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Remembered Today:

Assistance with a RFA Gunner requested.


Gunner 87

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Dear all.

I have helped a new member research her Great Grandfather, Charles Richard Howes, who she understood served with King’s Troop, Royal Horse Artillery in the Great War, was on the Somme and at some point injured, being returned to Orpington Hospital.

I’ve since been informed King’s Troop weren’t a unit during the war which explains the RFA on the Medal Index Card (MIC) mentioned below. @FROGSMILE

I have searched the National Archives and found, what I think, is Charles’ MIC, recording his rank as Gunner, service number, 145861. I cannot conform this is definitely him.

I have also searched Fold3 which has proved fruitless.

Charles was born in Holborn in 1899, living in the Orange Street area before moving to Carter Street.

I am not asking for any search results from alternative subs sites but would very grateful if any of out members would be kind enough to let me know if there is trace elsewhere so Shirley can subscribe and obtain the information. 

As per a normal research request, Shirley is keen to confirm a date of attestation / mobilisation, Battery served, and any details of Charles’s injury or convalescence. I have advised that if the MIC relates to her Grandfather then Charles did not deploy to a Theatre of War until after 31st December 1915.

I have searched the BMF and Token on Shirley’s regarding recovery of the VM and BWM and chances of success.

Shirley resides in France and will admit to being no too tech savvy hence my post on her behalf.

I have attached a photograph of Charles and his Medal Index Card.

Any assistance would be grateful received.

Gunner 87

@ShirleyM
 

6E1ED9FE-424A-4AB9-A121-EA63CE933C07.jpeg

15B06237-2683-4078-ADA1-F129864F2E36.jpeg

Edited by Gunner 87
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A minor point, but to avoid any potential confusion it’s worthwhile noting that there was no “King’s Troop” at that time.  King George VI set up the Riding Troop RHA (as the sole remaining mounted unit) for ceremonial purposes and Queen Elizabeth II renamed it the King’s Troop after her father’s death and in his memory.

NB.  During WW1 the RHA was a subordinate-branch of the RFA and gunners moved to and fro between the two branches as required.  Gunner Charles Howes is shown on his medal index card as being with the RFA.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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3 minutes ago, FROGSMILE said:

A minor point, but to avoid any potential confusion it’s worthwhile noting that there was no “King’s Troop” at that time.  King George VI set up the Riding Troop RHA (as the sole remaining mounted unit) for ceremonial purposes and Queen Elizabeth II renamed it the Kings Troop after her father’s death and in his memory.


i did not know that… and being an ex Gunner, I stand very firmly corrected !! Thank you Frogsmile.

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41 minutes ago, Gunner 87 said:


i did not know that… and being an ex Gunner, I stand very firmly corrected !! Thank you Frogsmile.

Always glad to help where I can.  There were two substantial branches of the artillery at that time.  The RFA with its subordinate RHA and the RGA with its subordinate Mountain Artillery, although the latter did not have quite the same discrete identity and elements of uniform and insignia (i.e. shoulder titles) that the RHA did.  In addition there were administrative elements such as the stand alone ‘Artillery Clerks’ branch, who could be posted anywhere within both, the Royal Regiment’s units, and formation headquarters with integral artillery staff.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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  • Gunner 87 changed the title to Assistance with a RFA Gunner requested.
3 minutes ago, FROGSMILE said:

Always glad to help where I can.  There were two substantial branches of the artillery at that time.  The RFA with its subordinate RHA and the RGA with its subordinate Mountain Artillery, although this latter did not have quite the same discrete identity and elements of insignia (shoulder titles) that the RHA did.  In addition there were administrative elements such as the stand alone ‘Artillery Clerks’ branch who could be posted anywhere within the Royal Regiment and formation headquarters with artillery staffs.

Thank you again … I certainly learned something about my own regiment this evening.

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29 minutes ago, Gunner 87 said:

Thank you again … I certainly learned something about my own regiment this evening.

