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Pipe Major R.A.M.C.


aboode
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I am looking for information about Pipe Majors in the Royal Army Medical Corps during WW1. At the moment I have the following names:

- Currie, Malcolm MacLean (B. 1865 Kilchoman, Islay; D. 1940 Glasgow)

- Stewart, Donald (B. 1888 Dundee)

- Phillips, William Edward

- Gilbert, ? (1st Highland Field Ambulance)

And there may be more, of course. I am interested in their full first/middle names, year from-to as P/M with name of unit, year/place of birth, year/place of death.

Any help will be appreciated.

Thanks

Aad

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MrSwan,

The information about P/M Malcolm Currie is available on the website www.tunearch.org for the tune "Malcolm Currie", a reel composed by P/M William Gray. It mentions that the information comes from the Scottish Pipers Association (Glasgow), of which he was the first Secretary:

Malcolm MacLean Currie was born at Carnduncan in the parish of Kilchoman, Islay on 16th December 1865.....

During the 1914-18 war he was Pipe Major of the RAMC pipe band and then staff sergeant forming camps for convalescent soldiers. Before the war he was a piper in the band of the 7th HLI under P/M Farquhar MacRae.

More recently - in the 1950s and 60s - there were also pipe bands in the RAMC: James Clark CAUTION was P/M around 1953 and Robert Henry HILL was P/M of the 257 (City of London) General Hospital from 1960. I believe these were T.A. units.

The Pipes & Drums of the 2nd Scottish General Hospital RAMC took part in the 1950 Edinburgh Military Tattoo. They were disbanded in 1962.

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There even is a "205 (Scottish) Field Hospital (Volunteers)" tartan, registered with the Scottish Register of Tartans (ref. STWR 3255). It does not say in which year it was registered. But it does mention "The unit tartan has for some years been Graham of Montrose, worn originally by the Pipes & Drums of the 2nd Scottish General Hospital from 1920."

I think it is fair to assume that this tartan was created after WW2 and may well have been worn by the Pipes & Drums of the 2nd Scottish General Hospital when they took part in the 1950 Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Probably the members of the Pipes & Drums were volunteers, including the Pipe Majors.

Aad

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Aad,

In the book, 'The Pipes of War' {which can be downloaded for free at https://archive.org/stream/pipesofwarrecord00setorich#page/148/mode/2up there is mention of 2 R.A.M.C. Pipers:-

318411 Pte. William Scott M.M., 11th Field Ambulance.

93110 Piper Andrew McIntosh 2/2 Lothian Field Ambulance. The fact he is officially a Piper would imply a pipe-band, and also a Pipe-Major.

I wonder if the unit War Diaries {if they exist} would mention pipe bands?

Regards,

Alf McM

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Aad,

In the book, 'The Pipes of War' {which can be downloaded for free at https://archive.org/stream/pipesofwarrecord00setorich#page/148/mode/2up there is mention of 2 R.A.M.C. Pipers:-

318411 Pte. William Scott M.M., 11th Field Ambulance.

93110 Piper Andrew McIntosh 2/2 Lothian Field Ambulance. The fact he is officially a Piper would imply a pipe-band, and also a Pipe-Major.

I wonder if the unit War Diaries {if they exist} would mention pipe bands?

Regards,

Alf McM

I am assuming when you say 'unit War Diaries' you are referring to the FA Diaries? If that's the case, I have not seem a pipe band or any other for that matter, mentioned in the diaries.

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On the website http://bedfordhighlanders.blogspot.co.uk covering the period 1914-1915 there is a photograph of the Pipes & Drums of the 3rd Highland Field Ambulance RAMC and a poem "Skirl of the Pipes of the 1st Highland Field Ambulance" dedicated to their P/M Gilbert.

Aad

Aad,

Just want to congratulate on a fascinating website/BlogSpot.

Many congratulations.

Kindest Regards.

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  • 4 weeks later...

In the book, 'Floo'ers O' The Forest - Fallen Pipers of the Great War', there is mention of a few pipers who had either matriculated in medicine or who had previously served in the RAMC, however at the time of their deaths in WW1 they were serving in infantry regiments.

However in the book's introduction, there is mention that, (quote), 'Pipers of the Commonwealth and Colonial Forces who had maintained pipers on the strength of their regiments are not included. Not are pipers of the English regiments with territorial battalions affiliated with regular Scottish regiments. Excluded too, are certain batteries of the Royal Regiment of Artillery and territorial units of the Royal Army Medical Corps who had also maintained a pipe band.'

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Dear All

When the Training Officer for 225 Highland Field Ambulance in the early 90s I found the Officers Mess had loads of old photographs including the unit pipe band at the time of the First World War but its then designation escapes me ( might be 153 Highland Field Ambulance). From what I remember the pipe band was quite large and the QM's had some instruments from later years but I do know they were disposed of. The AMS Museum does have pipers uniforms and RAMC plaid badges. We wore Red Robertson tartan behind our cap badges.

Pete

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As the term Pipe Major is an appointment rather than an official rank, there is one MIC on Ancestry stating Pipe Major RAMC as a rank but that is a modern transcription error, it would be very difficult to identify those in that position.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have seen references to Pipes & Drums in the following units:

- 1st Highland Field Ambulance

- 2nd Highland Field Ambulance

- 2nd Scottish General Hospital (1920-1962) (Took part in Edinburgh Military Tattoo 1950)

- 2/2nd Lothian Field Ambulance

- 3rd Highland Field Ambulance

- 11th Field Ambulance

- 50th Casualty Clearing Station

- 57th Middlesex General Hospital

- 152nd (Highland) Field Ambulance

- 153rd Field Ambulance

- 205 (Scottish) Field Hospital (1920-1962)

- 205 (Scottish) General Hospital (from 1967)

- 256 (City of London) Field Hospital (till 1983)

- 257 (City of London) General Hospital

Thank you all for your comments so far; any additional information about Pipes & Drums in the RAMC and their Pipe Majors is still welcome!

Aad

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Aad.....one person who might have some information containing pipes & drums of the RAMC is a former P/M of the Aberdeen UOTC (P/M there in the late 1970s/early 1980s).

He subsequently went on to become a commissioned officer in the RAMC.

I have an email address for him if of any interest. If so send me a private message/email and Ill pass details on to you.

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  • 1 year later...

Just came across this photo on youtube of an RAMC Pipes & Drums c1966, and thought I'd post the link here in case of any interest:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPPixBSArtg

and another.....

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32892154@N04/10118425223

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32892154@N04/9722619235

http://www.bluebellmilitaria.co.uk/viewitem.php?id=26

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  • 1 month later...

There is also a good photograph of the 2/2 Lowland Field Ambulance RAMC Pipe Band in the 12th August 1916 edition of the Stirling Observer. They wore Ross tartan. Specifically shows eight pipers, four side-drummers and a bass drummer.

Unfortunately I have no idea how to upload the article onto here!

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  • 3 years later...

Pipers in the Royal Army Medical Corps Band http://martinharrisonsmedalresearch.wesebly.com/macphee-neil.html

 

Until the late 1970s, possibly into the 1980s too, 225 (Highalnd) Field Ambulance had a pipeband. The regimenal records (now 225 (Scottish) Medical Regiment) has some records and the odd photograph of the band. The band wore the Robertson tartan as did all ranks as a capbadge backing.

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