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Remembered Today:

Irish Soldiers' Records; Enlistment books of the five disbanded Irish regiments


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A National Army Museum email today included details of "Irish Soldiers' Records; Search the enlistment books of the five disbanded Irish regiments. The Connaught Rangers, the Leinster Regiment, the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, the Royal Irish Regiment and the Royal Munster Fusiliers were units of the British Army, which were disbanded following the establishment of the independent Irish Free State in 1922. The enlistment books contain records of soldiers serving in these regiments in the period 1920-22." http://www.nam.ac.uk/soldiers-records/persons

The numbers of online results is 11,981 broken down by regiment as follows; 

Connaught Rangers 2,548

Royal Irish Regiment 2,497

Royal Dublin Fus. 2,388

Leinster Regiment 2,358

Royal Munster Fus, 2,190

search results give Name, Date and Place of Enlistment, 


Full online details by individual per sample below;

First name: Patrick
Last name: Brandon
Unit: Royal Munster Fusiliers
Army number: 7211940
Place of birth: Newtownsandes, Kerry
Trade on enlistment: Labourer
Age on attestation: 22
Date of attestation: 18/09/1919
Place of attestation: Tralee
Address of next of kin: Aughrim, Newtownsandes, Co. Kerry
Address on discharge: Aughrim, Newtownsandes, Co. Kerry


Further details available from scanned original source - for same example http://www.nam.ac.uk/soldiers-records/persons?f={"search_s_unit":{"v":"Royal Munster Fusiliers"}}


These records appear to have been initiated upon introduction of the army level serial number system in 1920 as the originals are in serial number order (each regiment was allocated a block of about 40,000 unique serial numbers), initially for the personnel as of 1920 and subsequently for recruits until end 1921. Previous RMF serial number is also given where relevant plus many other details such as next of kin and discharge or transfer to other units. A remarkably informative source free online....




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Wow - a great resource!  Some of the records even record dates of overseas service with BEF, MEF etc. To think we have to pay for the Royal artillery equivalent of these.


Amazing to see Irishmen enlisting in the British Army in late 1921 in Ireland when they were on the way out. A good exercise would be to compare these with the Free State National Army Census of November 1922. There's a thesis in that!



Edited by kildaremark
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The basic online data search results can easily be copied into Excel to allow analysis by enlistments date and place of enlistment. The next level of analysis would require copy and transpose paste by individual record, to add in Unit: Army number: Place of birth: Trade on enlistment: Age on attestation: Address of next of kin: Address on discharge:

Further details would have to be manually added from the original scanned document, which can be downloaded page by page. At 6 entries per page, this should be about 300 pages per regiment.  

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The data for example includes both RMF Other Rank VC winners, Martin Doyle and William Cosgrove. Also the 1920 executions James Daly, Connaught Rangers India Mutiny and Richard Flynn, R Dublin Fus. for a civilian murder in Constantinople. 

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You can also see the last enlistments into each regiment before disbandment; for the RMF these were a pair of Cork lads on 12th December 1921, who received serial numbers but who are recorded as having 'Absconded' the same day !

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Former RMF KIA in WW2: This source also allowed full information on this case of a former RMF soldier who died with the 2nd East Surreys aged 40 as a Warrant Officer Class II in Malaya and is buried at Taiping WGC Malaysia. A book on the British Battalion (E Surreys & Leicesters amalgamation) states he died of disease May 1942 in the jungle uncaptured. This is a rare case of a WWII KIA with a disbanded Irish regiment 1920 serial number, as most were by then too old to serve in combat units. This new online source from NAM has solved the issue of his RMF service as the medal rolls rarely have the 1920 serial number but this source gives both the old RMF and 1920 number - very useful.... http://www.nam.ac.uk/soldiers-records/persons?ss={"q":"munster fusiliers"}&sort={"order_s_achternaam":"asc"}&page=28

First name: John Henry C.

Last name: Foley

Unit: Royal Munster Fusiliers

Army number: 7211462

Place of birth: Upton-on-Severn, Worcester, Worcester

Trade on enlistment: For Training as Musician

Age on attestation: 14 112/

Date of attestation: 06/03/1916

Place of attestation: Birmingham Address of next of kin: 88 Bordesley Green Road, Small Heath, Birmingham

http://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/937607/FOLEY, JOHN HENRY RATHBORN 

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Excellent, I got one of mine.

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Thank you very much Staunton, I got "one of mine' also my Great Uncle  35463 John Kilty, Royal Munster Fusiliers, formerly of R. Engineers & M.G.C.



Edited by John Mulcahy
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  • 1 month later...

OK, he is in the RMF BWVM OR Medal roll as Kilty John 35463 Royal Munster Fusiliers Private. British War Medal and Victory Medal 

Previous Unit: 200/M.G. Corps. Pte 157761. Suspect it is a post war transfer c 1919 to RMF from the serial number.

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