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Remembered Today:

Is this man Inniskilling Fusilier?


fjwiltshire
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I'm researching the ROH of a village in Sussex. In May 1917 the Kent and Sussex Courier ran a short piece on Pte James Peerless returning home after 6 months in hospital recovering from wounds.

James had enlisted in the Royal West Kent Regt. aged 15, then transferred to the Machine Gun Corps.

Accompanying the article was the attached poor quality, grainy photo. Well, some mistake surely.

I think they got their photos mixed with an officer from the village.

The question then " Is this the headgear and cap badge of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and did officers wear the Glengarry?" The badge looks about right but I'd like the opinion of wiser folk.

Cheers, Frankpost-34734-0-43868700-1404187373_thumb.j

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Yes definitely a Royal Scots Fusilier. As well as the cap badge, the diced glengarry is a dead giveaway. The officers pattern badge was different so the man shown is not an officer.

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Given that the piece refers to the Fusilier as having spent 6 months recuperating, I'd suggest he's pictured wearing hospital blues.

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Given that the piece refers to the Fusilier as having spent 6 months recuperating, I'd suggest he's pictured wearing hospital blues.

Yes, I agree, the white shirt and red tie worn with hospital blues are apparent from the photo.

I enclose an image of an RSF officer in a glengarry and the pattern of cap badge that he wore.

post-599-0-67383900-1404215141_thumb.jpg

post-599-0-30915400-1404215155_thumb.jpg

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Yes definitely a Royal Scots Fusilier. As well as the cap badge, the diced glengarry is a dead giveaway. The officers pattern badge was different so the man shown is not an officer.

I should have looked closer, after looking at the badge and cap, I noticed the tie, never thought of 'hospital blue's'

well done

khaki

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post-34734-0-34806300-1404246336_thumb.j

Many thanks for all your comments. My first theory is out the door now, definitely Royal Scots Fusiliers.

The apparent age of the soldier, just 17, and hospital blues tie in with the facts. The attached news report, his SWB record and MIC all confirm he was with the Machine Gun Corps. Has anyone got a reasonable answer why he could be entitled to wear this cap?

Frank

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attachicon.gif1917-5-18 Peerless, J wounded report.jpg

Many thanks for all your comments. My first theory is out the door now, definitely Royal Scots Fusiliers.

The apparent age of the soldier, just 17, and hospital blues tie in with the facts. The attached news report, his SWB record and MIC all confirm he was with the Machine Gun Corps. Has anyone got a reasonable answer why he could be entitled to wear this cap?

Frank

I imagine that the photo was taken whilst he was still badged as RSF, but a member of his battalion's MG section. These sections had already been brigaded (an army term meaning grouped) into Brigade companies by early Autumn 1915, whilst retaining their regimental badges, and in the October the Machine Gun Corps (MGC) was formed to absorb them. A new cap badge was designed, but not issued until the following year (1916). Ergo, your man was already a part of the MGC, but had not yet been issued with his new cap badge. Not long afterwards the MG companies were grouped into battalions, with one allocated to each infantry Division.

If he joined aged 15 in 1914, or 1915, then his wounding aged 17, would fit with the MGC dates.

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Frogsmile, Thanks for your reply which has clarified the attached, but separate, status of the MGC.

Sorry, I should have given full details of James' career. Born May 1900 he enlisted as a regular in the Royal West Kent Reg.(L11034) on 14th Sept 1915. A news report of May 1916 states he is MGC (No.4196) at the front and in good health. He would have been wounded later in the year because that news report of his release from hospital is dated May 1917. So given your dates he may have been assigned to RSF.

Possible, not conclusive. We'll hang a question mark over this one. Thanks to everyone for your very informative answers.

Frank

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Frogsmile, Thanks for your reply which has clarified the attached, but separate, status of the MGC.

Sorry, I should have given full details of James' career. Born May 1900 he enlisted as a regular in the Royal West Kent Reg.(L11034) on 14th Sept 1915. A news report of May 1916 states he is MGC (No.4196) at the front and in good health. He would have been wounded later in the year because that news report of his release from hospital is dated May 1917. So given your dates he may have been assigned to RSF.

Possible, not conclusive. We'll hang a question mark over this one. Thanks to everyone for your very informative answers.

Frank

I think you misunderstand what I have said Frank. Once MGC cap badges were issued in 1916 he would have worn only that badge. Prior to being issued with his MGC badges (i.e. in 1915) he would have continued to wear his Royal West Kent (RWK) insignia, including after being incorporated with his (formerly RWK) MG section in a Brigade machine gun company. There would be no real justification for him to wear RSF insignia (and head-dress), even if his MG section was temporarily attached to give support to that unit.

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Frogsmile, Thanks again for your comments and please excuse the delay in response.

You have now cleared up all uncertainty about this young man's identity. Unless local or family evidence can contradict, I don't feel confident about publishing this photo on the village website. It's difficult to call a negative a result but you can't win them all.

Frank

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Frogsmile, Thanks again for your comments and please excuse the delay in response.

You have now cleared up all uncertainty about this young man's identity. Unless local or family evidence can contradict, I don't feel confident about publishing this photo on the village website. It's difficult to call a negative a result but you can't win them all.

Frank

I think you are correct to come to that conclusion Frank. Even if the brigade intelligence officer had asked the MG section to wear RSF insignia as some kind of deception measure, which is extremely unlikely, there would have been no reason for young Frank to wear anything other than his parent regimental insignia when in hospital blue.

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