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Remembered Today:

Lance Corporal Lewis Charlesworth


paul guthrie

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I have been given an Active Service Testament by Andy Fiton who is in the US and spoke at a WFA meeting here. He was co-author of the Machine Gun Corps in Kentucky article which was in our US journal and was on the WFA site and will be again if we get articles back there.

It has inside in pencil Pt. L Charlesworth 2d Manchesters July 28 1915 Rouen.

In SDGW and CWGC I find Lance Corporal Lewis Charlesworth #163, 20th Manchesters, died or maybe it was KIA 8 10 17 age 29 buried Tyne Cot.

Since this man's records probably did not survive and there is no # in the Bible seems hopeless to me but I see forum folk do amazing things. Ideas? Is there something I can ask one of our intrepid PRO visitors to do? Thanks as always.

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Well there is a partial answer in the testament. There is an insert called SUGGESTIONS FOR MEMBERS. On page 4 it instructs you that if you accept Christ as your Saviour to sign your name on the dotted line on the back page. There he wrote L Charlesworth and an address now illegible. The first word in the first line for adress is Wood and in the second line it's Delph, the rest of the word or second word is hopeless.

On the facing page he wrote,

" For God so loved the worle that He gave His only son that Lewis Charlesworth who ...live within him should not persih but have everlasting

LIFE

So I know he was Lewis Charlesworth but do not know if he is the same one who lies in Tyne Cot. Can someone check PRO to try and find out?

Also where were the 20th Manchesters on his day of death October 8, 1917? Thanks a lot.

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Paul ,

20th Manchesters engaged in Battle of Broodseinde with 22nd Brigade, I think.

Delph is 15 miles North East of Manchester. Interestingly , it is only about 4 miles from Oldham which is given by SDGW as the place of residence of our man in Tyne Cot and Ashton where he enlisted is only 6 miles from Delph. His place of birth in Huddersfield is only 12 miles from Delph across the Pennines in Yorkshire.

I would say the circumstantial evidence certainly points to him being the same man.

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Guest Hill 60

Paul - If I remember rightly the 20th Manchesters were in the 22nd Brigade, 7th Division.

They were in the Battle of Broodseinde on the 4th October.

I'm pretty sure this is right, but I haven't got any books with me at the moment.

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Paul,

"163" isn't one of the numbers allocated to the "original" members of the 20th Bn., so he could have been transferred to this Bn. (from the 2nd Mancs.???) at some time before his death.

I notice that CWGC list him as being in "A" Coy. of the 20th. Interestingly, there is a 17042 Pte.J .Charlesworth listed amongst the original members of this battalion, who was in 1 Platoon, also of "A" Coy. (However, the "City Battalions" didn't leave for France until Nov.1915)

Dave.

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F ellows I appreciate the help. Researching a UK soldier is so much harder than Dominion men due to lack of records. I hope someone can take a look at the PRO, next time some one volunteers I will ask.

It may be a while before I am in Ieper again. Can some one get a picture and let me know if there is a personal inscription on the headstone? Thanks.

Is Tyne Cot on the Broodenseide Ridge?

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Yes Tyne cot is on teh Broodseinde Ridge.

I will try and get you a photo before Monday.

KOYLI

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Koyli thanks, I have been there several times and may not need a photo unless it demonstrates an aspect I do not know. Looking at my Holt's map yesterday I was not sure but thought so. Maybe I should have figured it out though since I think it's last ridge before Passchendaele Ridge and clearly cemetery is on a ridge.

With Terry Denham's help I have learned Charlesworth is buried on the top right of the orderly after battle section.

The help one gets on this site is terrific!

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Hi Paul,

Went down to see the grave, and trying out some photo's found it to complicated to give you an idea of the where he's buried. Instead I took a photo of the grave itself.

The personal inscription runs "As we loved him, so we miss him ".

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Nice to know that our ex-butcher's boy born in my wife's home town of Huddersfield rests in Tyne Cot with his struggles over. God bless him.

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Well that sure brought a tear to these old eyes. Many thanks. God bless Lewis and what a nice family inscription on his headstone.

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Nobody seems to have remarked on the fact that CWGC says 'Husband of Edith Charlesworth, of Wood House, Delph, Oldham' - seems pretty conclusive that the owner of the bible and the casualty are the same.

Jock

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Since I first asked about this man June 18 with your help and that of Andy Fitton in Rochdale I have gotten an amazing amount of information. I cannot imagine doing all of this by mail as I did with some men.

New information from a book, name of which I do not yet know, will post that when I do:

He lived on Woodhouse Knowle, Delph, Oldham. Parents lived nearby on Industrial Terrace.

