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CWGC Grave Registration Report Form


Gus1914
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Years ago I found a Canadian website where all the CWGC Grave Registration Report Forms, Burial Reports, Exhumation Reports etc for certain CWGC cemeteries could be downloaded.  My question is, does anyone know how to download these documents “in bulk” by cemetery please?

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I think you mean the work by the late Richard Laughton. I’m not sure whether his website is still extant. 

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@Gus1914 are you referring to the COG-BR reports like the one attached?  Sometimes assembled into PDF or as individual JPG.  There would have been thousands of them, all well organised.  I think I downloaded them from the late and much missed Richard Laughton web site.  That was some time ago and it appears his web site has now gone (laughton.ca).

I think the CEFSG (Canadian Expeditionary Force Study Group) still has them - it is a massive archive and when I just checked it looked comprehensive and I have successfully downloaded the exhumations at the AIF Burial Ground, Flers.  To go directly to the folders try this link.  Let us all know how you get on as we collectively don't want to lose his legacy.

Cheers, Bill

image.jpeg.37b331ec80b90106bd69c97e35ea95df.jpeg  I donwloaded a few 

image.jpeg

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Thanks all... Jay, it's more how the files were created as the cemeteries I'm interested in, the two St. Sever cemeteries at Rouen aren't part of the work by Mr Laughton... 

 

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There is a fairly straight forward way of downloading a batch of GRRFs or Concentration forms in one go. I then use Irfanview (free) to combine all the jpgs into a pdf file or just use any image program to view the files.

The only fiddly bit is determining the batch of files needed from the CWGC server IE. the jpg filenames.

I could PM tomorrow if you'd like to give it a go?

TEW

 

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4 hours ago, TEW said:

I could PM tomorrow if you'd like to give it a go?

TEW

 

If it's not too much trouble that would be very much appreciated thank you.

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 I would appreciate a copy of your advice on that task as well, as I am slowly setting out to explore original burial locations of men who died in the Salonika campaign.

Keith

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I'll have to put up the full instructions tomorrow, I'd like to double check they've not made any changes or updates that invalidate the instructions.

In the mean time.....

Step One

You need to set up downthemall, which is a browser add-on for Firefox, Chrome or Edge. Downthemall website. Follow instructions. You may need to shut down the browser and re start it but you should then have the downthemall icon top right.

ACapture.JPG.3ff0de4028b2ba915985bfd9da47536a.JPG

The CEFSG Sharing Resource has a page titled 'Making a GRRF or COG-BR Binder'. Last edited 2016 and it is a bit out of date. You do not need to use Chrome AND Firefox nor do you need to view to source code for the CWGC page. The process is now much simpler.

Step Two.

This example is based on Gus1914's ST. SEVER CEMETERY, ROUEN for all the Grave Registration sheets (GRRFS). I don't think there are any concentrations for this cemetery. There are 3097 burials here across 310 pages. So there are going to be a lot of GRRFs, at approx 28 burials per sheet that should equate to 110 GRRFs to download. NB there may well be some burials with two different editions of the same GRRF.

On the CWGC site search for the St. Sever cemetery then follow the FIND THESE CASUALTIES link.

What you need to determine is the filename range for the GRRFs. To do so I change the 'Sort By' from the default Relevance to Date of Death.

That gives 8272 John Barber 6/10/14 as the earliest burial. Click on MORE DETAILS for Barber and scroll down to see the 2 Grave Registration and 2 Headstone details.

The left hand Grave Registration is the required GRRF the right hand one is the cemetery index.

Move the mouse cursor over the left hand panel and the full file path appears. My screenshot seems to remove the mouse cursor!

agrrf1.jpg.1e4ef7d2fd7042e74b182ce688bba91b.jpg

Although this is one of the earliest GRRFs (doc2542460.jpg) it may not be THE first GRRF for St Sever, in order to make sure you capture any before this one I'd adapt the file name to something lower EG. doc2542440.jpg.

You then need the highest file number. Repeat the process above for the last man on page 310 - JOSEPH ARTHUR ROBERT COTE which gives doc2542593.jpg. Again, I'd add to this number to make sure you capture any after this. In this case go for doc2542610.jpg. This actually captures the first 10 GRRFS for ST. SEVER CEMETERY EXTENSION.

I find it better to capture the extra files as you can then be sure you have all the GRRFs for the relevant cemetery. In this case it also tells Gus1914 that doc2542601.jpg is the first one for the Cemetery Extension, any GRRFS that are not needed can simply be deleted.

Make a note of the two filenames - doc2542440.jpg & doc2542610.jpg which should equate to 170 GRRFs.

