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Remembered Today:

Mystery Northumberland Fusilier


ss002d6252

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A newspaper report of 29 March 1916 states this man's body was fished from the River Tyne near Redheugh.

 

Can anyone help identify this man ? I've had a quick look but couldn't find a good match.
 

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Craig

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I think this will be difficult Craig. There is a very good chance that the man would have been identified later on-so tracking via CWGC would be a major problem.  A way into it may be to ascertain WHICH cemetery  an unidentified  corpse would be taken-  My guess is that EITHER it would go a  cemetery within the local government area where the body was found OR to a cemetery (almost certainly municipal )where the War Office/Admiralty might have an arrangement  to bury unidentified corpses ( of which washed-up Royal Navy and Merchant Navy,plus Germans would be the most obvious.)   Thus, the likeliest would be Gateshead East cemetery-which has 6 unidentifieds from the Great War. But as CWGC do not put their records of unidentifieds online, then you would have to tackle them direct on that.

    After that, Newcastle and Biker has 11 or 12 unidentifieds of the Great War

Of course, it may be narrowed down considerably  as, at an informed guess, the CWGC headstone- which there should be- should have "Northumberland Fusiliers" rather than just "Known Unto God"

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Can we assume he was leave? He might be in Police gazette under Deserters?

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13 minutes ago, johnboy said:

Can we assume he was leave? He might be in Police gazette under Deserters?

 

       JB- both possibilities. It does put up an interesting question-  Just how many men went missing during the war at home?   Presumably, they are all down as deserters until other information came to hand.   I looked up Newcastle and Biker, as well as Gateshead East- and just those 2 gave 23 unknowns of the Great War.   Wonder just how many more there are around the country???

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I think this will be difficult Craig.

 

I expect so.
 

Quote

There is a very good chance that the man would have been identified later on-so tracking via CWGC would be a major problem.  A way into it may be to ascertain WHICH cemetery  an unidentified  corpse would be taken-  My guess is that EITHER it would go a  cemetery within the local government area where the body was found OR to a cemetery (almost certainly municipal )where the War Office/Admiralty might have an arrangement  to bury unidentified corpses ( of which washed-up Royal Navy and Merchant Navy,plus Germans would be the most obvious.)   Thus, the likeliest would be Gateshead East cemetery-which has 6 unidentifieds from the Great War. But as CWGC do not put their records of unidentifieds online, then you would have to tackle them direct on that.

    After that, Newcastle and Biker has 11 or 12 unidentifieds of the Great War

Of course, it may be narrowed down considerably  as, at an informed guess, the CWGC headstone- which there should be- should have "Northumberland Fusiliers" rather than just "Known Unto God"


That could be difficult - as the River Police mortuary was at Gateshead Quayside, slightly further along from Redheugh, and the Town Hall was just up the road from the mortuary (a few hundred yards). I suspect that the cemetery would either be Saltwell, or the closer still, as you have mentioned, East Gateshead cemetery (both municipal). I wish CWGC would make their 'unknown' records more readily available - do they have the records hidden online as they do for the ones in France ?

 

I had a quick glance through SDGW for men who 'died' but couldn't see an obvious one. He should be somewhere in the effects but that can also be difficult where dates and names are unknown. Someone must have a record somewhere but, as you mention, if he died whilst under desertion (or suspected to be desertion) there may be no army records to say he ever died.

 

Craig

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On 27/07/2018 at 13:37, johnboy said:

Can we assume he was leave? He might be in Police gazette under Deserters?


Hard to say but I think a problem is that that Police Gazette is not 100% available.

Craig

JB- both possibilities. It does put up an interesting question-  Just how many men went missing during the war at home?   Presumably, they are all down as deserters until other information came to hand.   I looked up Newcastle and Biker, as well as Gateshead East- and just those 2 gave 23 unknowns of the Great War.   Wonder just how many more there are around the country???

 

Mike, How do you easily find out how many unknowns are shown for a cemetery ?.

Craig

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33 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:


Hard to say but I think a problem is that that Police Gazette is not 100% available.

Craig

 

Mike, How do you easily find out how many unknowns are shown for a cemetery ?.

Craig

 

  "Easy"   As if- it seems to be buried away on the cemetery page on CWGC-  It's just a case of comparing the blurb about the numbers there, with the totals of identified graves which can be searched. Just basic subtraction to get the "Unknowns"

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On 27/07/2018 at 15:35, DavidOwen said:

Might a later newspaper report name him?


Not that I've seen so far.

