Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

Janet Wilkes

Garibaldi Aldridge 1895 - 1914

Recommended Posts

Janet Wilkes

I am trying to confirm that Garibaldi Aldridge is the younger brother of my late grandfather Edmund Aldridge. Born in Walsall. I have found that he is buried in Arnhem, Belgium and was one of the first casualties doing a few days after his 19th birthday

Edited by Janet Wilkes
Hadn't put enough information

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ss002d6252


Garibaldi was born 1895, 2 Oct 1895, in St Georges, Staffordshire.

 

On the 1901 census he is shown with his family. One of his older brothers is shown as Edmund Aldridge, born 1891.

 

Craig

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JOANNE TOWNSEND
13 hours ago, Janet Wilkes said:

I am trying to confirm that Garibaldi Aldridge is the younger brother of my late grandfather Edmund Aldridge. Born in Walsall. I have found that he is buried in Arnhem, Belgium and was one of the first casualties doing a few days after his 19th birthday

Garibaldi Aldridge was my great uncle, He was my nans brother, He died when she was only 11 years old. Edmund  Aldridge married Eliza Tapper she came from Somerset, not sure when she came to live up this way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Janet Wilkes

Thank you. I know my grandad Edmund, named after his father had a mother Eliza Tapper from Somerset/Devon. It looks as if Garibaldi is definitely my great uncle. Sorry which sister was your nan? 

Edited by Janet Wilkes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JOANNE TOWNSEND
9 hours ago, Janet Wilkes said:

Thank you. I know my grandad Edmund, named after his father had a mother Eliza Tapper from Somerset/Devon. It looks as if Garibaldi is definitely my great uncle. Sorry which sister was your nan? 

Hi Janet, Ada was my nan, I also remember Emma used to visit her when we were younger, It's nice to think 100 years after Garibaldi's death, Great Cousins have been brought together through his name,  Would be nice to find out more about your grandad Edmund. if you don't mind. Could private message, Thanks Jo x

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
GraemeClarke

Hi

 

1901 attached

 

I have this on him

 

     Garibaldi was born in Walsall on Saturday 5 October 1895, the third son of Edmund and Elizabeth Eliza (née Tapper) Aldridge of 46, Paddock Lane, Walsall and later of 25, Charlotte Street, Walsall, his father being a bobber and later a bit and spur polisher. He was baptised on Thursday 14 November 1895.

     He enlisted in the Royal Marines at Birmingham on Sunday 16 July 1913, at that time employed as a gas tube fitter, and was stationed at Plymouth when war was declared.

     Drafted to Belgium, Garibaldi took part in the defence of Dunkirk and Antwerp. The Germans began their efforts to secure the city on Tuesday 29 September 1914 by attacking the south eastern part of its defences. German guns pounded the city reducing its defensive forts to rubble. Between Saturday 3 October 1914 and Monday 5 October 1914 reinforcements from the Royal Marines and the Royal Naval Division began to arrive in the city but to no avail.

     Garibaldi’s battalion was placed facing the town of Lierre on the bank of the River Nethe on Sunday 4 October 1914. Early the following morning the Germans crossed the river forcing a retreat from the area. On Saturday 10 October 1914 the Military Governor, General Deguise, formally surrendered the city to the Germans.

     Casualties in the battalion amounted to 10 men killed or missing and 2 men died of wounds as prisoners of war.

     A report by Captain Everard Home Rooke, (Royal Engineers detachment, attached to the Royal Marine Brigade, Royal Naval Division) made on Thursday 15 October 1914, from the Dutch internment camp at Groningen and addressed to the Adjutant General Royal Marines stated,

     “On reporting myself to the G.O.C. I received orders to employ my detachment assisting the brigade to improve its defences of outpost positions. These were north and south of, and on, the Lierre Road, immediately west of the river Nethe, the bridge over this river had been destroyed.

