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Postcard addressee


Mick M
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Sorry if this is misplaced.

The recipient of this postcard was a Millie Wells at an address in Birmingham. Sent from a location called Candahar which I believe was a camp in Tidbury.

The only fit I can find is a Millie Wells in 1911, father Frederick Wells 16 Ernest Road (think that's Balsall Heath), who was a boot repairer trader. However the fly is Frederick was conscripted in 1918 to the RAF aged 49.......could he have been working in 1916 in a civilian capacity at Candahar or does the conundrum continue?

 

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13 minutes ago, Mick M said:

Sorry if this is misplaced.

The recipient of this postcard was a Millie Wells at an address in Birmingham. Sent from a location called Candahar which I believe was a camp in Tidbury.

The only fit I can find is a Millie Wells in 1911, father Frederick Wells 16 Ernest Road (think that's Balsall Heath), who was a boot repairer trader. However the fly is Frederick was conscripted in 1918 to the RAF aged 49.......could he have been working in 1916 in a civilian capacity at Candahar or does the conundrum continue

Candahar Barracks at Tidworth, Wiltshire. I have the 2/5th, 2/6th, 2/7th & 2/8th Royal Warwickshire Regiment at Tidworth from February 23 to May 21, 1916 (and the 9th & 10th Royal Warwickshire Regiment at Candahar barracks from March to July 1915), but note that your card is dated  25.10.16. (There are several websites, not least the Long, Long Trail - link at top left- that may give different dates.)

H A R May set up a series of courses at Tidworth, which he described in several chapters in Memoires of the Artists’ Rifles (Howlett & Son, London 1929), pp160-180 and 246-8). He took command of the Officers’ School of Instruction at Candahar Barracks, in late 1916 living in the CO’s house there, and quickly set about designing a new syllabus and timetable, as well as overhauling and cleaning the quarters: grass was cut, paths gravelled, rooms and tables scrubbed. Up-to-date practice trenches were also dug. No barrack room was large enough to accommodate the whole school, so the YMCA was used once a day for lectures.

Among the courses were those for military police sergeants from most parts of the British Empire and the United States, commanding officers of Volunteer regiments, – mostly retired COs of Territorial regiments - and medical officers, many of whom were former civilian general practitioners.

A course in military law aimed to enable its participants to instruct their fellows officers back at their units. One for chaplains introduced them to anti-gas precautions, working in the field, riding and (if required) cycling.

Which is probably too much information!

Certainly there would have been a demand for boot-repairers.

Many images of Candahar Barracks in the 1900s and 1910s are available from Googling.

 

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She was actually called Mildred Wells, aged 8 according to the 1911 Census.

Father was Charles E. Wells, mother Olive, both aged 30 in 1911, all living at that address.

Martin

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2 minutes ago, tootrock said:

She was actually called Mildred Wells, aged 8 according to the 1911 Census.

Father was Charles E. Wells, mother Olive, both aged 30 in 1911, all living at that address.

Martin

Thank you, i tried a few combinations except Mildred!

2 minutes ago, Moonraker said:

Candahar Barracks at Tidworth, Wiltshire. I have the 2/5th, 2/6th, 2/7th & 2/8th Royal Warwickshire Regiment at Tidworth from February 23 to May 21, 1916 (and the 9th & 10th Royal Warwickshire Regiment at Candahar barracks from March to July 1915), but note that your card is dated  25.10.16. (There are several websites, not least the Long, Long Trail - link at top left- that may give different dates.)

H A R May set up a series of courses at Tidworth, which he described in several chapters in Memoires of the Artists’ Rifles (Howlett & Son, London 1929), pp160-180 and 246-8). He took command of the Officers’ School of Instruction at Candahar Barracks, in late 1916 living in the CO’s house there, and quickly set about designing a new syllabus and timetable, as well as overhauling and cleaning the quarters: grass was cut, paths gravelled, rooms and tables scrubbed. Up-to-date practice trenches were also dug. No barrack room was large enough to accommodate the whole school, so the YMCA was used once a day for lectures.

Among the courses were those for military police sergeants from most parts of the British Empire and the United States, commanding officers of Volunteer regiments, – mostly retired COs of Territorial regiments - and medical officers, many of whom were former civilian general practitioners.

A course in military law aimed to enable its participants to instruct their fellows officers back at their units. One for chaplains introduced them to anti-gas precautions, working in the field, riding and (if required) cycling.

Which is probably too much information!

Certainly there would have been a demand for boot-repairers.

Many images of Candahar Barracks in the 1900s and 1910s are available from Googling.

 

Thanks that gives me some reading i had trouble locating Candahar.

