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Tom Wilkie, 1st Black Watch


Ian Robertson
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Tom,

Don't get me wrong, I thought Joe Cassell's book was extremely interesting and I'm not really trying to pick holes. I was just wondering how much the sentiment of the time affected his actual memory of the events. The book was written after he had gone to the USA.

That is a great picture and in fact it does sit very well with Tom's collection.

regards

Ian

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  • 3 weeks later...
Hello,

Here is the badge. I will check the Chronicle for info tonight. Do you have any other group photo's of the Black Watch? I am looking for one of a pte who at this time would have the 1911 Durbar medal and QSA. He was at Edinburgh and Aldershot in 1913-14. I've got a small newspaper photo of him, but keep on looking at all battalion photo's to see if i can spot him :blink:

Tom, I do have a 4th Bn title, are you needing a photo. I have an example of the 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 6/7th part of a 4/5th, 2 V RH and HCB titles.

Regards,

Stewart

Interestingly this badge was devised by Baden Powell in 1897 when he was serving with the 5th Dragoon Guards and awarded to cavalry scouts that he had trained. After he became inspector of cavalry it was spread to all cavalry regiments and from around 1905 adopted by all of the Army, becoming increasingly popular in WW1. It was issued in 2 grades, each of 2 styles. The larger badge was First Class and the smaller badge Second Class. The NCO version had a cross at the base and that for troopers/privates did not. However, as the exigencies of the war made supply difficult the badges were soon mixed up and worn inconsistently. He later adopted a similar (but not identical) badge for his Scout Movement.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ian,

I managed to visit Tom's resting place today on the way back from the Somme. I placed a poppy on your behalf and had a drink for him as it may be a wee bit yet before you get across to see him.

I have quite a few pictures that I will email to you.

Aye

Tom McC

I go then, my lass, to win honour and fame;

And if I should chance to come gloriously hame,

I'll bring a heart to thee, with love running o'er,

And then I'll leave thee an' Lochaber no more.

from: Lochaber No More - The Regimental Lament of The Black Watch

post-10175-1203619415.jpg

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Tom,

Very many thanks for taking the trouble to visit Tom Wilkie's grave,the first instance of any one who knew of him visiting his last resting place in the nearly 92 years he has been there. My Grandmother always spoke about visiting her favourite brother grave, but circumstances never allowed it. She would have been deeply touched that you took the trouble to visit On her behalf, and mine, thanks again.

regards

Ian

P.S. when you said that you were off to France I thought that it was just a blind for a jaunt to the Seychelles wi' the Polo shirt cash! :lol:

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Ian,

It was absolutely no bother at all to visit Tom's grave. It was nice to visit Bully Grenay as it appears that no too many people visit the cemetery. I have a Latitude and a Longitude for you to press into a Tom Tom and a map of the area which I can send on to you or share at the next forum meeting. I managed to have a good look around the Neuve Chapelle, Aubers Ridge, Le Touret, Northern Loos area so it was a useful recce as such.

Aye

Tom McC

PS - As your cheque was the only one that I had received, I am saving the '3 weeks in New Zealand' till the rest arrive :D

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Tom,

This thread http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/i...showtopic=90168 was on the forum a few weeks ago.

Tom Wilkie was the first burial in the British Military extension. Some time ago I had a look through the records on the CWGC site for this cemetery. There is no specific regiment predominating with only about 7 BW men in the 600+ graves. Interestingly the oldest soldier buried here is a Canadian private aged, I think, 52!

The cemetry it's self is easily seen on Google Earth.

regards

Ian

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Ian,

Incidentally, killed on the same day, is Pte J G Cameron. He is buried right beside Tom. He is the same age, same battalion (1st Black Watch) and from Dundee

Surname CAMERON

Firstname John

Service Number S/9298

Date Death 30/04/1916

Decoration

Place of birth Dundee

Other 1st Bn.

SNWM roll THE BLACK WATCH (ROYAL HIGHLANDERS)

Rank Pte

Theatre of death F.& F.

Aye

Tom McC

post-10175-1203672816.jpg

post-10175-1203672900.jpg

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Ian,

Incidentally, killed on the same day, is Pte J G Cameron. He is buried right beside Tom. He is the same age, same battalion (1st Black Watch) and from Dundee

Surname CAMERON

Firstname John

Service Number S/9298

Date Death 30/04/1916

Decoration

Place of birth Dundee

Other 1st Bn.

SNWM roll THE BLACK WATCH (ROYAL HIGHLANDERS)

Rank Pte

Theatre of death F.& F.

Aye

Tom McC

Tom,

Check out my signature!

The family story goes that Tom was in the reserve trenches when he was killed by a stray shell. On checking out the bat. diary there is an entry that says that 2 ORs were killed and 5 ORs wounded on this day.These were the only recorded casualties that week. It seems fair to assume that he was killed by a shell burst and that John Cameron was the other unfortunate victim. John Cameron lived at Kingennie by Dundee.

regards

Ian

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Ian & Tom,

He is not on the Monifieth ROH. He is on the Dundee ROH address Murroes Loan, Kingennie. Every time I pass the monument at Murroes I wish I had my camera I will try and get a photo tomorow! The road to hell.........etc :rolleyes: I have my gransons this week-end so a quest may be in order after going swimming.

Tom

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Ian,

As you mentioned in your earlier post, you can see by the proximity of Tom's location to the entrance, that as you stated, he must have been the first burial at the cemetery. It was also interesting to see the original grave marker on your link.

Aye

Tom McC

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  • 3 months later...

Bad News.

