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S Jenkins 5 batallion family history help please


ajcarr
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Dear all

I am new here and am hoping for any help. I am trying to put together a 70th birthday present for a relative, one side of her family is a bit of a mystery re her Grandfather- Sidney Hartley Jenkins (from research he is her Grandfather, but unknown to her, or his own son Raymond, for reasons that I will mention later).

I have found various records for Sidney, in 1911 census he is noted as aeronautical engineer in Byfleet (boarding with similar engineers). I have read the note of S Jenkins in the 'Contemptible...' book and was very helped by this reference. I have used my ancestry account and also downloaded medal records from Kew online- neither of which helped much!

Aside from his personal info, I am trying to understand what he was doing during the war as an air mechanic and where he was? The book notes his Medal Militare in 1914 (for action in August 1914) and I believe he also got the Croix de Guerre at some point.

I would really appreciate any help re finding any info re Sidney-

in particular- I am really struggling with London Gazette where I think I might find more info? (I really cannot work the search!).

I would love to put together a story for relatives re Sidney!

Sidney has a post war history as a convicted bigamist, therefore with various different families. Who knows if the bigamy links to his war experience / mental health, a number of direct family members therefore have no knowledge of their Grandfather, their parents were told that their father was dead.

It would be really nice to be able to say something about who Sidney was and what he did during the war. So may years on, Sidney is not an issue in the family, just a source of interest, especially since it appears that in his work, he was reliable and gallant. I would like to add something positive about Sidney as an addition to the obviously devastating impact on the families that he had.

It is facts that I would welcome ( I am compiling a tree, with info, not making judgements) and I would be grateful for your help in putting together the story of a decorated early WW1 RFC member.

Best wishes and many thanks for any help that can be offered.

Amanda

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Hello Amanda and welcome to the Forum,

Do you have his service number?

It will help others to search, especially with a common surname.

Phil

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Thanks for replies.

Might service number be 112? Does that sound right? Sorry, I am not from a service family (though various of Sidney's children are in service in WW2 and subsequent) so I find all the numbers and detail confusing re which is what number! Will check again and give all the numbers I have, it will mean more to you than me!

Big thanks for replies and help.

Amanda

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Thanks Amanda,

That was the only one I could find.

If he is the right man, it looks like he may have left the RFC before the RAF was formed in 1918. That is a very low service number, so possibly fulfilled his full period of service?

The London Gazette's current search engine is a nightmare, but as both awards are French, they may not be in there anyway.

Phil

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From McInnes & Webb's 'A Contemptible Little Flying Corps':

112. S. Jenkins

Enlisted 26 June, 1912 directly into RFC. 1AM 5 Squadron at the outbreak of WW1. Promoted Cpl 10 August, 1914, proceeded to France with the squadron 14 August, 1914. Awarded French Medaille Militaire in L.G. 9 November, 1914 'for gallantry 21-30 August, 1914' Promoted Temp SM (T) 1 April, 1917 and shown as CMM. (Technical) in 1918 RAF Muster Roll.

Errol

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Dear Craig

Re linking my Sidney / Sydney/ S Jenkins..

Bit tenuous I know, but I have his supposed full name from various marriage certificates and newspaper reports of his crimes, also there are some photo's of him during the war, in and around planes and in a couple of uniforms.

One of the photo's has 'Jenkins 1AM' written on the front. Having then searched records for Jenkins (S, Sidney, Sidney Hartely and various spellings) the only record I could find that seemed to match his profession as air engineer / mechanic pre and post the war, was the S Jenkins 112, that record seemed to fit with the info on the picture re 1AM.

I may be very off course!

Amanda

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How did you connect 112 S Jenkins with Sidney Hartley Jenkins ?

Craig

I haven't necessarily - I just simply quoted the 'Contemptible' entry for airman No 112, which was the number that Amanda menitoned in post #4.

Errol

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Sorry- all new to me and apologies if I am not very good at this sort of stuff... I thought I was being asked how I had made the link between S and Sidney Hartley Jenkins.

I do hope I haven't caused some sort of issue, which was very definitely not intended.

Thanks for the help I have been given by all of you.

Amanda

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I haven't necessarily - I just simply quoted the 'Contemptible' entry for airman No 112, which was the number that Amanda menitoned in post #4.

Errol

Sorry Erroll, question was for Amanda

Craig

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Amanda,

Don't worry about it.

Have you managed to get hold of the RAF record (AIR 79), that I linked to?

There should be a section on it "Person to be informed of casualties". With a bit of luck, you may recognise the name or address and be able to confirm that he is youe Sidney Jenkins.

Phil

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you mention newpaper reports of his CRIMES? Do the reports give anyhint as tohis war service? I've seen such that refer to service details of the person. Hope you can find him for sure & can post more info on his run in s with the law!

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I've had a look at the AIR79 for No 112 Jenkins on findmypast.

It gives date of birth 31 Aug 1888 at Wolverhampton.

