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Remembered Today:

British Salonika Force


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The man on the right of this photo is my great grandad William E Jones. In 1919 he was Deputy Assistant Provost Marshall, British Salonika Force and Deputy Assistant Provost Marshall Baku, British Army of the Black Sea. However, I am keen to translate the writing on this photo, but do not know what language this is. Does anybody recognise it? Also, does anyone know where the man with the sword may be from?

post-34507-1211874430.jpg

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Interesting - as you will know, the armies in Salonika were multi-national, so the possibilities for the seated guy would be: Russian (? most likely), Serbian, Greek (who all fought alongside the British, French, Italians...)

Language: Serbian maybe? or Greek?

Good luck with it!

Peter

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The language is Russian. Can't make out much (only did 2 months of Russian about 25 years ago!), but the text contains the date August 1919, so perhaps Baku & Russian, rather than Salonika & Russian/Serbian. The language is definitely not Greek, though!

Adrian

EDIT: It starts "In memory of good times, ...", and is signed by someone with the surname Gudiev.

Lines 2-5:

we conducted ... in the town of Baku

in May, June, July and August months

of 1919. ... friend ...

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The seated figure is in cossack uniform.

ETA: Sorry, should have said "and is probably Imperial Russian or White Russian".

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The seated figure is in cossack uniform.

A Caucasian Cossack from the Terek or Kuban region. A smaller group than the Steppe Cossacks (that included amongst many regional groupings the Don Cossacks). Probably a Hetman with a rank equivalent of Brigadier General

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Thanks for all your help guys.

I've been told by soemone at work that it says: "In memory of the good times we spent together in the city of Baku in May, June and July of 1919. To my friend Captain Jones.

With warm love, T.Gubiev (? name is unclear)"

So you were spot on - only 2 months of Russian 25 years ago - you have a great memory!

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I'm going to stick my neck out here (and will probably get shot down in flames), but I'd lay money on it being this gentleman:

post-16303-1211895023.jpg

Guda Alievitch Gudiev (1880-1920)

Ingushetian patriot, cavalry officer and Military Governor of Baku 1919-1920.

Subsequently arrested, tried and executed by the Supreme Revolutionary Tribunal of Azerbaijan.

Details gleaned and picture nicked from http://www.ingush.ru/jzl17.asp

And lots of Babelfish!

Adrian

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Is the bloke on the left Scots?

Looks like their jaiket but he has 'like' Gren Guards collars like our ladies G/Grandad.

Anyone know?

Dave.

& what year did the cigar bandolier come out?

You cant tell me they're bullets!

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Cartridges actually. Its how you tell a Caucasian Cossack from a Steppes Cossack*. They were certainly part of the costume during the 1812 campaign. The cossacks of that period could load and fire a smooth bore muzzle loading carbine whilst on horseback and on the gallop.

From the translation of the writing plus the uniform this cossack was probably an officer with the Terek Cossacks led by Lazar Fyodorovich Bicherakhov. Part of the Imperial Russian force on the Persian Front he had retreated into Persia (Iran) after the Bolshevik revolution from where he made an agreement with General Dunster and assisted in the occupation of Baku. His forces stayed there until late 1919. Some later participated in anti Soviet guerrilla operations in the Chechen and Osietia area. (Stalin later booted the cossacks out of the region - some of those struggling today to pacify it might wish that he hadn't).

I had wondered if this guy might be General Bicherakhov himself but he appears to be older and Bicherakhov was clean shaven. Its difficult to tell his rank without knowing the colour of his shoulder straps.

*Unless the latter was in His Imperial Majesty's Own Convoy Cossacks

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I seems to me that the guy on the left is wearing a cut-away tunic typical of a Scottish regiment, too. His collar badges are not clear, but he does have a brassard with a badge on that too. Not sure what that might be!

Did you know that there is a Commonwealth monument in Baku to the Allied effort there in countering the Ottoman effort late war? It's not in good shape at the moment, I believe...

Peter

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