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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Machine Gun Corps Experts - Help Needed!


dannyboy

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Hello - I've recently located the Medal Index card for one of my relatives with some certainty. However I've got a question I need some help on please. Do any of the MGC experts on here know from their experience approximately when and where his service number 134835 was issued?

He has a second service number listed on his index card with both MGC & Tank Corps as 7811248 appearing to have been issued after the Great War in 1919 (where he saw service in India). This is confirmed on the Royal Tank Corps enlistment records recently released on Find My Past.

However there is no reference to his previous service number on the Tank Corps Enlistment records but it does appear on his index card & is listed as MGC. This number seems like it is possibly an earlier number as I've located several MGC men on Ancestry SWB & service records who have a range of close numbers (Examples include Charles Beresford 133554 & Benjamin Bates 133646). Any help on the origins of his number would be greatly appreciated.

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By no means an expert but in 1920 pursuant to Army Order 338 the old system of Regimental numbering changed and each serving soldier received a seven digit number. This number remained with him throughout his service. The MGC was allocated numbers in the block 7807001 to 7868000 so he was serving in the MGC in 1920. When he moved to the Tank Corps he took his number with him (coincidentally the Tank Corps sequence followed on i.e. 7868001-7891868).

Looking at the medal card there is no reference to the BWM and Victory Medal, which means it is an oversight (unlikely) or he did not serve in a theatre of war, or overseas prior to the Armistice. It is possible there is another card at TNA but I can only see the one on a basic search.

However if you have access to Ancestry and look at the mic for Alexander N Showell he first went overseas with the MGC No. 29225and was awarded a pair., In 1920 he was allocated number 7808665. He also went to India and was awarded the IGSM with Waziristan Clasp for 1919-21 with the MGC and the 1921-24 Clasp with the Tank Corps. His IGSM was sold but still appears on this site; http://www.medal-medaille.com/sold/product_info.php?cPath=247&products_id=5377

You will see he served with 7 Armoured Motor Battery MGC when he qualified for the1919-21 clasp and in 1921 transferred to 10 Armoured Car Company Tank Corps and continued to serve in Waziristan until 1924, qualifying for the second clasp and the subsequent entries on the mic are identical to those of your relative.

You will notice that both his and Pte Shore's medals were sent to 10 Armoured Car Company, Tank Corps, Fort Delhi India, and both were applied for by the Records Office at Hampton Court. This suggests a similar pattern of service.

So going back to the 134835 number I believe this was in fact allocated by the MGC (Cavalry) post Armistice, probably around July/August 1919.

For example 134593 was issued to a Pte Bagnall on 17/7/1919 he was 18 and originally enlisted for 7 years with the colours and 5 on reserve as a regular soldier (although he was discharged after a couple of months).

134518 was allocated on the 9th July

Shore's original number does seem to be added to the mic out of sequence (i.e. if he'd gone overseas prior to the Armistice it would be similar to that of Showell).

How old was Alfred Shore in 1918? (There is insufficient detail in the original post to identify him but there are at least two who were born 1900).

However as he served beyond 1920 his service record should be available (for a fee) from the Veterans Agency

http://www.veterans-uk.info/service_records/army.html

Ken

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