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ralphjd

James CROWTHER

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ralphjd

A Rochdale newspaper article plus photo dated 17 6 1916 states that this lad serving with the Manchesters has died in a hospital in India, NO record of him on any site that I can find, usual suspects yield nothing at all. Can you help out there. ? Thanks. Ralph.

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ss002d6252
1 hour ago, ralphjd said:

A Rochdale newspaper article plus photo dated 17 6 1916 states that this lad serving with the Manchesters has died in a hospital in India, NO record of him on any site that I can find, usual suspects yield nothing at all. Can you help out there. ? Thanks. Ralph.

Can't see anything obvious in the effects records.


Craig

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corisande

Strange

 

Nothing on General CWGC search for Manchesters in India (there are only 37, and nothing looks even close to a misprint)

 

Here is the actual article, which you have, so that other readers can pick up any clues

 

crowther.jpg.9aab89516abfad9afde0d4d24d9e8362.jpg

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ss002d6252

Assuming the article is correct.

So, we're looking at a regular who was placed on the reserve and then recalled in 1914 - if he served 13 years before joining the reserve & was recalled in 1914 then this means he must have joined the army in 1901 or before.

If he was 30 in 1916, then he was born in 1886 - indicating that he likely joined the army at age 14.

It also means that he would have still been a serving soldier in  1911 to have gotten in the 13 years of regular service.

Craig

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DavidOwen

As he was "called up" so early a search of Boer War Records might be of use?

 

J Crowther 3049 served in the 1st Battalion of the Manchester Regiment in that prior conflict, being slightly wounded. (Also served with 19th Mounted Infantry). No record of same number in any ww1 records I can find.

 

No other Manchester Regiment candidates found. But there are another 7 J Crowthers who did serve in the prior conflict in other regiments. 2 can be ruled out as died in 1901/2.

The rest seem to have the wrong first name or are too old.

 

Can only find 2 Crowthers in CWGC in India, neither J(ames).

 

Next step to check Medical records for 1914.... Only to find FMP don't have any for 1914......

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travers61

Thanks for posting the original article.

 

He could have been in the 1st Garrison Battalion, Manchester Regiment which were stationed in India March 1916 to July 1918.  This also fits with him being wounded, so maybe medical cat B1 or lower.

 

1st Garrison Battalion The Manchester Regiment

Formed at Knowsley Park, Liverpool in September 1915 and commanded by Lieutenant Colonel H W K Bretherton, a retired Territorial Force officer. Composed of officers and men permanently unfit for active service but considered fit for garrison duty overseas. They left Prescot at 9.15pm on 24 February 1916, arriving Devonport at 10 am the following day. Sailed at 4.30pm on board Kinfauns with an escort of two destroyers. On 5 March they passed Alexandria and then on into the Suez Canal. Arrived Bombay, India on 14 March 1916. Moved to Fyzabad where they stayed until end July 1918. To Singapore arriving on 3 August 1918 until December 1919.  A reinforcement detachment left Singapore on 5 August and arrived at Hong Kong on the 9th. This detachment left Hong Kong on 3 September and sailed for Vladivostok, where they disembarked on 11 September 1918. The detachment arrived at Spasshoe in Siberia on 12 September where they were to join the 25th Garrison Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment. On 27 November 1919, Colonel R Ashworth and the officers paid a visit from Singapore to Johore where they were entertained by the officers of the Johore Forces commanded by Colonel Hamid. The Regent of Johore presided and the Manchester 's were given a hearty send-off prior to their return to the UK. The Battalion returned to UK in December 1919 and was disbanded on 27 February 1920.    https://www.tameside.gov.uk/museumsgalleries/mom/history/garrison1914

 

This thread also gives more details of The !st Garrison Battalion

 

 

 

 

The only other Battalion of the Manchesters who served in India or as part of an Indian unit, was the !st (Regular) Battalion, who were in India at the outbreak of WW1 as part of Part of the 8th (Jullundur) Brigade in 3rd (Lahore) Division but were in France from Sept 1914, and seem to have remained in that Division throughout the war, but did not return to India.

 

Seems there are two websites for research into the manchesters:

 

http://www.themanchesters.org/garr batt.htm

 

http://www.themanchesters1914-18.org/regimental-history.php

 

This last one says 22 men of the 1st Garrison Bn died in WW1.  Its possible that 19 of them are the men of the Manchesters listed on the Madras 1914-1918 Memorial, which features in the CWGC record of James Duffy !st Garrison Bn, Manchester Regt, died 27.6.1918 and buried at Cawnpore Cantonment.

https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1465546/duffy,-james-patrick-j./

 

Regimental Archives of The Manchesters are at Tameside Archives & I think a saw a book listed which covered casualties of all the Battalions.

 

 

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travers61

 

Lets hope we can find this man, as he seems a candidate for rememberence at CWGC via In From The Cold & one of the many that slipped through the net post war.

 

As others have said the article implies that he was in the Army Reserve & mobilised/called up from there in August 1914.

 

He is not at 54 Hope Street, Rochdale in the 1911 Census.  On that date it is occupied by:

 

Denis MULCAHY head age 28 labourer in Iron Foundry born Co Tip. Ireland

Ellen MULCAHY wife age 23 a ring spinner, born Edinburgh

john ANDERSON father-in-law age 55 tailor Journeyman born Edinburgh

 

The newspaper article fits with the 2nd (Regular) Bn Manchesters record rather than the 1st Bn, which did not arrive in France until late Sept 1914.

