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Military Photograph

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Military Photograph

Postby TCJ » Tue Nov 12, 2019 4:04 am

Hi, I was wondering if anybody could please help me to identify the uniform in this photograph? This photograph has been passed down in my family but we are uncertain of who the photograph is of. One side of my family has lived in Australia for several generations, but the other side came over to Australia in the 1920's from Wales. I know that one great-grandfather was in the military in Wales. I wonder if this photograph could be Welsh or if it more likely Australian? I would be greatly appreciative of any help or advice please.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby AdrianB38 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 12:00 pm

So far as I know (and I'm not terribly au fait with these matters), the cap badges of the Australian Imperial Force were all based on a sun-burst pattern - see https://www.awm.gov.au/articles/blog/australian-imperial-force-aif-badges-1914-1918. Your badge doesn't look like that to me.

That would suggest a UK badge - just because your candidate is from Wales, doesn't mean he would have joined a Welsh regiment. Under conscription, one could be sent anywhere but even before that, if your mates went into a regiment that wasn't your local regiment, well, you went along with them.

As for what regiment - hmm - I'm not happy that I can see a candidate - it looks like there might be a double scroll at the bottom, which is unusual. Whether that's a fleur-de-lys on the top or it's wishful thinking on my part to fit in with your question, I don't know.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby Jethro Tull » Tue Nov 12, 2019 5:29 pm

Hi TCJ,

Its not terribly clear but to me it's similar to the cap badge of The Welsh Regiment or the The 7th (Cyclist) Battalion, The Welsh Regiment TF. (They had the same badge).

There are a few that are similar looking.

As Adrian has mentioned I think the feather plumes do look like the right theme here.

Cheers

Dan

Welsh_Regiment_Cap_Badge.jpeg
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby AdrianB38 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 9:25 pm

I think you've got it, Dan. For some reason, I missed that one when looking through my book. I was actually contemplating The Cheshire Yeomanry (Earl of Chester's) - that has a virtually identical badge except that the scroll underneath is much longer (well, it would be to get that name on). I think, though, that the proportions in the photo match The Welsh Regiment (apparently the alternative spelling of "Welch Regiment" is both archaic and later).

The 1/1st Cheshire Yeomanry (Earl of Chester's) got dismounted (i.e. turned into infantry) and amalgamated with the 1/1st Shropshire Yeomanry during 1917, becoming the 10th Bn of the KSLI - so statistically much less likely to be the one we want.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby TCJ » Tue Nov 12, 2019 10:38 pm

Hi Adrian and Dan, I just wanted to thank you both very much for all of your kindness and help. I wasn't quite sure where to begin yesterday (or whether it might have even been possible to identify whether this was my Welsh great-grandfather) so I am so very grateful for your kindness in replying to my question. Since I put the photograph up yesterday I have managed to learn that my great-grandfather (if this might be him) was in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers in WW1. I wasn't quite sure whether there then might be a possible way of identifying the photograph further based on that knowledge? I have just seen that they have a museum and a website so wonder if it might be a good idea to try and write to them next to try to confirm whether this was him? Thank you very much again for everything.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby AdrianB38 » Wed Nov 13, 2019 8:54 pm

I really don't think the cap badge in the photo is the RWF. The RWF badge is quite different, see below:
Royal_Welsh_Fusiliers_Cap_Badge.jpg
Royal_Welsh_Fusiliers_Cap_Badge.jpg (43.05 KiB) Viewed 299 times

(photo from Wikimedia by Dormskirk licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license)
The RWF badge is, I think, a typical fusiliers badge depicting a flaming grenade - that would just end up as two splodges on top of one another in a small photo.

However, it's important to understand that just because someone started in one regiment, it doesn't mean that they finished in the same one. In fact, interestingly enough, the Long, Long Trail refers to this:
2/6th (Glamorgan) Battalion [Welsh Regiment]
Formed at Swansea in December 1914 as a second line unit.
Absorbed by the 2/5th Royal Welsh Fusiliers at Bedford in November 1915.


There are also a couple of complicated transfers of training battalions which started in the RWF, went regiment-free (because they were just for training) and then ended up in the Welsh Regiment.

Really, you'd need to investigate your G-GF from the RWF to see if there's any possibility that he might have been in the Welsh at any time. (See https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/soldiers/) That seems like a good thing to do anyway, regardless of that photo.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby TCJ » Thu Nov 14, 2019 1:16 am

Thank you very much for your kind message Adrian. I can completely see what you mean and now think that the photograph might be of another relative altogether. Unfortunately while there have been a couple of photographs passed down in my family, none of them have anything written on the back of them and nobody seems to know who the photographs are of. I have managed to find a Certificate of Discharge amongst a bag of mixed photographs that relates to my great-grandfather having left the Royal Welsh Fusiliers and have also managed to obtain a photograph of his headstone which also mentions him having been in the Welsh Army, but beyond that I have no idea as to whether the photograph is of him or perhaps another Welsh relative. All I know is that the Certificate of Discharge says that he enlisted on 27-6-1917 and that he was discharged on 1-5-1920. I did try to contact the Royal Welsh Fusiliers museum yesterday and they have now referred me to the local archives so I will try them as soon as I can and will definitely look at the link that you kindly suggested now. Thank you very much again for your help.
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Re: Military Photograph

Postby AdrianB38 » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:28 am

You are very lucky to have an original document! The Certificate of Discharge should contain his name, regiment and his number. That means you can use Ancestry or FindMyPast to see if his service papers survive - bearing in mind that only 1/4 to 1/3 do. You can also look to see if he received any campaign medals - Ancestry contains both the Medal Index Cards and the Medal Rolls that they point to. FMP only has a text index while our National Archives site has black and white images of the Medal Index Cards - front of the card only.

Searches can be awkward because names might be written out differently but the regiment and number should take you to any stuff. There is an outside chance that there are 2 people with the same regiment and number but for someone who joined up that late (conscripted at that date) it's unlikely. The Long Long Trail website should help you out here. Be prepared to find nothing if his papers were burnt and he never went abroad before 11/11/1918.

Good luck.

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Re: Military Photograph

Postby AdrianB38 » Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:34 am

Sorry- just to add that you may have trouble searching on the regimental name - it might be written out in several ways from the full version to RWF! FindMyPast does wild card searches better than Ancestry so * Welsh * would be one search to do, though that will pick up the Welsh Regiment as well.

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Re: Military Photograph

Postby TCJ » Thu Nov 14, 2019 10:16 pm

Thank you very much for all of your kind advice Adrian. I will definitely try all of the things that you mentioned today. This is the first time that I have ever tried to trace any military records so I really appreciate all of your suggestions. Thank you very much again.
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