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Remembered Today:

McDougal(l?) Service Number 306045


dgibson150
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I have been trying to identify soldiers noted in my grandfather's "The Soldiers Own Diary" for 1918.

The next to last page includes an entry "McDougal, (or possibly McDougall) 306045. I thought that finding out who McD was would be easy but I have drawn a complete blank on this name/number combination.

My grandfather was Private George Gibson 306070, 9th Battalion Tank Corps. Given the proximity of the service numbers I thought McD was probably Tank Corps, but that number doesn't exist in the records for the Tank Corps.

Could it be that the Medal Index Card has gone missing? Has anyone any ideas?

I attach a scan of the diary page.

David

post-108666-0-88735600-1413913086_thumb.

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He may well have been in the Tank Corps just didn't go overseas therefore no mic.

A quick look at TNA shows 040 also missing but all the rest in the 04* series are present apart from, as you say 045.

Ken

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As that's Stokoe's Tank Corps number, it seems almost certain to also be a Tank Corps number. Was this in the UK? Perhaps McDougall was found unsuitable?

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The notebook shows '33 Hut 6 Coy RE Command Depot Thetford, Norfolk'. There could have been many reasons why he did not go overseas however as a Command Depot was a military convalescent camp and if the address is linked to the name he may well not have been fit enough for overseas service.

The LLT shows 4000 beds at Thetford http://www.1914-1918.net/command%20depots.htm

Ken

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Many thanks to you all for the interest.

I think Ken (post #4) that the reference to Thetford is a different matter, as indicated by the feint wavy line drawn across the page.

I know Stokoe (post #3). I have a photograph of Stokoe with my grandfather when they were together in either the Durham Fortress Engineers or the 408th Highland Reserve Field Company RE. They were both from Washington, County Durham. Stokoe was indeed ultimately Tank Corps, 10th Battalion, dying in late May 1918.

Re Ken's post #2 I think the entry in the diary was probably made in France, therefore McD should have had a mic.

I can only think that the absence of any record of McD is a clerical error, unless of course the interpretation of what was written is not "McDougal(l)", but I can't think whatever else it might be.

Are there any precedents for missing mics?

David

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The medal cards are the most complete record of soldiers who served overseas in the British Army in WW1. There are 4.8 million names in the database. As with any administrative system, which has also gone through a copying process, some have probably slipped through the net and I'm sure a couple of possible have appeared on the forum recently. However I do find it a strange explanation in this case as the series from 306030 through to 306070 is a complete run with the exception of, as noted before *40 and *45 and I would still argue it's more likely these men did not go overseas for whatever reason.

It may be significant Stokoe's Bn is shown against his name whereas McDougall's is not which suggests he was not posted when the note was made.

It appears George Stokoe is a non-comm as the only one I can find on the CWGC R of H who died on 27th May 1918 was in the Northumberland Fusiliers.

Ken

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Ken

I think you are right.

On reflection, I was wrong in assuming the diary entry was made in France. George Gibson transferred to the Tank Corps on 18 January and was at Wareham until 5th April when he left for France. McDougal was probably in the same intake of recruits but, as you say, was never posted overseas, hence the lack of a mic and a battalion designation in the diary entry.

David

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  • 2 years later...

I am new to this forum, so please excuse the late reply nearly 3 years late

The person you are talking about is my Grandfather, His name is James McDougall and he was a tank trainer instructor from Newcastle area (Jarrow) and served 1915 to 1919. He never served abroad and so didn't get medals

His number is 306045 as you already know. I do have a military photograph of him with 22 others, it is marked up as 19j and another separate single shot of him

He actually was a miner and worked Kent mines in WW2, Later came to the midlands, died in Halesowen 1960

Hope that helps, I am curious to know where he did his instructing although I also have a postcard off him from Kilwinning about that time so maybe that's where but I don't know for sure

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Thanks for the new information brummie771.

 

Maybe to recap on what I know about my grandfather will help. My grandfather attested in Jarrow around 6 January 1915 and joined the Durham Fortress Royal Engineers serving at Link House Camp in Blyth, Northumberland. His first RE service number was 953. I have looked at neighbouring numbers and it seems that several of his friends from Usworth / Washington in County Durham enlisted at the same time. There is an Edward, "Teddy" Graham from Washington, #943 whose service records survive and it is highly probable that my grandfather's service record was the same. 

 

Service numbers of George Gibson - Durham Fortress Royal Engineers #953, RE renumbering #470457, Tank Corps #306070

Service numbers of Teddy Graham -  Durham Fortress Royal Engineers #943, RE renumbering #470447, Tank Corps #306067

 

Teddy Graham transferred from Durham Fortress RE to 408th (Highland) Reserve Field Company RE, based at Kilwinning in Ayrshire, on 30/10/1917. He was transferred to the Tank Corps on 16/1/1918 and posted to the Depot Battalion Tank Corps, Wareham, on 22/1/1918. George Gibson's diary records his transfer from RE to Tank Corps as taking place on 18/1/1918. I have correspondence from George Gibson to my grandmother, from both Blyth and Kilwinning consistent with Teddy Graham's service history.

 

I suspect that James McDougall followed the same route and that he did his Tank Instructing at Wareham, possibly at the Tank Corps School of Gunnery.

 

I would be really interested in having sight of the group photograph 19j you refer to above, in the hope of putting some faces to names.

 

David

 

 

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I have been looking for the original items but cannot locate them amongst all the clutter, however I do have some scans that might be OK. James is the fellow middle row, 3rd in on the rightroyaleng.jpg.7145b891aded3f2c325c26bb0608af5b.jpg

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You were right about wareham, I noticed that name on one of the cards I have, anyway heres a few more images to add to the mix

img007.jpg

img010.jpg

disembodied.JPG

james mcdougall.JPG

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Thanks Brummie771 and, by the way, welcome to the Forum.

 

Unfortunately I can't identify any of the soldiers in 19J. I have however a photograph of my grandfather, also with an RE cap badge, taken by the same studio, Geo H Smith, Hudson Street Studio, Tyne Dock, with the same type of brick wall pattern behind. My grandfather's picture is numbered 48J. It seems they might have been taken at the same session. I don't know the date.

 

I note from the Certificate of Disembodiment on Demobilisation that James McDougall was a First Class Driver, so I suppose that would have been what he trained others in.

 

David

 

 

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Just for the record I attach the photo referred to in post 15.

 

I just wonder if a tank mechanical and driving instructor would have remained a private, as per the disembodiment certificate. Maybe the Tank experts could advise.

 

Incidentally, I found a December 1917 booklet on Tank Corps Training here.

 

 

CCI04042017_0002.jpg

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Unlikely but not impossible; would probaby have been a junior NCO

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