Author Topic: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902  (Read 1174 times)

Offline Shane Cooke

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Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« on: Friday 24 January 14 02:42 GMT (UK) »
Dear friends,
I am trying to find some information on my Great Grand Father Harry Cooke who received the KIngs Own Medal for long service in the volunteers force.
The medal has an inscription # 2755 Sjt H Cooke 2/ W.R of Y.R.G.A.V
The problem I have is the number 2755 does not come up for him.
What unit would he have been in as a volunteer?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks
Shane

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Offline KGarrad

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #1 on: Friday 24 January 14 08:15 GMT (UK) »
Welcome to RootsChat! ;D

He would have been in the West Riding of Yorkshire Royal Garrison Artillery (Volunteers).
See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_Riding_Artillery
And: http://www.yorkshirevolunteers.org.uk/wrarty.htm
Garrad (Suffolk, Essex, Somerset), Crocker (Somerset), Vanstone (Devon, Jersey), Sims (Wiltshire), Bridger (Kent)

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Offline Shane Cooke

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #2 on: Friday 24 January 14 10:44 GMT (UK) »
I'm coming to England in August into September. Where would I find these records of my great Grand Father Harry Cooke.
Do I apply in advance to access the records or can I simply arrive?
Thanking you
Shane

Offline km1971

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #3 on: Friday 24 January 14 11:27 GMT (UK) »
Hi Shane

Most units had their own numbering sequence. So there will be hundreds of other 2755s.

There are hardly any records of rank and file Volunteers. Only those for men who were embodied (made full-time) and volunteered for service in the Boer War; or to allow a Regular battalion to be sent to South Africa, appear to have survived. These should be on Findmypast.

If all he did was go one evening a week with a two week summer camp, and the odd weekend away, the chances of finding anything on him are extremely small. If he later re-enlisted for WW1 the standard Attestation Form has a box for declaring any previous military service. Those that survived a fire during WW2 are on Ancestry. But if he received a long service medal during Edward VII reign he may have been too old for WW1.

One exception would be if he was on the permanent staff of the Volunteers. In this case you should be able to find him described thus in census and/or on a BMD certificate. The permanent staff were almost all discharged Regulars. So again FindMyPast is the place to look. If he is only listed as a civilian you can assume he was a part-timer. But it is always worth contacting his local Record Office as a local historian may have produced a booklet.

From Wikipedia -

Artillery Volunteers

In 1860, as the British government feared invasion from the continent, the Secretary at War recommended the formation of Volunteer Artillery Corps to bolster Britain's coastal defences. The 1st Yorkshire (West Riding) Artillery Volunteer Corps was raised at Leeds on 2 August and the 2nd Yorkshire (West Riding) Artillery Volunteer Corps at Bradford on 10 October. They began as Coastal Artillery with 32 pounder guns. In 1886, they became Position Artillery with 40 pounder RBL guns. By 1871, the 1st had grown to eight batteries and the 2nd had become the 1st Admin Brigade, Yorkshire (West Riding) Artillery Volunteers, containing five Yorkshire (West Riding) Artillery Volunteer Corps, numbered the 2nd, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th. By 1880, a number of these Corps had been disbanded or absorbed and the Bradford Brigade became the 2nd Yorkshire (West Riding) Artillery Volunteers.

Various reforms from 1889 resulted in the units being renamed as 1st and 2nd West Riding of Yorkshire Artillery Volunteers, then the 1st and 2nd West Riding of Yorkshire Volunteer Artillery. In 1898, they became the 1st and 2nd West Riding of Yorkshire Royal Garrison Artillery (Volunteers) and were equipped with 4.7-inch QF guns drawn by steam tractors.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RBL_40_pounder_Armstrong_gun

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QF_4.7_inch_Gun_Mk_I%E2%80%93IV

Ken

Offline Shane Cooke

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #4 on: Friday 24 January 14 11:45 GMT (UK) »
Thank you for this information. Harry was born in 1872 so he would have been some 28 years of age. I know he immigrated to South Africa in 1912 with his family. I do have all the family
information about him EXCEPT the military connection - only the long service medal.
To receive the Kings own long service medal Did I read right that one would have to do a certain number of months / years? Would this mean he was a volunteer that did extended service in South Africa?
I appreciate your responses
Thanking you
Shane

Offline km1971

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #5 on: Friday 24 January 14 12:02 GMT (UK) »
Hi Shane

To receive the Volunteers long service medal he would have served 15-18 years. This would be independent of any full-time service.

If he did serve in the Boer War he would have received the Queens South Africa medal. The medal rolls for this are on Ancestry. Unfortunately they do not give forenames in full, and there are about 40 H Cookes listed in all. His unit did not go en masse so he would have had to have volunteered for another unit, and he would have been given a new number.

You need to look in FindMyPast using his date and place of birth. If you cannot find him it is likely he did not volunteer (small v) for the Boer War.

Ken

Offline Shane Cooke

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #6 on: Friday 24 January 14 12:04 GMT (UK) »
Thanks Ken for this information.

Offline km1971

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #7 on: Friday 24 January 14 12:18 GMT (UK) »
Where was he born and do you know his trade or his father's name?

Ken

Offline Shane Cooke

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Re: Yorkshire West Riding Volunteers units Boer war 1899 to 1902
« Reply #8 on: Friday 24 January 14 21:19 GMT (UK) »
Hi Ken
Harry Cooke was born 5th February 1872 in Bradford Yorkshire. He was a Tailor.
His father was William Thomas Cooke born in Huddersfield Yorkshire. He also was a Tailor.