Craig

"Easy"   As if- it seems to be buried away on the cemetery page on CWGC-  It's just a case of comparing the blurb about the numbers there, with the totals of identified graves which can be searched. Just basic subtraction to get the "Unknowns" 

Thanks, I though the headline figure was the total identified. It is, of course, odd that there are unidentified men but desertion and/or being dragged out of a river would tie in with that sort of issue.

 

Question 2: Any way of locating the details of what these unknown burials are ?

Craig

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"Easy"   As if- it seems to be buried away on the cemetery page on CWGC-  It's just a case of comparing the blurb about the numbers there, with the totals of identified graves which can be searched. Just basic subtraction to get the "Unknowns"

Unless I have got it wrong the Saltwell Cemetery in Gateshead doesn't have any ww1 unknowns as the ww1 and ww2 numbers add up to the total stated and the ww1 download shows all the casualties as named.

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6 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:

Question 2: Any way of locating the details of what these unknown burials are ?

 

     Not that I am aware- save a call to CWGC, who are quite helpful. They seem to have the full details available at their fingertips.  It's part of a larger problem of "unknowns"-which, of course, greatly affects France and Flanders. But home unknowns were a surprise.  The call may be worthwhile a) because they may have a listing of  Northumberland Fusiliers "Unknowns" which would narrow it- or narrow it by knocking out maritime deaths, which I suspect must be the majority of these cases. 

 

 

Just now, DavidOwen said:

Unless I have got it wrong the Saltwell Cemetery in Gateshead doesn't have any ww1 unknowns as the ww1 and ww2 numbers add up to the total stated and the ww1 download shows all the casualties as named.

   Yes, indeed, the blurb for Saltwell gives a tally-and this matches the  "identifieds",ergo not there(unless identified later). Same with the small parish churchyards at Gateshead-no unidentifieds of the Great War.

 

       I think the way into this is most likely to be from the other end. Forget CWGC pro tem but tackle the cemetery registers for the likely  grave- or have a go at the local coroner's office records to see whether they have a register of where the body went- should give a grave reference-albeit likely to be a common grave.  I think coroner's officers are under a legal duty to generate such records, though with the  passage of time  they may have been junked. A call to the Gateshead coroner may  help- coroners tend to be quite helpful as their day job can be unremittingly gloomy -so this is a novelty for them. 

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Not that I am aware- save a call to CWGC, who are quite helpful. They seem to have the full details available at their fingertips.  It's part of a larger problem of "unknowns"-which, of course, greatly affects France and Flanders. But home unknowns were a surprise.  The call may be worthwhile a) because they may have a listing of  Northumberland Fusiliers "Unknowns" which would narrow it- or narrow it by knocking out maritime deaths, which I suspect must be the majority of these cases.  

Yes, indeed, the blurb for Saltwell gives a tally-and this matches the  "identifieds",ergo not there(unless identified later). Same with the small parish churchyards at Gateshead-no unidentifieds of the Great War.

  I think the way into this is most likely to be from the other end. Forget CWGC pro tem but tackle the cemetery registers for the likely  grave- or have a go at the local coroner's office records to see whether they have a register of where the body went- should give a grave reference-albeit likely to be a common grave.  I think coroner's officers are under a legal duty to generate such records, though with the  passage of time  they may have been junked. A call to the Gateshead coroner may  help- coroners tend to be quite helpful as their day job can be unremittingly gloomy -so this is a novelty for them.  


It is something I may have to take up - the cemetery is only 15 mins walk away from me, the council offices not much further.


Craig

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The 29th March 1916 was a Wednesday

The only UK death recorded for a member of the Northumberland Fusiliers that would match the Monday (27th) or the Sunday (26th) is Private Robert Percy Hill aged 39 5879 6th Bn buried in Nottingham General Cemetery son of the late George and Annie Hill of Nottingham. Date of death 26/3/1916.

Could this be your man?

Edited by DavidOwen
added DoD
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1 minute ago, DavidOwen said:

The 29th March 1916 was a Wednesday

The only UK death recorded for a member of the Northumberland Fusiliers that would match the Monday (27th) or the Sunday (26th) is Private Robert Percy Hill aged 39 5879 6th Bn buried in Nottingham General Cemetery son of the late George and Annie Hill of Nottingham

Could this be your man?

The coroner's hearing was 28th so any identification and burial would have to be after then.

Craig

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Just now, ss002d6252 said:


It is something I may have to take up - the cemetery is only 15 mins walk away from me, the council offices not much further.