Downthemall creates its own folder within your download folder which is where the GRRFs will be. There may be other ways to do this but I'd create a new folder EG. 'St_Sever_GRRF' and move all the downloads to the new folder once they've downloaded having checked the GRRFS are just for St. Sever.

If you have set up downthemall and we now have the relevant file range for St Sever you could try the following.

Click on the downthemall arrow icon top right and select Manager.

Clipboard03.jpg.349b56161fe5549ec216616353836b50.jpg

 

Click on the blue plus sign icon

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This brings up the Download box. The file name range needs to be formatted as in this example, all the files start with 2542 and the range is 440-610. Note the square brackets and colon.

Clipboard05.jpg.eb121b957bb4247bbd4d6d315db01ad4.jpg

Then click on Download and a Batch Download confirmation box appears saying 171 downloads are ready. Click Batch Download and the process begins.

You then see a the download process in action file by file. The red bars with a red X simply mean there are no files of that name and in this case that doc2542454.jpg is the first GRRF for St. Sever. There maybe more red bars within the download which simply mean no such file exists (CWGC filenaming) rather than that download has failed. This also means that despite saying there are 171 downloads there may be less than this. The downloaded GRRFS should then be in your Downloads/downthemall folder which as I said earlier will include an extra 10 GRRFs for the Cemetery Extension.

Clipboard06.jpg.3967eab6fdf2d9bdf0fe4f24ad649bc0.jpg

TEW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, TEW said:

I'll have to put up the full instructions tomorrow, I'd like to double check they've not made any changes or updates that invalidate the instructions.

In the mean time...

Thank you very much for taking the time to write and post that... I followed it and I've just downloaded my first set of documents. Much. much quicker to use than manually downloading the information a single page at a time.  Again, thank you TEW for your much appreciated efforts.

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Glad that all worked out, re-read the post later and wondered if it seemed complicated.

There are other ways to find the range of filenames. As you have  doc2542601.jpg as the first one for the Extension and there are approx 8000 burials you could just add EG. 350 to that number and download that batch and check what's been downloaded.

If it runs over into the next cemetery (alphabetically arranged) just delete the unwanted. If the final download is still for the Extension, adjust the batch number download to capture the next 50.

Once you have the full file path and filename for a GRRF for cemetery X you can paste that link into the address bar and (browser dependant) view the GRRF image, edit the filename and repeat until you get an idea of the range needed.

Once you've done this a few times it all becomes second nature and eventually you get to be able to estimate the range of filenames based on the number of burials for the cemetery. Some may only have 20 GRRFs.

There should also be a way of adjusting the download folder name to EG. Sever_GRRF and the add on should then create that folder within the Downthemall folder. Saves copying them to a new folder. I can do this on my laptop but not the windows desktop so I omitted this yesterday until I figure out why!

Binding the images into a pdf is a personal thing, you could just leave the GRRF .jpgs as they are and use an image viewer. Irfanview (image viewer) can gather all the images together and bind them into a pdf if needed. You do then have the ability to annotate the pdf with comments to perhaps bookmark each plot or start of each row etc. These can then be viewed as an Index. Perhaps of more use with the quantity needed for the Extension.

Irfanview may change the resolution of the images to help with overall file size management, something that may need testing out with a small batch.

Will run through finding concentrations later.

TEW

Edited by TEW
Correction
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Thanks TEW... yes learning how to do the concentrations would be good... As you wrote, there aren't going to be any for the St Sever cemeteries but some of the other cemeteries that interest me will have concentrations... 

 

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Thanks very much. I am on a short holiday in Malta GC at present but will give that a try when I get home later this week. Your help is muçh appreciated and I look forward to trying out this procedure.

Keith

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First, a few additions from yesterday's post.

I said Click on the downthemall arrow icon top right and select Manager.  You can of course just click on Add Download, leads you to the same thing.

Clipboard03.jpg.d260c2b1c52f8ce552029894de27ab39.jpg

You can specify the folder to place all the downloads into as in the example below. Just add the slash/foldername. Ticking the 'Use Once' box means it won't keep that foldername on record which would otherwise be available from the dropdown arrow box (to the left of 'Use Once'). For GRRF or COG purposes you're unlikely to ever need that folder name again and the dropdown arrow box just gets filled with all the foldernames you ever used and you can't remove them.

The 'Sever_GRRF' folder is created automatically.

NB. The default location for the Downthemall folder is in the Windows/Downloads folder but this is only set by your browser settings. You can (or someone else might) alter the default location for all downloads in the browser settings and Downthemall will follow that path and create a downthemall/Sever_GRRF folder in that location. Which as I've found out can take a while to find!