I managed to track down Tom's grand nephew , Stewart Wilkie in West Yorkshire. I thought that perhaps his Father may have been given the plaque by my Grandmother and that Stewart would have inherited it. Unfortunately he doesn't have it but says that his father had wondered where it had gone. The upside of this is that I am now in contact withStewart and he is extremely interested in Tom's story. There is one remaining relative with whom the plaque may be. Lindsay Mackie is the grandson of Tom's older sister Lizzie. He emmigrated to Canada in the early 70's and became a partner with KPMG but I have no idea of which city he moved to or even the region. I've had a look at the KPMG web site but he is not mentioned but it's fair to assume he has retired as he will be 64 on his next birthday.

The search for Tom's plaque goes on!

Good News

It looks as if forum member Nicolaiona MAY have identified one of the soldiers in the photographs. In post no 45 the soldier second from the left with his hands on the shoulders of the man in front COULD be Corporal David Goldie, service number 16, KIA 16.06.15. For Nicolaiona's comments see post six on the Black Watch Diary thread http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/i...howtopic=100047 and the thread "Can you help?" http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/i...howtopic=100391

One definite, two probables and one possible identification. Four down; 1024 to go!

regards

Ian

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Ian,

Whilst Stewart is getting a picture of the badge, here is a link to Rank at a glance, which has a drawing of the Scout badge:

http://www.diggerhistory.info/images/rank/Page30.jpg

Also, would you like the readout from the Soldiers Died in the Great War CD? What is interesting about the other two photos is that these soldiers are wearing 'Blue Patrols' [note collar badges and cuffs]. Black Watch often wore this for walking out.

These are excellent photos, it could be worth sending copies to Balhousie Castle (Tom Smyth).

Stewart

Do you have a picture of a 4th Black Watch TF shoulder title please?

T

4

RH

Aye

Tom McC

Tom is this the pic. you`r Looking for . gary.

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Ian,

Thanks for the interesting update and the search goes on: I hope you get there in the end.

Gary,

Thanks for the picture. I notice John Gibb was killed at Buzancy with the 4/5th Black Watch.

Aye

Tom McC

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Hi John Gibb is the G/Grandfather of my wife,born Brechin but moved to Dundee ,her other grandfather was in the 4th bn I`m sure it`s his badge I sent pic of + we have his original hackle,I`m at the moment attempting to post two or three pics of the lads of the 4th & 4/5th but am having an old ding dong with my scanner as they are all too big to post,don`t know what I`m doing Wrong.? Lang may your Lumb reek Gary.

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  • 1 month later...

very good photos, really enjoyed looking at them.

Joe

Forward the 42nd

Thanks for looking at the photos and thanks to Tom McC, Stewart and Grumpy for the information and advice.I have always cherished these photos but up until recently I didn't realise how special they are; because I grew up with them I always assumed that most households would own something similar. It's been a pleasure sharing them with people who appreciate them.As i said Tom I'll certainly contact Balhousie nad offer them copies.
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  • 1 month later...

On Saturday I left a CD containing Tom Wilkie's photos at the Black Watch Museum for the attention of Tom Smyth the archivist.

Mr Smyth has very swiftly written to me with the following information, some of which corroborates facts already known and some which is new to me, especially the date of Tom's attestation. I quote from his letter:

" 2098 Thomas Wilkie.

Attested for the Black Watch, Perth, 1/7/1911, aged 18 years. Posted to the 1st Battalion, Limerick, 1/7/1911.

Depot roll book 1905-14 BRWA 0496

When he went to France with the 1st Battalion in August 1914, he was a lance corporal, serving in D company.

Nominal role, 1 BW, 13/8/1914 BRWA 0180.

Unfortunately he is not listed in the Sergeants' roll for the 1st Battalion. It is defective for the First World War "

I am indebted to Mr Smyth for the information. Crucially it gives the definitive date of his attestation which means that the obituary in the local paper is wrong as it said that he had been with regiment for five and a half years. He had been with them four and three quarter years. More importantly it means that he gave the wrong age on joining. He was only 17 years old having been born on the 11th June 1894 which is confirmed in the Dundee registrar and this would also explain why his age was given as 22 on his grave marker when in fact he was only 21 at the time of his death.

regards

Ian

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Hi Dundeesown

200503 PTE GIBB J was in the wounded lists published in The Scotsman on 28/07/1918

6768 PTE CRUIKSHANKS A was in the wounded lists published in The Scotsman on 15/10/1916

Dont know if you had this.

Regards

Fred

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Good to hear more of his story and I am glad all went well at RHQ on Saturday :D Hope I can make it next time. It would be nice to be able to put faces to names.

Regards,

Stewart

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On Saturday I left a CD containing Tom Wilkie's photos at the Black Watch Museum for the attention of Tom Smyth the archivist.

Mr Smyth has very swiftly written to me with the following information, some of which corroborates facts already known and some which is new to me, especially the date of Tom's attestation. I quote from his letter:

" 2098 Thomas Wilkie.

Attested for the Black Watch, Perth, 1/7/1911, aged 18 years. Posted to the 1st Battalion, Limerick, 1/7/1911.

Depot roll book 1905-14 BRWA 0496

When he went to France with the 1st Battalion in August 1914, he was a lance corporal, serving in D company.

Nominal role, 1 BW, 13/8/1914 BRWA 0180.

Unfortunately he is not listed in the Sergeants' roll for the 1st Battalion. It is defective for the First World War "

I am indebted to Mr Smyth for the information. Crucially it gives the definitive date of his attestation which means that the obituary in the local paper is wrong as it said that he had been with regiment for five and a half years. He had been with them four and three quarter years. More importantly it means that he gave the wrong age on joining. He was only 17 years old having been born on the 11th June 1894 which is confirmed in the Dundee registrar and this would also explain why his age was given as 22 on his grave marker when in fact he was only 21 at the time of his death.

regards

Ian

Ian

History shared is History saved

Tom

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  • 3 weeks later...

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