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Remembered Today:

Do all soldiers who served in the First World War have Records available?


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researcher55

I am researching the war records of my grandfather, and although joining sites such as Ancestry, cannot find any military record. I know that he served in France at some point as I have an early photographic postcard of him with Carte Poste on the back . 

 

Can anyone help?

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Hi researcher55,

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

This article link may help to explain why there can be some difficulty in researching WW1 soldiers, and this one (link) about how to try to going about it. If you can post an image of the postcard, together with his name, any service details you know (including service number - eg on his medals if you have access to them), genealogy info, where he lived, etc - it may help Pals to dig something out for you.

 

Regards

Chris

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Stebie9173

About 30% of the service records survive - the rest were lost in a firebomb air raid in WW2. About 95% of the medal cards survive - each man who served overseas would have had medals automatically issued (barring a few cases like officers who had to apply).

 

Matching the more common names to the medal records is moredifficult.

 

 

Steve.

 

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Matlock1418

Hi researcher55,

Welcome to GWF.

Ancestry does show up Fold3/WFA pension record card for widows/dependants and disabled soldiers

They can sometimes show other service numbers which help beyond medal records etc,

As has been suggested if you can provide more details I am sure we can have a good hunt for you.

All the best with your quest,

:-) M 

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researcher55

That’s really helpful - thank you. 
I attach 2 photos. My grandfather is the soldier on the right hand side of the photo. 

His name was Harold Jenkins , born in Stoke on Trent. I don’t have any service details - sorry. 
 

 

image.jpg

image.jpg

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Matlock1418
37 minutes ago, researcher55 said:

His name was Harold Jenkins , born in Stoke on Trent. I don’t have any service details - sorry. 
 

Any family details - Mum [maiden name?]/Dad/Wife?

Date of birth?

Place of birth - which of the towns of S-o-T?

Any addresses?  Late war?  1939?

Occupation before/after the war?

It is remarkable how these non-military details can often help - we hope!

:-) M

Edited by Matlock1418
additional questions
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Did he survive the war?

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FMP have a  Harold Jenkins, 805639. 62nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.   B.1894 Barlaston, (S-on-T) Staffs.   

 

  Enlisted. 24/3/1914.   Pte. 2260. 6th South Staffordshire T.F.   Living at 46, Westing? St. Wednesbury, Staffs.

Transferred to North Midland Divisional ammunition Column. 31/10/1914.  No. 313.

 Transferred to 2nd North Midland Brigade, R.F.A. 19/9/1915.  No. 696. - Later renumbered 805639.

 

Edited by GWF1967
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researcher55

Thank everyone for you help so far

 

Sadly, its not the individual suggested  by GWF1967. 

 

More information:  He was born in 1897 and lived in Burslem - Bowden Street,  Stoke on Trent before enlisting.  He survived the War, and lived to be a good age. 

 

Is it likely, given his area of birth , that he would have joined the North Staffs Regiment?

 

 

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Matlock1418
45 minutes ago, researcher55 said:

He was born in 1897

Mother's maiden name?

Had my eye on this previously ...

Name:                                                    Mother's Maiden Surname: 

JENKINS, HAROLD                                 HANCOCK  

GRO Reference: 1897  J Quarter in WOLSTANTON  Volume 06B  Page 145

OK I think Wolstanton might be classed as Newcastle-u-Lyme, but ... only a couple of miles away from Burslem ...

???

 

1911 & 1901 Census for Burslem

Harold Jenkins [born Burslem], son of James and Ann

[Edit: rather looks like him as 17 Bowden St, Burslem on 1911 Census - Anyone found details for him on Absent Voters' Lists 1918 and/or 1919?]

???

45 minutes ago, researcher55 said:

Is it likely, given his area of birth , that he would have joined the North Staffs Regiment?

Possible, possibly likely but not guaranteed.

:-) M

Edited by Matlock1418
1911 census & 1901 & edit
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researcher55

Hi Matlock1418

 

This new information is very exciting  - that is very likely to  be him. Mothers name is indeed Ann Hancock 

 

Does that mean,  from your top line information, that there may be military records available for him?

 

 

 

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Matlock1418
1 hour ago, researcher55 said:

This new information is very exciting  - that is very likely to  be him. Mothers name is indeed Ann Hancock 

 

Does that mean,  from your top line information, that there may be military records available for him?

Didn't mean to raise your hope too high.

I'm afraid not found any records [yet ?]

 

But DoB & place and also having other family names and locations correctly fixed as a start can be a great help in tracking a man - and who knows where this might end?

So we have:

= Son of: James and Ann [nee Hancock] Jenkins

= Born: March-June 1897, Burslem/Stoke on Trent/birth registered Wolstanton Q2

= 1911 address: 17 Bowden St, Burslem

= 1911 occupation: Errand Boy for a Boot Dealer

 

Trying to get some military details to aid [we really need something more robust to get a handle on!] - So, more question(s) for you:

= Another photo(s) of him? - looking for more clues off his uniform/cap etc.

= Any other correspondence?  Or other artefact documents such as a pay book, bible, diary etc.  Or other artefact(s), engraved item(s)? Etc.

= Are any wound(s) known?  - Casualty Lists often gave the home town of a wounded man.  Local newspapers could report on them too [Possibly worth considering looking at British Newspaper Archive and/or Find My Past]  Or illness(es)?

