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GrandsonMichael

Essex Units in the War 1914-1919

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GrandsonMichael

Mike, Owen,

Smashing! :D I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Cheers,

Michael

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Guest Mike Barlow

Hi Owen & Michael

Good news, my grandads medals were still available so after a quick visit to the bank they will be with my dad this week.

It looks like the medals changed hands afew times over the last 18 months or so, so I guess my timing was very lucky.

We still don't know what he did to win his MM but I'll keep looking.

My mums dad also won the MM (Edwin Upton 53558, LG 06/08/1918), he was in the Royal Horse Artillery (Brighton) so I now have 2 grandads to track down!

Thankyou both very very much for your help.

Kind regards

Mike

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owen4256

Mike

Great to hear your happy ending. If you haven't already, try emailing Ian Hook at the Essex Regiment Museum pompadour@chelmsford.gov.uk, he's your best bet for any further info on the MM award

Well done for tracking the medals down

All the best

Owen

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GrandsonMichael

:D Owen, kudos to you for pointing in the right direction!

:lol: Mike, congratulations, you must be well chuffed!

I hope you will be able to trace the M.M.'s.

Cheers,

Michael

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Doug Lewis

Michael

I've today discovered that my Grandads cousin dow 6/10/17 serving with the 13th Btn. I know it's difficult because he died of wounds but could you give me a general idea of where the Btn was and upto around this date. Any information would be gratefully received.

Regards Doug.

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GrandsonMichael

Hi Doug,

If you can provide some additional information like name and perhaps service number, I'll start to dig.

I did have a quick look at Burrows and the War Diary, went back to June 1917, but in the months preceding your Grandfathers cousins death there wasn't all that much action. There is a mention of 2 men being accidentally wounded in August. I'll have to take a good look at the information that I have. So any little piece of information that you might have, will be helpful.

Cheers,

Michael

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Doug Lewis

Michael

His name is Walter John Bailey Pte 41429 formerly 6668 Cambrigeshire Rgt. I've only known about him for a couple of days,so that is all the information I have. Thank you for your help.

Regards Doug

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GrandsonMichael

Hey Doug,

Somehow the date he died (of wounds) doesn't tally.

According to the CWGC and Soldiers died in the Great Wat 1914-19., Part 48., The Essex Regiment., he died 28/04/1917.

Name, service number and battalion are the same. And apparently he didn't die of wounds but was killed in action?

Could you let me know what the source of your information is? I'll check tomorrow.

Cheers,

Michael

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Doug Lewis

Michael

Whoops :unsure: sorry, I found three cousins of my grandad at the same time who were all killed and was looking at the wrong one when I said he died of wounds. My apologies he was in fact killed in action 28/4/17 as you stated.

Regards Doug.

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GrandsonMichael

So what's new? Happens to me all the time. :lol:

I'll do a look up and let you know what information I find.

Cheers,

Michael

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AGWR

Doug,

That would mean that he was almost certainly killed just south of Oppy Wood.

Regards,

AGWR

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Doug Lewis

Thanks Michael :D

Thanks AGWR for the info. Every little helps

Regards Doug

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AGWR

Doug,

I have got the 13th Essex war diary entry for 28/04/1917 somewhere. I'll PM you tomorrow.

Regards,

AHWT

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Doug Lewis

Glyn

Thanks for the link to the other thread. How spooky is that and me being the Adjutant of the South Staffs pals ;)

AGWR

Thank you very much

Regards Doug.

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GrandsonMichael

Hey Doug,

Got you a sort of map from the War Diary of the 13th (!) Canadian Infantry Battalion, April 1917.

post-2017-1170429653.jpg

Cheers,

Michael

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Doug Lewis

Michael

Thank you very much.

Regards Doug.

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paul searing

Hi Michael

Please please please and lots of please's would you look and see if there is any information for my grt uncle his name is Private Henry Edward Searing Number 19562 he was killed on 27th May 1916 but dont know how he died although I plan a trip to Kew I would love so much to get any snippit of information as I am buzzing at the moment.

if you could help I will give you lots of thankyous as well

Kind regards

Paul

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GrandsonMichael
Hi Michael

Please please please and lots of please's would you look and see if there is any information for my grt uncle his name is Private Henry Edward Searing Number 19562 he was killed on 27th May 1916 but dont know how he died although I plan a trip to Kew I would love so much to get any snippit of information as I am buzzing at the moment.

if you could help I will give you lots of thankyous as well

Kind regards

Paul

Hi Paul,

I could have sworn I have already answered your question in this thread.

What's up???

Cheers,

Michael

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chrisrflnet

Hi all.

I'm looking for information on my great grandfather John James Butcher born lived and worked in Chelmsford Essex. Family reports say he served in WW1 in ireland, thats all I have! Looking through the medal records for J ( J ) Butcher I notice one is from the Essex regiment. Did any battalions of the Essex Regiment serve in ireland?

Many thanks

Chris Davies.

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GrandsonMichael

Hi Chris,

Welcome to the Forum.

