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Remembered Today:

Malcolm12hl

"Native" Stokers lost with H.M.S. Good Hope

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voltaire60
9 hours ago, Malcolm12hl said:

David

 

Thank you for the information on A/B Bashford - I am very grateful for any other information on GOOD HOPE or MONMOUTH crewmen.  As I am also just completing a short memorial book on the war dead of the parish of Thames Ditton, Surrey, and would be fascinated to know of any information you might have on Bell Ringers at St. Nicholas here in the village.

 

Mike and Jane

 

I am very happy to report that a typescript copy of the de Verteuil GOOD HOPE diary survives in the CO file at TNA which Mike dug up the reference to.  It is a fascinating document, and I will post separately on it when I have a bit more time.

 

Malcolm

 

    Hooray!!    A pleasure.  I look forward to hearing more in due course....Now I know why that file at Kew was "out" last Friday.  Oooh...it's like an advert for what's coming in "New of the World"  years ago.

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voltaire60

    And an odd thought...of many.  Good Hope was lost with all hands-919 or so-let alone casualties from others. A little surprised that no bodies were washed up on the coast of Chile or recovered from the water. There are no CWGC memorials in Chile, though there is one in the town of Coronel.  Just as a long shot, I might look up the 1914 correspondence from the British Embassy in Chile and that of the Consuls (there was a Vice-Consul at Coronel and a full Consul at Valparaiso). Just wonder if there are any undentifieds recovered from the sea buried ashore at the town of Coronel or thereabouts

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Malcolm12hl

I am back at TNA today - if you are there on a Wednesday or Friday you will usually find me at Table 54 in the 2nd floor - Large Document/Map - reading room.  I will post on the diary tomorrow when I have time to do it justice - there are several references to the West Indian stokers.  On the subject of bodies, there is some correspondence in an ADM 137 file about searches for survivors, but I have yet to check for possible consular file references to bodies being washed ashore.  I have never heard any reference to such an event, and it may be that currents and winds were not onshore, but it is worth looking into.

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Malcolm12hl

Mike

 

On the subject of the possibility of bodies having been washed ashore, I have now looked through the correspondence between London and both British consular staff and Chilean naval officials in ADM 137/1022.  At least three ships were dispatched to search for wreckage, bodies or survivors, and none of them found anything either at sea or on the shore line.  The vessels did not set forth until 5-6 days after the engagement, there was a strong SE wind blowing at the time of the battle, and the lost British cruisers went down on the seaward side of the engagement, so I suspect that what wreckage and bodies there were was blown out to sea and dispersed.

 

David

 

Thank you for getting back to me on the bell ringers of Thames Ditton - it was a bit of a long shot!

 

Malcolm

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johnboy

I read that Good Hope was seen with a 200ft plume of smoke coming from here just before she disappeared,Would the majority of men been below decks during an attack? Captain and officers and gunners above deck. Men below decks could have been trapped in wreckage when ship went down, Does seem funny that nothing was found,

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johnboy

From WIKI

 

Spee immediately turned to close and signalled his ships to open fire at 19:04 when the range closed to 12,300 yards (11,200 m). Spee's flagship, Scharnhorst, engaged Good Hope while Gneisenau fired at Monmouth. Cradock's flagship was hit on the Scharnhorst's third salvo, when shells knocked out her forward 9.2-inch turret and set her forecastle on fire. Cradock, knowing his only chance was to close the range, continued to do so despite the battering that Spee's ships inflicted. By 19:23 the range was almost half of that when the battle began and the British ships bore onwards. Spee tried to open the range, fearing a torpedo attack, but the British were only 5,500 yards (5,000 m) away at 19:35. Seven minutes later, Good Hope charged directly at the German ships, although they dodged out of her way. Spee ordered his armoured cruisers to concentrate their fire on the British flagship and she soon drifted to a halt with her topsides all aflame. At 19:50 her forward magazine exploded, severing the bow from the rest of the ship, and she later sank in the darkness. Spee estimated that his flagship had made 35 hits on Good Hope, suffering only two hits in return that did no significant damage and failed even to wound one crewman.[14] Good Hope was sunk with all hands, a total of 919 officers and enlisted men.[5] Four of the midshipmenaboard the ship were the first casualties of the newly formed Royal Canadian Navy.[15]

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Malcolm12hl

As is often the case, the Wikipedia entry on the Battle of Coronel needs to be treated with care.  In this case, the article is based almost entirely on one unreliable secondary source (Massie's Castles of Steel), and is at odds with the available primary sources - in this case largely the report from H.M.S. GLASGOW and von Spee's Dispatch (both of which can be found at TNA in ADM 137/1022, and which form the basis of the accounts in the official history and Bennett's book Coronel and the Falklands).  To give just two examples of Wiki going astray, the reported explosion on GOOD HOPE was amidships and not forward (and did not blow off the bow), and von Spee never ordered both of his armoured cruisers to concentrate on GOOD HOPE (GNEISENAU fired only at MONMOUTH throughout the main engagement).

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pierssc

On the subject of currents, the strong Peru or Humboldt current flows northwards along the west coast of South America.   In the days of sailing ships, this current and the prevailing winds could make it difficult for vessels to sail south.  I would imagine that bodies etc going in the sea at Coronel might not be washed ashore until Peru, if they came ashore at all.

 

See https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humboldt_Current with the usual caveats.

 

Edited by pierssc
Typo

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pierssc

.... except if El Niño is doing his stuff,  It seems 1914-15 was a strong El Niño period.  This may make a difference, I’m not sure.

Edited by pierssc
Change of mind!

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Malcolm12hl

I have managed to find one more document at the National Archives relating to the West Indian stokers lost aboard H.M.S. GOOD HOPE on 1 November 1914.  The document (reference CO 321/289) is a communication from the Governor of the Windward Islands to the Colonial Office dated 3 April 1916 requesting reimbursement of a total sum of £253. 12s. 6d. paid by the Admiralty as "compensation" to the next of kin of 13 of the men on St. Lucia.  The document includes an itemised list of the men and their next of kin, together with receipts signed (or marked with an "x" by illiterates) by the recipients.  Of the men, 12 can be cross-referenced to names on the CWGC database, although in some cases there are minor differences in spelling, leaving only one who cannot.  The document also states that compensation has yet to be paid to one man from Barbados and one from Antigua.  There is no mention of other men, leaving 12 missing from the CWGC list (of whom one is presumably the man on the CO 321/289 list whose name cannot be matched).  The men listed are as follows: 

 

PHILLIP JULIEN

WILLIAM ALFRED

CHRISTOPHE ALEXANDER

JOSEPH BRAITHWAITE

MAXIM GEORGE

GEORGE HAYWOOD

CHARLES HAMILTON

JORDAN BOULOGNE

JOSEPH MATHURIN

FRANCIS MATHEW

HENRY NEWMAN

PAUL SOLOMON

 

EDWIN ARNOT (No obvious CWGC equivalent)

 

HENRY FREDERICK (Barbados - compensation outstanding)

NORMAN CHANDLER (Antigua - compensation outstanding)

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