Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

"Arthur", No 6 Squadron RFC, October 1914


Recommended Posts

I have a postcard sent by "Arthur" to George and Mabel Whatmore of Grove Road, Windsor from No 6 Squadron, RFC Netheravon on October 4, 1914, saying that he is "expecting to go out to the war about the 15th ... I shall be glad to ... have a go at the Germans from the air".

 

No 6 moved to Farnborough on the 4th, transferring via Bruges to Ostend and arriving at Boulougne on the 13th.

 

The message suggests that Arthur was aircrew, and the card is addressed to "George & Mabel", from which I infer that they were not his parents. And I would guess that he would have been in the RFC before the war. (I did wonder if George was his brother, but could find no likely matches for "Arthur Whatmore".)

 

I wonder if Arthur can be more fully identified, please?

 

This is a casual enquiry, asked on the off chance that someone may be able to easily provide the answer without going to too much trouble.

 

Moonraker

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Moonraker, just been having a coffee and spent a little time on FreeBMD, looking at Whatmore surname, there was an Arthur Whatmore born in Kingston, not a million miles away from Windsor in 1894, would make him 20 in 1914, coincidently there is an Ellen Mabel Whatmore also born in Kingston 1896, but no George , could have no connection with your Quest at all but it's something to go at.

Den

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just found this by googling 6 Squadron Royal Flying Corps which sort of fits the narrative

 

The Squadron deployed to France on the 6th of October, with the aircraft being flown via Dover to Bruges where they all arrived safely. When the  first battle of Ypres commenced on the 19th October, the Squadron was based at Poperinghe.

 

I've no idea if there is a nominal roll of those who went at that time but the ops book may survive? (If there was one then)

 

Happy hunting 

Link to post
Share on other sites

In 1911 the Whatmore family were residing at  32 St Marks Place, Clewer Within, Berkshire, England

 

First name(s)         Last name    Relationship    Marital status  Sex  Occupation  Age  Birth year                               Birth place       

George Frederick  Whatmore             Head       Married  Male       Coachman Domestic            32            1879        Egham Surrey      

Mabel Grace          Whatmore             Wife       Married  Female    -                                          33            1878        Thorne Kent        

George Edward     Whatmore             Son         -               Male       -                                         1              1910        Slough Bucks

 

well that's George and Mabel  identified now who is Arthur? and what was the relationship

 

Regards Ray

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the surname may be a red herring, as there's no  Whatmore amongst the 1914 Star listing for men called Arthur serving with the RFC.

 

There are only 109 listed, so it would not be a mammoth job to look through all of them to see how many could be eliminated by having the wrong dates of entry to theatre.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Arthur Whatmore, born at Kingston, looks to be son of Walter Whatmore, and George had an elder brother by the name of Walter, it's looking good, or maybe just coincidence!

Link to post
Share on other sites

John 

For future ref how did you get to the 109. Which website etc? Just to help with something I am looking at?. Got time to look into it to see if it is possible to uniquely identify "Arthur". It would also seem plausible once we have excluded those by qualifying date to look at where the remainder resided. As we do not think Arthur was a close family member.

mark

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Mark1959 said:

For future ref how did you get to the 109

Ancestry.

 

However, I've spotted the fatal flaw in my grand plan. Whilst there is no-one called Whatmore amongst the 1914 Star listings for the RFC, I realise that as he was probably an officer and as such the medal index card search will not have his first name, only an initial. That throws in quite a number more. Still doable I would have thought, if Moonraker wanted to devote a bit of boring clicking on the  possibles - it's fortunate that there's a specific date of the squadron going overseas and we have to assume that Arthur was with them.