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8 minutes ago, tootrock said:

She was actually called Mildred Wells, aged 8 according to the 1911 Census.

Father was Charles E. Wells, mother Olive, both aged 30 in 1911, all living at that address.

Martin

Even a pension file discharged unfit after gas poisoning.....brilliant thank you.

 

Mick.

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Posted (edited)

This chaps attestation is dated 23.9.14 with Royal Warwickshire Reg. He was previously 474 of RWR 4 years expired. By that does he mean his territorial reserve period is expired therefore he is not recalled as a territorial but a volunteer anew?

 

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Edited by Mick M
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47 minutes ago, Mick M said:

This chaps attestation is dated 23.9.14 with Royal Warwickshire Reg. He was previously 474 of RWR 4 years expired. By that does he mean his territorial reserve period is expired therefore he is not recalled as a territorial but a volunteer anew?

I do not believe the above interpretation is accurate:-

But to answer your question yes if a man was a time expired TF soldier and joined a New Army Battalion he was volunteering anew.

In practice what usually happened, as time expired in the TF would be at the earliest 1912, most rejoined their old Battalion in August 1914.  They were not 'recalled' but practicality meant they would prefer to serve with men and officers they knew.  The TF Associations were vying with Kitchener's Army and the regulars for recruits during the entire 'voluntary period.'

As for Pte Wells he enlisted on the 23rd September 1914 in Birmingham into the 16th (Service) Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment and was allocated the number 16/474.

On his attestation form he declared previous service in the 1st Volunteer Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment "1 V B Warwicks 4years expired" .

The Volunteers were disbanded on formation of the TF in 1908 (the last annual camp of the 1 VB Warwicks was 1906). No dates are given by Wells but my guess is he ceased to be active after he married and Mildred came along in 1902. Interesting he married Olive 25.3.02. (00 struck through) and Mildred was born three months later.
 

 

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44 minutes ago, kenf48 said:

I do not believe the above interpretation is accurate:-

But to answer your question yes if a man was a time expired TF soldier and joined a New Army Battalion he was volunteering anew.

In practice what usually happened, as time expired in the TF would be at the earliest 1912, most rejoined their old Battalion in August 1914.  They were not 'recalled' but practicality meant they would prefer to serve with men and officers they knew.  The TF Associations were vying with Kitchener's Army and the regulars for recruits during the entire 'voluntary period.'

As for Pte Wells he enlisted on the 23rd September 1914 in Birmingham into the 16th (Service) Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment and was allocated the number 16/474.

On his attestation form he declared previous service in the 1st Volunteer Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment "1 V B Warwicks 4years expired" .

The Volunteers were disbanded on formation of the TF in 1908 (the last annual camp of the 1 VB Warwicks was 1906). No dates are given by Wells but my guess is he ceased to be active after he married and Mildred came along in 1902. Interesting he married Olive 25.3.02. (00 struck through) and Mildred was born three months later.
 

 

Thank you,

I hadn't heard of this unit, were they numbered separately or collectively with RW reg? I saw a similar number 552 who joined October 1905 but he was a regular Btn (army service numbers blogspot), this would be close enough for a rough idea of his service and fit in with the 1908 reforms.

 

Mick

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37 minutes ago, Mick M said:

I hadn't heard of this unit, were they numbered separately or collectively with RW reg?

I don't know the numbering system for Volunteer Battalions I do know that whatever it was it was not the same as the Regular numbering, as the County Volunteers had a high degree of independence which Haldane's reforms in 1907 were meant to curb (among other objectives).

There is a history of the 1st Volunteer Battalion Warwickshire online

https://archive.org/details/historystvolunt00hartgoog/page/n4/mode/2up

The militia was another unit which was abolished and became the Special Reserve as a result of the Haldane reforms and I do know they numbered separately from the Regulars both as the militia and as the SR. 

In 1908 each TF Battalion numbered separately from '1', depending on local practice. 

Many former Volunteers declined to join the TF when it was created in 1908.  The old Volunteer establishment opposed Haldane's reforms and he ensured the TF County Association were Government funded unlike the Volunteers who depended on subscription and other subsidies.

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1 minute ago, kenf48 said:

I don't know the numbering system for Volunteer Battalions I do know that whatever it was it was not the same as the Regular numbering, as the County Volunteers had a high degree of independence which Haldane's reforms in 1907 were meant to curb (among other objectives).

There is a history of the 1st Volunteer Battalion online

https://archive.org/details/historystvolunt00hartgoog/page/n4/mode/2up

The militia was another unit which was abolished and became the Special Reserve as a result of the Haldane reforms and I do know they numbered separately from the Regulars both as the militia and as the SR. 