     I proceeded there at once, finding the existing defences very weak with no head cover and insufficient depth to the trenches. The field of fire, which in some places did not exceed 80 yards was insufficiently cleared. On the arrival of my detachment I at once put the work in hand. Firing houses, knocking down walls, clearing trees and bushes, deepening trenches, putting up head cover, making machine gun emplacements and generally improving the defences. The detachment was distributed in 3 of the outpost positions and I supervised the work and also advised at other posts to which the R.E. detachment could not be spared, and otherwise I remained at the most important post on the Lierre Road.

     At 5.30pm the defences were attacked by shrapnel fire and at frequent intervals during the night by both shrapnel and rifle fire. By the light of the burning houses the enemy's infantry were repeatedly seen advancing along the road, they were fired on and forced to retire. During shrapnel fire the men in the trenches were instructed to lie down close to the parapet and no casualties occurred although the fire was well aimed and accurate. During the night a field gun was brought onto the road, in front of our position, we opened fire on it, which subdued its fire from time to time.
     By 5.15am the following day (5th October) this gun was observed to be now only about 500 yards distant. It was protected by a barricade thrown across the road during the night. It now opened fire on the portion of our trenches which lay across the road, with percussion shrapnel demolishing a portion of the trench and killing and wounding some of our men. Fire was opened up on the gun and barricade but the enemy's infantry now sent forward snipers to the remaining houses and used what cover there was on their side of the river. As a result, determined attack by rifle and shell fire was made on out positions, causing severe casualties.

     At 11am, information was received from the Post on our right that the Belgian post on their right had retired and that the enemy were crossing the river at that point and that they were about to retire themselves. Whereupon, the Commander of our post gave us the order to retire. This retirement was carried out under fire by men leaving singly. The other British posts were also strongly attached and suffered casualties, so that the whole line now retired to a new position along the same road but about one and a half miles nearer to Antwerp. During this period of attack we suffered no R.E. casualties.

     We were now employed putting this new position into a state of defence, improving existing work and putting up barbed wire entanglements. However, snipping commenced almost immediately, followed by shell fire. This consisted of shrapnel and high explosive during the later hours of the night, which increased in intensity from daylight, causing many casualties in the trenches by fragments of shells.

     At 11.30am, orders were received from G.O.C. to at once retire otherwise total annihilation was risked. So, a second retirement was carried out as before under heavy shell fire to a position athwart the road. We were now about one and a half miles in rear of the line Boschhok - Vrende where again the R.E. detachment was employed improving trenches.

     At 3am the following day - October 7th - orders were received to evacuate this position and for the R.M. Brigade to retire to Waesdonck, in reserve.”

     Garibaldi is buried in Schoonselhof Cemetery, Antwerp in Grave 80 and is  commemorated on the Walsoll Roh and on the roll of honour at St. Paul’s Church, Walsall. He was 19 years of age.

     Whilst his service records indicate a date of birth of Wednesday 2 October 1895, his baptismal records indicate Saturday 5 October 1895.

 

Regards,

 

Graeme

1901.jpg

Aldridge_G a.jpg

aldridge g 3 a.jpg

aldridge g.jpg

DSCF0988.JPG

Edited by GraemeClarke

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Janet Wilkes

Thank you everyone. Hi Jo it would be lovely to chat about it your nan and my grandad as they were brother and sister. It makes us cousins once removed. My email is janetwilkes59@gmail.com if you want to chat there about them X x

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Niko

Wow, nice information. His unit was first at the barricades in the centre of Lier, along the Antwerpsepoort, they retired towards their main positions along the old miliutary railroad, approxiamtely where the ring road is today, and then towards the intermediate line together with the Naval brigades, all next to the deadstraight Lier Road. From there on to rest positions at Waasdonk, that's about where the Antwerp Airport is today, just behind the forts3 and 4.

 

Would it be possible that I can use the photos for my site, please?

 

Niko.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
GraemeClarke

Hi Niko,

 

Use what you wish, no problem.

 

Do you have a link to your site ?

 

Regards,

 

Graeme

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mark1959

Janet

Edit your post and remove your email address. You will be spammed. Send email to Joanne via PM system

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×