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Sue L

RAMC and Conscientious objectors

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Sue L

Hi

 

Would it be fair to say that SOME men who joined the RAMC may have done so because they were conscientious objectors? Or is that just too much of a sweeping generalisation to have any basis in fact?
I am not referring to a specific man - this is just a general query

 

Thanks

 

Sue L

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Terry_Reeves
Posted (edited)

Sue

 

Yes, there were some direct enlistments into the RAMC by men who were COs. The late Dr John Rae notes this in his book Conscience and Politics - The British Government and the Conscientious Objector to Military Service 1916-1919. Oxford University Press 1970. The numbers were relatively small though.

 

This site gives some figures which confirm the above:

 

http://tinyurl.com/ybsfo5ez

 

TR

Edited by Terry_Reeves

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Sue L

Thank you.  I will check this out

 

Sue L

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petestarling

Terry

That is an interesting link. Thank you. It would be interesting to find out if, when fit RAMC men were compulsory transferred to the infantry in 1917 and vice versa, less fit men to the RAMC, if they were left alone because of their beliefs.

 

Pete

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Magnumbellum

As the linked article has attempted to demonstrate, when men who had, pre-1916, volunteered for the RAMC precisely because they could not conscientiously enlist in a combat unit, were in 1917/18  compulsorily transferred to infantry regiments, they unsurprisingly refused to obey, leading to court-martial and imprisonment.

 

So far as the Army was concerned, such men had a higher value rotting in prison than continuing medical work.

 

With regard to the suggestion that less fit men may at this time have been drafted iinto the RAMC, I am not aware of any such. Less fit men were more likely to be drafted into the Labour Corps/,

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PJS
Posted (edited)

 

6 hours ago, Magnumbellum said:

 

With regard to the suggestion that less fit men may at this time have been drafted iinto the RAMC, I am not aware of any such. Less fit men were more likely to be drafted into the Labour Corps/,



 

The link below is not strictly on topic (nothing about conscientious objectors) but I found the first hand account of life in the RAMC very interesting. He speaks to his medical rating (B2) being the factor that got him assigned to the RAMC, the fitness of others in the RAMC and the overnight upgrade to his - and everyone else's - medical rating.

 

http://worldwar1veterans.blogspot.com/2015/03/112171-pte-frank-gearing-royal-army.html

 

The other 2 pages of the interview are here:

http://worldwar1veterans.blogspot.com/2015/03/112171-pre-frank-gearing-ramc-part-two.html

http://worldwar1veterans.blogspot.com/2015/05/112171-private-frank-gearing-ramc-part.html

 

Peter

Edited by PJS

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Sue L

Thanks Peter

I agree - very interesting

 

Sue

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