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laughton

COG-BR 2762284101 years ago today, on 21 March 1918, Great Uncle James Kennedy was KIA near Grand-Seraucourt. The same day, his brother, Act/Captain Josiah Kennedy was captured by the Germans during the opening day of Operation Michael, fortunately spending the remainder of the war as a "Guest of the Kaiser", failing which I would not be here to write this post! Both men, as well as brother William (KIA 7 June 1917), served in the Royal Irish Rifles. James Kennedy, lies in Plot 2 Row F Grave 13 of this cemetery.

 

A search of the GWF does not return a page that tells me that I have already added the details about this cemetery. I have it in my records that I first posted the BINDERS in November 2015 and then upgraded that with the ZIP files in October 2016.

 

Today is a good day to start this update, as it is 101 years ago (21 March 1918) that my Great Uncle 2nd Lieut. James Kennedy was KIA near Castres, buried in the field 66c.A.22.d.8.3 and later concentrated into this cemetery. Initially he was an UNKNOWN but they named him. I am not sure how they did that, as 2nd Lt. John Crawford Thompson was KIA that same day, recorded on the same page in the war diary, yet he remains an UNKNOWN, listed on the Pozieres Memorial.

 

(NOTE: Lieutenant Hodgson on that list does not seem to exist - I posted that on a separate page under his name: see here - he has been identified now as Lt. Bertie John Hodson, attached to the Royal Irish Rifles)

I can include the War Diary here as this did not come from Ancestry.

1akh0utpde9t8616g.jpg

Great Uncle James Kennedy is the 3rd entry on this COG-BR

doc2762205.JPG

 

Some time ago, I don't recall when, I had extracted the information from the CWGC and started to look at the details of the cemetery. It would appear that the location where they recovered my Great Uncle was a smaller cemetery, but that is not proven. As I have with the other cemeteries, I will go through the list and add the trench map coordinates to the smaller cemeteries. Then I am going to see if I can find out what happened to John Crawford Thompson, as he must have been buried with my Great Uncle. In the back of my mind, far far away is the other question - does the CWGC have the correct man in this grave?

 

The text is from the CWGC website to which I am adding the coordinates. First I check the COG-BR documents to see if they are provided, failing which I look them up on the DAL (David Avery List). In some cases I had already added a COG-BR document tag, which I will check to make sure they are correct, then add the cemetery coordinates.

 

Quote

II Corps passed through this neighbourhood on the Retreat from Mons in August, 1914, and it was lost in the early days of the Fifth Army retreat in March, 1918. The Cemetery was made in 1920-26 by the concentration of graves from the battlefields and from other burial grounds, including:- 

 