Edited by John_Hartley
Link to post
Share on other sites

Some possible candidates - from "Dolphin's" excellent website,  http://airhistory.org.uk/rfc/EF1.html        
Capt. A. Ross Hume
Capt. A.C.E. Marsh
Sgt. A.E. Barrs
Capt. A.G. Fox
2/Lt. A.B. Ford

Lt. A.E. Morgan
All were pilots (I think), and arrived between 7 Oct. and 21 Dec., 1914, most of them in October but Ford in November and Morgan in December. Ross Hume and Marsh arrived with 6 Squadron (7 October).


Dave

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, so far in checking the army lists I've come up with - A.C.E. Marsh (Augustus Charles Earl) and A.G. Fox (Alan Geoffrey). Still looking for the others, guess it could be a middle name though.
 

Dave

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the easiest way of getting a full list of possibles, would be to search Ancestry's listing for the 1914 Star medal roll - searching on entries for men with the Royal Flying Corps with the name of Arthur or the initial "A" . Then use that list to check through the medal index cards for the right dates (suggest that be both the 6th & 7th, to be sure).

 

Query: to be aircrew in 1914, would he have to have been an officer, or were there ORs flying? If the former, that cuts down the Star roll list quite a lot.

Link to post
Share on other sites

John,

 

Don't really know the answer to your question about rank, but Sgt. A.E. Barrs apparently flew an aircraft over in 1914. No sign of Sgt. Barrs' ever becoming an officer nor was he KIA according to the CWGC site.


Dave 
 

edit: Did find this - https://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auction-catalogues/dreweatts-donnington-priory-salerooms/catalogue-id-327221/lot-24216
 

and this - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pilots_awarded_an_Aviator's_Certificate_by_the_Royal_Aero_Club_in_1914    His full name was Alfred Edward Barrs and received his certificate on 7 March, 1914.

Edited by lostinspace
Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, John_Hartley said:

 

 

Query: to be aircrew in 1914, would he have to have been an officer, or were there ORs flying? If the former, that cuts down the Star roll list quite a lot.

Hi

No you did not need to be an officer to be a pilot.  eg.  The same day that a certain Major H. M. Trenchard was granted his Royal Aero Club Certificate, August 13th, 1912, No. 270, a certain Air-Mech.  W.T.J. McCudden (James McCudden's older brother) was granted his No. 269.  Trenchard got his learning to fly at Sopwith's school at Brooklands, McCudden got his at the Central Flying School.  There were a few non-commissioned pilots around in 1914 (and later).

 

Mike

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi the Arthur Whatmore born Kingston, died aged 5 in 1900, so that's tidied that up.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all your efforts. Guess I was hoping there just might be a list of members of No 6 Squadron somewhere. Before I made my first post, and subsequently, I did play around a bit myself looking for clues, but didn't get anywhere. No 6 flew from England in BE2as, BE8s and Henry Farman F20s, all of which carried observers, which enlarges the list of suspects. Naturally there are a number of Arthurs in the

 

list of pilots awarded Royal Aero Club certificates

 

but no clues towards answering my question.

 

Thanks again.

 

Moonraker

Link to post
Share on other sites

Would it be worth looking for a suitable Arthur in A Contemptible Little Flying Corps?

Roger M

Link to post
Share on other sites

I had some time on my hands so I've followed my own suggestion upthread - using Ancestry to identify all the men awarded a 1914 Star, for service with the RFC, and having the name of Arthur , or the initial "A".  There was about 70 of them. I've then cross checked them against the medal index cards for date of entry to theatre. Only two have the right date and Iit has to be a good bet that Arthur must be one of them. They are:

 

SR.19, 1/AM William Arthur Lawrence

 87, Sgt Arthur Ward.

 

I'd guess that Ward is the better bet for being flight crew. FWIW, he was commissioned in 1917.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Heck, John, that was a response beyond the call of duty; thanks. I hopefully Googled "Sergeant Artur Ward" and got excited when I got

 

this hit

 

but it is a different man.

 

Moonraker

Link to post
Share on other sites

This might be your man, Lawrence, William Arthur birth dec 1890 Windsor 2c 404

So worth a look on 1911 Census to see if a neighbour.

Den

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...