Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

mhifle

3rd Battalion, The Connaught Rangers

Recommended Posts

tullybrone

Hi,

 

It’s difficult to search for his Medal Index Card with just a Regiment and Regimental Number as  Ancestry gives 12,000+. A name would help.

 

In respect of his motivation it can only be guesswork but if we discount feelings of patriotism perhaps he was a young man with a sense of danger who saw wartime military service in the British Army as an escape from his possibly mundane life or poor home and employment conditions?

 

It would be possible to get some figures on the number of men who were born and  lived in the United States and enlisted in the British Army in the United Kingdom from the data in the Soldiers Died in The Great War CD Rom. I don’t have mine to hand. You need to bear in mind that later in the war there was an officially sanctioned U.K. recruitment drive in the U S A.

 

Good Luck

 

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
archangel9

Hi Mr T,

 

As Steve said a name would help to narrow him down. The service number 4892 for a Connaught Ranger has no match in the medal index cards database - 

 

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/help-with-your-research/research-guides/british-army-medal-index-cards-1914-1920/

 

Are you sure that number is correct? If so that would indicate no overseas service during the Great War. This is possible as 3rd Bn. Connaught Rangers were a a reserve battalion stationed in Ireland and England for the entire war. But most men went to the reserve first before being posted to the overseas battalions after training.

 

As for his motivation there could be many factors so might be almost impossible to ascertain. I wonder if previous service might have been a factor? There were at least two US born men in the 1st Battalion 1911 census - Daniel Collins born in New York and Michael Connolly born in Chicago. 

 

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mr. T

Here's a better write up ... His name was Foster James Trainor (Trainer), born 11 July 1897 as an American-born citizen (Plattsburgh, NY) and lived in Schenectady, NY, when he joined the Connaught Rangers in 1914. He was in the 3rd Battalion, D Company. He signed up in St. Pancras, London and discharged as a Private in Kinsale, Ireland. His service number was 4892. He is of Irish decent as his grandfather was born in Dublin and died in 1882 in Montreal, Canada. His father was born in U.S. and employed as a machinist at the General Electric Company in Schenectady, NY.  What would have been the motivation for him to join the British Army and was it common for American citizens during WW1 to join the British Army (Connaught Rangers)?

 

On the Short Service Attestation form below he answered, Yes, to are you a British Subject. Not sure what that means. Looks also, he may not have been truthful about his age.

 

Foster James Trainer

 in the British Army WWI Pension Records 1914-1920

Name: Foster James Trainer
Gender: Male
Birth Date: abt 1895
Age: 19
Document Year: 1914
Residence Place: Saxton Home, Wells St Whitechapel E
Regimental Number: 4892
Regiment Name: Connaught Rangers
Form Title: Short Service Attestation

 

 

MIUK1914A_118715-00796 (1).jpg

Edited by Mr. T

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tullybrone

Hi,

 

I still can’t see him on the Medal Index Cards.

 

His occupation is noted as seaman so I expect his “home” address was a seaman’s hostel in the east end of London near the docks.

 

He clearly had a sense of adventure as indicated in his choice of occupation. My father’s best friend when he joined the British Army in 1937 was an Australian seaman who had “jumped” ship in London and joined up.

 

There was no requirement for potential recruits to prove any of the assertions they made on their enlistment form - it was all accepted as the truth - but if any discrepancies were discovered later the recruit could be disciplined for making a false declaration.

 

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
clk

Hi Mr T,

 

1 hour ago, tullybrone said:

I still can’t see him on the Medal Index Cards.

His service record shows that he was discharged before seeing any service overseas.

 

1 hour ago, tullybrone said:

His occupation is noted as seaman so I expect his “home” address was a seaman’s hostel in the east end of London near the docks.

The record appears to read as Sailors Home, Wells [?] St., Whitechapel E.

 

1 hour ago, tullybrone said:

There was no requirement for potential recruits to prove any of the assertions they made on their enlistment form - it was all accepted as the truth - but if any discrepancies were discovered later the recruit could be disciplined for making a false declaration.

He was discharged on 21st March 1915 (intended place of residence 306 Avenue 'B', Schenelady [?], New York, USA under para 392 (ii) of the King's Regulations -  'having been irregularly enlisted'. On his attestation it shows that he claimed to have been a British Subject. A false declaration could lead to discharge under para 392 (viii) -  'having made a false answer on attestation'. Might he have been able to argue the point on the basis of his grandfathers birth place? I don't know what the rules were to claim/apply for being a British Subject at the time.   

 

3 hours ago, Mr. T said:

His name was Foster James Trainor (Trainer), born 11 July 1897

 

That being the case he wouldn't have been 19 years and 2 months old (per his attestation) when he attested in November 1914. So, also a false statement, which could presumably also have resulted  in discharge under para 392 (vi) - 'having made a mis-statement as to age on enlistment'. He signed up for General Service for the duration of the war. In 1914 the minimum age for overseas service was 19. When he signed up he would have only been 17.

 

Regards

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mr. T

I erred and posted this in wrong forum.

