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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Robert Withers Jacomb Gibbon


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Hi all, Not too sure where exactly to start, or where to post, but I'll start here if that's ok.

I was sent here from the Historic Military Vehicle Forum by 'Super 6'

My Grandfather Robert WJ Gibbon was in service between 1914 and 18 but we as a family know precious little since upon his death in '56 my Grandmother disposed of a lot if not almost everything relating to him, including all conclusive photos of him.

Very recently my Uncle unearthed just over 160 photos taken by him (we think) during his time in France/Belgium. We have since scanned these pics and I posted them on the HMVF and had some fantastic feedback and suggestions as to where some of them were taken.

So far we have found out due to some skillfull detection by forum members that he was probably based around Ploegsteert wood since there is a picture of the local church and a shot of a road in nearby Gheer.

After a bit of basic internet research I found out that he was initally in the Royal Field Artillery then latterly the Royal Horsedrawn Artillery. He was comissioned at some point to (as far as I can tell) 2nd Lieutennant then Lieutennant and also at some point awarded the Military Cross as found here:

https://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/u/0/?ui=2&ik=1e4a65d65b&view=att&th=143635cade7a0edb&attid=0.3&disp=inline&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P_5KcsN6iyl-hQ8MM6BEBJq&sadet=1389095526633&sads=5bJ8LHn7J9veNXvpYyZddxkEo5I&sadssc=1

I registered, paid for and also downloaded his medal card (that would be handy to decipher)

post-105431-0-99138800-1389096104_thumb.

My initial question is whether it is possible and if so, where should I up-load the pictures (bearing in mind there are up to 164 of them)

Secondly upon their uploading I was wondering if anyone might be able to shed any light on their location further to what has already been gleaned.

I'm happy for them to be publicly viewed but request that permission is asked prior to their re-use

Many thanks in advance.

Bob

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Bob, there is a photo you display on the HMVF of a grave surrounded by a picket fence.

If the Name on the cross could be discerned, it might link to a RFA casualty and perhaps your GF's unit.

From a cursory scan, it looks to have fairly lightweight ammunition.

From the 1939 LG entry it looks as if he remained in the Army through the inter war period and it therefore might be possible to obtain his Service records from the MoD, which would probably incorporate both his WW1 career, mid Wars years and from Captain onwards in WW2.

SPECIAL LIST. Lt. Robert Withers Jacomb GIBBON, M.C. (97803) late R.A., to be Capt. 1st Sept. 1939.

A bit more Googling turns up this: http://www.unithistories.com/officers/army_officers_g01.html

1918: attached Signal Sub-Section, Royal Engineers, 5th Artillery Brigade, Royal Horse Artillery.

Dec '39 to Sept '40: Battery Commander (Officer Commanding), 6th Light Anti-Aircraft Battery RA (SR) (Scotland) (medically unfit) (you may already have an idea why)....
Born in Cuckfield I see, not all that far away from me...
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Robert Withers Jacomb Gibbon was commissioned, 2nd Lieutenant, December 4 1915

http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/29396/supplements/12296

Promoted to Lieutenant July 1 1917

http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/30286/supplements/9545

Awarded M.C., New Years Honours List 1919, no individual citation.

http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/31092/supplements/25

The back of the medal index card gave his correspondence address as - Wootton Heath, New Milton, Hants.

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SPECIAL LIST. Lt. Robert Withers Jacomb GIBBON, M.C. (97803) late R.A., to be Capt. 1st Sept. 1939.

Would that be his number?

From the 1939 LG entry it looks as if he remained in the Army through the inter war period and it therefore might be possible to obtain his Service records from the MoD, which would probably incorporate both his WW1 career, mid Wars years and from Captain onwards in WW2.

We had assumed he came out after WWI and was re enlisted in '39

and I would have a fair idea why he was dimissed medically unfit...however that might have come along later.

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I'd assume that 97803 is his WW2 Service Number.

WW1 officers did not have a Service Number, but those in WW2 did.

I don't know the date when Officers were issued Service Numbers but no doubt some Pals on here will be able to tell.

WW2 didn't start (on our side) until 3rd September 1939, although by 1st September it must have been pretty clear where things were heading.

Nonetheless for him to have been promoted Captain would indicate to me that he was already in the Army, although whether he resigned his commission some time after WW1 is outside of my current knowledge.

I'd guess that he had rejoined some Territorial unit, perhaps after Munich?

PTSD is accepted now, but in those days, stress and privations caused some people to behave abnormally, usually affecting those they loved the most.

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