  • ALAINCOURT GERMAN CEMETERY. 66c.I.20.c.2.2
    • COG-BR 2762307 - only one UBS on that page, had been labelled German?
  • BENAY MILITARY CEMETERY (3 British, February and March, 1918). 
  • CHEVRESIS-MONCEAU COMMUNAL CEMETERY 66c.K.30.b.8.4 (116 German; 40 French; 3 British, March and April, 1918). 
  • CILLY GERMAN CEMETERY (6 British, September, 1918). 
    • GRRF 2005745 Kipling Memorial for 4 British Soldiers died as POW in 1918, whose graves are now lost
  • CLASTRES NEW FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY DAL 66c.G.27.c.6.1 (14 British, February and March, 1918). 
  • CUGNY MILITARY CEMETERIES DAL has a Cugny British Cemetery at 66d.R.14.d.3.2? (Aisne, near Ham; the 2nd Royal Irish Rifles held out and were annihilated here 24 March 1918); used by British and Germans, it contained 88 British graves of February-June 1918. 
    • COG-BR 2762283 - CUGNY COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 66d.R.20.d.3.8
    • GRRF 2005767 for 6 on a Kipling Memorial, POWs whose graves are lost
  • DURY CHURCHYARD (Aisne; 5 British, March 1918).
  • ESSIGNY-LE-GRAND GERMAN CEMETERY 66c.G.18.b.9.6 (200 German and 99 British, March and April 1918, largely 36th (Ulster) Division).
    • COG-BR 2762308 to 320 (lots), mainly first day of Operation Michael 21 March 1918 and then the days that followed
    • GRRF 2005743 also has 11 men KIA on 21 March 1918 from this cemetery "whose graves are now lost"
    • GRRF 20005765 a single Kipling Memorial, but at the Communal Cemetery not the Military Cemetery
  • FONTAINE-NOTRE DAME GERMAN CEMETERY 62b.P.25.a.9.6 (Aisne, 900 Germans; 12 French; 2 British, March 1918).
  • FONTAINE-UTERTE COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 62b.O.3.a.3.4 (500 German; 23 British, March 1917-March 1918).
  • GRUGIES COMMUNAL CEMETERY (2 British, January 1918). 
  • HIRSON COMMUNAL CEMETERY FRENCH and GERMAN EXTENSION 62a.L.35.a.30.50 (14 British, December 1917-October 1918).
  • LESDINS FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY (4 British, September 1918). 
  • MARCY CHATEAU GERMAN CEMETERY 62b.U.17.d.4.8 (2 British, September 1918).
  • MARBLES COMMUNAL CEMETERY EXTENSION (17 British, April-October 1918, besides French, Italian, Russian and Germans).
    • must be "MARLES" COG-BR 2762333-5 66b.N.4.d.5.9 - from the CILLY GERMAN CEMETERY in 1920
    • GRRF 2005744 also has 7 men on a Kipling Memorial died as POW in 1918, whose graves are now lost
  • MENNEVRET COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 62b.E.23.c.5.4 (312 British, August 1914, March, October and November 1918).
  • MEZIERES-SUR-OISE GERMAN CEMETERY 66c.I.3.b.2.1 (200 German, 24 French, 1 British).
  • MONCEAU-LES-LEUPS GERMAN CEMETERY (1 British, February 1918). 
  • MONCHY-LAGACHE CHURCHYARD no TMC on COG-BR 2762351 (4 British, May 1917 and September 1918). 
  • NOUVION-ET-CATILLON COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 66c.P.29.b.3.3 (13 British, February-August 1918).
  • ORIGNY-EN-THIERACHE COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 62a.R.13.c.9.4 (200 German; 13 French; one American; one British, October 1914).
  • REMIGNY FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY 66c.N.13.c.9.9  (33 French; 13 British, February and March 1918).
  • ST. MICHEL COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 62c.G.34.central (Aisne; 132 German; 23 French; 6 British, August-October 1918).
  • SEBONCOURT FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY 62b.J.16.a.9.0 (99 French; 1 British, October 1918).
  • SERAUCOURT-LE-GRAND COMMUNAL CEMETERY FRENCH EXTENSION 66c.G.8.b.2.8 (13 British, February and March 1918). 
  • VERVINS GERMAN CEMETERY 66b.D.8.a.8.5 (390 German; 20 Italian; 15 French; 7 British, May-September 1918).

 

There are now over 2,000, 1914-18 and a small number of 1939-45 war casualties commemorated in this site. Of these, almost two-thirds from the 1914-18 War are unidentified and special memorials are erected to two soldiers from the United Kingdom, known or believed to be buried here. Other special memorials record the names of 32 United Kingdom soldiers, buried by the enemy, whose graves could not be found.

 

In Plots III, IV and V are many graves, identified collectively but not individually, which are marked by headstones superscribed: "Buried near this spot". 

