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Postcard Question


StormPetrel
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I have been going through a photo album belonging to my grandmother, who was born in what was Czechoslovakia. I believe her father served in WW1, and the photo I have found (attached) seems to support this. However, I am confused that the post mark seems to read "U.K. 11/104 Infant. Batallion". Can anybody please explain this to me? Any help interpreting the uniforms would also be greatly appreciated. 

20210919_163121.jpg

20210919_163149.jpg

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KuK means Kaiserlich und Königlich -- in this case referring to the imperial and royal armed forces of Austria-Hungary.

The round stamp shows the whole abbreviation.

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good morning,

in the photo, they are Austrians.

regards

michel

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Thank you both. Can someone please explain to me why post from the Austro-Hungarian has a British Army postmark on? I have no idea how this mail system worked and it seems strange to me. 

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as knittinganddeath explains.......it's K.u.K. (Kaiserlich und Königlich) not u.K. (United Kingdom) ........ a "K" has gone missing somewhere. 

In 1914 every Austo-Hungarian "Common Army" Regiment had a number, preceded by the letters K.u.K., K.K., or M.KIR and a further title that denoted their Colonel or the district from which they were raised. The majority of K.u.K. IR had as their Colonel a member of the imperial dynasty or of a foreign ruling house, or a prominent individual either living or dead. By 1918 things had changed.  IR 103 and onwards were formed by the Summer of 1918 and comprised of three not the usual four Battalions.  Your ancestors unit IR 104 was one of these new units.  By 1918 IR 104 had a headquarters and three field battalions numbered in Roman numerals I to III - your ancestor served in II Battalion - hence II/104.  The newly raised IR 104 was formed by existing regiments Nr.1-102 handing over one or two battalions. IR 104 was formed from IV/4, and V/4 and IV/84.  So, potentially, your ancestor could have been serving in one of these battalions prior to writing the postcard.  Both IR 4 and IR 84 were Lower Austrian (German) units.

P.S. The date on the postcard "3/VI/17" perhaps suggests this reorganisation had happened rather earlier?

Edited by TullochArd
P.S. added
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9 hours ago, StormPetrel said:

Now I'm more confused than ever! More research needed indeed. Thanks for the insight. 

No drama StormPetrel.  P.M. me if you are confused with anything I posted above. 

The key point is it is not a British Army postmark. 

The situation in the Austro-Hungarian Army in 1918 seems to be the same as in the British Army around that time ....... units were being restructured as manpower problems meant reduced numbers holding the same ground.  In the British Army, in Feb 1918, Brigades reduced from four to three Battalions and in your ancestor's army Regiments (loosly the British equivalent of a brigade) also reduced from four to three Battalions by the of Summer 1918.

Your IR 104 (and other battalions numbered IR 103 onwards) were formed with three Battalions around this time and numbered I, II and III.  These Battalions came from the now surplus IV (and sometimes V) Battalions of IR 1 to 102. Unless your ancestor was a new recruit he might have come frome from Battaliion IV or V of IR 4, or Battalion IV of IR 84 which made up the new IR 104.  

I'd offer that it would be useful to spend a while studying this excellent website:   Austro-Hungarian Land Forces 1848-1918 (austro-hungarian-army.co.uk)  It may also answer your earlier uniform queries.

 

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A most unusual source available on the internet at Austro-Hungarian Military Mail 1914-1918 (austrianphilately.com) which tells us much more.    It explains IR 104 was actually in existance from May 1916 but when your postcard was stamped (I cannot see the stamp date but it is handwritten dated 3/IV/17)  your ancestors Battalion, II/ IR104 was in 13 GbBrig along with IV/IR 104.  I'll leave the rest to you but if he is the fellow with cross under him then it looks as if he was a Gefreiter.  Good luck unravelling this one further. 

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Thank you so much for your help with this, and the link to both sites. I certainly have my work cut out trying to get to grips with it all! 

Judging from later photos in the same album, it is the one with the cross next to him. Thanks again. 

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