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Looking for help!


Craigellachie
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I am tracing my family tree and looking for any information on a James Burns, date of birth 17th October 1885.

James was a Private in the 3rd Battalion Scottish Rifles, Cameronians.  

 

Any help is much appreciated, thanks Tam

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Welcome Tam,

 

A good rule to follow is to nail down the family tree First with all the biographical details, and then try and fill in the military history.

This is because civil records, and your own family knowledge is far more complete than Great War service records.

If you can supply more details, - residence, marriage, spouse, children, date and place of death , regiment, number, work, plus anecdotal family history etc. etc. you are more likely to get members able to help find supporting evidence.

James Burns isn't that uncommon a name so we need all the information you have to try and find a match for him.

 

Otherwise we will see yet another Ancestry Tree with the wrong person selected, with incorrect information attached in perpetuity.

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Thanks very much for your prompt reply and advice. 

He married Marjory Doherty on 22nd March 1915 and his occupation is given as a housepainter along with Private in The Scottish Rifles. He was 29 years old, so born around 1886 and his address when he married was 275 Coburg Place, Glasgow. 

21 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

Welcome Tam,

 

A good rule to follow is to nail down the family tree First with all the biographical details, and then try and fill in the military history.

This is because civil records, and your own family knowledge is far more complete than Great War service records.

If you can supply more details, - residence, marriage, spouse, children, date and place of death , regiment, number, work, plus anecdotal family history etc. etc. you are more likely to get members able to help find supporting evidence.

James Burns isn't that uncommon a name so we need all the information you have to try and find a match for him.

 

Otherwise we will see yet another Ancestry Tree with the wrong person selected, with incorrect information attached in perpetuity.

 

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Tam,

 

Hi and welcome to the forum.

 

Just to amplify what Dai has said, the more information you can give us the better. The 3rd Battalion was a home service only Battalion. Men serving with it in the Great War would not have received any service medals, so if you have cause to believe he served with that Battalion it would be good to know your sources

 

The majority of other ranks service records were destroyed during the blitz, when bombs fell on the warehouse where they were stored. Much of what remains is fire and water damaged, so finding information can often be a bit of a detective game. A common starting point is the Medal Index Card - literally that, an index card created late 1918\early 1919 to keep track of the issue of medals for men who had served overseas. Looking for James Burns who served with the Scottish Rifles aka the Cameronians, brings up 23 matches. One was an officer so presumably can be ruled out, but there is no duplication caused by the issue of Gallantry Medals, so it would seem there are potentially 22 who served overseas, with the possibilty there could as many who were home service only.

 

Cheers,

Peter

 

Edit: Sorry, just seen we have cross posted.

Edited by PRC
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3 minutes ago, PRC said:

Tam,

 

Hi and welcome to the forum.

 

Just to amplify what Dai has said, the more information you can give us the better. The 3rd Battalion was a home service only Battalion. Men serving with it in the Great War would not have received any service medals, so if you have cause to believe he served with that Battalion it would be good to know your sources

 

The majority of other ranks service records were destroyed during the blitz, when bombs fell on the warehouse where they were stored. Much of what remains is fire and water damaged, so finding information can often be a bit of a detective game. A common starting point is the Medal Index Card - literally that, an index card created late 1918\early 1919 to keep track of the issue of medals for men who had served overseas. Looking for James Burns who served with the Scottish Rifles aka the Cameronians, brings up 23 matches. One was an officer so presumably can be ruled out, but there is no duplication caused by the issue of Gallantry Medals, so it would seem there are potentially 22 who served overseas, with the possibilty there could as many who were home service only.

 

Cheers,

Peter

 

Edit: Sorry, just seen we have cross posted.

Thanks Peter. The only information that I have is on his marriage certificate. Unfortunately, I have nothing much else. Regards Tam

 

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I take it no children born during the period he might have served - fathers' occupation on the birth certificate would show rank and regiment\corps as a minimum and sometimes much more.

 

Where servicemens' records survive they are more likely to reference place of birth in the intial documents, and thats what the genealogy sites tend to pick up on when they do their indexing. Things like home address tend to be buried away in next of kin details or later on in pages relating to discharge. The Medal Index Cards seldom mention home addresses for Other Ranks as the medals were issued fairly automatically - Officers had to apply for their medals, so the MiC's have a correspondence address.

 

Cheers,

Peter

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