Craig

 

    Craig- By sheer chance, I was looking up a Gateshead man at BL Newsroom only yesterday- Harry Reynolds Chapman, 10 DLI, killed in France, 27th June 1915. Not much in the Newcastle papers but was there a specific local paper for Gateshead at that time-BL can be hit amiss if the name of the place is not in the catalogue.

     I think you may still need a call to CWGC for NF undientified of 1916-I suspect this man may be the only one.   Enjoy the walk:wub:

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2 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:

The coroner's hearing was 28th so any identification and burial would have to be after then.

Craig

Craig

Sorry didn't make it clear that this was a download from CWGC - so the date of death shown would be the actual date, not the date it would have been registered. Sorry for any confusion.

David

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1 minute ago, ss002d6252 said:

The coroner's hearing was 28th so any identification and burial would have to be after then.

Craig

 

     I am not absolutely sure about that-one would think so.  But the references to the time the body was in the water is a discreet way to state that the body was in poor shape with decomposition.

    As it is- a memory- I think a coroner has to issue a burial certificate.  Not sure what happens about death certificate-but that has to be after the inquest, as cause of death would be dependent on the outcome of the inquest.

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Craig- By sheer chance, I was looking up a Gateshead man at BL Newsroom only yesterday- Harry Reynolds Chapman, 10 DLI, killed in France, 27th June 1915. Not much in the Newcastle papers but was there a specific local paper for Gateshead at that time-BL can be hit amiss if the name of the place is not in the catalogue.

     I think you may still need a call to CWGC for NF undientified of 1916-I suspect this man may be the only one.   Enjoy the walk:wub:

 

The Ncl Journal and the Ncl Evening Chronicle covered a lot of the Gateshead side. Gateshead had a whole range of little papers that came and went but I'm not aware of any particular one for the war years.


Yes, I think the CWGC is probably the next step.

 

Craig

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I am not absolutely sure about that-one would think so.  But the references to the time the body was in the water is a discreet way to state that the body was in poor shape with decomposition. 

    As it is- a memory- I think a coroner has to issue a burial certificate.  Not sure what happens about death certificate-but that has to be after the inquest, as cause of death would be dependent on the outcome of the inquest. 

The newspaper reports I've looked at before, albeit not WW1 related, have usually named the person if their identity was known, which makes me think that it wasn't until at least after 28 March on that basis.

Craig

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The next candidate I can identify after the inquest is Private George Robson 2982 1st/4th Bn aged 18 DoD 01/04/1916 buried Corbridge on Tyne (Corbridge) Cemetery son of Thomas and Mary Robson. Born at Little Whittington, Newcastle upon Tyne.

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2 minutes ago, DavidOwen said:

The next candidate I can identify after the inquest is Private George Robson 2982 1st/4th Bn aged 18 DoD 01/04/1916 buried Corbridge on Tyne (Corbridge) Cemetery son of Thomas and Mary Robson. Born at Little Whittington, Newcastle upon Tyne.

Died in Northern General Hospital so I think we can cross him off the list.


Craig

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01/04/1916 but buried in Fulford Cemetery Yorkshire, J Hogg Private 4090 2nd/7th Bn no other information recorded.

 

Please do tell me to stop Craig if this is becoming a distraction!

 

David

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Just now, DavidOwen said:

01/04/1916 but buried in Fulford Cemetery Yorkshire, J Hogg Private 4090 2nd/7th Bn no other information recorded.

 

Please do tell me to stop Craig if this is becoming a distraction!

 

David

Any help is appreciated, always best to have another person to bounce things off ! I'm simultaneously being cooked and drowned with the weather here, whilst being interrupted by Sunderland air show planes, so my concentration is not at it's best (and I'm doing bits of work in between).

 

Hogg is noted as Fishgate, York in the effects.

Craig

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Next one (I am ignoring NCOs and Officers as there would have been identifying marks on the uniform, or at least I am presuming so)

 

Buried at Mickley (St George) Cemetery, "On South Border"  DoD 02/04/1916 Private JT Pattison 1733 1st/4th Bn. No other information recorded.

 

Still very warm here, watching Tour de France and expecting it to rain when I go out to water the plants!

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15 minutes ago, DavidOwen said:

Next one (I am ignoring NCOs and Officers as there would have been identifying marks on the uniform, or at least I am presuming so)

 

Buried at Mickley (St George) Cemetery, "On South Border"  DoD 02/04/1916 Private JT Pattison 1733 1st/4th Bn. No other information recorded.

 

Still very warm here, watching Tour de France and expecting it to rain when I go out to water the plants!

Pattison is shown as 'At Home' so can't be ruled out just from the effects.

Like a sauna here.

Craig

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