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Boer war soldiers

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Boer war soldiers

Postby Tobina » Sat Mar 30, 2019 2:03 pm

Is there anywhere that I can find a list of soldiers who served in the second Boer War?
My family believe that Thomas Tobin from Liverpool was in South Africa as part of the mounted infantry but we cannot find any definite evidence to support the belief.

Thanks Tobina
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Re: Boer war soldiers

Postby MoVidger » Sat Mar 30, 2019 2:35 pm

On FMP, there are three military records for the following Thomas Tobin's of Liverpool:

Date of birth: 1878 - 6th Dragoons (in South Africa 1899-1900; father Michael at 36 Peter Street)
Date of birth: 1880 - Lancashire Artillery (trade/calling: Hawker; brother James at 24 Gt Homer St)
Date of birth: 1884 - Loyal North Lancashire Regiment (mother: Ellen at 40 Escott Street)
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Re: Boer war soldiers

Postby Tobina » Sun Mar 31, 2019 5:36 pm

Thanks for the suggestions. I’ve checked them out, the first 2 are not our relative.
The third one is Thomas when he joined the Loyal North Lancs. in 1903.
We’re still trying to find out if he served in 1900 in South Africa.

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Re: Boer war soldiers

Postby AdrianB38 » Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:16 pm

I assume that this is your chap, based on what Maureen said:
First name(s) Thomas
Last name Tobin
Birth year 1884
Birth parish Lpool
Birth town Liverpool
Birth county Lancashire
Birth country England
Service number 8929
Regiment Loyal North Lancashire Regiment
Year 1903
Attestation date 05 Jan 1903
Attestation age years 19
Attestation age months 1
Attestation service number 8929
Attestation corps Loyal North Lancashire Regiment
Discharge corps Loyal North Lancashire Regiment
Document type Attestation
Series WO 96 - Militia Service Records 1806-1915

If the service papers on FindMyPast are true in what's written on them, then your Thomas had never served in the Armed Forces before January 1903 when he signed up. It's one of the questions that gets asked and the answer is recorded on the front of the Attestation Form (Q14).

Ack to FMP
Tobin.JPG (29.39 KiB) Viewed 1085 times

Also note that he's only 19y 1m old at this point - I'm never sure how old guys had to be before they could be sent overseas, but if they had to be 18, then he couldn't have gone out before December 1901. That's not totally impossible but if he were in the Army then, he'd have joined up for several years and there's no way he'd have been finished in time to get out and join the militia in 1903. And besides, he says he's never been in the Forces before.

I'm trying to work out what he actually did:
- January 1903, he joined the Militia (not the Regular Army) as 8929 of the North Lancs - this appears to have been the 3rd Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. See This unit had indeed been to South Africa.
- His Statement of Services form has nothing about the Militia except for the note "Joined N Lan Rgt 18203". So I think that he moved over from the Militia part of the LNL to the Regular Army part where he carried number 18203. Again, this is not unusual but is not what someone who's already been in the Regular Army does.

I can't find any further mention of Tobin / 18203 on FindMyPast, so he may have served his 12 in the Army / Army Reserve and got out just before the start of WW1, or had his number changed or had his papers burnt in the WW2 fire or I'm not searching for him right or .....

So, to be frank, I'm afraid that the story may have grown in the telling. Based on the details that he gives, then he wasn't out in South Africa during the Boer War - he hadn't yet joined up (and he probably wasn't old enough). He could, of course, have falsified his details, exaggerating his age, but since he's neither of the other two that Maureen found, then he's going to have changed his name or place of birth if he falsified his details, so you'd never recognise him. But I'm afraid that it's much more likely that he never fought in the Boer War. He might, of course, have gone out there on garrison duty after joining the Regulars, but without his full service papers (lost or burnt), we've no idea.

Sorry if I've spoiled your hopes...
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Re: Boer war soldiers

Postby Tobina » Mon Apr 01, 2019 7:51 pm

Thanks Adrian, we had come to more or less the same conclusion.
Thomas was in fact born in 1882 but we now don’t believe he was in the Boer War.
This story originated from a cousin who believed that Thomas had the QSA medal which has since disappeared.
I think the missing “medal” may have been the liver badge awarded to him when he was wounded at Mons in WW2.
Incidentally his number was 8929 & then 7102 in the regular army. I think 18203 was the attestation date.
Thanks again Tobina
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Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 1:29 pm

Re: Boer war soldiers

Postby AdrianB38 » Mon Apr 01, 2019 8:15 pm

Tobina wrote:... I think 18203 was the attestation date ...

Oh embarassment!
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