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Maureen Hurst

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Maureen Hurst

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Can anyone help with identifying the regiment of this young man please. I have done the research on find my past and the national archives and the only possibility is The South Nottinghamshire Hussars but i have no way of knowing if this is the correct person as there is only the medal card available which does not give any personal details.I know he is William Edwin Monks born in Nottingham. This is a local history enquiry, I have a few pictures I need help with. Thank you.

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Steven Broomfield

Do you have his name? Looks like 11H to me - 11th Hussars. I'd expect a South Notts Hussars shoulder title to have a 'Y' above the letters 'SNH' (Y for 'Yeomanry')

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Maureen Hurst

His name was William Edwin Monks  from Nottingham.

Do you know what the crossed swords on his sleeve are and the little square above his pocket?

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)

11th Hussars definitely.  He was a regimental fencing and gymnasia instructor, as marked out by the crossed swords.  His daily work place was the regimental, or more often garrison gymnasium, and he would have been responsible for swordsmanship and physical training, which in those days was based upon a technique called Swedish drill.

 

NB.  (as Michelle mentions below) At that time a soldier of line cavalry joined one of three corps that each represented a group of regiments, the Corps of Dragoons, Corps of Hussars, or Corps of Lancers.  The intent was that although a man joined a particular corps he could be readily cross-posted between any of the regiments within it in the interests of the service.

Edited by FROGSMILE

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Michelle Young

I think but I wait to be corrected, that the crossed swords are swordsmanship proficiency trade badge. The square is a medal ribbon. His medal index card shows Corps of hussars.

Over to the experts.

Michelle 

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Maureen Hurst

Thank you very much for the information, a fencing instructor is not what i was expecting. The Medal Card for William E. MONKS says South Nottinghamshire Hussars Rg. No 833 . corps of Hussars 281946 so it seems very likely from what you say that it is his card. but there doesn't seem to be any other information as to what he did . he susrvived and returned home.

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Maureen Hurst

It says L/Cpl with medals 15 star, British and Victory. he was in Egypt  reentry therein 26/4/15

 

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

Lovely photo Maureen and a good quality scan.  

So clear, I can read his shoulder titles on my phone screen.

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Maureen Hurst

It was scanned on my little Flip Pal

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MaxD

From all that I have been able to see, the South Notts Hussars didn't have the Y on their shoulder title.   The medal ribbon is almost certainly the ribbon of the 1914 or 1914/1915 Star.  The wearer of a crossed swords badge is more usually described as a PT Instructor - no doubt fencing played some part in that back in the day.

 

What you may not know is that some 60% of service records were lost to bombing in WW2 so it is unsurprising that you can find nothing more than the card (there are two award rolls associated).  The date of entry to Egypt was on the way to Gallipoli where the SNH first fought.: Piece here:https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/regiments-and-corps/the-british-yeomanry-regiments-of-1914-1918/nottinghamshire-yeomanry-south-nottinghamshire-hussars/

 

All that said, although the final H on the title is clear, the first letters do not look like S N and could indeed be 11.  There was a William Monks who ended his service in the 11th Hussars, enlisted 1899, this chap looks a bit young.

 

Max

 

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Maureen Hurst

William Edwin Monks was born in 1890

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Maureen Hurst

Thank you I was aware of the burnt papers, but so far when researching something has always turned up if only a portion.

William Edwin Monks was born in 1890

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
39 minutes ago, Maureen Hurst said:

It was scanned on my little Flip Pal

Excellent.

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)

It’s true what Max says that we would think of him as a PT (physical training) instructor, but at that time the language used was different and in the cavalry they combined the responsibility for swordsmanship, which was still taken very seriously at the beginning of WW1 (the true bearing of the medium machine gun not yet appreciated), with the responsibility for physical fitness, associated at that time with so-called Swedish Drill.

 

 

His appointment was one on the regimental headquarters staff and known as “Instructor of Fencing and Gymnasia” (IF&G).  

 

 

In regular units this was a staff sergeant (SSIF&G) or WO (SSMIF&G) appointment, but I imagine that in the Yeomanry it was not necessarily so senior.

 

 

 

3C079488-7480-4B32-AF25-35D04EA83FF2.jpeg

1239D5FA-C292-408F-94D3-AA1972C60D43.jpeg

A 19th-century-exercises Swedish Drill.jpg

Cavalry Sword Drill ii.jpg

 

Edited by FROGSMILE

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MaxD

Value added as always Frogsmile!  (my post was prompted by Maureen's surprise at "not expecting a fencing instructor".

