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Finding Date of Entry from Service Number


WilfSlack
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Can anyone tell me if it is possible to find the date of entry into a regiment from soldier's regimental number? For instance Private Wilfred A. Slack, 1st/8th Lancashire Fusiliers, regimental number 52388 - date of birth: 7.10.1898. We have his medal card and he didn't have the Star but did have Victory and British medal, no burnt soldiers records for him survive.

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He was Wilfred Arnold Slack, and he served in the 1/8th Battalion.

An expert on the Lancs Fusiliers may be able to help, you should edit the title of your post to include Lancashire Fusiliers in order to attract their attention.

BillyH.

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Wilf

if there are no surviving service records then the only path is to draw inferences from the surviving service papers in the same number range.

It appears that the Lancs Fusiliers were utilising the 52*** range in March 1918 both for domestic transfees and those via the IBDs in the theatre of war.

Joseph Wrigley 52218, a home based boy soldier was allocated his number on 5 March 1918. Frederick Perry 52310 was allocated his number on 19 March 1918 having already entered the theatre of war with the Border Regiment with the service number 28868.

Your man is number 52388 and the Lancs Fusiliers are the only regiment mentioned on his MIC so it is fairly safe to infer that he arrived in the theatre of war in or around mid March 1918 most likely from a Training Reserve and was allocated to the Lancs Fusiliers via the IBD and probably on the same day as Perry albeit to different battalions.

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The first men in this number series to die were in May 1918. It is likely he was allocated from another regiment to Lancashire Fusiliers in a reinforcement block around April/May 1918 when reinforcements were rushed out after the German spring offensive. I note that a number of men both sides this number were formerly Northumberland Fusiliers in the 52??? series. 52380 and 52383 were formerly 18th Bn NF.

It is probable that he was conscripted in 1917 and allocated to a Training Reserve Battalion, each of which were affiliated with Infantry Regiments. He may well have still been undergoing training when he was drafted to France. It is probable that he arrived an Infantry Base Depot and was allocated from there to the 1/8th Bn, regardless of his existing regiment (probably Northumberland Fusiliers).

Get yourself a book called 'Men of 18 in 1918' by Frederick Hodges. Hodges' number was 57043 and he was allocated to the 10th Bn Lancashire Fusiliers, but it gives a very good idea of how reinforcements worked around this time.

From 1916 men of 18 could be conscripted and trained but had to be 19 to serve OS. In April 1918 the age for OS service was dropped to 18 years 6 months as long as they had 6 months training.

Recruitment explained here. Look down the page at the Military Service Act.

http://www.1914-1918...recruitment.htm

More on the Training Reserve here:

http://www.1914-1918...ing_reserve.htm

If you have an Ancestry subscription it would be a worthwhile exercise looking for men's papers in the 523?? series. If you strike it lucky this should give you an idea of what his movements were after being called up.

Rgds

Tim D

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Thanks for advise, is there any way of finding out what reserve battalion a soldier was in? No burnt papers have survived for him and we have been to Kew and found the few details we have of him and the 1st/8th battalion Lancashire Fusiliers War Diaries, we are trying to trace where he was but until we know his date of entry this is impossible.

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52393 PTE Ernest Cartwright has papers on Ancestry. They are rather burnt, but I can make out the following movements which I am confident (for at least Oct 17 onwards) are a good indication for your man.

19 Jan 17 - Attested

03 May 17 - Mobilised

04 May 17 - 5th Training Reserve Battalion

18 Aug 17 - 4th Training Reserve Battalion

01 Oct 17 - 51st Graduated Battalion

12 Feb 18 - 3rd (Reserve) Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers

16 Mar 18 - France (unfortunately the section with his posting, which I suspect is to an Infantry Base Depot, is missing)

17 Mar 18 - 18th Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers

19 Mar 18 - 1/8th Bn, Lancashire Fusiliers

Later served Labour Corps and West Riding Regiment Garrison Battalion.

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Where was he from? If you look at the above Training Reserve link you will note that the 5th TR Bn was formerly affiliated with the Leicesters and the 4th with the North Staffs. The 1st Bde also absorbed the 15th NFs in late 1916.

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Hello Guys, I wondered if you could help me find a date for a serial number for Henry Nichols (20731) which was his number before Territorial Army renumbering. I am guessing he originally joined 2/6th Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

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Quote:

Hello Guys, I wondered if you could help me find a date for a serial number for Henry Nichols (20731) which was his number before Territorial Army renumbering. I am guessing he originally joined 2/6th Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

National Archives shows 20731 R War R to be Pte John ORME. The MIC for Henry NICHOLS R War R shows a service number of 242557. Where have you got the information that Henry Nichols previous service number was 20731? Is it possible that it is a training reserve number rather than a regimental number?
It is not always an exact science taking enlistment dates from SWB rolls and extrapolating them to establish another number's enlistment date but it would appear that 20731 would have enlisted early to mid 1916, whereas 242557 would have enlisted Nov-Dec 1915
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Start your own thread with your own heading Micah. You will attract more interest that way.

Rgds

Tim D

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Hello,

I got this information from the recently released war graves papers which list his serial number as 20731 so I wanted to do a bit of extra digging with this number. This is interesting news I have done all of the reading on the LLT. When would a training reserve number be allocated? I mean this is another possibility. He tried to join up in September 1914 and this is the only bit of information I have the only advancement was with this serial number I found on his graves commission.

Quote:

Hello Guys, I wondered if you could help me find a date for a serial number for Henry Nichols (20731) which was his number before Territorial Army renumbering. I am guessing he originally joined 2/6th Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

National Archives shows 20731 R War R to be Pte John ORME. The MIC for Henry NICHOLS R War R shows a service number of 242557. Where have you got the information that Henry Nichols previous service number was 20731? Is it possible that it is a training reserve number rather than a regimental number?
It is not always an exact science taking enlistment dates from SWB rolls and extrapolating them to establish another number's enlistment date but it would appear that 20731 would have enlisted early to mid 1916, whereas 242557 would have enlisted Nov-Dec 1915
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Start your own thread with your own heading mate. You are narrowing the assistance requested as a lot of people will not read your Posts if the title is of no interest to them.

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