 am

116 cases evacuated, 104 sick (8 Officers) and 12 wounded (1 Officer) H.S. Rewa and Somali left both full

54th Casualty Clearing Station War Diary

Suvla, 8th November

2/Lt. B. S. JENNINGS 6th YORKS. G.S.W. Groin - Died

Admissions. Officers sick 4, Capt. G. DAVIDSON R.A.M.C. - Debility, Lt. & Qt. A. DICKIES R.A.M.C. - Debility, Lt. S. D. M. WILSON 13th Hants. - Enteritis, 2/Lt. A. DALTON R. Dub. F. - Enteritis

Wounded nil

Other Ranks sick 96, wounded 15

Evacuations by H. Ship REWA. The above officers sick. Officers wounded nil

Other Ranks sick 97, wounded 11

Evacuations No.19621 Pte. E. GRIFFITHS 9th W. Yorks. G.S.W. abdomen - Died, No.9062 Pte. F. J. POPE 2nd Hants. G.S.W. Head - Died, No. 6811 Pte. T. Andrews 4th Worcesters. G.S.W. Chest - Died.

The above entry for 8th November is a little confusing as the number of sick and wounded is recorded twice and has differing totals. It is however as recorded for the day.

Kind regards

Alan

Edit - Having studied the entry a bit longer the difference between the two totals is probably that one is for admissions to the CCS and the other is for evacuations for that day.

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seaJane

For REWA I can offer: Two month's work in the RN Hospital Ship REWA at the Gallipoli beaches / by the medical staff of REWA. Journal of the Royal Naval Medical Service, vol. 2, pt. 1 (January 1916).

Let me know if you'd like to see a copy.

sJ

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Bennett

Thank you very much Alan for your generous sharing of that information and to SJ, yes, I would greatly appreciate seeing a "copy".

I am interested in the Rewa during the days following the last assault at Suvla Bay (August 21-25). I am especially interested in researching Captain J A Tennant. 1st Border, who DOW on board the Rewa and was buried at sea August 22nd. Thanks again Ralph

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limeyrr

Hello Alan,

I'm interested in Edward John Chipp who received a GSW to the head and right shoulder on Sept 21 1915 during action in Gallipoli. He was transferred to HMHS Assaye and passed away on Sept 23 1915 and was buried at sea the same day.

I'm wondering if you might have any further information on him.

Thanks,

Gerald

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stevem49

Hello Alan

Is it possible to search men by battalion?

I may have some 9th Bn Sherwood Forester men who were on the Assaye.

As an aside - My first barracks in BAOR was named 'Assaye' (not sure why)

Thanks

Steve M

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alantwo

Gerald

I note that this is your first post so welcome to the forum.

Your casualty is named in the HMHS Assaye Admissions and Discharge Book National Archive ref 106/1911. I have copied below the entry and the top of the page for context.

Kind regards

Alan

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alantwo

Hello Alan

Is it possible to search men by battalion?

I may have some 9th Bn Sherwood Forester men who were on the Assaye.

As an aside - My first barracks in BAOR was named 'Assaye' (not sure why)

Thanks

Steve M

Steve

The Regiments are listed, I've copied the top of the page and the entry for Gerald above and it will give an idea of the information given.

Regards

Alan

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alantwo

Gerald

It would appear that the surgeons on board HMHS Assaye operated on your casualty. Operations are listed at the back of the Admissions and Discharge Books. I hope this is of interest.

Regards

Alan

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post-74297-0-21746200-1385835138_thumb.j

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simon2

Alan,

Brilliant bit of work.

I have reason to believe that my Great Grandfather was wounded in 1915 at Gallipoli but

as yet have been unable to confirm. If it's not too much trouble could I ask you to check

for the books for him. I can only give you his details but sadly cannot narrow down when

he may have been wounded.

He is Pte Harold Francis Evans PLY16385 RMLI

There are too many clues to suggest he wasn't.

Cheers,

Simon.

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limeyrr

Alan,

Thanks for the additional information.

Gerald

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alantwo

Simon

Your casualty doesn't appear to be in these records. I could only find three RMLI names, 17665 Pte. Hickman, A., Portsmouth 17429 Pte. Drew, G. W. and 19315 Pte. Beech, F. C.

Regards

Alan

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simon2

Alan,

Many thanks for your help.