 

Max

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, MaxD said:

Value added as always Frogsmile!  (my post was prompted by Maureen's surprise at "not expecting a fencing instructor".

 

Max

 

Yes max, it's understandable because fencing has such a different connotation now to what it once did, and people often don't fully appreciate the connection with the more robust sounding term - swordsmanship.  You get a good idea of how much effort it all involved and how seriously it was taken, here: https://www.ejmas.com/jnc/jncart_burtonnewsword_0200.htm

Edited by FROGSMILE

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Maureen Hurst

Thank you very much for the fascination information you have provided much more than i had hoped for. I have been looking at the photograph again , both sides and  see that it was dated 18/3/19 which means it was towards the end of his time in the Arm,. it shows him with three stripes which I assume means he was a Sergeant  but the medal card says Lance/C, which I assume was written up after the war was over.

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Maureen Hurst said:

Thank you very much for the fascination information you have provided much more than i had hoped for. I have been looking at the photograph again , both sides and  see that it was dated 18/3/19 which means it was towards the end of his time in the Arm,. it shows him with three stripes which I assume means he was a Sergeant  but the medal card says Lance/C, which I assume was written up after the war was over.


He is wearing a sergeants stripes Maureen, but he might be a ‘Lance Sergeant’, which means a man operating temporarily at a level above that which he is paid for on a permanent basis.  This could be quite complicated and was intended to prevent a man from being promoted too quickly into a rank that had great benefits for pension rights if it was made permanent.  Thus a man might have a substantive rank of Private, or Corporal, but be operating one or two ranks above, wearing the higher insignia and sometimes paid for it too, but always on a temporary basis unless and until his higher rank is made permanent.

Edited by FROGSMILE

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Maureen Hurst

Thank you very much for that explanation.  I have another photograph connected to the same person is it alright to add it onto this conversation ?

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FROGSMILE
1 minute ago, Maureen Hurst said:

Thank you very much for that explanation.  I have another photograph connected to the same person is it alright to add it onto this conversation ?

 

Yes I don't see why not given that the thread title is quite generic.

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Maureen Hurst

This picture was sent by the same young man William Edwin Monks to his sister, i think the postmark says Moulsford  oct 1914.

Has anyone any thought on this. and are either of the young men in the picture likely to be Ted Monks or is it just a general picture. He does say "do you like photo" in the correspondence .

scan0020.jpg

scan0021.jpg

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FROGSMILE
Posted (edited)

I think that's Edwin Monks on the left, and it's unsurprising that he later became an instructor, as he's the only one of the two men meticulously adopting the correct posture for that particular sword exercise (each posture had a name).  The other chap looks distinctly embarrassed, as if he could not imagine himself sticking a sword in anyone (the technique was to thrust and pierce and not to slash).  The background to the photo indicates an annual summer training camp for a yeomanry regiment.  It seems that Monks must have started in the Notts Hussars Yeomanry, a part-time citizen soldier auxiliary unit, but then transferred to the 11th (Prince Albert's Own) Hussars, a regular army regiment, before the end of the war.  In this last photo he wears the insignia of the Notts Hussars, but in the first photo he has the shoulder title of the 11th Hussars, who were a very prestigious regiment with significant social cachet for the officers.

 

9AEA5EE8-D8B9-447E-A391-586DFF63EFC7.jpeg

Edited by FROGSMILE

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MaxD
Posted (edited)

His cap badge is clearly the South Notts Hussars and so is the shoulder title on the man to the right so the medal card (as a Lance Corporal) keeps making more sense.

 

Max

Edited by MaxD

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MaxD

Moulsford is less than a mile in a straight line from South Stoke in Berkshire where the Notts and Derbyshire Mounted Brigade (which included the SNH) were brought together in September 1914 as part of the 2nd Mounted Division.

 

Max

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FROGSMILE
3 minutes ago, MaxD said:

Moulsford is less than a mile in a straight line from South Stoke in Berkshire where the Notts and Derbyshire Mounted Brigade (which included the SNH) were brought together in September 1914 as part of the 2nd Mounted Division.

 

Max

 

I think that is very likely the date and venue Max.

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