Clipboard01.jpg.e762bf1f5663d9dbdc967f17d0b7657f.jpg

Specifying the range of filenames. Yesterday's example for St Sever was ..................doc2542[440:610].jpg. If the range you're after is EG. doc2134027.jpg to doc2134060.jpg you can format it as either doc21340[27:60].jpg or as doc2134[027:060].jpg, it makes no difference.

TEW

 

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Concentrations.

Again you have to find the details for an individual with a Concentration form. Same method as with GRRFs, find the details, hover the mouse over the concentration form and note the full filename OR right click on the concentration form and select 'Copy Link' and paste it into notepad.

As I've downloaded the COG forms for Dantzig Alley I thought I'd use that as an example. There is no way (I can see) of re-ordering the CWGC results to indicate which is the first or last COG form.

You may want to read the CWGC History for the relevant Cemetery to see if they give a total number of concentrations and/or if the concentrations are in specific plots.

If you look at the CWGC for Dantzig Alley and set the 'Results per page' to 100 you have 16 pages.

Page 1, the first few COG forms. Chalmers is doc2134094.JPG, Doyle is doc2134113.JPG and the first man on page 16 is Povey doc2134052.JPG which gives a range of 61 forms between Povey & Doyle. You could glean more filenames from other records or pages as you really can't tell if Povey doc2134052.JPG is the lowest number.

You have an option at this point, you can try to find the full range of filenames or just take those for Povey and Doyle and subtract/add perhaps 20 to give you a range of doc2134[032:133] download them and see what you've got. If you only have COGs for Dantzig the odds are you don't have the full range. You may need to try again subtracting/adding 50 instead of 20. If you've downloaded COGS for other cemeteries at both ends of the range then you have all the COGS for Dantzig (Sort Of! See Below).

CWGC tend to separate GRRF and COG forms for different cemeteries by leaving a batch of unused filenames so if the download progress bars starts with a block of red bars or ends with a block of red bars it's an indication the successful green bars in between are the required files.

(Sort Of! See Below).

I've just checked other posts on the subject and LDT006 said in March 2021.

Quote

Please note that those documents are sometimes stored in several batches for a given cemetery and that you might need to find another concentration casualty with his document in a different batch.

Checking for as many filenames as possible is recommended. Having worked through those for Dantzig I've discovered that some EG. Balchin 7th man down on page 1 have a completely different filename sequence, his is doc1993925.JPG.

This means you have to repeat the process for a second batch of downloads IE. find the range of the doc199**** files.

My original Dantzig Alley COG downloads run to 100 forms starting doc2134105. Then there is a second batch of 56 COGS starting doc1993923.

No idea why this is, it's just the way CWGC have decided to do it. You can see the time and effort the CEFSG have put into their resource.

TEW

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Thanks again TEW.  You've put a lot of time in to writing this up and I very much appreciate you taking the time to pass your knowledge on.

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TEW,

thanks for this, I have been following this topic but hadn't have much time to reply.

I am probably using an older version (Firefox 56.0), the screen dumps are different and other things also: I am able to enter a path, or browse, to the folder where the downloads should go. But it is basically the same method as I have used since many years.

GRRF forms are "easy" because they are all in one batch, Burial Return sheets can be in several batches as you stated above. The only way to be sure that you have them all is marking the graves from the batch that you found on the cemetery plan. Then check a known casualty in an unmarked grave and you might find another batch. And so on.... it's a lot of work but I did this for cemeteries which were important to me.

Important: Burial Return and Special exhumation report documents with only unknowns are no longer on line since the last update of the CWGC website some years ago. The CEFSG files created by Richard Laughton were made before this update and have those missing documents, so these should be checked first: https://www.mediafire.com/folder/e6csl7gfp5jf8/1._New_Zipped_Files_-_Faster!
 

PS: Can you check this:

On 21/11/2022 at 18:19, TEW said:

My original Dantzig Alley COG downloads run to 100 forms starting doc2134105. Then there is a second batch of 56 COGS starting doc1993923.

I have 156 forms for Dantzig, you probably missed some because you mention:

On 21/11/2022 at 18:19, TEW said:

is Povey doc2134052.JPG

Luc.

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Luc, I'll check tomorrow but I should also have 156 COGs for Dantzig Alley.

By coincidence and another topic I found another batch of about 8 COGs for Dantzig Alley which generally show no body found.

Two are actually in Carnoy & Millencourt, the others on memorials only. The Millencourt man has a COG which is not with his CWGC page.

So, they expected to re-bury these men in Dantzig but found nothing or that they were buried elsewhere, seems a bit odd.

TEW

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