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Remembered Today:

long shot - soldier in India 1917 - 1920


james drury

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Hi All 

This is a very very long shot I know and have very little to go on. 

I have a letter written from a soldiers father to a relative in Australia stating that the son, Arthur Shorthose, was in India in the army from 1917 to 1920. The family were from Notts/ Derbyshire. 

That all I have to go on a name and the dates. 

Has anyone any tips  on what units may  have been in India during these dates  - it might help me narrow down. 

 A very long shot I know but any tips much appreciated. 

:-)

 

 

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There are 3 Arthur Shorthose in the medal rolls, only 1 was awarded just the British War Medal which was the normal entitlement for soldiers who had only served in India - Pte Arthur Shorthose 53280 DLI and later 40045 Yorkshire Regt

Charlie

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52 minutes ago, james drury said:

have a letter written from a soldiers father to a relative in Australia stating that the son, Arthur Shorthose,

 

It would help to know the name of the father and his exact address

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The father was Joseph Belfield Shorthose 

The last family address was

 4 Church Street, Cotmanhay, ilkeston, Derbyshire

 

Thanks for the tips - will have a dig about  :-)

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The 1911 England census has an Arthur Shorthose aged 28, so born 1882/83, living in Ilkeston, Derbyshire. Other family members at the same address include his widowed father Joseph aged 65, siblings Annie and Joseph, along with Joseph junior's wife, Emma, and their child Cora.  The address is as above, 4 Church Street, Ilkeston. Arthur's occupation is given as assistant to head (of household). Joseph senior is a timber and coal merchant, and all three children seem to be employed in the family business in some way.

Edited to add if he is the same Arthur Shorthose living in Ilkeston in the 1939 England and Wales National Register, he was born on 24 August 1882.

The obvious place to look would be the absent voters lists for 1918-1920 to see if he is listed there which may tell you which regiment he was serving with. Others might be able to advise whether the 1918-20 absent voters lists for Derbyshire are still in existence.

The Long Long Trail website shows that the 1st Battalions of both the Durham Light Infantry and the Yorkshire Regiment remained in India for the duration of the war.

Edited by Tawhiri
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32 minutes ago, Tawhiri said:

The Long Long Trail website shows that the 1st battalions of both the Durham Light Infantry and the Yorkshire Regiment remained in India for the duration of the war.

It was the 1st (Garrison) Bn of the Yorkshire Regt not the regular 1st Bn - 2 different Bns.

Charlie 

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18 minutes ago, charlie2 said:

It was the 1st (Garrison) Bn of the Yorkshire Regt not the regular 1st Bn - 2 different Bns.

According to the Long Long Trail, both the regular 1st and the 1st (Garrison) Battalions of the Yorkshire Regiment were stationed in India for the duration of the war, so there are actually two possibilities. Either way, it's consistent with a soldier serving with both the Durham Light Infantry and the Yorkshire Regiment getting just the British War Medal for service in India only. 
 

Quote

 

1st Battalion
August 1914 : in Barian, Punjab, attached to 2nd (Rawalpindi) Division. Remained in India throughout the war. In November 1914, briefly moved to the Delhi Brigade in 7th (Meerut) Divisional Area before going to the Kohat Brigade on the North West Frontier. Took part in Third Afghan War in 1919.

1st Garrison Battalion
Formed in Pontefract in October 1915, then on Christmas Eve 1915 sailed to India where it remained throughout the war. Manned by troops who had been medically rejected for fighting and returned wounded who had been medically downgraded. Known to have been based at Sialkot in 1918.

 

 

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As they say  - Bingo ... this must be the chap .... the address match and its the 1st Yorks with corresponding number to the DLI and YK's

702124066_Screenshot2021-08-05at15_22_16.png.d6dc46ad0cabc4e4697ec31eef475b68.png

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The corresponding British War Medal and Victory Medal roll for the Yorkshire Regiment shows two things. Firstly, Arthur Shorthose was still serving at the time that the roll was compiled in 1919, and secondly, looking at the men around him in the roll, there were at least seven other men from the Durham Light Infantry who transferred to the Yorkshire Regiment at the same time that he did.

Image sourced from Ancestry:

41629_626640_11613-00224.jpg

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16 hours ago, Tawhiri said:

there are actually two possibilities

Sorry my mistake :)

Charlie

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Thanks for all the advice all :-) 

Am I right I think there wouldn’t be a war diary  for either the 1st DLI or 1st York’s ? I had a quick look and couldn’t see anything but was just a fleeting glance. 
 

