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Regimental Title on headstone


ralphjd
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Might be the wrong place for this but here goes, would a soldier serving with the Army Service Corps being killed WW1 have the inscription Royal Army Service Corps on his headstone ? not given the Royal title until after the war ended. We have one buried in Heywood Cemetery with the RASC badge and Royal Army Service Corps inscribed thereon. Ralph

Edited by ralphjd
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1 hour ago, ralphjd said:

Might be the wrong place for this but here goes, would a soldier serving with the Army Service Corps being killed WW1 have the inscription Royal Army Service Corps on his headstone ? not given the Royal title until after the war ended. We have one buried in Heywood Cemetery with the ASC badge and Royal Army Service Corps inscribed thereon. Ralph

Hi Ralph. Good question and one that I thought to look up. I searched the CWGC site for ASC soldiers which recorded 9473 with dates that appear to be earlier in the war. I then searched for RASC and the records listed 3256 men with dates later in the conflict.... so in short site had both and it appears they did differentiate depending on what date the soldier was killed and whether the ASC had become RASC at that point. I could be wrong but a brief look seems to suggest that. 

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It's a similar situation to Privates in the Brigade of Guards who became Guardsman a few years after the War.  Those buried under these RASC headstones or with their rank changed to 'GDSM' served and died with no knowledge of these late War/post War changes.  It's a CWGC anomaly.  It seems to occur more when headstones have been replaced at a later date (eg Posen > West Berlin consolidation).

Edited by TullochArd
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the ASC were prefixed R in 1918 so maybe either he died after the new designation or as we would say now, a typo error.

could have been a ASC death but headstone added after 1918 , the stonemasons using the new format

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He died in hospital at home on the 29th March 1917 after surgery. Personally I think his headstone is incorrect imho.

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My understanding is that after the end of the war several of the newly Royal titled regiments (including the RASC) wished to make their mark as such, thus when the IWGC/CWGC stones were approved the newer title/badge was adopted even for casualties that never served under it. This was the prevailing attitude at the time, but in more recent years this has been changed and the newer headstones show the title/badge appropriate to that a casualty served under.

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On 08/11/2022 at 20:52, ralphjd said:

We have one buried in Heywood Cemetery with the RASC badge and Royal Army Service Corps inscribed thereon. Ralph

Although Heywood, Rochdale is not far from me Ralph I've not been there. That said, the CWGC records show me that there are four Great War ASC/RASC burials there.  Livsey (Aug 1919) would fit the RASC criteria and his grave reads as such.  I agree with you that the other three, Turner (Nov 1915), Shepherd (Mar 1917 and Butterworth (Aug 1917) should all fit the ASC criteria. 

You have pointed out that Shepherd has an RASC headstone ....... any idea if Turner and Butterworth have ASC or RASC headstones? 

The 41 headstones in Heywood were put in place probably in the late 20's or 30's as a single site contract so I would expect them to be all the same for these four - RASC. Of the four I could only find Butterworth's MIC and that was similarly emblazoned RASC for his 15 Star, BWM and BVM.  It would be interesting to see if this post War change actually made it onto similar ASC casualty medals. 

 

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Thanks for your input, I think you mean Butterfield not Butterworth and no photo for him (Butterworth was a Lancs Fusilier). I have contacted Mick at the BWGPP and he has come up with several anomalies  as ours some with Royal pre 1918 and some without. Wonder if the CWGC could give an answer -  will ask but wont hold my breath.

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19 hours ago, TullochArd said:

You have pointed out that Shepherd has an RASC headstone ....... any idea if Turner and Butterworth have ASC or RASC headstones? 

Butterworth Butterfield it is. Turner (Nov 1915) also has an RASC headstone. 

Turner.jpeg

Edited by TullochArd
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On 09/11/2022 at 18:12, Andrew Upton said:

My understanding is that after the end of the war several of the newly Royal titled regiments (including the RASC) wished to make their mark as such, thus when the IWGC/CWGC stones were approved the newer title/badge was adopted even for casualties that never served under it. This was the prevailing attitude at the time, but in more recent years this has been changed and the newer headstones show the title/badge appropriate to that a casualty served under.

I agree - I too think this was the case for many ASC, and for AVC and AOC as well - since they only become 'Royal' post-Nov. 1918

And of course RAF has commonly long been used at CWGC for many pre-1 April 1918 RFC casualties.

All seem to now be slowly changing, typically as headstones need replacement.

So now RASC is not always chiselled in stone [notice the change in design to match the relevant change in cap badges]

 image.jpeg.d0928c5b948dd497807fcad048b1a7bf.jpeg        image.jpeg.4dcbf1a25832f571af3ae7295d0453ea.jpeg

A recent limestone headstone I think.                           A portland headstone I think. [I'm less sure of its age but it has little weathering].

I think both have little weathering and that they are probably machine-engraved - so probably neither example is from the immediate post-war period - but I could be wrong!

M

Edit: I would also comment that it seemed often prevalent for MoP Pension cards to use a 'Royal' pre-fix for ASC, AVC and AOC [incl. for pre-Nov 1918 deaths and for those who had left long before Nov. 1918 and then died later]

Edited by Matlock1418
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Many thanks for all the input from you chaps, very informative, just out of curiosity for a detailed database being formed by my friend for future generations would one suggest that the entry for a ASC soldier pre Royal be listed as 1235 Bloggs Army Service Corps or is this being too pedantic ?

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On 16/11/2022 at 21:52, ralphjd said:

ASC soldier pre Royal be listed as 1235 Bloggs Army Service Corps or is this being too pedantic ?

Not pedantic to me - it seems correct that there should be differentiation between ASC and RASC.

The challenge will be for you to decide on which if they were in both!

At date of death for casualties and last served in for survivers

Well that's my thought(s) on the matter.

M

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M. Thanks. To me it is no question that his and any others on our database that served in any of the pre-royal regiments should have the entry without the Royal, all our men are war dead only - no survivers . Ralph

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2 hours ago, Matlock1418 said:

Not pedantic to me - it seems correct that there should be differentiation between ASC and RASC.

The challenge will be for you to decide on which if they were in both!

At date of death for casualties and last served in for survivers

Well that's my thought(s) on the matter.

M

Ditto

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19 hours ago, TullochArd said:

Ditto

Me also

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The ASC design was never used on original headstones. It only began being used in recent years on replacement ones.     Pete.

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