 

  • These were on COG-BR 2762261 but are not listed above: (with those strange coordinates we have seen before!)
    • ANZY-LE-CHATEAU 1/50,000 315.7 x 191.6
    •  CHAUNY 1/50,000 307/6 x 176.9
  • COG-BR 2762278 - L'EPINE DE DALLON FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY or ST. QUENTIN ROUPY MITTE GERMAN MILITARY CEMETERY at 62b.S.20.b.9.5
    • then on the next page(s) they have not made the TMC change, so it still shows 66c.A.4.a.1.5
  • COG-BR 2762282 - ANNOIS C. C. (COMMUNAL CEMETERY?) CHURCHYARD 66d.R.1?.a.3.4
  • COG-BR 2762286 - OLLEZY COMMUNAL CEMETERY
  • COG-BR 2762291 - TRENCH K.II GERMAN BURIAL LIST NO. 951 66c.M.8.c.6.4 (20 sets or remains)
  • COG-BR 2762295 - REMAUCOURT FRENCH MILITARY CEMETERY - No TMC
    • another one with similar name (omits FRENCH) at 62b.N.12.c.9.8 - exhumed from elsewhere, TMC are provided on COG-BR 2762338
  • COG-BR 2762303 - ST. MARTIN'S MILITARY CEMETERY EXTENSION, ST. QUENTIN
  • COG-BR 2762321 - SEBONCOURT COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION 62b.J.11.d.3.3
  • COG-BR 2762323 -  another (see main list) CLASTRES RES? MILITARY CEMETERY 66c.G.27.c.7.0
  • COG-BR 2762342 - BEAUVOIS GERMAN MILITARY CEMETERY 62c.W.23.c.2.6
  • COG-BR 2762344 - FAUBOURG ST. JEAN (ST. QUENTIN)
  • COG-BR 2762363 - CHAPELLE BRITISH CEMETERY, HOLNON 62b.S.2.a.0.4

 

 

This was in this file, so I have looked at some of these previously. I will update the list:

 

Quote

 

UNKNOWNS:

 

COG-BR 2762220

 

There are 5 majors on the Pozieres Memorial for 21 March 1918: CWGC Link

There are 38 Lieutenants for the same conditions: CWGC Link

 

The Second Lieutenant and Captain of the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry in 3.F.13 and 3.F.14 were identified.

There are two cemeteries on COG-BR 2762279 that are not listed here. Looks like others as well.

 

 

Back later to finish adding the information! 

Edited by laughton
updating files and links, done; fixed link 5/1/2020

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laughton

I don't think I made a "serious list" when I went through these documents initially. This is a new list, leaving out any that are just "UBO" with no other information. I also left out any that have too many missing to make it a reasonable search if there is no date or battalion specified (i.e. a Lieutenant of the R Inn FUs, a Lieutenant of the RFA, etc.)

 

The only cemetery listed on the DAL for 66c is the Grand-Seraucourt Communal Cemetery Extension at 66c.G.8.b.2.8.

 

There are a lot of men on these lists coming from very specific locations, not marked as cemeteries, however the common TMC suggests that is the case (i.e. COG-BR 2762227) and onwards, most from the Rifle Brigade.

