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Philip Hughes

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Trying to find out why Sgt J Houston 7/7574Royal Irish Rifles was awarded the bar to MM. Sgt Houston was my great uncle and can any member of the forum advise me on how to find his relatives. Thanks for all your help.

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Hi Philip, Welcome to the GWF!

Let's start from the dates of the listings of his MM & Bar. His MM Index Card off TNA (Ref. WO-372-23-122603 - FREE at present) gives the dates of the London Gazette entries and the unique schedule numbers for each award:

1st MM in LG 19 November 1917, schedule no. 112167. Awards for 3rd Ypres, Passchendaele (Bate & Williamson).

2nd MM in LG 11 February 1919, schedule no. 207157. Awards largely for Battle of Amiens, 8 August- 3 September 1918.

 

Screen Shot 2020-11-23 at 10.51.23.jpg

Edited by Ivor Anderson
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His War & Victory medal roll (off Ancestry) show that he served with several battalions of the RIR during WW1.

The MM index Card shows that he was with the 7th Bn. when he won his first MM, but he was with the 2nd Bn. when he was awarded the second.

You will need to search the war diary of the 7th Bn. for Aug.-Oct. 1917:

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7352872

 and that of the 2nd Bn. from August-October 1918:

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7354021

 

Screen Shot 2020-11-23 at 11.16.33.jpg

Edited by Ivor Anderson
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The 7th Battalion WD for 29 September 1917 records that the battalion was awarded 19 MMs for bravery during operations at Ypres in August 1917:

(TNA ref. WO-95-1975-2).

Some of the others were Sjt. H. Connolly 10659, schedule no. 112170; Cpl. F. T. Drowyn 494, schedule no. 112179; Edward Boothway 41809, schedule no. 112182; Pte. Harry Freeman 41894, schedule no. 112184; Pte. James Freeney 1124, schedule no. 112185; and Pte. E. P. Giffard 4231, schedule no. 112187.

The WD records a major action on 16 August 1917 - 5 officers killed, 5 wounded, 7 missing. 30 ORs killed, 269 wounded or missing.

The 19-11-1917 London Gazette is here: https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/30389/data.pdf

N.B. The 7th RIR was amalgamated with the 2nd RIR on 14 November 1917.

Screen Shot 2020-11-23 at 14.42.27.png

Edited by Ivor Anderson
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  • 2 weeks later...

As mentioned above, he was serving with the 2nd Battalion when he was awarded the bar to his MM.

He does not appear in the battalion history's list of medals awarded, so he may only have been posted to it for a short time.

2nd RIR WD 1917-1919: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7354021

 

Screen Shot 2020-12-04 at 19.35.41.png

Edited by Ivor Anderson
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The 2nd Battalion were in action on 6th September 1918 and suffered significant casualties.

The WD for 24 Sept. records a medal ribbon presentation by the 36th Division GOC:

 

Screen Shot 2020-12-04 at 21.54.49.png

Edited by Ivor Anderson
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