It’s totally understandable, these things can quickly fade into history, even when they have existed for centuries.  The artillery also had its branch of Armaments Artificers, until it was swallowed up by the AOC in the late 1890s, then resurrected, only to be swallowed up again by REME in 1942.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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From the Rolls I can confirm the MIC you have found is for a Charles Richard Howes. The number 145861 was issued at No 4 Depot RFA, Woolwich, around May 11, 1916. This fits with someone who might be living in the Holborn area.  

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On 18/11/2021 at 09:00, David Porter said:

From the Rolls I can confirm the MIC you have found is for a Charles Richard Howes. The number 145861 was issued at No 4 Depot RFA, Woolwich, around May 11, 1916. This fits with someone who might be living in the Holborn area.  

David, that’s wonderful, thank you. Are the Rolls on Ancestry or FMP? I will access them once I know which service they are held at. Thank you for your time, it’s appreciated. 

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The Medal Rolls are on Ancestry and sometimes give other names when only initials are on the index card. Since my posting I have discovered that Orange Street was in Southwark.

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41 minutes ago, David Porter said:

The Medal Rolls are on Ancestry and sometimes give other names when only initials are on the index card. Since my posting I have discovered that Orange Street was in Southwark.


Ahhh, now I ‘assumed’, and we know what that means, Orange Street was Holborn. I do think we have the right guy by process of elimination liking at all the other Howes in the RFA. Thank you David.

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Gents.

Some tantalising new evidence regarding Charles’s battery and service.

Thr first image appears to have D Howitzer Battery ….. Brigade, written on it. Could that be ‘Forty’?

Second shows Charles on the right as a lance jack. Can anyone identify the trade badge over the stripe? could it be ‘Drummer’?

Also, am I right in thinking this maybe post war as Charles is wearing the VM and BWM ribbons. The cap appears post war that Charles is wearing.

Lastly, would anyone recognise the location of what could be Charle’s battery photograph?

@FROGSMILE

@ianjonesncl

@ShirleyM

@David Porter

CD2A99CB-26CF-4A93-AC37-8F87601FE1F1.jpeg

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5F1648D4-F901-43D7-A33B-1E6C917C270A.jpeg

Edited by Gunner 87
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It does look like “Forty” Brigade to me, yes.

From the LongLongTrail:

XL Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery

This was a unit of Britain’s pre-war regular army. It is also sometimes shown as 40 Brigade RFA.

History

This brigade was originally comprised of numbers 6, 23 and 49 Batteries RFA and the Brigade Ammunition Column. It was placed under command of the 3rd Division and went to France with it in August 1914.

130 (Howitzer) Battery joined from 30 (Howitzer) Brigade of the same division, on 14 May 1916.”

Edited by FROGSMILE
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3 minutes ago, FROGSMILE said:

It does look like “Forty” Brigade to me, yes.

From the LongLongTrail:

XL Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery

This was a unit of Britain’s pre-war regular army. It is also sometimes shown as 40 Brigade RFA.

History

This brigade was originally comprised of numbers 6, 23 and 49 Batteries RFA and the Brigade Ammunition Column. It was placed under command of the 3rd Division and went to France with it in August 1914.

130 (Howitzer) Battery joined from 30 (Howitzer) Brigade of the same division, on 14 May 1916.”

Thanks Frogsmile. Do you think the cap and medal ribbons suggest a post war photograph and the trade badge ‘Dunmer’?

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The collar dogs on the man on the left made me wonder if the picture was well after the end of the war.

I can tell you that the MOD do have a set of records for a CR Howes whose DOB was 19th February 1898, who continued serving Post-1921.
There are no forenames  and no previous regiment.

Whether this is your man, I can't say:

11005   ADT000279295 File   756010 HOWES CR   1898-02-19 (Edited to correct from 18/02/1898).

756010 may be another  service number.

 

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
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1 minute ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

The collar dogs on the man on the left made me wonder if the picture was well after the end of the war.

I can tell you that the MOD do have a set of records for a CR Howes whose DOB was 18th February 1898, who continued serving Post-1921.
There are no forenames  and no previous regiment.

Whether this is your man, I can't say:

11005   ADT000279295 File   756010 HOWES CR   1898-02-19

756010 may be another  service number.