 

2nd Manchesters:  August 1914 : at the Curragh. Part of 14th Brigade in 5th Division.   17 August 1914 ; landed at Le Havre.   30 December 1915 : moved with the Brigade to 32nd Division.

 

There is also a recently complied Roll of honour at Rochdale:

https://link4life.org/news/494-roll-of-honour-remembers-our-fallen-heroes

 

Some Indian Cemetery records are on the Family in British India Society website & hopefully a possible burial at/near Fyzabad is listed there.

https://www.fibis.org

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ss002d6252
1 hour ago, travers61 said:

 

He is not at 54 Hope Street, Rochdale in the 1911 Census.  On that date it is occupied by:

That would certainly fit with the time-line of him still being in the army so it's perhaps another point in the article's favour.


Craig

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HolymoleyRE

Not saying this man is a shoe in but his trajectory from birth to death is a little odd..but has some parallels. His birth year appears to vary from 1878 to 1886 born in Bacup, not too far from Rochdale I believe.  He uses an 1883 YoB to enlist into the Manchester Regiment in 1901, he serves for nearly 13 years and has regular service with the 2nd Battalion. 

Discharged in 1913, he marries Sarah Anderson in August 1914, and also mobilises into the East Lancs in 1914 YoB 1886 but only sees service at home briefly before being discharged, his pension records have official correspondence appearing to ascertain his whereabouts to issue his an Armlet... 

 

He next pops up in 1917 on a burial record for August 1917...YoB 1878???

 

I have only done an initial backstory, and while there are some similarities/odd coincidences equally there is plenty of contraindications namely his residence and he discharged in 1914.  But thought I would call him out as a man of potential interest... Will do some more digging on him. 

 

 

Regards 

Andy 

Edited by HolymoleyRE

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ss002d6252
9 hours ago, HolymoleyRE said:

Not saying this man is a shoe in but his trajectory from birth to death is a little odd..but has some parallels. His birth year appears to vary from 1878 to 1886 born in Bacup, not too far from Rochdale I believe.  He uses an 1883 YoB to enlist into the Manchester Regiment in 1901, he serves for nearly 13 years and has regular service with the 2nd Battalion. 

Discharged in 1913, he marries Sarah Anderson in August 1914, and also mobilises into the East Lancs in 1914 YoB 1886 but only sees service at home briefly before being discharged, his pension records have official correspondence appearing to ascertain his whereabouts to issue his an Armlet...  

 

He next pops up in 1917 on a burial record for August 1917...YoB 1878???

 

I have only done an initial backstory, and while there are some similarities/odd coincidences equally there is plenty of contraindications namely his residence and he discharged in 1914.  But thought I would call him out as a man of potential interest... Will do some more digging on him. 

 

 

Regards 

Andy 


He does seem to tick a lot of the boxes, certainly worth a look as it's not the first (or last one) where the newspapers have been wrong on some points.


Craig

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corisande
54 minutes ago, ss002d6252 said:

it's not the first (or last one) where the newspapers have been wrong on some points.

 

It is not that the newspaper is a little bit wrong, in that scenario the article would be wrong on every point.

 

The newspaper does say he died in India in 1916. And there is a lot of detailed information on him, his age, where he lived, his enlistment date. It is reasonable to assume that this came from his family and was not a piece of research by a local reporter digging through records. It must have come from his family, presumably his wife

 

The only scenarios that I can see that would make "died in hospital in India 1916" wrong, would be if either:-

  • The army mistakenly informed the wife that her husband had died and he had not, but was still alive and serving in India. I cannot find a retraction anywhere
  • Last saw his family in Feb 1915, went back to the front, and for whatever person reasons, his wife gave a false tale to the local paper, to cover up that he had left her. Article in local paper, and nobody locally questions his disappearance at the end of the war. Men disappearing during the war deserting their families was fairly common

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HolymoleyRE
12 hours ago, corisande said:

The newspaper does say he died in India in 1916. And there is a lot of detailed information on him, his age, where he lived, his enlistment date. It is reasonable to assume that this came from his family and was not a piece of research by a local reporter digging through records. It must have come from his family, presumably his wife

 

Corisande I agree whole heartedly with all of the above, James Hartley Crowther just seemed to have an odd backstory, and a few too close similarities..... perhaps elaborating on his WW1 service and his wife maintaining a cover story for good form...would a body be brought back from India....?? 

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corisande
1 minute ago, HolymoleyRE said:

perhaps elaborating on his WW1 service and his wife maintaining a cover story for good form...would a body be brought back from India....?? 

 

I would assume that burials in India were covered by the same rules as in France, that is the bodies never came home, but were buried close to where they died.

 

I feel that if Crowther really had died in an Indian Hospital, then there would be a CWGC entry. Or at least some Indian death record

 

Unless he resumed a post war life with the same name in say Australia, or indeed Glasgow, then I don't think that we can crack this one

 

One could throw money at it with getting certificates. We have the Hope St address, and the fact that he was married with a child. Getting a wadge of Marriage Certs and Births in Rochdale might strike lucky, and flesh out more clues to try to work on. On the other hand he might not have lived in Hope St when those events took place :-(

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