In 1908 each TF Battalion numbered separately from '1', depending on local practice. 

Many former Volunteers declined to join the TF when it was created in 1908.  The old Volunteer establishment opposed Haldane's reforms and he ensured the TF County Association were Government funded unlike the Volunteers who depended on subscription and other subsidies.

Many thanks, I'll read on...

Mick.

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Back to young Millie:

Mildred Sarah Olive Wells was born in Birmingham on 25.6.1902,  3 months after Charles Wells married Olive Wilkins.

Charles rejoined the army 23.9.14 and was posted to 16th Btn Royal Warwickshire Reg with whom he had previously spent four years with 1st Birmingham Volunteers prior to 1908. Charles embarked to France on 21.11.15 with The Royal Berkshire Reg and was gassed on 6.5.19. Returning to England as a Casualty he at some stage spent time at Candahar Camp Tidbury from where he wrote to his only child. Charles' military carreer was over he was discharged as unfit, he returned home to Birmingham and eventually his job in insurance.

Millie died in July 1926 aged 24. Charles and Olive subsequently moved to an address in Birmingham a few minutes from where I lived as a boy (small world).

I paid £1 for this postcard in a shop in Hay On Wye a few years ago, like many things thought to be rubbish, but as a moment in our history - priceless.

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15 minutes ago, Mick M said:

... Charles embarked to France on 21.11.15 with The Royal Berkshire Reg and was gassed on 6.5.19. Returning to England as a Casualty he at some stage spent time at Candahar Camp Tidbury from where he wrote to his only child. Charles' military carreer was over he was discharged as unfit, he returned home to Birmingham and eventually his job in insurance.

I'm feeling dozier than usual today, but the attestation paper above says that Charles was a photographer, living in Peckham, London. Your wording suggests that he returned to his job in insurance. Did Charles in fact move back to Birmingham and then make a career for himself in insurance?

My list of regiments based in Wiltshire during the war is far from infallible, but it has no Berkshire infantry battalion at Tidworth during the war (just a yeomanry unit).

I've tried to decipher the annotation to the right of "ATTESTATION OF" but with no luck: "1st ** S*B" ???

What is the illustration on the front of the card? I suspect/fear that it does not show Tidworth - nearly all the cards I have of the barracks have a publisher's imprint on the back. Many cards sent to daughters by serving fathers had sentimental messages and images printed on them.

Looking again at the date, I wonder if I was correct in saying it reads "1916"? Perhaps the last digit is a squashed "8"?

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42 minutes ago, Moonraker said:

I wonder if I was correct in saying it reads "1916"? Perhaps the last digit is a squashed "8"?

Yes, I agree it could be an '8'.

There is the suggestion of a pen stroke that fills the open end of the "6"

There is a postmark smudge and a stain on the card in this area that could have disguised or faded the ink.

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1 hour ago, Mick M said:

... Charles embarked to France on 21.11.15 with The Royal Berkshire Reg and was gassed on 6.5.19...

His medal index card states that his date of entry into "theatre of war first served in [France]" was "23/7/16". (I'm not sure about the "7", not the "3".)

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1 hour ago, Moonraker said:

I'm feeling dozier than usual today, but the attestation paper above says that Charles was a photographer, living in Peckham, London. Your wording suggests that he returned to his job in insurance. Did Charles in fact move back to Birmingham and then make a career for himself in insurance?

My list of regiments based in Wiltshire during the war is far from infallible, but it has no Berkshire infantry battalion at Tidworth during the war (just a yeomanry unit).

I've tried to decipher the annotation to the right of "ATTESTATION OF" but with no luck: "1st ** S*B" ???

What is the illustration on the front of the card? I suspect/fear that it does not show Tidworth - nearly all the cards I have of the barracks have a publisher's imprint on the back. Many cards sent to daughters by serving fathers had sentimental messages and images printed on them.

Looking again at the date, I wonder if I was correct in saying it reads "1916"? Perhaps the last digit is a squashed "8"?

I've taken the info from his demobilisation as unfit papers which does contain his attestation, medical examination and mobilisation records....he joined the 16th Btn Roy. Wark reg but was transferred to the Royal Bershires with whom he embarked to France, (havnt checked their diary yet so whether with the battalion or as a replacement). He was gassed and exacuated to England and during this period before discharge, is the date of the post card. 

His Attestation papers show him a photographer, but all post war records show him an insurance agent....Where he lived I'm guessing he was employed by the Prudential Ins....a large company in that part of Brum...

 

Mick.

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31 minutes ago, Moonraker said:

His medal index card states that his date of entry into "theatre of war first served in [France]" was "23/7/16". (I'm not sure about the "7", not the "3".)