 

 

1 minute ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

The collar dogs on the man on the left made me wonder if the picture was well after the end of the war.

I can tell you that the MOD do have a set of records for a CR Howes whose DOB was 18th February 1898, who continued serving Post-1921.
There are no forenames  and no previous regiment.

Whether this is your man, I can't say:

11005   ADT000279295 File   756010 HOWES CR   1898-02-19

756010 may be another  service number.

 

Thank you Dai Bach y Sowldiwr, we have Charles date of birth as 19th January 1899 which if you look at your suggestion could be subject to a typo!! 

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I guessed that his DOB was 19/1/1899, as this is the date attached to Charles Richard Howes who died in Bromley in 1972.

If only the year was wrong, you might be able to hope the records might belong to him.

The day is correct but neither  month or year are unfortunately.

There are however, not many CR Howses arount to exclude from the search.

(My typo too, that man was 19/02/1898).

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
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23 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

756010 may be another  service number.

Nice find.

756010 is a re-enlistment number given to the TA in 1924, previous number 145861, as given to the Charles Richard Howes on the Medal Index Card. According to Royal Artillery Attestations on Findmypast he married Ellen on August 1, 1920 and had children Charles, Ellen, Ernest and James between 1921 and 1925. Address is 68 Orange Street, SE1.

 

Edited by David Porter
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14 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

I guessed that his DOB was 19/1/1899, as this is the date attached to Charles Richard Howes who died in Bromley in 1972.

If only the year was wrong, you might be able to hope the records might belong to him.

The day is correct but neither  month or year are unfortunately.

There are however, not many CR Howses arount to exclude from the search.

(My typo too, that man was 19/02/1898).

 

5 minutes ago, David Porter said:

Nice find.

756010 is a re-enlistment number given to the TA in 1924, previous number 145861, as given to the Charles Richard Howes on the Medal Index Card. According to Royal Artillery Attestations on Findmypast he married Ellen on August 1, 1920 and had children Charles, Ellen, Ernest and James between 1921 and 1925. Address is 68 Orange Street, SE1.

 

Thank you guys. That’s really appreciated and has brought us a long way on from where we started. Gunner 87

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55 minutes ago, Gunner 87 said:

Thanks Frogsmile. Do you think the cap and medal ribbons suggest a post war photograph and the trade badge ‘Dunmer’?

The collar badge is the old type pre 1924 (see officer and OR patterns below), and if post war, I’d have expected to see more medal ribbons and other veteran features on the uniform of the Corporal and the fellow with 5-years worth of good conduct badges (inverted stripes).  I’m very intrigued by what is ostensibly a drummers badge, I have never seen one worn by a gunner before.  Perhaps a transferee from the infantry who has retained his badge.  The RA branches generally only wore either, their unique band badge, or the special pattern of Trumpeter badge that they shared with the RE.  I cannot see how a drummer badge could be permitted other than by turning a blind eye, which I don’t believe would happen in a regular gunner unit. 
 

NB.  The Corporal (later retitled Bombardier) is wearing a 1905 SD cap, I’m not so sure of the other two.  The Bombardier (later retitled Lance Bombardier) might be wearing a new specification cap from post war, it’s not entirely clear to me.

324E9010-FAB7-4248-95F5-26E85523475D.jpeg

C72980FB-62AE-4599-870F-F672EC5C75D5.jpeg

Edited by FROGSMILE
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On 18/11/2021 at 00:00, FROGSMILE said:

King George VI set up the Riding Troop RHA (as the sole remaining mounted unit) for ceremonial purposes and Queen Elizabeth II renamed it the King’s Troop after her father’s death and in his memory.

Not quite so, I believe. The King inspected the newly formed Riding Troop just after WW2 and himself altered "Riding" to "King's" when signing the Visitors' Book. Our present Queen did allow the title to be retained because of his special interest in the unit.

The "Royal Horse and Royal Field Artillery" was one of the two separate corps of the RA between 1902 and 1920, the other being the Royal Garrison Artillery. It is not uncommon to find the simple RFA on Medal Index Cards to include members of the RHA.

