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Remembered Today:

HELP! - "Gunner" Thomas Edwin Higham - Royal Field Artillery


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Hi guys,


I've recently discovered my 2nd great grand uncle was "Gunner" Thomas Edwin Higham. I know he signed and played for Brighton and Hove Albion as that was where he was posted as a soldier in the Royal Field Artillery. I have been able to find out a great deal about his footballing history but I'm not getting very far with his military history.


I think the card may be his from the war but I'm unsure - all I know is that he was a gunner and served on the western front in the war from his football records. He has a wikipedia page if this helps anyone - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunner_Higham


I would be very grateful if anybody would be able to help me out!


Thanks in advance,




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I’m sure others more qualified than me will reply, but this card is from WW1.

Thomas E Higham, appears to have been in 23rd Brigade RFA, first as a Gunner, then promoted to Bombardier.

Service No .41021.

From this info, you should be able to find a lot more through War diaries, Ancestry etc.

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Welcome to the Forum,


The number 41021 is consistent with someone joining the RFA in January 1906. If he was on a 3/9 term he could sign as a professional in January 1909 as a reservist. This does sit nicely with the Wikipedia entry and his subsequent call up in August 1914.

Edited by David Porter
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Hello Liam, and welcome to the Forum!


Gunner Ingham was one of the original British Expeditionary Force, which went abroad in August 1914. He was in 23 Brigade RFA in 3 Division until the end of 1916, when it became part of a general artillery pool as 23 Army Field Artillery Brigade.


He earned the 1914 Star with Clasp, meaning that he was in France and under fire before 22 November. It is possible, however, that he did not stay with 23 Brigade for the whole war.


The Brigade's War Diaries can be downloaded from the Kew website, www.nationalarchives.gov.uk for about £3.50 each. The references are:

WO 95/1399 Divisional Troops   
WO 95/1399 23 Brigade Royal Field Artillery 1914 Aug. - 1916 Dec.  
WO 95/293 23 Army Field Artillery Brigade 1917 Jan. - 1919 Mar.  

You may need to add a suffix such as /1, /2 etc as there are two or more diaries in each file. If you have access to Ancestry you may be able to get the first one free, but the second will not be on Ancestry yet.


War Diaries rarely mention individuals by name other than officers, but numbers of casualties each day are nearly always given, and the location of the unit, with a short description of its activities, is given on each day.


Good hunting!




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Thanks for the help guys, I really appreciate it!


Been doing some more research and found a newspaper article detailing that a football used in Brighton and Hove Albion match was sent to him at the front. Also looked into the history of the Christmas Truce and a football match was documented between the Royal Field Artillery against "Prussians and Hanovers" near Ypres.


Would there be any way of placing him around the area of Ypres in December 1914? If so, could have been that football that they used, who knows!

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