Also he served with the 1st York’s then the DLI

I read the DLI came back from India in late 1919 arriving Feb 1920 which would tie in with him noted as serving until 1920. 
 

again thank you - I’m learning lots :-) 
 

 

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21 minutes ago, james drury said:

Also he served with the 1st York’s then the DLI

I'd read it as the other way around, served with the DLI first, and then the 1st Yorks. The medal roll I posted is from the 1st Yorks, if he subsequently served with the DLI then his DLI service would not show in the medal roll.

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14 hours ago, james drury said:

Am I right I think there wouldn’t be a war diary  for either the 1st DLI or 1st York’s ? I had a quick look and couldn’t see anything but was just a fleeting glance.

India was not a theatre of war therefore no war diary.

The number 40045 is consistent with the 1st (Garrison )Bn. Yorkshire Regiment.  As pointed out above as he was serving with the Yorkshire Regiment when the Roll was compiled therefore that was his last unit. Close numbers suggest he was posted to that Battalion in India on the 12th June 1917.  They appear to have been posted from the 5th (Reserve) Battalion DLI.

e.g. Service records extant:-

40034 Debbage

40048 Mason

His DLI number is consistent with enlistment February 1917 (his age might help) , on enlistment he was probably placed in medical category B -fit for garrison duty abroad, hence the posting to India and the Garrison Battalion.

 

 

 

 

 

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I managed to find a record for James Martin 53275 in the DLI just 5 away from Arthur, 53280  - they would have had similar service ?

Martin  was also posted to the 1st G B Yorks  13th September 1918  but  has the number 40166 and as opposed to Arthur 40045. 

Frederick Mason, who you kindly noted, with No 40048 just 3 away form Arthur 40045 was posted to the 1st G B Yorks on the 12th June  1917 noted on his service record '1st Yorks Reg Garr Bttn  - arrived in India  - Nowshere  - 12th June 1917. 

all three were posted to the 1st DLI befor the 1st Yorks with Arthur and Mason joining the Yorks in June 1917 and Mason in September 1918. 

is it possible Arthur and mason never actual served with the 1st DLI but were posted straight to the 1st Yorks on arrival in India. 

Hope all that makes sense 

2030453836_Screenshot2021-08-07at17_57_04.png.8cb43f3b25bfd0155c1b974a6c2f5355.png

683833729_Screenshot2021-08-07at17_57_10.png.a8f8152600b64f970755543cb03eee5b.png

 

 

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2 hours ago, james drury said:

is it possible Arthur and mason never actual served with the 1st DLI but were posted straight to the 1st Yorks on arrival in India. 

They are in two different categories, as reflected in the numbers on the Medal Rolls  - again as previously posted from the LLT  'Manned by troops who had been medically rejected for fighting and returned wounded who had been medically downgraded.'

Mason, a Derby Scheme recruit was originally posted to the 1/5 (TF) Battalion DLI in France on 22 September 1916, he served 156 days in France with the BEF. Invalided home after being wounded on 7th November 1916 he was posted to the 5th (Reserve) Bn DLI on 3.1.1917.

From the 5th (Reserve)  Battalion he was posted to the 1st Bn in India on 16 March 1917 which is probably on or around the embarkation date (note when medically examined in 1919 he was in category B (iii)).  On arrival in India on the 12th June 1917 he was posted and renumbered to the 1st (Garrison) Bn Yorkshire Regiment. 

As he served in a theatre of war his medal entitlement was the Victory Medal and BWM.  His DLI numbers were 4855 & 6023.

Arthur enlisted later, his number as previously posted was consistent with enlistment in the DLI was February 1917 and he probably joined the 5th (Reserve) Bn DLI around that time.  The date is also consistent with the Military Service (Review of Exceptions) Act 1917 when less fit men, who has previously avoided military service, were conscripted into the Army.  So you have two men one of whom came in the 'wounded' category and the other in all probability 'medically downgraded', both in the same draft.

As in France on arrival in India men went to a Base Depot, in this case Nowshera and it appears were posted there to the Yorkshire Regiment.  I doubt they ever served with the 1st Battalion DLI though that was the intention when posted in the UK.  Garrison duty in India effectively continued in much the same way as it had before, and after the war, a military presence to guard and protect the interests of Empire.

 

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