Ron

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1 hour ago, Ron Clifton said:

Not quite so, I believe. The King inspected the newly formed Riding Troop just after WW2 and himself altered "Riding" to "King's" when signing the Visitors' Book. Our present Queen did allow the title to be retained because of his special interest in the unit.

The "Royal Horse and Royal Field Artillery" was one of the two separate corps of the RA between 1902 and 1920, the other being the Royal Garrison Artillery. It is not uncommon to find the simple RFA on Medal Index Cards to include members of the RHA.

Ron

Yes you’re quite right Ron, I was relying on memory (often fateful) and recalled the involvement of our present Queen, but not the most important first step by her father.  It’s important to get it right so thank you for the useful clarification.

I’m not so sure about the RFA being “separate” from the RHA, unless that was a later change, as the information I’ve seen indicates that the RHA were a subset of the RFA when the Royal Regiment was first divided between Field and Garrison units. My understanding had been that prior to 1899 the Royal Regiment of Artillery was a stand alone arm, but comprising of Field, Horse and Garrison units.  The regiment apparently became so large that it was felt better to divide it into two corps.  The last time I looked the explanation was that the horsed units were in one part, the RFA with smaller RHA under the same overarching system of depots and schools with all the necessary equestrian infrastructure, the majority of it at Woolwich, and the RGA with its smaller division of mountain batteries, thus bringing together the technical expertise of indirect fire, either over the horizon (as in coastal artillery) or over the mountain / high ground as with super heavy and siege artillery.  Much of the transportation was by tractor or, in India, Elephant, with just the small mountain guns using mules.  Depots, schools and infrastructure were initially at Liverpool, Plymouth and Shoeburyness, and equivalent stations in India. 

NB.  I’ll do some double checking and report back.  There used to be quite a good explanation in Wikipedia based on an old, well established encyclopaedia from the turn of the 20th Century, but someone has now amended it.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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7 hours ago, David Porter said:

The Medal Rolls are on Ancestry and sometimes give other names when only initials are on the index card. Since my posting I have discovered that Orange Street was in Southwark.

David. I now have access to Ancestry but having issues finding the Medal Roll. Would you mind sending the link.

***cancel found it, thank you anyway David ***

Edited by Gunner 87
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As an aside 

The 1939 register  has the corresponding date of birth as 19/1/1899

An overlooker munitions

howe.JPG.d318b44289dbb0b33fcee8ef4593f2cf.JPG

Ray

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16 hours ago, Ron Clifton said:

Not quite so, I believe. The King inspected the newly formed Riding Troop just after WW2 and himself altered "Riding" to "King's" when signing the Visitors' Book. Our present Queen did allow the title to be retained because of his special interest in the unit.

The "Royal Horse and Royal Field Artillery" was one of the two separate corps of the RA between 1902 and 1920, the other being the Royal Garrison Artillery. It is not uncommon to find the simple RFA on Medal Index Cards to include members of the RHA.

Ron

As I thought, someone has buggered about with the Wikipedia entry.

The authority for the reorganisation of the Royal Regiment of Artillery was the Royal Warrant of 1899:

A royal warrant provided that from 1 June 1899:

"... the mounted and dismounted branches of the Royal Regiment of Artillery shall be separated into two  corps... to be named respectively

(a) the Royal Horse Artillery and the Royal Field Artillery:

(b) the Royal Garrison Artillery."

The Royal Regiment of Artillery, thenceforth, was divided into four: RA (for the branch tasked with managing ammunition dumps and supply to units in the field); RGA; RFA; and RHA.

NB.  Clearly the RHA were the junior partner to the RFA (in historical longevity) and thus a subordinate element.  The equestrian infrastructure to support them both was singular and dominated by the RFA, not least because the RHA was so much smaller (95 batteries v 21 batteries in 1899).  However, as a mounted arm supporting cavalry the RHA took the right of the line on parade.

A97F759E-E2B1-4CAD-A4AE-8C872C20690E.png

Edited by FROGSMILE
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