Jump to content
The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Casualty Clearing Stations Operations Diary


ewanarm68
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi All,

I was going through my records of my great grandfather, Major William Buchan Armstrong, RAMC, last night and found some scanned pages for the operations diary for 15th Casualty Clearing Station where he was posted in 1915. These had been sent to me by someone through the Rootsweb WW1 mailing list many years ago. Unfortunately I have misplaced the original email.

The relevant pages refer to an operation he did on a soldier's head wound which led to him being Mentioned in Despatches and I was wondering if these operations diaries still exist somewhere. I have downloaded the war diary for the 15th CCS but these pages are not war diary pages but seem to have come from an exercise book.

Did the Casualty Clearing Stations have offical operations diaries and are they still available? I have done a search of the TNA Discovery catalogue but was hoping someone with a bit more knowledge or expertise might know more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Any chance of adding a page of the diary?

Without seeing the layout etc. it's difficult to say. It could be a private diary.

CCSs did keep Operations Books EG. No.11 Casualty Clearing Station: Operations

There's no equivalent for 15 CCS.

The only example I have is for Millbank Operations MH106/1792, which is only a list of operations and not a blow by blow account.

1792.jpg.37601e696624145e735113b4031923b4.jpg

Image courtesy of FMP

TEW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am not at home at the moment but will post a page so you can see the layout.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was very kindly sent copies of No 19 CCS Operations List from Oct 1915 to April 1917 and transcribed here:

I attach a typical page

 

Apr 17 Op 23.JPG

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, there sometimes odd things in CCS diary appendices which could get misplaced and end up months out of sync from where they should be.

15 CCS diary has two parts, did you download and check the whole lot?

15 CCS also features in the MH106 medical cards & sheets.

This man runs to 13 pages and has a mention of an operation but not which facility operated.

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C17201607

TEW

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Think I downloaded both parts of the diary but I will certainly check. Thanks 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Think I've just seen the scan on Lives of the Great War. Page 27, GSW IV, 2.

It has the look of an officially issued notebook. I have one somewhere which I can dig out tomorrow for a comparison.

Army Book or Field Message book 213 springs to mind but I can't find such a thing on Google.

I'm sure the one I'm thinking of is gridded like that. It may not have the same ratio height & width.

I don't think it's written by Armstrong so possibly the CO sending this to the DMS of whichever Army 15CCS was in at the time? Another tomorrow task.

It's also sometime after the operation as the man has now been discharged.

Quite an injury though and almost inconceivable recovery.

See within 'Evidence' IWM

https://livesofthefirstworldwar.iwm.org.uk/lifestory/67398

TEW

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, that's the page. I have some others with details of other operations. I too will have a look again tomorrow and see if I can work out anything else

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just trying to find more on the patient.

244 or 2441 L/Cpl. G Mansell is not offering any results.

There is a 2445 L/Cpl. G Manning in casualty lists & medals although his MIC also offers 1445. Oh, and he was commissioned in 1917 which seems unlikely.

Or, 2241 G Mauser on casualty lists (Aug 1915, 2 entries as they can't get his name right) but actually 2241 George W Manser on MIC. At least he has a SWB which would give his date of discharge and therefore help date the p27 entry.

The page has evidence of 'bleedthrough' from carbon paper copying which means what is left is the owner's own copy with another sent elsewhere and probably long lost.

I have similar from my Grandfather's infantry message pads he retained.

TEW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2241 Manser wasn't discharged till Aug 1917 and after he'd been re-numbered to 341112 earlier that year.

The SWB roll gives cause as 'sickness' and that he had not served overseas. This is contradicted by his medal details and a Casualty List. Perhaps they mean under his later number?

Sickness as a cause doesn't surprise me. They may have viewed his cranial through & through as healed while a secondary ailment caused the discharge. Bit of a cop out really but I've seen this before.

As the page 27 note says the patient has been discharged one would think the note is two years after the operation. Or perhaps the writer assumed discharged would be almost immediate.

There is a WFA pension record but for some reason I can't login. That should detail the injury.

TEW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting stuff, partly because it's complicated!!

Firstly, it's not from Field Message Book 153.

153.jpg.bba52f828d04365dc537d4ca7824eb2f.jpg 

I see WBA gets frequent mentions in the 15CCS diary. The diary is actually very good and gives movements, appointments of all levels of staff.

As an example page I'll add this for 26/1/16:

arm2.jpg.b20b53a9af3d679f3de2aff70639d854.jpg

Extracted from WO95/2771/1 TNA

 

WBA arrives 2/9/15 in place of McDonnell. His previous history is complicated as WBA had been the MO of the 9th Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders who were VI Corps troops. For reasons that baffle me this is reported in the ADMS diary of 49th Diary who say he was 'Divisional Reserve'.

arm1.jpg.45e87e5ea5d5fd187d842db51badefde.jpg

Extracted from WO95/2771/1 TNA

15CCS diary says that WBA was to become 'Specialist in Operative Surgery' 3/9/17. This was sanctioned 29/9/15.

