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Remembered Today:

Diagrams and codes in field notebook


thomatkinson
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Hi everyone,

I recently discovered my Great Grandfather’s wartime notebook. It contains all sorts of interesting information about his unit’s movements, addresses of friends and family, as well as his pay. It also has two pages (posted below) with curious drawings and what looks like codes or phonetics. 
 

Can anyone shed any light on what these pages might be? For context, here is some information about his unit/role:

Ellis Henley

Private 14699

5 Section 3 Platoon

25th Lab (Labour) Coy

B.E.F.

Thanks in advance for any ideas!

Thom

 

0994AE78-618C-4E2C-A104-154F82ABDDF1.jpeg

575DB4C3-D6B2-4FAA-AD27-C8821600D929.jpeg

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Can't help with the first page, but the second picture is an example of Pitman's shorthand, a system of strokes representing phonetic sounds.  I learned it a great many years ago and still remember some of them.  The strokes for Eff, Vee, Ith, Thee, Ess, Zee, Ish, Zhee were the first we were taught.  Funny the things that stick in your mind.

Edited by 593jones
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Thanks so much for that - I’d never heard of Pitman’s Shorthand! 
 

Looking into this a little, it seems it was used during during WW1. Does anyone have any thoughts on why my Great Grandad might have been using this shorthand? There are no other examples of the shorthand in the notebook but is it likely the Labour Corps we’re using it for military communications? In what sort of context? Any ideas / theories? 

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2 hours ago, thomatkinson said:

is it likely the Labour Corps we’re using it for military communications?

I would have thought highly unlikely or impossible since few people in the chain of command would be proficient in Pitman and it is onl;y transmittable in original hard copy and not by telegraphic means.

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