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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Is this Isaac Rosenberg?


michaeldr

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quote - Rosenberg – known for his “trench poems”, written between 1916 and 1918 – was 27 when he was killed on the western front near Arras on 1 April, 1918. The footage shows a man in the right foreground, staring out at the camera with a haunted look. He wears an armband bearing the initials SB, for stretcher bearer. Behind him men tend to the wounded. The date and location have not yet been identified.

see http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/07/war-poet-isaac-rosenberg-film-footage

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I'd say no more than possibly - the context of the film might be a step forward.

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The soldier in the photo is a stretcher bearer with the Irish Guards.

large.jpg

This photograph taken at the same time (31 July 1917 at Pilckem) shows that the men are from the Irish Guards and wear a badge to this effect on their shoulders. This same badge is just visible on the supposed Rosenberg figure in the film still. Rosenberg served with the King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment and I am not aware of any evidence that he was a stretcher bearer.


Here is the film still.

The-soldier-in-the-bottom-011.jpg

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Interesting Simon-thanks for the information. I've asked the co-ordinator of the Isaac Rosenberg Statue Appeal for further comment. Regards.

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It would be interesting to see if the man in the film is shown standing near to any of the Guardsmen as Rosenberg was somewhat vertically challenged, so he'd be quite a contrast to Guardsmen. I don't know exactly where 11/King's Own were on 31 July, but a look at the orbat/war diaries for then should show if 11/King's Own and Irish Guards could have been in the same place at the same time. (He probably didn't join 1/King's Own until 11th Battalion were disbanded on 17 February 18.)

There are a number of 11/King's Own platoon photos on the Museum website http://www.kingsownmuseum.plus.com/gallerywwone024.htm Taken prior to deployment in June 16, but whether he transferred to them in France or pre-deployment, I don't know.

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Hello Kevin

The 11th King's Own was 60 miles away at Villers Plouch. It was part of 40th Division which did not take part in Third Ypres. I believe that at about this time Rosenberg was attached to a 40th Divisional Works Battalion and 229th Field Company, RE. I think that you are correct that he transferred to 1st Bn in February 1918.

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