He had six brothers all served, Herbert was POW, will check to see if he died, others lived. Have checked SDGW, he is not there. He had six sons when he was KIA at 29. He was a pre war regular, a reservist in 1914, called up wounded October 1914 with 2d Manchesters. I need an exact date so I can figure out where wounded. He was home with trench fever in 1917.

His church was Wesleyan in Delph. He is on memorial at Pots and Pans, slang for a town I suppose but do not know what town. Well I am editing, now know it's a hill near small town of Mossley 15 miles NNE of Manchester, I have a color picture of a distant view of the hill and memorial, it's a lovely place!

I have a picture of Lewis too. It's in an email and I have no clue how to post it.

He must have surviving relatives if I knew who they are and if they care I would give them the Bible.

Thanks to all!

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The memorial that Paul refers to is on a hill known as "Pots and Pans" It can be found a couple of miles north-east of Mossley, up in the hills east of Manchester. This memorial covers most of the towns in the saddleworth area, if I remember corectly. I have a copy of a book titled Saddleworth 1914-1919, but it's in storage at the moment until we complete a house move soon.

I have a nasty feeling that I am going to be having to walk up that 1500ft hill very soon, I cant believe Paul would let me get away with a long distance shot for very long.

Andy Fitton.

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Yes, Andy and in the pennines even in July the windchill will make it feel like minus 20 !

Paul - there must be relatives around given the number of children he had.

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Ian I have no doubt there are living relatives. The book Andy refers to Saddleworth 1914-1918 is the source of the new inforamtion on Lewis Charlesworth.

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Ian, Wendy and I are going to have a crack at the summit on Saturday afternoon, it shouldn't be too bad, I'll take my oxygen mask just in case. The cold up there will compensate for the heat we encountered in Kentucky a couple of weeks ago.

I am also picking up a copy of the Saddleworth book to send to Paul.

I have to admit that I had not even looked inside the Testament I gave to Paul, just look at me now....moutaineering in West Yorkshire!

Andy.

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Mission completed, the legs are working again, altitude sickess wearing off, photos on a cd and are on their way to America with the book I promised to Paul. If anybody else has an interest in war memorials I can thoroughly recommend a look at this one. The views up there are fantastic, how they got the equipment up there to build this memorial still has me wondering.

I've just heard on the local news that the two missing sherpas have been found......so all's well.

Andy Fitton

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Andy,

Where exactly is this memorial. I will try to visit it , the next time I come up to my in-laws in Huddersfield.

Glad you enjoyed your trip to Kentucky as visiting Professor of MGC History !

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Ian, I got my first view of the memorial from the B6175, Huddersfield Rd, between Greenfield and Mossley, just south of the A635, Ashton to Holmfirth Rd. The best way up to it is via Uppermill, up Church Rd, to the top and turn right at the old graveyard. Its about a mile along this road, keep looking left and up, you cant miss it. Let me know when you are going to see it, I'll be at the bottom of the hill when you come back down!

Bye the way, did you find anything on the man with the unfortunate name from Barnoldswick?

I went America as the world authority on Harry Wellens MM, did I not mention him to you back in Ypres in April? If I didn't, then you are the first Lt Col who I let get away without talking about him.

Yours, L/Cpl Fitton.

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This man reported to Ladysmith Barracks. Where and what was this? This was early August 1914. Thanks. He is mentioned in the book I got from Andy today Saddleworth 1914-1918 on page 16 as well as in the list of those memorialized on Pots and Pans. Anyone know how hill got the name? Sure looks like a pretty place ideal for the memorial.

He and 2d Manchesters then reported to Curragh Camp Ireland where 2d was stationed. Heck, am browsing as I go , this man was at Mons and le Cateau!

Well he is mentioned at least two more times,once when he rescues a wounded comrade, later captured when medical place overrun, again when he is KIA as Bn being releived.

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Am I right in suggesting that Ladysmith barracks got their name from the Manchester regiment's involvment in the Boer war? I have seen all thats left of the barracks, the front gate. It's a mile or so up the Mossley road from Ashton under Lyne. There is a new housing estate right behind it. Quite a coincidence really, its the barracks my grandfather reported to at the outbreak of war. Think about it...they even may have met.

Andy Fitton.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have now finished the story on this fine man. It will appear in our US journal, Camaraderie and on the WFA web site when it's revamped. Boy is it ever moribund! Thanks to Andy, Jock and all of you who participated in this thread, I needed help and got it.

I can email it to you if you want.

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