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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Stoker Albert WIlliam Smith


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Albert William Smith, born Compton 19 Sept 1887 served in the Nary from 1907 until 1912 - I've found his papers relating to this period of service.


On 2 Jan 1915 The North Berks Herald reported that he had been on HMS Badger when it 'rammed and sank a German Cruiser'.  I think this is slightly wrong although on 24 October 2014 Badger did severely damage U-Boat 19 off the Dutch coast so I assume this is the incident referred to.


My problem is that I can't find any papers relating to Albert rejoining the Navy and what he did during the war.  Can anyone help as he obviously did?

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Can we assume that this is your man - a Special Service stoker born Newbury 19 Sep 1888 - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D7089726  ?

If so, this may be also him on a subsequent CS engagement starting in 1911 but with an incorrect year of birth 1881 - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D6923716     WW1 trio of medals to him as an Acting Leading Stoker.

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Yes, horatio2 - the first one you picked up is him.


Having found the second on FMP that's him as well - it even mentions Badger.  I missed it because of the wrong year of birth.


Don't know what it was with that family as his brother - who was on Good Hope when it went down at Coronel - had the wrong year of birth on his paperwork as well.


Many thanks to both of you.

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  • 4 weeks later...

My grandfather went to enlist in Trafalgar Square in May 1913 he gave his birthday correctly as 18th February 1893 ie age 20. He was told he was too old by 2 years and was advised to think about it and come back later.


Went he came back he was 2 years younger having been born in 1895. This year was shown in all his Navy records. He served on HMS Britannia as a Stoker. He was invalided out of the RN before she was torpedoed in 1918.

I believe in some poorer household at the time, birthdays were not as important as they are now. My grandand'a family moved around south London a lot. He believed he was born in Bermondsey but the addreess on his birth certificate was in Lambeth.

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  • 1 month later...

I'm trying to work out which ship Alfred was on for the Battle of Jutland.  From my reading of his records it look to me as if he was on Pelican but his grandson thinks it was Badger. 

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