Next of kin was Evelyn May, 136 Lord Str, Wolverhampton, wife. But address only then crossed out and in the margin of the form is John sidney L---l [a filing hole punched through the middle letters] 7.9.12 Bulford .

Also Hartley Wililam Henry, 19.9.14, Gosport.

Does this help, Amanda? If so it would be well worth you while looking up the two-page record on the findmypast site.

Errol

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The best match for a marriage is:

Marriages June Quarter 1912

JENKINS, Sidney, possibly to HORTON, Evelyn M

Wolverhampton, 6b, 1075

(From FreeBMD)

Phil

Edit: Again from FreeBMD, Hartley W H would appear to be their son, born Dec Qu. 1914

Edited by Phil Evans
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Thanks all for replies.

Yes I have done the best I can to find records-

Evelyn May is Evelyn M Horton (his first and as far as I can work out only legitimate wife!). I am looking into this re a subsequent marriage that went to court re bigamy (this marriage was in 1917- the relative I am trying to help is grand daughter from this 'marriage', there were then further bigamist marriages, next in early 1920's. I and the family are now fairly familiar with the endless marriages, children, bigamy and court cases, we just struggle to find info re RFC where he seems actually to have been a decent man!

So - he was an air engineer in 1911 census in Byfleet, then joins RFC, from bigamy court case reports he has Medal Millitaire and Croix de Guerre - these are noted as previous conduct... the book entry, if the same S Jenkins (I think it is) notes medal for action in August 1914.

I would love to know more about this, also how an A1M spent the war.

as an addition- in 1917 when he has his seemingly first bigamist marriage (and child) his 'wife' and child are in Cambridgeshire at the point that the child is born (the 'marriage' was in Scotland...!!)

Why was someone travelling around at that point? His Scotland marriage certificate notes him as an aeronautical instructor?

His newspaper bigamy report notes him as a 'cad'.... I think he was! But at some point he had obviously done something good!!

Amanda

Thanks

Amanda

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Well it looks like we have the right man.

I assume that you have seen the Higher Grade School extracts.

As I said previously, you need to get hold of the AIR 79 record. It will have have his postings, although unfortunately not for the RFC, although it should have his last unit.

There is a history of 5 Squadron at Kew in AIR 1/687

Phil

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Amanda

I can't find an entry for Jenkins in the London Gazette of 9 November 1914, but Flight of 13 November 1914 carries the following announcement:

FRENCH HONOURS FOR THE R.F.C.
AN Army Order issued on Saturday states that the President of the French Republic had bestowed the French Military Medal for Conspicuous Service in the Field, equivalent to the British Medal for Distinguished Conduct, on the undermentioned warrant officers, non-commissioned officers, and mechanics of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing), with the approval of His Majesty the King, in recognition of their gallantry during the operations between August 21st and 30th :—

Sergeant-Major T. Bullen.
Corporal C. R. S. Evans.
1st Class Air-Mechanic H. T. Gardner.
Corporal T. L. Gliddon.
1st Class Air-Mechanic H. Jameson.
Corporal S. Jenkins.
1st Class Air-Mechanic D. Mclntyre.
Sergeant-Major A. H. Measures.
1st Class Air-Mechanic W. P. Parker.
Corporal F. W. Powell.
1st Class Air-Mechanic A. H. Reffell.
Sergeant E. J. Street.
Sergeant E. L. Taylor.
Sergeant-Major F. H. Unwln.

So far I've come up blank with a search for Jenkins' Croix de Guerre.

Graeme

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Dear all

Thank you so much for your help. all the info is gratefully received.

Graeme, the Corporal bit fits with a note on record (air79) that I have now looked at (Thanks Phil and Errol!) - I did think I had downloaded everything I could find from Kew archives- not ever finding Air 79 whilst searching on FMP- I was searching Sidney, not Sydney- but never managed to get any RFC records up for him however I tried!

Yes- I had seen the info re visit to his old school whilst googling- the school turned out a hero and a monster!!

The Air 79 record is amazing- thank you so much, lots of info that I don't understand re ranks postings etc, but I am off to see an ex military relative to explain it to me next weekend, hopefully I will then better understand some of the terminology.

The record shows children I didn't know about from first, 'real' marriage and also has a couple of puzzles that I will try to follow up- re discharge- it mentions something that I can't quite read re Ireland- his child from 1st bigamist marriage was told that he died in Ireland- so this is interesting (even though he didn't die until many years later with more 'wives' behind him!!), his address on discharge is also the address where his first son from 1st bigamist marriage grew up, so must have been just before the court case in Scotland- amazing!

As I say, I can't really interpret the info - looks like he wasn't always with 5 battalion and did transfer to RAF. Also at some point he seems to be demoted in rank- I hope it will all become clear at some point!

Meanwhile, since Sidney's great Grand Daughter's 70th birthday is 30th Dec, looks like I have some info for a fun and emotional New Year exploration of her heritage!

Again- thanks all and very best wishes to you.

Amanda

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