Author Topic: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records  (Read 1120 times)

Offline MaxD

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #18 on: Tuesday 09 July 19 14:52 BST (UK) »
The "near numbers" technique is well known and results can be quite persuasive.  Dave T has missed one interesting fact.  63470 Thomas McDonald went overseas with 43 Brigade RFA.  So did 63464 Sains and a 63472 Smith and 63483 Smith.  These all went with the same RFA Brigade (I didn't look for others).

Worth inserting a caveat here for the purists.  Service numbers were not unique and there was, for example, another RFA man 63470 by the name of Fletcher another 63464 by the name of Clough and another 63483 by the name of Oakes.  However, by concentrating on men whose records suggest they were either already serving or had already served a term one can be relatively confident which one is referred to.

I would agree that the near numbers give two men who joined at about the same time and who may have joined at the same place.

What we have from this only is that Thomas McDonald may have been living in the south of England, joined in 1910 (which we knew) and was not in Hillsborough in 1911.  We are no nearer finding his place of birth I'm afraid.
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Offline kylemcdonald7

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #19 on: Tuesday 09 July 19 15:28 BST (UK) »
Max.

I agree this doesn't give us a place of birth, it was slightly relevant that he signed up the South of England as sometime between 1927 & 1928 the family moved to the Bethnal Green area where the youngest to children were born. These two things have slightly focused my search in those areas. First grandchild was born in 1931 in Lambeth London and Thomas and Emily where also living in the Daganham area in 1939, all within a relatively small area.

Unfortunately a search of births for Thomas McDonald within this region during Q1/Q2 of 1888/1889 provides a long list of results.

On the 1939 register his occupation is listed as Royal Defence Company 18437 Ilford. I found it was common for ex service men to join the TA and RDC during WW2. I have this week applied to the Army Personal Office is Glasgow in hope that they have some records of this. Failing a positive result i am now completely stuck for answers.

Offline MaxD

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #20 on: Tuesday 09 July 19 20:26 BST (UK) »
I do hope you get something from the WW2 records.
What the scenario is  - a man from (perhaps) the south of England, joins the RFA, is in Sheffield in 1912 and having met a young lady outside the barracks, marries her.  Some service records from the war but none showing positive ID. Fairly common happening (similar to me - me from Kent, joins the RA in Kent, stationed in the Midlands, met wife and married in Midlands, lucky not to have gone to war)

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Offline kylemcdonald7

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #21 on: Tuesday 09 July 19 20:58 BST (UK) »
Thanks Max.

It's been bugging me for a long time that we know so little of him, he fought in WW1 and in the end that cost him his life.

I was very sad to discover that he lay with his wife and mother in law in an unmarked grave in the city cemetery.

Nothing to show for his bravery.

Once I have confirmed details of a birth for him it's my intention to get something put in place at the grave to recognise the family and the sacrifice he made.

Thanks for sharing your story.

Offline kylemcdonald7

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #22 on: Sunday 28 March 21 21:24 BST (UK) »
I have recently found a record in the 1883-1942 Royal Artillery Attestation that gives Thomas's birth place as Edinburgh, Midlothian.

I have a question regarding Thomas regiment number 63470 RFA Driver.

Records show he enlisted in 1st December 1910.

Would he have enlisted to RFA in 1910 or another regiment?

Could he have joined the army in Scotland in another regiment and been posted in Sheffield? Would 63470 have been issued to him in 1910 enlistment (if not RFA) or given to him when he joined the RFA?

Thanks

Offline MaxD

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #23 on: Monday 29 March 21 19:57 BST (UK) »
I have recently found a record in the 1883-1942 Royal Artillery Attestation that gives Thomas's birth place as Edinburgh, Midlothian.

Which of the many Thomas MDonalds in the register is the one you are referring to. I do see a Midlothian born 1844.

Is that the one?

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Offline kylemcdonald7

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #24 on: Monday 29 March 21 20:35 BST (UK) »
Hi Max D

His birth year is 1889.

Offline MaxD

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #25 on: Tuesday 30 March 21 11:22 BST (UK) »
This is by way of a mind clearing exercise:

The attestation record for 746477 Dvr T McDonald whose former number was 63470 is a re-engagement in 1922 at the age of 33 having already served 8 years 71 days in the RFA.  He is living with wife Emily Crawford in Sheffield having married her in 1912.  He is working as a riveter in 1922.

63470 would have been his original number.  The number system changed in 1920/21 hence he has a new number on re-enlisting.  He left that engagement in 1930.   He was already serving in 1914 when war broke out and was in a pre-war regular brigade so seems to have joined up yet again sometime after 1930.

In a medical register of Dec 1917, he is recorded as having served 9 years (figures in the register are not accurate to the day!) which sort of adds up to having enlisted in about 1908/09 although the Silver War Badge record says 1910 which would be more accurate.  He left in 1919.

He has pension records on Ancestry Fold 3 to which I donít have access. The ones that say Royal Fusiliers are almost certainly Ancestry mis-transcriptions).  These may give more information. Mcdonald - Ancestry.com (top four).

My scenario:
Joins as a regular soldier in 1910, marries in 1912.   Serves through the war to 1919.  Moves to Sheffield and works as a riveter.  Re-joins in 1922, serves to 1930.  I don't see any "other regiment" involved.

MaxD
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Offline ShaunJ

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Re: Thomas McDonald - WW1 Records
« Reply #26 on: Tuesday 30 March 21 11:55 BST (UK) »

Date of birth of this soldier was 18 March 1889 per the MoD FoI spreadsheet 4:

746477   MC DONALD T   1889-03-18
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