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Remembered Today:

Reginald Ernest Webster 29984


JonathanW
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Hello:

I am in the initial stages of researching the life of my great grandfather. I am very new at this so, I apologize in advance if I am in the wrong forum, but it seems like a good place to start.

Reginald Ernest Webster ( Pvt. 29984) "died of wounds" on September 3, 1916. He was originally with The Oxford & Bucks L.I ( 22962), but died as a member of the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. His name is engraved on the Thiepval Memorial

This is what I would really like to know:

1) Am I right in guessing the O&B amalgamated with the Royal Warwickshire?

2) I found that the Battle of Guillemont started on this date. Is it likely this is where he fell? Any way to confirm?

3) Did they photograph each soldier?

4) Any other service records avaliable?

Any informaton or direction you could provide would be greatly appreciated,

Jonathan Webster

Vancouver, Canada

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1) Am I right in guessing the O&B amalgamated with the Royal Warwickshire?

He was transferred from the 2nd Ox & Bucks.

3) Did they photograph each soldier?

Not as a matter of course, unfortunately.

Craig

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Originally Ox and Bucks, then the Royal Warwicks probably due to his original regiment being decimated and the survivors posted where they were needed, or he had been wounded and then sent where needed most and not to his original posting. The Ox and Bucks did not amalgamate with the Warwicks.

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SDGW shows

Name: Reginald Ernest Webster
Birth Place: Cowley, St. John's, Oxford
Death Date: 3 Sep 1916
Death Place: France and Flanders
Enlistment Place: Oxford
Rank: Private
Regiment: Royal Warwickshire Regiment
Battalion: 2nd Battalion
Regimental Number: 29984
Type of Casualty: Died of wounds
Theatre of War: Western European Theatre
Comments: Formerly 22962, Oxford and Bucks L.I.

Craig

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Jonathan

You asked whether there is any way of confirming that your Great Grandfather was killed on the first day of Guillemont. The Long Long Trail (here) confirms that the 2nd Royal Warwickshire Regiment was part of the 7th Division and that this Division was involved at Guillemont. According to the Commonwealth and War Graves Commission, 100 from the 2nd Royal Warwicks lost their lives on 3 September 1916 so it may very well be that this is where your Great Grandfather received his fatal wound.

The only doubt is that in the SDGW extract posted by Craig above, it says that he "died of wounds", rather than that he was "killed in action" and there were half a dozen or so casualties in the battalion in the days leading up to 3 September. It is therefore possible - but I can't prove it either way - that although he died on 3 September the wounds had been received at any earlier date.

C

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He was in a group of men from the Oxford and Bucks who were posted as a reinforcement draft to 55 Infantry Base Depot (IBD) Rouen on various dates from 10 July 1916 - 13 July 1916 (without a service record impossible to say which group he was in for sure). However all were posted to the 2nd Bn Warwickshire Regiment from the Base Depot on the 21st July 1916, joining the Battalion on the following day.

The war diary should list the numbers in the draft (though not always). Some of the men were 'attached' to the Warwicks while others were 'transferred' this is an administrative nicety to all intents and purpose he did not go on active service with the Oxford and Bucks, although as he was first in France with them his medals should be imprinted to that regiment (again -not always!).

The closest I've found within the range are 22274 - 22291 the first was 'attached' to 2nd Warwicks and formally transferred on the 27th August 1916; the latter was a 10th July arrival and his record shows 'transferred'.

His enlistment in the Ox and Bucks was around March/April 1916 and he was more than likely a Derby or Group Scheme volunteer.http://www.1914-1918.net/derbyscheme.html

The war diary for the period for the 2nd Warwicks is available from TNA as a digital download for just over three of our British pounds!

http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7352440

Ken

EDIT 'Died of Wounds' simply means he entered the casualty evacuation chain which could be an advanced dressing station; field ambulance or CCS any of which he could have reached on the day he was wounded. He would be interred there but as the ground was fought over many times his grave may have been lost.

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Thank you very much for taking the time to reply. The information supplied answers a lot of my questions and also explains why I might never get many of the answers, like so many others.

I noticed on the Guillemont Road Cemetary site, they list 8 Royal Warwickshire and 1523 unidentified put to rest there. I suppose he might very well be one of these,

Thanks again for your help,

Jonathan

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