  • COG-BR 2672180 - Lieutenant Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers 66d.L.10.c.3.4, probably February 1918 based on others
    • nope, 4 in March missing (CWGC Link) but none in February
  • COG-BR 2762199 - possible as all different units, Captain Royal Irish Rifles, only 3 for March 1918 (CWGC Link)
    • that is the first time that I have seen the GRU actually mark the COG-BR * 2 candidates, which is true as one went to the Entrenching Battalion
    • this could be good evidence that the GRU did not have the capability to separate units by locations reported in the war diary, which would be key to our projects
    • it also means they knew the date was March 1918, although that is not recorded on the COG-BR
    • check GRRF documents to see if he was identified!! (done - no he was not)
  • COG-BR 2762200 - Lieutenant Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry (CWGC Link has 3)
    • here is the second of the three Lieutenants from that regiment COG-BR 2762230
    • may be a different time as quite different locations 66c.A.22.d.8.3 with my Great Uncle and the other at 66d.R.16.a.2.8, but better check details!
    • here is the third one at the same location as the second COG-BR 2762231 - he is with a Captain in the next grave ( he was identified as Captain B. A. Anderson)
    • none of the Lieutenants are named in that cemetery (CWGC Link) and the Captain sets the date as March 1918
    • I think that points a finger directly at Lieutenant Anthony Hepburn Edwards as the third Lieutenant, also 5th Bn found with the Captain
    • maybe not, the second one on the list was at the same location, so we will need to consult the war diaries
    • now we have a 4th Lieutenant on COG-BR 2762232 - this is getting confusing! He is with Corporal Ralph Reed, also 5th Bn - a large group 66d.R.16.a.2.8
  • COG-BR 2762205 - 2nd Lieutenant Royal Irish Rifles 66c.A.22.d.8.3 in 2.F.13
    • had to put that one in, as they found my Great Uncle James Kennedy
    • but how do they know if was not Thompson, the other KIA and UNKNOWN that date? (CWGC Link)
  • COG-BR 2762200 - the Major listed in the first post
  • COG-BR 2762225 - Captain Liverpool Regiment 66d.R.24.c.4.3
  • COG-BR 2762240 - Captain Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (CWGC Link) 66d.R.18.c.3.1 also a large burial area

more that 100 more pages to do - back later!

Edited by laughton
fixed error - last entry on page is 66d not 66c

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Becstar

Rest In Peace James and William Kennedy. We will remember them. 

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laughton

Thanks Bec, now the list continues:

  • COG-BR 2762271 - 2 of the 1 man of the Royal Canadian Dragoons (I don't see them him on my CEFSG LIST, so will need to check more)
    • if the coordinates are correct 66c.S.3.a.2.3 (and 5.8) that is map [Tergnier] 66c.SW near FAILLOUEL
    • never heard of the RCD being anywhere near that area - obviously buried by the French?
  • COG-BR 2762298 - check if identified as TWO BRITISH OFFICERS (AIRMEN) 30 April 1917 with "Flying Boots" in 6.J.13 and 6.J.14 @fetubi
    • Fontaine Uterte Communal Cemetery German Extension 62b.O.3.a.3.4
    • GRRF 2005752 lists them as UBO with no mention of airmen
    • looks like everyone on that page may be an Airman? Many of them identified
  • COG-BR 2762349 - Regimental Serjeant Major, Durham Light Infantry
    • interesting that there are three (3) in France (CWGC Link) and they all have KNOWN GRAVES! 
    • check if the Secondary Regiment
  • COG-BR 2762358 - Serjeant Major of the Manchester Regiment, only one (1) listed in a known grave (CWGC Link)
Edited by laughton
updating list as we go .... fixed links, thanks Luc!

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LDT006
8 hours ago, laughton said:
  • COG-BR 2762298 - check if identified as TWO BRITISH OFFICERS (AIRMEN) 30 April 1917 with "Flying Boots" in 6.J.13 and 6.J.14 @fetubi
    • Fontaine Uterte Communal Cemetery German Extension 62b.O.3.a.3.4
    • GRRF 2005752 lists them as UBO with no mention of airmen

 

Very quick reply:

 

Links don't work, missing .JPG at the end, correct ones:

https://archive.cloud.cwgc.org/archive/doc/doc2762298.JPG 

https://archive.cloud.cwgc.org/archive/doc/doc2005752.JPG

 

There are only 2 airman on the Arras Flying services for that date:

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/746719/davidson,-donald-alastair-leslie/

Capt DAL Davidson, B1562 SPAD, Blown to pieces in air on offensive patrol Lens-Le Forest-Fontaine-Noreuil.

Lens is to far north and can be excluded.

 

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1575038/kay,-maurice-alfred/ 

2Lt MA Kay, A4866 SE5, Brought down and burst into flames on impact nr Villiers on offensive patrol.

There's a claim from Edmund Nathanael (Jasta 5) for A4866 E of Fresnoy (this is NE of Fontaine Uterte) and a possible candidate..

 

I'm sure that Trevor will have more details and eventually correct my errors.