He also took over the CO's duties 6/1/16 - 15/1/16.

I'm 95% sure the patient is George William Manser 6/2441 6th Northumberland Fusiliers.

Man.jpg.1580232a157ad7bf51864bee2ef94cf1.jpg

Images sourced from Ancestry & TheGenealogist

I'd suggest this man was wounded early-mid July 1915. That makes things awkward as WBA didn't transfer to 15CCS until 2/9/15. I'm still unsure as to the the date of the cranial operation or the page27 write up.  I can't quite make out all the names of the other parties involved on p27.

I've found Capt. Lyth arriving at the CCS 9/11/15 and Capt. Carson 18/11/15. I've not found Sister Martin or Capt. A G Ford in the dairy. All these parties need to be present at the CCS for the operation. Can you confirm the names?

A cranial through & through GSW undergoing surgery at least four months later is quite something. The note says he was visited by medical officers of the surrounding district (Hazebrouck) who thought .........?? marvellous case.

Are you 100% certain the book is specific to only 15CCS? I'm wondering if any of the medical officers of the surrounding district made notes.

I'd suggest going though the 15CCS diary and check for the presence of Sister Martin, Capt. A G Ford for sometime after 9/11/15 (Lyth's arrival).

As another possibility, there are occasions where a surgical team were sent to another unit, perhaps Martin & Ford were at another CCS or hospital. As the diary is so detailed this should be recorded.

TEW

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As far as I know the pages came from a descendant of Capt A G Ford. I have a photograph of some of the staff which I will upload but there is no identification of who is who. It is a shame that I have lost the original email because I think this gave a bit more detail about the pages and the people involved.

I am trying to build up a timeline of WBA's service in WW1 and have the War Diary for the 9th Argylls and the 15th CCS. He eventually ended up in a hospital at Etaples but I need to confirm which one. Interestingly one of his medals has his rank at Lt Col and I can see that he did have a temporary promotion.

I will dig through what I have and try and firm up the dates a bit more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In your original post you asked if anyone knew if there were any official diaries at TNA. I took it to mean the daily operations carried out. I now feel that wasn't what you meant as my info has been ignored

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Bardess said:

In your original post you asked if anyone knew if there were any official diaries at TNA. I took it to mean the daily operations carried out. I now feel that wasn't what you meant as my info has been ignored

Sorry, your information has not been ignored. I have downloaded the official war diaries for the 15th CCS but the pages I have are a completely different format to official diaries. What I was asking was if they were official records of the daily operations.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can you check the original note. I ask as there is a Private A G Ford 53596 RAMC with the CCS.

A G Ford assisted with the surgery, the note is too pixelated to see but his rank may be dittoed from the line above, or is it?

Having trouble finding a MIC for Capt. A G Ford RAMC.

TEW

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've found Sister Martin.

She was SN Sarah Ellen Martin QAIMNSR. Her dates for 15CCS are 20/3/16 to 21/9/16. That seems a long wait for 2241 Manser's operation (perhaps he's not the man?)

Previous service was with Meerut British GH then a short stint in Abbeville.

Depending on Ford's rank that places all those named at 15CCS from 20/3/16.

TEW

martin.JPG.37316c03de56ab4921f4a55df9536762.JPG

Courtesy of TNA

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, TEW said:

Can you check the original note. I ask as there is a Private A G Ford 53596 RAMC with the CCS.

A G Ford assisted with the surgery, the note is too pixelated to see but his rank may be dittoed from the line above, or is it?

Having trouble finding a MIC for Capt. A G Ford RAMC.

TEW

 

My mistake it was Private A G Ford. This is the photo

 

AGFordwarphoto.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

These are the pages I referred to in my original post

page27.jpg

page36.jpg

page37.jpg

page38.jpg

page39.jpg

page40.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Are these a random selection or a sequence? The casualty lists for patients date across 1915 & 1917. 

Do you know if it's a book or loose pages?

I'm not sure that 'Operations Diary' is the right term, an occasional partial date doesn't match with 'diary' or anything official.

They would have kept an official register for operations which I'm afraid got pulped in the 1970s. The details in your sheets are more extensive.

I suspect they are personal notes or perhaps the CO ordered them to be kept as part of their official history but were not retained for the WO95 diary.

There's still the issue of when they were written, perhaps during a quiet spell and extracted from other records.

Interesting set of documents though.

Can't help wondering how Manser faired after the war.

TEW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think they are a random selection taken from a book because they are pages which mention WBA. I too was frustrated by the lack of complete dates. It does look more like some sort of unofficial record

I am still working on transcribing the 9th Argyll's war diary up to the point when WBA left the regiment and then will start on the 15th CCS.

I too have wondered about how Manser fared after the war.

Edited by ewanarm68
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...