A problem shared is a problem halved. Post your brick walls here and see whether you can offer advice to others
Mon Apr 08, 2019 4:43 pm
On 5th March 2016 I posted a new topin which I titled
"GRO gets it so very badly wrong".
After 3 long years of hard hitting correspondence I have finally got a correct version.
Place of death is now down as Belgium.
Age is now down as 19.
However although the place of birth was known what I did not know was that Monmouth was not in Wales; it was in England. This was my mistake but I think it was an understandable mistake as the birth certificate is bi-lingual and the place of birth was Mynyddyslwyn.
One weird thing I spotted is that on the 1911 census for my Monmouth ancestors there is a column for "language spoken" and specifically asking whether people spoke Welsh, English or both. I can see that my great-grandmother spoke both. More research shows that some of my ancestors did not fill in this census because they were not offered one where they could put down that they spoke Welsh.
So the Monmouth dispute has gone on for a long time. I asked the GRO man who was dealing with my case if the new certificate could say not just "England" but "Monmouth England" to respect my great grandmother and he did! and he had to get permission from the military to do that. Enormous thank you to both people involved in that.
I have done some research into how the mistakes were made in the first place.
It appears that during the first year or so there was very little concern for the bereaved of WW1 as they had volunteered so it was their hard luck. It was only later, after conscription started in January 1916 that the mothers and other members of the family started wanting more respect and information that things started to change. Even after the end of the war people regarded the battle fields as places for an excursion.
Respect for the dead and injured of the 1WW came much later and the military paperwork was corrected but, it appears that, the GRO never corrected their paperwork.
There is interest as my original post had 46 replies, mostly telling me how I was wrong!! and also 7551 views.
What an enormous job that would be to correct GRO records that came from notes made at the front, quite possibly by men under fire! and I wish I could do something about it but my sight is now too bad.
This issue needs to be taken up by a young person.