Luc.

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laughton
3 minutes ago, LDT006 said:

offensive patrol Lens-Le Forest-Fontaine-Noreuil.

 

That caught my attention in Trevor's book, thinking that maybe they were flying to FONTAINE as that is where they were found. There was only one man in the plane. Guess there is no reason they could not be in separate planes?

 

Thanks Luc, I fixed the links - there were a few others.

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LDT006

There is a potential claim for Capt DAL Davidson, B1562 SPAD at Sallaumines, just east of Lens:

From http://www.theaerodrome.com/forum/showthread.php?t=67857:

Post 5: this Spad eventually credited to the Schusta 19 crew of Vfw Boight & Uffz Woidt - who claimed a Spad Salluamines at 1320GT. 

 

French placenames are difficult, there could be a Fontaine-xxxx near Lens.

The same for the location of the other plane: Villiers or Villers: several dozen of these.

 

It could be a 2 seater crew also with wrong dates on the graves,

it could be 2Lt MA Kay and the other for a pilot that died as POW,

Let's see what Trevor has.

 

Luc.

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laughton

These cases have now been split off:

  1. Grand-Seraucourt British Cemetery: Case #1 - Captain Royal Irish Rifles
  2. Grand-Seraucourt British Cemetery: Case #2 - Two (2) Unknown British Officers (Airmen)

If others arise from the review, they will be added to the above list.

Edited by laughton
added links

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laughton
On 22/03/2019 at 07:05, laughton said:

COG-BR 2762358 - Serjeant Major of the Manchester Regiment, only one (1) listed in a known grave (CWGC Link)

 

Could a Company Sergeant Major be confused with a Serjeant Major? There is one (1) CSM for March 1918 on the Pozieres Memorial.

CSM Herbert Richard Bannister 275655

 

I think this drags me back to the confusing Warrant Officer issue, for which I have little understanding. @Muerrisch I recall knows the details.

 

doc2762358.JPG

 

 

Edited by laughton

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laughton

Back into the COG-BR sheets looking for a Second Lieutenant of the 15th Royal Irish Rifles (Michael Case #3) and I notice there is a Company Serjeant Major of the Royal Engineers in 2.G.17 recovered at 66c.H.21.b.8.8. The entry was partially obscured by the blue crayon marks (COG-BR 2762207). There is a UBO on that page as well, but no other clues other than the location. On checking, I see he was identified as CSM Woodger. There are another three (3) on the Arras Memorial that I would have expected to see on the Pozieres Memorial? Perhaps someone actually checked on their location when they were KIA?

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laughton

Back again and I see that the Captain and Lieutenant of the Royal Berkshire Regiment on COG-BR 2762211 are not named for being in this cemetery, so they are missing to date. If this is the same period of Spring 1918 then there are 4 Captains and 4 Lieutenants to consider.

 

The Captains should be easier to separate as the dates are varied. I will come back and check into these in further detail, or in the interim anyone can check them out.

 

doc2762211.JPG

 

p.s. Isee now there are two (2) other OFFICERS with them, all in the same location. That should simplify the search of the war diaries.

 

I really need to go back through all the men listed in the previous posts and see if any of them can be resolved. There are many and I think more not listed.

 

Edited by laughton
p.s.

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laughton

In the first post in this topic I had mention of the UNKNOWN BRITISH MAJOR in Plot 4 Row C Grave 4. I have fixed the links that were there. This came up again as I was going through the documents looking for men that perished in the Cugny area where Captain Thompson and Lieutenant Marriott-Watson were reported buried by the Germans in the church cemetery (see dickaren post).

 

Rifleman R. J. Young of the 1st Bn Royal Irish Rifles has a date of death of 21 March 1918, so that has to mean that he was taken to an aide station southwest of Cugny, where he subsequently died, or the date is wrong and he died after the retreat through that area. It is also possible he died on the night of the 21st during the retreat. It is at this same location we find the Major, so we have to expand the dates to include those that may have perished in the area a few days later, perhaps all at an Aid Station?