To my knowledge the 1st & 3rd Battalions The Essex Regiment were the only ones to serve in Ireland, but that was after the end of the war. The 3rd Bn. was stationed in Ireland from May 1919 and the 1st Bn. from the end of August 1919, the men of the 3rd became men of the 1st Bn. from that moment on.

There is more information to be found about this period here & here

Cheers,

Michael.

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owen4256

Chris

The 1/8th (Cyclist) Battalion also served there from February 1918.

Owen

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chrisrflnet

Many thanks for the replies.

Sees to me I need to consult with the family to see if I can find any more details or photo's etc.

Thanks

Chris

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PBI Friday

Hi GrandsonMichael,

If I might take advantage of your kind offer for 'look-ups' on Essex men and possibly add to your own knowledge base with what I have already found out about one of them...

I have been looking into the background of a territorial, 4310 Private Thomas David Davidson, who served with the 1/5th battalion. He was renumbered to 251378 (in 1916 I guess) and KIA aged 24 on 26/03/1917. From the CWGC site it shows that he buried at the Jerusalem memorial, Israel. Soldiers Died show that he was born in Southwark Surrey, enlisted in Woolwich, resided in Canning Town Essex and was KIA Palestine.

It is therefore likely that he was killed during the fighting in the first battle of Gaza and, I am guessing from information gleaned from the London Gazette, that he got a posthumous Menition in Dispatches for his actions around the time of his death. He was gazetted 12/01/1918... a full nine moths after he was killed.

I would like to know more about what the 1/5th were doing around the time of Davidson's death and wonder if there is any mention of their actions in Palestine in regard to the Gaza action. I know specific citations for MiDs are rare, so am not expecting a result in regards to what our man did to justify his Mention. At least, by bringing his name up on the forum those who read this thread can take a few momets to remember him for his sacrifice.

Thanks,

David 'PBI Friday'

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GrandsonMichael

Hi David,

Luck is with us. A mention in both Burrows, Essex Units in the War 1914-1919, Volume 5, page 173 and Lt.-Col. T. Gibbons, D.S.O. With the 1/5th Essex in the East, pages 77 & 78. Not a citation but I do think clearly why he earned the Mention in Despatches.

Pte. Tom Davidson, when his platoon was held up by machine gun fire from a hut on his flank, got the fire of his section on to the loopholes and continued to cover the advance of his platoon and to encourage those around him after being wounded severely himself. He was left on the field and was not among those brought back during the night.

Furthermore, both mention a lot of other soldiers and Gibbons continues with the following, same page.

The above are only a few instances, brought to notice by superiors, of the gallantry and resource shewn by all ranks in this battle. A far greater number will never be recorded.

Curiously Gibbons, at the beginning op page 77, mentioned a list of immediate awards for the actions on March 26th, and then continues to mention why these were awarded. Davidson was not mentioned in this list but is mentioned where Gibson describes the actions that earned the awards mentioned in the list…..it looks as though the M.I.D. of Pte Davidson was added in a later stage.

In Appendix II. Honours and Awards, page 193, under ‘Mentioned in Despatches’, 251378 Pte. T. Davidson.

Interesting note, again from Gibbons (who was wounded on the 26th), an extract from a personal letter to him from Brigadier-General M. Dodington, Commanding 161st Infantry Brigade, dated April 4th, 1917, page 79.

My Dear Gibbons,

You don’t know how delighted I was to get your letter. Yes, Wilson will be retained in command and he is doing so well. The regiment is fit and ready again and when you come back you will find it the same as when you took in into action on the 26th March. I tried to reach Officers and men with my message and I have since been round to each unit and told them the true unvarnished tale of the whole two days. You do not know how I have felt about the Brigade ; the attack on the 26th was absolutely beautiful, such precision, suck drill, and yet such dash. Will you do me a great favour? You will doubtless see a lot of our wounded, both officers and men, while you're away, and if you would give them my message I should be so grateful. My fear is that they should not know that all they did was appreciated. I cannot say enough for the Brigade.

…How I wish I could have seen the wounded myself, but, of course, except those I came across on the field I had no opportunity. What surprised me more than anything else the other day was the resource and skill of the officers, and in very many cases the N.C.O.’s. Some day when you come back (the sooner the better), I will tell you many things that I cannot now. I can tell you, however, that we had the Turks stone cold in Gaza on the night of the 26th and could have bagged the lot if only those higher placed had known as we knew. We had them too on the 27th if only certain action had been taken…..You don’t know how I long to thank you all personally, you and all the others who have worked and helped to make the Brigade what it was the other day, and is still, despite its losses. I trust and hope you and many others will come back soon to us ; we want you all. There was much work done by the Brigade on the two days besides the attack on the Green Hill. Please remember me to all my officers and men, all those you see who fought so well, and who have done so much. When making some recommendations the other day I felt inclined to throw them all out, as how can one select when all did so well? …Come back soon.

Yours sincerely,

M. DODINGTON.

There is a considerable amount of information, general and specific, on the battle of March 26 & 27, 1917. If you PM me an email address I can send you scans of the relevant pages, including photographs of the 1/5th in action.

Cheers,

Michael

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