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Edwin & Reginald Hands, Royal Warwickshire Regiment


Rich Hands
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Recently able to purchase a relatives medals off eBay, and have begun researching, yesterday was able to discover and visit grave if Edwin Hands for first time and pay my respects. Have so information on him but wondered if there are anyone on forum with interest in Royal Warwickshire Regiment who would be able to point me in right direction for more information on the brothers 

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Thanks to Find My Past.

Birmingham Mail 11 May 1916

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Birmingham Daily Gazette 23 May 1916

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Rich,

Welcome to GWF

Hard to tell where you have already looked.

Always worth looking a the Pension Index Cards at the Western Front Association / Fold3 - there are several cards for Edwin and Reginald - with parents' names and addresses etc.

For Edwin: Claim for disability from 10.3.17 [Discharge - matches his MIC which also show enlisted 13.8.15] @12/6 pw from 11.3.17

Sadly one of them further notes for Edwin: Died 27-3-18, Confusional Insanity

:-) M

 

Edit:

Do you know why Edwin was discharged? [beyond 'Sickness' from his MIC?]

It is interesting that the MoP seems to have paid a dependant's P/A allotment only to Edwin's parents but CWGC do not commemorate him. 

Have you his Death Certificate?  Seems likely it could be worth getting and possibly an application for CWGC commemoration may potentially come out of it.

Cause of death only has to start in service - so even with a post-discharge death there would perhaps be a commemorative possibility.

Should you wish - much experience and advice on this should be available from GWF.

Edited by Matlock1418
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Hi Rich,

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

Edwin has some surviving service papers. On Findmypast they are here.

 

According to Birmingham City Battalions 1914-1918 it seems that Reginald served with 11 Platoon,  'A' Company, 16th Battalion.  From his service number it would appear that he probably attested in mid September 1914 on the formation of the Battalion. Surviving papers for some near-ish 16th Bn men show:

 

16/33 Hulbert - attested 19.9.1914/'joined' 16.10.1914

16/40 Goodman - attested 21.9.1914/'joined' 23.10.1914

16/41

16/42 Hubbard - attested 19.9.1914/posted 16th Bn 16.10.1914

 

If you would like an image of his actual resting place, it looks like British War Graves may be able to send you one (on a free of charge basis) - link.

 

There is good advice on how to try to research a soldier here.

 

Regards

Chris

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Oh wow, was not expecting to see photos of them both!!, thank you all for the info I have so far, I will order his death certificate as would be nice for Edwin to be commemorated like his brother. 

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Edwin Hands also has an entry in the Silver War Badge roll, which again shows that he enlisted on 13 August 1915, and was discharged on 10 March 1917 due to sickness, which is again consistent with his claim for a disability pension from that date. Presumably the reason for his discharge is given on one of the missing pages of his service record.

 

Image sourced from Ancestry:

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Edited by Tawhiri
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2 hours ago, clk said:

Edwin has some surviving service papers. On Findmypast they are here.

Nice one Chris.

 

Rich,

From his Service Record it is possible to see that Edwin was quite often sick in France -  including Isolation/observation [treatment?] for Diptheria and Tonsillitis in May 1916

Edwin's return from France seems to have been on the basis of N[ot] Y[et] D[iagnosed] Mental and Dementia entries in his SR in June 1916.

NYD Mental and Dementia also seen respectively in two corresponding Hospital Admission & Discharge Book entries [also on FMP]

Transferred to England by the HS "Austerias", then to Netley Hospital for nine days - 'Stress of campaign'

The SR also has subsequent cause of later discharge from the Lord Derby War Hospital, Warrington, with recommendation for military discharge, as: Confusional Insanity like his original disability pension card.

Interesting that the entries do not suggest 'Shell Shock' or 'Neurasthenia' as a possible alternative diagnosis though there is one entry for 'Shock (Shell)' on the same page as the first HA&DB and four entries for 'Neurasthenia' on the same page of the second HA&DB

Think his SR and war diaries should be evaluated to see if he had potentially/likely been exposed to the trauma of combat and/or shelling etc. with 15 RWR during his time in France.  See: http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7352253 [the relevant 15RWR WD - free to download at present]

[EditFrom SR evidence it is hard to see where Edwin went - he may perhaps have not have got very far beyond Infantry Base Depot and hospitals in France!? :-/]

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Image courtesy of Find My Past - with thanks

Assuming he did not have a prior medical history of such medical and mental condition(s) then it seems hard not to suggest the potential that his military service either aggravated a prior disposition of or caused his condition thus it started during his time in the Army and thus that commemoration is a possibility. 

The fact that his parents' didn't get a dependant's pension may perhaps be read as they had no dependency on him, and thus were ineligible that way, rather than there was necessarily no military cause or liability or other appropriateness for commemoration due to his cause of death condition starting during service.

Under the circumstances of his death it is quite possible his family never thought to enquire if he was eligible for commemoration.

Of course his death could have been from something completely unrelated to the above conditions or his period of service!

The case for CWGC would need to be carefully put together and evaluated further.

We thus await a DC with interest [Only £7 for a basic PDF version or £11 for the full one from the GRO https://www.gro.gov.uk ]

Name:                                   Age at Death (in years):  

HANDS,           EDWIN          24  

GRO Reference: 1918  M Quarter in BIRMINGHAM  Volume 06D  Page 244

A PDF DC can come in as little as four working days and a full one in a couple of weeks or so - our patience now required!

:-) M

Edited by Matlock1418
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I have ordered a death certificate this morning, as soon as I have info I will post, again many thanks to you all for your interest and help 👍it mean a great deal as the more I learn  of Edwins life the more I believe he deserves commemorating and remembering for futures generations just like his brother Reginald

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Edwins death certificate arrived yesterday see attached, did does not mention the confusional insanity that is recorded on his pension card, However I am led to believe that some patient records and other documents are available in Birmingham library relation to the City Asylum, so guess this will be my route of research when they reopen 

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3 hours ago, Rich Hands said:

Edwins death certificate arrived yesterday see attached, did does not mention the confusional insanity that is recorded on his pension card, However I am led to believe that some patient records and other documents are available in Birmingham library relation to the City Asylum, so guess this will be my route of research when they reopen 

Thanks for posting.

Broncho-Pneumonia didn't seem that uncommon generally in 1918 and the influenza/flu pandemic was sadly a growing feature of the period.

That his condition & death occurred after a long period out of service may/does seem to indicate a separation of events and a likely reason for a lack of CWGC commemoration.

That there may be further records is however interesting - and we look forward to a further update.

Good luck.

:-) M

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