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Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Gunner » Fri May 31, 2013 11:26 am

Hello - this detail from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission site shows he was in 224th Siege Battery at the time of his death.

PACKE, HERBERT CECIL
Rank:GunnerService No:166208Date of Death:10/11/1917Age:36Regiment/Service:Royal Garrison Artillery 224th Siege Bty. Grave ReferenceI. C. 54.CemeteryPOTIJZE CHATEAU GROUNDS CEMETERY
Additional Information:

Son of James and Elizabeth Annie Packe, of Northampton; husband of Flora Packe.
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Valann » Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:28 am

Hi Gunner

Thank you vm for going to the trouble of finding out details for Herbert C Packe. His brother James Ernest Packe was in 118 Bty but, despite looking through military records on Ancestry for another brother - Wilfred Bernard Packe, I cannot see what Bty Wilfred belonged to.
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Gunner » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:40 am

Re 224 Siege Battery
The National Archives at Kew, London have the following war diary:
Date range:01 May 1917 - 30 November 1917
Reference:WO 95/394
As it happens this Reference is the same box for War Diary of 62nd Heavy Brigade - and 224 was certainly in this Brigade from Jan 1918 (and I think also earlier - but I can't say when). So looking at the Bde diary here would be useful.
Which would probably give you information about Herbert Packe's service leading up to his death and - perhaps - details of the action in which he was killed.
Regarding the Heavy and Siege Batteries - few of the batteries had war diaries for other than the early part of the war (224 is an exception here). Their activities can be most tracked by finding out the Heavy Artillery Brigade (or Heavy Artillery Group- the system changed back and forth during the war!) they were in and then reading the Brigade/Group's diary.
War Diaries vary considerably in what is recorded - sometimes a great deal with mention of individuals - more often just the operations and locations - and occasionally, virtually nothing!
There is a war diary for 118 for 1914 only, but I am guessing James Packe was not serving then.
The NA 'Medal Rolls' might (big might) indicate what battery Wilfrid was in - if you are interested I will try and find out the reference and location for them?
If you are able to visit Kew let me know and I will make some suggestions about the best way to tackle things!
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Valann » Tue Jun 04, 2013 3:08 pm

Hello again and thank you vm for your input. Not being used to doing military research and understanding the jargon, I'm getting a little bogged down so to clarify things for us, here is a list of my ancestors and the husband of one of them who all served in the RGA. If you could try and find the ref and location for the Medal Rolls for Wilfred Packe that would be great. Also could you let me know please whether I would be able to check in the war diaries without actually visiting Kew?

I never thought that when I started researching my paternal line that I would be going down this route - really interesting. Look forward to hearing from you Gunner.

James Edward PACKE
118 bty, transferred March 1919

Herbert Cecil PACKE
224 bty, died 10/11/1917

Wilfred Bernard PACKE (1887-1955)
Bombadier
Bty not shown on Medal Rolls. Date of joining not known.

Frederick MILLS
139 bty, joined March 1916
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby jillycornish » Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:57 am

Hi Gunner, my grandfather Ernest Spry Vincent M2/202350 served as a Lieutenant in the Royal Garrison Artillery 1914-1920. The catalogue ref for his medal is WO 372/20. I know he served in France, Belgium and Italy and was granted a commision in the field by General Plummer. I would really like to know more about the campaigns he would have taken part in and any other information you may have. Many thanks,
Jill
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Gunner » Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:33 am

Valann,

I will get on to this later on and come back with some further thoughts - many war diaries have been digitised and available online - but these are nearly (if not all!) infantry diaries. You can order them from Kew but that is expensive. I will see on another website if anyone has looked at these ones.
I go to Kew from time to time and otherwise could look when I am next up.

Jill
I will also have an initial look, but could you let me know if you have any more information re units, date of service and commission?
Do you live near Kew by any chance?
I will then look in more detail too!

best wishes
Alan
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Sylcec » Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:47 am

Alan - Gunner - you are doing a fantastic job here.

It might be worthwhile some of your enquirers looking at The Long Long Trail http://www.1914-1918.net/ which is searchable and includes information on the Siege Batteries of the RGA. (I'm sure you know this, but the enquirers may not :) )

Cheers, Sylvia
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby Gunner » Thu Jun 06, 2013 10:39 am

Hello Sylvia

Yes, many thanks - visiting the Long Trail and associated Great War Forum is the best 'one stop' for finding out information on most WW1 matters. And there is much background information there to help us all!
And really good for enquirers to read the previous posts also for further ideas on how to find out more. Indeed, I appreciate many are keen to enjoy the research themselves.

I am very happy to continue 'bridging the gap' with help on some more specific aspects - particularly if I have knowledge of particular batteries. I know what a mystery much of this when first setting out (and some still is now!).

My own aim is to encourage anyone with specific connections to certain batteries to get in touch - particularly the 122nd Heavy Battery, but also some which fought alongside (123rd, 126th - but also the siege batteries such as 224th - the latter two for the whole of 1918).

best wishes
Alan
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby nodmonkey » Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:10 pm

hi my great grandfather,bsm/acting rsm john mercer served with 64th hag in ww1,he was awarded the DCM for actions in 1916,his army number is 92205 ive tried to understand how i search or even where or how i can find his battery which is still a mystery to me.we have no photos of him and we know pretty much what ive typed but thats it,if anyone can help me that would be so appreciated .ive seen alot of people talking about these wo.. lists but dont really understand what or where to look .ive had a look at the long trail site and it may as well be in japanese as i dont know where to start.please help someone.cheers
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Re: Royal Garrison Artillery World War One

Postby ColinB » Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:40 pm

Ancestry appears to have the service record for John Mercer , with the service number incorrectly transcribed as 92255 . I've read enough to see the correct number is 92205 but the record extends to 100 pages so worth a carefull read.

Colin
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