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Remembered Today:

Henry Nichols. Coventry. Killed 1917. Final infomation


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Hello all,

These past few months I have been gathering and consolidating and trying to gather more specialised info for my great grandfather Henry Nichols. I wanted to share all this information with your guys from this forum and try to gather some last information.

Henry Nichols

Henry Nichols portait photo holding a Soprano cornet taken in around 1909.

Henry Nichol was born 24th January 1886 in Providence Street Earlsdon, Coventry to Richard Nichols and Eliza Nichols. He had 3 sisters Eliza (The eldest sibling) Daisy and Mable Nichols (who was still 0 in 1891 when Henry was 5 in 1891).

Henry Nichols worked as a Polisher and then a Dairy Farmer (taking after his dad Richard who had been a manager on a farm in Leicester moving to Coventry presumably for the motor industry as a Cycle Machinist and finally a Gardner).

During this time Henry Nichols playing with the Coventry City Salvation Army Band under bandmaster Robert Minton playing Cornet, Flugal and Soprano Cornet (We have pictures which I will add from his time in the band dating from 1909) he played the same instrument as his best friend William Sherwin (who was the best man at his wedding)

Coventry Salvation Army Band 1909

Henry Nichols is 3rd from the right on the back row in this picture. William Shewin is the 3rd person from the left on the back row.

Coventry Salvation Army Band

Henry Nichols is 3rd row 2nd person from left.

Coventry SA Band

Henry Nichols is 3rd row 2nd person from the right hand side. (I can provide better pictures if needed)

Henry Nichols was married 26th November 1910 age 24 to Elizabeth Hobley they both lived at 98 Westwood Road Coventry and Henry Nichols worked as a Dairyman at this time. William Sherwin from the Coventry Band was his best mad.

Henry Nichols first child Victor Nichols was born on the 29th May 1913, Followed by Agatha and Olive Nichols (I am guessing birth dates here at 1914/1915 or possibly early 1916 for Agatha) we know that Olive was born in 1915.

Very little is known about Henry Nichols joining the Army but I am guessing that Henry Nichols joined under the Derby Scheme in late 1915 or early 1916 joining the 1/6th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment with the serial number 242557. I know little of when he was deployed to France (There is very little on his Medal Card apart from the Victory and British war medal being awarded).

Henry Nichols Medal Card

Henry Nichols Medal Card (Top left)

It is known that William Sherwin joined up in December 1915 with the Royal Warwickshire Regiment so it is likely that Henry Joined at the same time or near this date. William was to be invalided out the army due to an injury (I don’t know if this was in France or later) But he was in the Labour Corps leaving in 1919 2 years after his best friend had been killed.

In January 1917 the 1/6th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment was deployed to Biaches near Peronne where on 11th March 1917 Henry Nichols was killed along with a Private Arthur Cresswell (serial number 242136) I do not know what Henry and Arthur cause of death was but I am guessing it was shellfire and at the time the village of Biaches was heavily fought over although it was a lest battered by shellfire than the battlefield of the Somme. It was very frosty but from what I can tell this weather gave the trenches a "spacious air about them". The 1/6th war diary states 2 Killed 1 wounded.

War Diary 1/6th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment Biaches March 1917

1/6th Battalion war diary orders going into Biaches in March 1917. 11 days later Henry Nichols would be dead.

Trench Map January 1917

Trench Map of Biaches January 1917 (the 1/6th RWR would have used this map) Note Kiboko Wood in the bottom left hand corner of the map.

Biaches Trench Map January 1917

Clear map of the trenches around Biaches in 1917.

After being Killed Henry Nichols and Arthur Cresswell were buried in Kiboko Wood (meaning Hippopotamus in Swahili) very near the frontline at Biaches. Kiboko Wood survives to this day as Bois Marc. After the war they were both buried in Asseviller War British Cemetary.

I finally wanted to show you a final image of myself and Henry Nichol. He left a huge legacy that was continued to this day passed from father to son.

Great Granddad

Just a final message of thank to you all in helping me research my great granddad. And if anyone has any info or any ideas where I could futher my research on Henry Nichols I would be happy to hear it.

Thank you

Micah

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Much appreciated if anyone has any directions of research that I could take to discover more infomation (if there is any more to discover).

Thanks Again.

Micah

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