= Any gallantry award(s) known?  - London Gazette quite frequently gave home town.   Local newspapers could report on them too [As above]

= Did he continue serve long after the war? - for some men, born pre-1900 & served c.1921- , service records are still kept by the MoD

= Did he marry? - If so, when? If during the war [or after if still serving] he might have given military details on a Marriage Certificate?  Also a wife might help track a1918 or 1919 Absent Voters' List  - The 1939 Register has a Harold Jenkins b.22 April 1897, a potters turner, married to Elsie, b.30 June 1897, living at 3 Mountford St., Stoke on Trent [in Burslem]. Stoke on Trent marriage index Q3 1924 for gives a potential of Elsie Cooper - Have you seen a Marriage Certificate?  Died/Death Registered in Newcastle u Lyme Oct-Dec qtr 1979.  Do you know if this was him? 

= Any more info???

 

Will keep looking, as I am sure others will.

In hope for you ...

:-) M

 

P.S. [Names from 1911 Census] Have you found anything on his older brothers Job and/or Frederick that might offer a suggestion of anything for Harold?

 

 

Edited by Matlock1418
p.s.
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researcher55

Hi 

 

The information you have is quite correct, and its definitely him. I have managed to get a lot of his history but I lack his military records to complete the picture. 

 

Talking of which - that's  the only picture I have of him during the Great War. I know he was demobbed following cessation . He didn't marry until into the 1920s. 

 

Sadly, he rarely spoke of his experience during the war - as i'm sure many others didn't - and I don't  have any artefacts of his relating to that time. 

 

Sorry I cant be of more help. 

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Matlock1418

 

9 hours ago, researcher55 said:

The information you have is quite correct, and its definitely him.

Sorry not got you any further but such background info might help others here on GWF who are better than me at such sleuthing.

 

Assuming he didn't make an 'error' with his DoB ... 

Looking at his DoB would make him aged 19 in 1916 [which would be the normal age to go overseas if he had volunteered earlier in the war]

If conscripted in 1916 then earliest late 1916, probably likely 1917 going overseas.

So probably just a British War Medal and Victory Medal - not sure that narrows it down much though.

 

If he 'fibbed' or just went out early ... and went earlier with a local regiment like the North Staffordshire Regiment ... then speculatively a LCpl 4015 / Sgt 200958 - would seem a chap to check out further [if you can - I've not done much] - got a 1914-15 trio - landing France 19/8/15.  Disembodied 14/12/18 [details from Medal Rolls & MIC] = ??? a very big maybe ??? 

Edit  For what it is worth: 4011/200958, William Johnson, NSR also landed in France 19/8/15 with 1/5th Battalion [MIC/Roll & CWGC] - and has a 'burnt' Service Record - Enlisted/Attested: 22-1-15, Hanley. Embarked: Southampton. Disembarked: Rouen - seems likely as part of a reinforcement draft at that date.

:-) M

Edited by Matlock1418
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Stebie9173

There is a cap in the picture just not on a man's head - it is to the left of the man on the left as we look, sideways from his right foot.

 

563664768_Capbadge.jpg.dd533bbe2540ae723da533ed2c456001.jpg

 

 

 

Steve.

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

It's hard to tell from this image, but to my eyes, it doesn't look like either  Staffordshire Regiment.

Could be ASC.

A high res scan would be helpful.

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Matlock1418
23 minutes ago, Stebie9173 said:

There is a cap in the picture just not on a man's head

Good spot - Royal Engineers??

:-) M

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Stebie9173

It's consistent with R.E.

 

Also possible for the following Harold Jenkins:

 

Harold Jenkins    North Staffordshire (Prince of Wales's) Regiment    4015, 200958 (the Knot at the top?)

Harold Jenkins    Royal Tank Corps    316820

 

 

Steve.

 

 

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Michelle Young

Sticking my neck out, it's a big badge, how about Glosters? @CorporalPunishment @FROGSMILE

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Matlock1418
6 minutes ago, Stebie9173 said:

Harold Jenkins    North Staffordshire (Prince of Wales's) Regiment    4015, 200958 (the Knot at the top?)

Much as it might seem rather handy I'm not so sure - It's a bit too round to my eye

North Staffs has plumes above its knot and a scroll at the bottom and I think that would especially show.

:-) M

Edited by Matlock1418
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Stebie9173

I have to agree with you there M.

 

Glosters crossed my mind as well Michelle.

 

 

Steve.

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Matlock1418
13 minutes ago, Michelle Young said:

it's a big badge, how about Glosters?

Again I am afraid I am not sure.

I think the the Gloucestershire Regiment cap badge would probably appear more rectangular [in 'landscape'] and the sphinx less rounded at the top

:-) M

 

Edited by Matlock1418
typo
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researcher55

Thanks so much everyone for helping with the identification. I’ll continue to look for any further pictures etc. 

 

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Michelle Young

2562 Harold Jenkins 1/4 Glosters in the MICs

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Matlock1418
4 minutes ago, researcher55 said:

Thanks so much everyone for helping with the identification. I’ll continue to look for any further pictures etc.

Can you, please, scan that cap badge closer and in greater details/higher resolution?

 

On 13/05/2021 at 22:52, researcher55 said:

My grandfather is the soldier on the right hand side of the photo. 

Not wanting to be a bearer of doom - but a cautionary note to all ... The OP's GF is on the right of the photo

The cap on the left could belong to the chap on the left and we don't know anything about him.

:-) M

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