Only three names surprised me as they lost heavily during 1915.

I can now scratch that off my list and keep on digging. I just wish the Plymouth

War Diary existed so I could scratch that off too.

Cheers,

Simon.

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popshammett

Hi I wonder if you can help ... Frederick Percy Victor Brownsea 5th Battalion Dorset Regiment was evacuated from Gallipoli early in October 1915 to Malta, where he surcumbed to his injuries ...... I beleave he was evacuated on HMHS Assaye 2/4th October .... can any one give me any more detailed ie Wounded or Ill .... he died in Malta 15th October 1915 ..

Many thanks in advance .... Peter Hammett in UK

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alantwo

Peter

There does not appear to be an entry for your casualty, either by name, number or regiment in the HMHS Assaye records, both MH 106-1912 or 1913. The ship was certainly in that part of the Mediterranean on 9th/10th October as a couple of casualties are discharged to Malta and 1 casualty is recorded as being buried there. By the 13th the ship was just North of Tunis and arrived England 20th October.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission and your casualties MIC has the date of death as 12th October and that he died of wounds.

Regards

Alan

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seaJane

Thank you very much Alan for your generous sharing of that information and to SJ, yes, I would greatly appreciate seeing a "copy".

Bennett, did I ever get back to you about this? If not I do apologise ... drop me a PM...

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kjharris

Excellent work Alan!

It may be of interest to some:

The Wellington Trust, http://www.thewellingtontrust.com/trust/news?pnum=1

We are currently planning an exhibition this year about troopships, hospital ships and their nurses. It is intended to highlight
the place of Merchant Vessels together with their crews, taken up from trade, as troop ships and hospital ships. In addition
to their civilian crews the other personnel were doctors, medical orderlies and nurses.
cheers
Kirsty

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popshammett

Peter

There does not appear to be an entry for your casualty, either by name, number or regiment in the HMHS Assaye records, both MH 106-1912 or 1913. The ship was certainly in that part of the Mediterranean on 9th/10th October as a couple of casualties are discharged to Malta and 1 casualty is recorded as being buried there. By the 13th the ship was just North of Tunis and arrived England 20th October.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission and your casualties MIC has the date of death as 12th October and that he died of wounds.

Regards

Alan

Many thanks for your kind efforts Alan ..... Regards ... Peter Hammett

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harrison_ja

Alan,

Bit of a shot in the dark, and I know it's been a while since you posted about the HMHS Assaye...I'm trying to track down my great-great uncle L/cpl Harold HARRISON 11606 8th Cheshire Regt, 40th Bde, 13th Western Div. A small card in the family archives states "died of wounds received at Suvla Bay", although he didn't actually die until 19/10/1915 after he reached the UK, and then of an unspecified fever. I suspect that if he had caught dysentery he would probably have been evacuated only as far as Mudros or Egypt, so I suspect that he was probably wounded. However, I have no clear idea on what date he might have been wounded.

The 8th Cheshires appear to have been at Suvla from 1st September 1915, and were 'in reserve' until 20th September, then in the Sulajik sector (Section B, which I believe may have been 32nd field ambulance territory) until the 30th September. Prior to this in August they were on Cheshire Ridge, the Apex, Walker's Ridge and Russell's Top at Anzac, and it is possible that Harold was injured at Anzac, I suppose. I'm guessing that it probably took at least a few weeks to get back to the UK, particularly if he went via Mudros and Alexandria.

I know that the whole of September may be an awful lot of casualties, but I'd be grateful if you'd be able to look up what records you have. Feel free to PM or email me (harrison_ja@hotmail.com).

Many thanks

Jim Harrison

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alantwo

Jim

I've been able to locate 54 casualties for 8th Cheshire up to 22nd September which was about the time the ship left Suvla, but not your casualty. All the casualties were suffering from illness rather than wounds with the majority of 38 suffering from dysentery.

Regards

Alan

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s.hibbitt

Sadly I am unable to work anything out from this postcard but came across this ship's name in my research. Please would it be possible to see if Herbert Hibbitt Regiment No: 2045 and 240370 of The Leicester Regiment, I believe he was wounded and sent home in 1917 and again in 1918. This postcard I think is 1918 as the first time home he met his wife and married her and this postcard is to his wife. Thank you in advance.

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