 

Quote

COG-BR 2762220

 

There are more at this location on other sheets, such as Rifleman Donnelly #5881 of the 2/RIR who perished on 24 March 1918. He is in Plot 4 Row C Grave 12.

 

doc2762220.JPG

 

These are the MAJORS that are on the Pozieres Memorial for that period in late March 1918:

 

surname forename death regiment secondary_regiment unit
AWDRY CHARLES SELWYN 24/03/1918 Wiltshire Regiment Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry 6th (Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry) Bn.
BAKER SYDNEY HAROLD 23/03/1918 Gloucestershire Regiment   12th Entrenching Bn., late 1st Bn.
BANHAM JOSEPH JOHN 27/03/1918 Royal Sussex Regiment   9th Bn.
BARKER HAROLD FREDERIC 29/03/1918 Royal Garrison Artillery Royal Field Artillery 4th Div. Ammunition Col.
BROWN HAROLD 23/03/1918 Yorkshire Regiment   5th Bn.
CARDELL EDMUND POWNE 25/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery   46th Bde.
CHALMERS JAMES 23/03/1918 Royal Scots Machine Gun Corps (Infantry) 5th Bn.
CHEVERTON THOMAS BIRD 24/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery    
COCHRAN FRANK EARDLEY 24/03/1918 South African Infantry   2nd Regt.
DENNES WILFRED 21/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery   82nd Bde.
DOUGLAS-WILLAN WALTER GORDON 24/03/1918 Durham Light Infantry   4th Bn. attd. 22nd Bn.
FAIRLIE EDWARD 30/03/1918 King's Royal Rifle Corps   7th Bn. attd. 17th Bn.
HAMMONDS DENYS HUNTINGFORD 30/03/1918 Royal Engineers   225th Field Coy.
HANBURY EVAN ROBERT 24/03/1918 Leicestershire Yeomanry Machine Gun Corps (Infantry)  
JAMESON HORACE ARMYTAGE 24/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery   311th Bde.
JERWOOD JOHN HUGH 21/03/1918 Durham Light Infantry Somerset Light Infantry 10th Bn.
LE FLEMING L J 21/03/1918 East Surrey Regiment   2nd Bn. (Commanding 9th Bn.)
MOSS THOMAS JOHN 21/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery   307th Bde.
RIGG SAMUEL 25/03/1918 Border Regiment   5th Bn.
ROBINSON FREDERICK WILFRED 28/03/1918 Machine Gun Corps (Infantry)   8th Bn.
STAMPE GEORGE HERBERT 27/03/1918 Machine Gun Corps (Infantry)   24th Bn.
STORR LEYCESTER PENRHYN 29/03/1918 The King's (Liverpool Regiment) Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry 12th Bn.
SYMONS HUBERT 22/03/1918 Royal Field Artillery   "D" Bty. 47th Bde.
St. AUBYN MORICE JULIAN 22/03/1918 King's Royal Rifle Corps   7th Bn.
TOSETTI DOUGLAS 21/03/1918 Royal Berkshire Regiment   8th Bn.
VILLAR ROBERT PETER 22/03/1918 The King's (Liverpool Regiment)   18th (Lancashire Hussars) Bn.
Edited by laughton
added Donnelly; clarified that the table is MAJORS

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laughton

This has been moved to a new case at:

 

Grand-Seraucourt British Cemetery: Case #3 - Captain Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers

Edited by laughton
moved to new case

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laughton

Moved to new topic at:

Grand-Seraucourt British Cemetery: Case #4 -Lieutenant Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry

Edited by laughton
moved to new topic

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laughton

To clean up this topic on the Grand-Seraucourt British Cemetery, I moved two (2) of the newer cases to their own topics:

 

 

I have left the other ones here for the moment (i.e. the Major) as it does not appear as promising.

Edited by laughton
Moved to a separate topic to continue discussion.

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