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Remembered Today:

Frank Dobson POW Chateau d'Oex 1918


susantydd
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Hi.

I have a photograph of a Frank Dobson dated the 5th November 1918 taken at Chateau d'Oex. I have an earlier one April I assume the same year which states he had just had his birthday on the 23rd March,( its a very poor quality photo with little detail hence is not uploaded with this post). I think he was in the Labour Corps going of the cap badges.  I have an earlier photo thats likley that shows he was possibly in the Army Service Corps.  All I know is he wrote to my grandmothers sister so obviously known to her Maggie Osborne, a Fiancee I’m under the impression not as Maggie early the follwing the year.  I am looking for any reference to Frank during his time at Chateau d'Oex that will hopefully lead me to finding the correct man on the Ancestry website.

The attached photos, the two men is the photo definately at Chateau d'Oex 5th November 1918.  The second photo attached I think Frank is in this photo but its not confirmed and have no date or location for it 

9A1250F9-E936-46D5-B6D6-0B465F469B27.jpeg

F01D3FE8-5DC9-4021-A550-E8A05F41C3F5.jpeg

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Susan,

A first look at ICRC internees Switzerland doesn't show Frank Dobson. I will have a scour of the main file? 

Charlie

Edited by charlie962
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Hi Charlie, no sorry I dont have any other information. I’m not 100% sure which one is Frank.  Family names that possibly be connected are Alfred Eyer who Maggie (margaret) married but he was in the Essex Regiment though they met in Manchester whilst he was camped at Heaton Park.  Brothers, Charles and Robert Osorne, though I dont know which regiments they served in. A further brother Thomas I dont think was wounded at this time or even serving, he wasnt born until 1901 he died whilst in the army from Malria in 1923 and buried in India.   I doubt very much its a friend of either of her sisters,  my gran didnt meet her husband until shortly after the war, though on the outside chance she may have done the surname would be Anthistle, some of the Anthistle brothwrs were wounded during the war though non I am aware of were POW.   Attached is the other photograph I have that is definately Frank, though its very feint.  The third attachment is the November 1918 reverse of the photo with the two sat down.

92C47BBC-1D94-40E7-BE10-819CF953033E.jpeg

913DBA45-2E4F-4DAD-A058-754F491DEDAA.jpeg

20D6F817-ECA1-46E9-80FE-5737C6500754.jpeg

Charlie I just had a thought if he was perhaps Francis but known as Frank ?

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The very faded photo has all three men with sticks- suggesting all wounded ?

All seem to wear the same large capbadge - Royal Arms, as you say it was worn by the labour corps.

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One of the military experts at find my past thinks the two men are Labour Corps, and the photo with the truck is Army Service Corps, ( I think I have it the correct way around) I hope its not just wishful thinking on my part but I am pretty sure the same face appears in all three photos. I have to say it has me a bit stumped this mystery. , Charlie the photo of the two together one of the men also has a stick, I’m pretty much assuming the March 1918 was also taken at Chateau d'Oex.

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From the feint outline of the capbadge on the last photo, I think he is the soldier on the left in the Manchesters. It could be 12825 Francis Dobson 19th Bn Manchester Regt, dob is given as 23.02.1891 on the Red Cross lists but typos are common place. Wounded in the left shoulder and taken PoW in 1916 at Guillemont. Home address is in Chorlton on Medlock.

 

Charlie

 

His trail ends at Konstanz where PoWs were re-assesed before being sent to Switzerland

Edited by charlie2
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Well done Charlie. I was just about to get your advice for the cap badge for this very reason. What are the clues to distinguish between Royal Arms and Manchesters in photos ? They are both large and difficult to discern in faded photos.  Charlie

 

12825 Francis C Dobson was reported wounded and prisoner in German hands Daily Casualty List 27/10/16. If he was still using a stick in 1918 it might be reasonable that he had been moved to Switzerland. ?

 

Edited

Edited by charlie962
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34 minutes ago, charlie962 said:

 What are the clues to distinguish between Royal Arms and Manchesters in photos ? They are both large and difficult to discern in faded photos.  Charlie

 

Charlie, the scroll at the bottom is continuous on the Manchesters and the crown is surmounted by a lion on the Royal Arms badge

Manchesters http://www.themanchesters.org/Badges page.htm

Royal Arms

Charlie

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Hi Charlie...and Charlie 

I’m not  sure its the right fellow.  I’ve just been reading through the service records for 12825 Dobson. If this chap had a G.S.W to his shoulder he wouldnt be needed a stick to aid his walking, I cant see any other injuries listed.  12825 was most definetely in Switzerland in 1918 going off the info on the attached document.  I assume the ‘posted’ in 1918 refers to the transfer to Switzerland. I’ve checked through some of his family history etc and can’t see any distant connections to my family.  Its intriguing, if it his him, where did she meet him, and what is the connection.   Though if its the only Frank or Francis Dobson appearing to be in Switzeralnd then it must be him. His birth was registered in the June quarter of 1891 though his birthday is the 23 March, so it could be right if his birth wasnt immediately registered within a week of his birth it would appear in the next quarter. 

