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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

James McCarthy, unit unknown


Sinabhfuil

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I'm looking at a lad called James McCarthy, who was born on 8 May 1900 in Ballycarbery, Cahirsiveen (variable spellings - Caherciveen, etc). He was serving in Oghlaigh na hÉireann, the National Army, in the 1920s, but the précis of his service adds that he had served in the British Army, without elucidating. 

He must have been young when serving, though I suppose he could have joined as a boy soldier, or joined aged 18 in 1918, or faked his age to join…?

Any help gratefully accepted.

Abstract of service James McCarthy VR7546.pdf

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His local regiment for recruiting purposes would have been the Royal Munster Fusiliers.  As there was no conscription in Ireland men were more likely than in Britain to go to their local regiment, although he could conceivably have joined the artillery, or some other Arm.  However, there was a particular shortage of infantry after 1916 and healthy young men are more likely to have been steered by Ireland based recruiting staff towards their local infantry regiment.  At least that might give you a start point for your search.

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Edited by FROGSMILE
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I can't readily see him in military records but there are several public trees on Ancestry, unfortunately none have information on him being in the British Army. I don't know if you have seen the attached images (courtesy of Ancestry)

McCarthy 1.jpg

McCarthy 2.jpg

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Wow! I haven't any of that, this is fantastic! Thank you! 

(I'd kind of assumed he was working away and might've joined in England or Scotland.)

Do you know what date that Return of Officers… clipping is from? Oh, wait, it's the National Army not the British Army, so it has to be 1922 or 1923.

Edited by Sinabhfuil
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11 minutes ago, Sinabhfuil said:

Do you know what date that Return of Officers… clipping is from?

The owner of the family tree has it noted as being from 'Ireland, National Army Census, 1922'

This tree also shows that he died in Liverpool on the 19 July 1939 -- link to the tree below if you have access to Ancestry.co.uk

Ancestry Person

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Interesting. His National Army pension record seems only to go up to 1924. Thank you.

I'm thinking of getting a year of Ancestry, but dithering; you have the choice of the UK-flavoured or US-flavoured one - there's no international version, which has stopped me before, since Irish records often concern either/both US or UK. How is it for access to historic newspaper archives?

Edited by Sinabhfuil
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D'oh, of course he left the army in 1924; two-thirds of the army were demobbed at that stage.

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6 hours ago, Sinabhfuil said:

How is it for access to historic newspaper archives?

Ancestry charge newspaper access as an extra above the subscription cost. I find the Find My Past have clearer images of military records and they allow access to newspaper archives as part of the annual premium subscription.

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