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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

You know they were there but ...


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I think that I'm very lucky in that I do have access to my Grandfather's medals and diary and my Great Uncle's medals but even though I have accurate details I still have dificulty finding documents that back up what I already "know". Apart from MICs and the CWGC record for my Great Uncle I've drawn many blanks on finding their names listed elsewhere. I know from the CWGC record that my Great Uncle was KIA in 1918 but can't find any Memorials with his name on in Stoke on Trent where he came from (Busby, EP), or for a WW2 relative either! As for my Grandfather, I hav his diary that states where and when he was a POW along with his numbers, but have not seen him on the lists I've accessed through the sites (Busby, T). I know other members have also very kindly done 'look ups' for me and not found their names either. If it is this dificult to verify 'known information how many gaps and dead ends must members come up against who are searching blind for a relatives history? Does anyone know how much information is missing from our easily accessed archives or am I just unlucky!? <_<

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I do not think that it would be possible to quantify missing information. How would one go about measuring an unknown quantity? We have fairly good estimates of the amount of information that was contained in the Burnt Records but that is all. Individuals were very seldom recorded unless there was something special to record. That is why establishing the unit is so important. We trace the man by tracing the unit and hope that there was no short term transfer which we don't know about.

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Local memorials are not documented backup as they reflect what information a local comittee (is it 2 m' s or 2 t' s?) was given. As for where someone lived ? was it he or the next of kin that lived there? is there a memorial? is it recorded online yet? and so on. So your looking for official sources. Once youve worked your way through CWGC (SDGW) and National archives thats that unless your lucky and hes in a book or regimental diaries but again as has been mentioned many times its the local press which is the most likely source of extra information.

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