 

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Sorry! I was fumbling around the watermarked version and picked up on the wrong "Wells, Charles Ernest", who was a major.:o

So no clues from the front of the postcard?

 

 

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1 minute ago, Moonraker said:

Sorry! I was fumbling around the watermarked version and picked up on the wrong "Wells, Charles Ernest", who was a major.:o

So no clues from the front of the postcard?

 

 

It's the Royal Warwickshire Reg cap badge goat cap badge on a black background.

 

Mick.

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Ah, thanks. I'm dozier than I thought (tired after a walk yesterday), I see that you included it in your first post.

Vaguely interesting - or not - that in 1916 - or 1918 - Charles opted to send a card showing the badge of his old regiment, rather than his new one.

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3 minutes ago, Moonraker said:

Ah, thanks. I'm dozier than I thought (tired after a walk yesterday), I see that you included it in your first post.

Vaguely interesting - or not - that in 1916 - or 1918 - Charles opted to send a card showing the badge of his old regiment, rather than his new one.

He had served with a militia unit of the RWR at some stage prior to the Haldene reforms, I suspect the choice of card reflects where his heart lay.....I find it odd at this stage that he was transferred. 

Mick.

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But if he was discharged on 24/1/17, then the postcard won't be dated 1918 then?

Edit: Date confirmed by SIlver War Badge Roll.

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
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Transfers from one regiment to another were common,especially as the war progressed. We have several threads about this, including here - which mentions the Warwickshires.

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16 minutes ago, Moonraker said:

Transfers from one regiment to another were common,especially as the war progressed. We have several threads about this, including here - which mentions the Warwickshires.

Thanks

I thought it was more to do at the conscription stage, train with one Reg then posted where the shortages were from an IBD ..more reading...

 

Mick.

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21 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

But if he was discharged on 24/1/17, then the postcard won't be dated 1918 then?

Edit: Date confirmed by SIlver War Badge Roll.

Quote the postcard is dated in 1916.

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To help out those who are feeling dozy, me I'm feeling G & T;

Pte Wells was, on attestation in 1914:-

1. Born in Peckham in the County of London in 1880

2.Living at 70 Newlands Road i.e. the address on the postcard

3. He enlisted in the 16th Battalion (3rd Birmingham) Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the 23rd September 1914 when the Battalion was raised by the Mayor of Birmingham.  He declared previous service in the 1st Volunteer Battalion Royal Warwicks on attestation and stated he was 'time expired'.

4. He landed at Boulogne with the main body of the 16th (S) Bn Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the 21st November 1915

5. He was posted to the Depot strength of the RWR on the 26th May 1916 having been subjected to a gas attack at Arras on 5th May 1916 and repatriated to hospital on the 25th May

6, He was posted to the 1st (Home Service) Garrison Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment on the 2 September 1916 which means his medical category was down graded to "B" or even "C" he was considered no longer fit for active service overseas.   Little is known about this Battalion which was disbanded in December 1917 but presumably they were in the process of being formed at Candahar Camp.  The Wardrobe states they were formed in October 1916.

7. He sent a postcard to his daughter in Birmingham on the 25th October 1916

8. He was discharged from the Army as no longer physically fit for war service on the 24th January 1917

 

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8 minutes ago, kenf48 said:

To help out those who are feeling dozy, me I'm feeling G & T;

Pte Wells was, on attestation in 1914:-

1. Born in Peckham in the County of London in 1880

2.Living at 70 Newlands Road i.e. the address on the postcard

3. He enlisted in the 16th Battalion (3rd Birmingham) Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the 23rd September 1914 when the Battalion was raised by the Mayor of Birmingham.  He declared previous service in the 1st Volunteer Battalion Royal Warwicks on attestation and stated he was 'time expired'.

4. He landed at Boulogne with the main body of the 16th (S) Bn Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the 21st November 1915

5. He was posted to the Depot strength of the RWR on the 26th May 1916 having been subjected to a gas attack at Arras on 5th May 1916 and repatriated to hospital on the 25th May

6, He was posted to the 1st (Home Service) Garrison Battalion Royal Berkshire Regiment on the 2 September 1916 which means his medical category was down graded to "B" or even "C" he was considered no longer fit for active service overseas.   Little is known about this Battalion which was disbanded in December 1917 but presumably they were in the process of being formed at Candahar Camp.  The Wardrobe states they were formed in October 1916.

7. He sent a postcard to his daughter in Birmingham on the 25th October 1916

8. He was discharged from the Army as no longer physically fit for war service on the 24th January 1917

 

Thank you,

That's corrected one of my mistakes as to when he transferred from Roy Warks to Roy Berks....an administrative matter.

 

Mick.

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