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Can some one explain this for me which is on an uncles army record for 1917.

Frederick Smith 18th Hussars Expeditionary France and Flanders.

How do I trace him do I go through the Hussars or The Expeditionary Force. What is the connection. I am new to army records.

He was kia 20th Nov-1917 and buried south of Trescault in an unmarked grave then recovered and laid to rest in Flesquires Hill Cemetery France.

I would like to know if it is possible to find where he was fighting and died.

Thankyou Sylvia

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Hello Sylvia

The 18th (Queen Alexandra's Own Royal) Hussars were part of the 2nd Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division.

The basic history of his war can be found on the main site here:

http://www.1914-1918.net/CAVALRY/1cavdiv.htm

He would have been killed on the first day of the Battle of Cambrai.

Regards

Mel

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Sylvia

While I am looking on your behalf (this is a learning curve for me too !) take a look here:

http://www.1914-1918.net/CAVALRY/1cavdiv.htm

This shows where the 18th Hussars, as part of the 1st Cavalry Division,spent their war.

Best wishes

Sotonmate

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The B.E.F. = British Expeditionary Force was the entire British Army in France and Flanders (including Infantry, Cavalry, Engineers, Aircraft, etc.) and was thus the largest possible "unit" in the War.

The Hussars path is the one to follow.

Steve.

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Sylvia

In case you do not have it:

CWGC

Name: SMITH

Initials: F J

Nationality: United Kingdom

Rank: Lance Corporal

Regiment/Service: 13th Hussars

Date of Death: 21/11/1917

Service No: 31146

Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead

Grave/Memorial Reference: IV. B. 18.

Cemetery: FLESQUIERES HILL BRITISH CEMETERY

+++

National Archives Medal Index Card:

Description Medal card of Smith, Frederick J

Corps Regiment No Rank

Hussars 31146 Private

Date 1914-1920

Catalogue reference WO 372/18

++

Soldiers Died in the Great War show him as 18th Hussars

Born Bedford, enlisted and resident of Doncaster.

++

It may be that CWGC have the 13th as a transcription error instead of 18th Hussars.

Ian

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ian

Thanks for all the info some I had but not the National Archives Medal Index Card number so thanks for that.

Frederick had enlisted under the assumed name of Smith his correct name was FJ Hudson.

Do you know if there is any way I can trace him while he was at Doncaster?

Records show him to have enlisted in Doncaster 16th February 1916 under the name of Smith which was I think either his wife or mother’s maiden name. His medal is engraved 31146 PTE F.J Smith 18-HRS (18th Hussars)

The following entry is in the book The Marquis de Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour and must have been given by the family as it is in his correct name.

Son of Henry John Hudson, of Wood End, Marston, near Ampthill, Bedford, Farm Labourer, by his wife Anne, daughter of Joseph Smith. Born Marston aforesaid 8th Aug 1890; educated there; was employed by the London & North Western Railway Company at Northampton from 1911 to 1914; enlisted 16th Feb 1916, served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from the following October, and was killed in action 20th Nov 1917.

The search for this member of the family started 2years ago when his photo turned up at an elderly aunts and the question "who is the soldier" was asked by me while I had been searching for some one else. From then on he seems to have taken over the family tree research.

Sylvia

Sylvia

In case you do not have it:

CWGC

Name: SMITH

Initials: F J

Nationality: United Kingdom

Rank: Lance Corporal

Regiment/Service: 13th Hussars

Date of Death: 21/11/1917

Service No: 31146

Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead

Grave/Memorial Reference: IV. B. 18.

Cemetery: FLESQUIERES HILL BRITISH CEMETERY

+++

National Archives Medal Index Card:

Description Medal card of Smith, Frederick J

Corps Regiment No Rank

Hussars 31146 Private

Date 1914-1920

Catalogue reference WO 372/18

++

Soldiers Died in the Great War show him as 18th Hussars

Born Bedford, enlisted and resident of Doncaster.

++

It may be that CWGC have the 13th as a transcription error instead of 18th Hussars.

Ian

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Sylvia,

Guess this is him in 1901:

Frederic Hudson 11 Beds Marston Bedford Marston Moretaine

Seeing as he was employed in Northants I can only guess he went to Doncaster (also a military centre) to enlist with reasons connected to his assuming his mother's maiden name? Though I expect the 1911 census, when finally available, will still show his place of residence in Bedford.

Maybe there was a falling out between 1914 and 1916? Perhaps he wanted to enlist and his parents did not want him to go? Who knows this far off in time? He may have shown place of residence as Doncaster simply because he was in digs there.

That said, Doncaster was also a railway centre (though not for the LNWR, Doncaster would have been a GNR works in those days, I think). Perhaps it was a work connected move? Maybe worth tryIng to see if any railway records exist with employees listed?

Otherwise only by sighting his army service record will you know any more. As you may have seen elsewhere, the service records were some 60 percent destroyed in the Blitz. But you never know, so always worth checking. They are coming on line bit by bit over the next year.

Ian

PS - as a former railway employee, I wonder if he appears on any raiwlay company rolls of honour - LNWR (later LMS after 1923) or perhaps in view of Doncaster GNR (LNER after 1923)?

I.

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Does no one find it strange that he enlisted under a false name in February 1916, a time when enlistment was in force? Maybe he was in a reserved occupation and joined up under a false name to get around this difficulty.

Andy

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Hi Sylvia,

My great grandfather, from Gateshead, was with the NER before he joined the DLI, and I think I've found him (at least a 'J Bell') in an entry in the NER magazine for Feb 1915 as enlisting in the DLI (and he too, was in Doncaster in 1916, where he was stationed; he married a local girl there, as well!). So . . . check out any relevant railway magazines, they often carried lists of employees enlisted, and employees/ past employees killed or wounded.

Chris :)

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Does no one find it strange that he enlisted under a false name in February 1916, a time when enlistment was in force? Maybe he was in a reserved occupation and joined up under a false name to get around this difficulty.

Andy

Andy

I to find it strange that Frederick James enlisted under an assumed name first of all his age 24yrs.

Young boys gave incorrect info or old men lied about their age.

If he was in a reserved occupation does that mean he need not have enlisted. Where can I find a list concerning reserved occupations.

Thankyou

Sylvia

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Hi Sylvia,

My great grandfather, from Gateshead, was with the NER before he joined the DLI, and I think I've found him (at least a 'J Bell') in an entry in the NER magazine for Feb 1915 as enlisting in the DLI (and he too, was in Doncaster in 1916, where he was stationed; he married a local girl there, as well!). So . . . check out any relevant railway magazines, they often carried lists of employees enlisted, and employees/ past employees killed or wounded.

Chris :)

Thanks for reply where can I look for old railway mags How do I trace LNW Railway Company Northampton.

Thankyou Sylvia

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