CCA94F00-1B18-42B4-A4A3-B9CF9FA0155D.jpeg

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The reference to posted is him being moved for admin purposes from 19th Bn to 16th Bn to (via Depot when repatriated)  3rd Bn Manchesters.

 

Does his service record not give NoK details ? (I don't have access)

 

The 'Interned in Switzerland' seems pretty good to me in that he would not be sent there unless he was incapable of fighting.

Edited by charlie962
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I have this chap we have been looking at this afternon  family history and have sent a message to a relative, yes his parents names etc were n his service records. .  It seems this  Francis died in 1940 but he did marry and looks like two children born in the early 1930’s.  I ‘m waiting to see if I get a reply if she knows the day of his birthday, that should confirm one way or the other.   Charlie I meant the ‘posted’ entry on the line above interned in Switzerland, I assume ‘posted’ in that instance meant his transfer to Switzerland.   This attachment makes reference again to his injury.  I cant quite make out all it says though.

645C199A-4FC7-47FC-B01C-D6514B6274DF.jpeg

Edited by susantydd
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10 minutes ago, susantydd said:

I have this chap we have been looking at this afternon  family history and have sent a message to a relative, yes his parents names etc were n his service records. .  It seems this  Francis died in 1940 but he did marry and looks like two children born in the early 1930’s.  I ‘m waiting to see if I get a reply if she knows the day of his birthday, that should confirm one way or the other.   Charlie I meant the ‘posted’ entry on the line above interned in Switzerland, I assume ‘posted’ in that instance meant his transfer to Switzerland.   This attachment makes reference again to his injury.  I cant quite make out all it says though.

645C199A-4FC7-47FC-B01C-D6514B6274DF.jpeg

Who were his wife and children ?

The 1939 register should give the date of birth.


Craig

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Looking at the 1939 Register, on FindMyPast, the following information is given:

 

Quote

Francis CDobson23 Mar 1891Book Keeper (Cotton Warehouse)

HelenMcCann (Wright)20 Nov 1898Unpaid Domestic Duties

HelenTarri?y (Wright)03 Jan 1921Departmental Assistant

 

They were resident at 52 Albert Road , Manchester C.B., Lancashire, England, four people resided at this address.

 

In the image the last name for Helen, 20 Nov 1898, was left blank, the Wright is an assumption by the transceiver.

Edited by BFBSM
Additional information.
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5 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:

Who were his wife and children ?

The 1939 register should give the date of birth.


Craig

Good thinking Craig!

His date of birth is 23.03.1891 and not 23.02.1891 as recorded by the ICRC, as I said typos are rife in the ICRC records. 

 

Charlie 962 is quite right with the „posted“ above „interned in Switzerland“. The 19th Bn was disbanded at the end of February 1918 and even though Frank Dobson was a PoW he still had to belong somewhere so he was transferred on paper to the 16th Bn.

 

The use of walking sticks does not mean the user need one, they were also used as a „fashion“ item.

 

As Dobson isn‘t part of your family he could easily have just been a friend, it was quite normal at that time to exchange photos.

 

Charlie 2

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The 1891 census has a Francis Dobson in the correct area aged 12 days.  Francis Clayton appears on the 1939 register and states a birthday of 23rd March.  I’m taking it now this is the correct person.  Thankyou Charlie and Charlie for the help.  I’d hazard a guess the photo showing just two men, he is likely the one without the stick ... what do you think Charlie ? 

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3 minutes ago, susantydd said:

guess the photo showing just two men, he is likely the one without the stick

The one with the stick is the one wearing the Manchesters cap badge. I cannot make out the other badge.

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Hi,

 

1 hour ago, susantydd said:

This attachment makes reference again to his injury.  I cant quite make out all it says though.

 

I think that line might read as something like:

 

Prisoner of war. Shrapnel wound left shoulder. Prison camp (or prison hospital) Ohrdruf. Germany.

 

image.png.d981201dc022efaca3102e80cdee7561.png

 

Regards

Chris

 

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Thanks everyone.  At least I now know for sure who the  mystery man in the photograph is even if I dont know the connection and I’d take a guess I’m never going to find that out.  Aunty Maggie ( Margaret) must have thought fondly of him to keep his photograph for many years.  I hope they did know each other in the flesh so to speak, as youngsters they likely lived within a couple of miles of each other.  I’d be suprised if they met many times if at all when the war finished, when Maggie married she moved to Towcester In Northamptonshire. 

Edited by susantydd
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Just a little footnote.  Frank passed away at quite a young age in December 1940, it seems from Emphysema.  His grave is only a few miles from where I live, I’ll make an effort and visit it.   On one of the family trees on Ancestry his son has left a note via a family member I’ve attached a screen shot.  It appears his brother was also wounded and survived. 

76AD816E-F701-4225-AF93-E75F453CEB72.jpeg

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Susan,

It was an interesting bit of research and good to have identified the man in the photo. Did the family you found ask for a copy?

 

 

It does mean that the ASC photo in your first post is probably another part of the Your family and nothing to do with FC Dobson.

 

Charlie

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