 

On the back of this WW1 British soldier's (Jack Spencer) photo are what appears to be references to military campaigns. It looks like from the photo he is a member of The Queen's (Royal West Surrey) Regiment, 4th Battalion. Can anyone shed some light on this?IMG_3545.jpg.03393d92378cbae94bf4ec39d7be3f5a.jpg

FullSizeRender.jpg

IMG_3547.jpg

Edited by Mr. T

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Prayner

Hi, I'm looking for details on my grandfather and have drawn a blank. His name (apparently) was John Joseph Kavanagh and he re enlisted in the Connaught Rangers at the start of WW1. He is not the captain JJK. I know very little about him as he may have lied on his marriage cert as he was a bigamist. Hope someone can help.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

Hello Prayner

 

Welcome to the forum

 

There are two things you need to do to get somewhere with your very intriguing enquiry

 

1. Start a new thread in the Soldiers and their Units sub forum with his name and regiment in the title. That enables forum members to put everything on one thread. If you do not know how to start a new thread , then write that on this thread, and I can start a new one for you.

 

2. We do need a lot more ino. The Captain is the obvious man, but you say it is not him.

    There is another JJ Kavanagh who served in Connaught Rangers and Inniskilling Fusiliers as a Private

 

    We need his date and place of birth if you know it

    We need his marriage date and to whom. You say he was a bigamist, whas this the first or secnd marriage. Do you have details of the others

    Do you have any of his medals, and if so what is written on them

    I assume he survived the First World War, what happened to him and where did he live

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

I see you have had an enquiry, but no reply on another forum. You put there, but need to add a bit more for us

 

  trying to find details of my grandfather. The relatively certain things about him are:-
1. Born in Ireland
2. Joined Connaught Rangers (possibly twice as he may have reenlisted for WW1)
3. Went to London after the war.
4. Name John Joseph Kavanagh.

Now the uncertainties- he married my grandmother but was already married in Ireland and when this was discovered my Gran kicked him out. My mum was quite young and what with not living with her dad, then being evacuated she doesn't know much about him. we have the marriage certificate and he was apparently born around 1887 and his dad was Charles Kavanagh. However as it was bigamy and he was marrying someone a lot younger he may have lied about his dad and his age. My uncle knew a bit more but is unfortunately dead. He did go with his dad to a connaught rangers reunion though.

Edited by corisande

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Prayner

Thank you Corisande. I am away at the moment so these facts are not definitive. He also probably lied on his wedding cert so cannot 100% rely on this. He was born approx 1888. The family myth was that his dad got him out of the army, then the war started and he reenlisted and was promptly disinherited. My mum thinks he was born in Roscommon, (she was never close as he was booted out when the bigamy came to light). His dad was allegedly called Charles and his first wife was Brigitte, not sure of spelling. His second wife was Gladys Goodrich, born about 1908. They met and married in London where he worked for the post office. My mum recalls him as intelligent and educated and also thinks that he may have been a gamekeeper or similar. He possibly had one daughter at least with Brigid who bacame a nun and is probably dead or at least in her late 90s. My mum never met her half sister. My uncle went with him to a CR reunion and met some old friends so I am sure of this part. My uncle also felt he had at least one brother. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

Prayner

 

Having tried and failed to find him, let me say the problem is that nothing cross-references, so my conclusion is that some of your information must be wrong

 

1. If we start off what seems to be correct, that is he served in Connaught Rangers.

 

2. You say he could not have been the Capt John Joseph , can I ask why you believe that

 

3. If he is not the Captain, then either he did not serve abroad (i.e no medal card) or he is Pte John J Kavanagh who served in Connaught Rangers , then in Inniskillings

 

kavanagh-medal-roll.JPG.4f12d8765897eb95eedd1af44b1dc0c5.JPG

 

kavanagh-medal-roll-2.JPG.f572ce133bcc31331e7000a01b0042ba.JPG

 

kavanagh-pension.JPG.b3eeba99341cfea924e0e20e0f6c3a14.JPG

 

4. This man was living at 5 St Mary's Square, Cork  post WW1 and was born 1882. I cannot tie him to any of your other clues

 

5. You think your man was born Roscommon. The only possible Irish birth in "Roscommon" town registration district is this illegitimate plain John, no father

 

kavanagh-rosscommon.JPG.996534bada9c5672cf20d7091df460cc.JPG

 

He could of course have been registered in any other registration district in Co Roscommon, or an adjoining counhty, but if so, I cannot find him

 

6. Nobody obvious in 1911 census in Ireland

 

7. Nobody obvious in 1939 Register in England

Edited by corisande

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

Having said all that I have found him in Connaught Rangers in India in 1911 census - Click Ancestry 1911 census

 

Born Ballyforan, Roscommon about 1887.

 

This does fit all your clues

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

Which then gets you two possible births, both in Roscommon, bith in Boyle Reg District, which takes in Ballyforan

 

kavanagh-rosscommon-2.JPG.dbedcab123f92b4797dfcb8be04904ec.JPG

 

kavanagh-rosscommon-2a.JPG.dfa3e3f767bfc25d82fc0f4e453708d2.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
corisande

One can establish that the John J Kavanagh in 1911 census is the son of James Kavanagh  and Onney White

 

His parents had 4 children born in Ballyfornan, James b1890, John b1887, Mary b1885 and Daniel b1884

 

James b1890 has a British Army Penson card that gives his place if birth as Ballyforan and ex-RIC. The RIC record gives exact dob, and the whole thing fits to show that he came from the same family as John

 

So to sum up, the John J Kavanagh in Connaught Rangers in 1911 census was born 28 Mar 1887 in Ballyforan, Roscommon. Son of James and Onney. I would be reasonably certain that he was your grandfather (even though his father is not Charles)

Edited by corisande

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...