Author Topic: Identification of Soldier from photograph  (Read 321 times)

Offline tonythurston

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Identification of Soldier from photograph
« on: Wednesday 28 October 20 19:48 GMT (UK) »
I am trying to find the regiment of John Herbert Crowfoot, born 1920 in Barnet, from a picture dated Sept 1946 upon the back says "Agra". Agra could be Agra in India or A.G.R.A. - an army general Royal Artillery unit (of which there were many). It is believed John joined the army when WW2 began but that could be a mistaken. John married Joyce Reed in Barnet in 1950. In 1939 John was living with his parents (John William and Helen Crowfoot) in Potters Bar. Originally the family were from Kirby Cane in Norfolk but John only lived in Barnet and Potters Bar

I have tried ancestry, FindMyPast, national archive and IWM

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

Online MaxD

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 28 October 20 20:02 GMT (UK) »
AGRA is Army Group Royal Artillery which were groupngs of medium and heavy artillery attached to a formation.  There were many and each had a number so in this case it may be the place in India.

The basic reason you can't find anything on line if that WW2 service records are still held by MoD and have to be applied (and paid) for:

https://www.gov.uk/get-copy-military-service-records.

The few WW2 records (on FindMyPast the RA Attestations) and on Ancestry (the tracer cards) do not have him.

MaxD


 
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Online MaxD

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 28 October 20 20:10 GMT (UK) »
PS  Having looked more closely at the writing on the photo, it may well be Hqra  - Headquarters Royal Artillery the title of the directing HQ of a formation as in (and correctly it is all in caps) HQRA 1 Division or HQRA 27 Brigade or HQRA X Corps.  No number though so could be anywhere/thing although the group photo is not in India - wrong uniform.

MaxD
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Offline tonythurston

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 28 October 20 20:35 GMT (UK) »
Thank you MaxD - I can research HQRA but is it the same problem? MOD have records and I dont know the unit number? I believe there are long delays on MOD searches

"Not India - wrong uniform" is very helpful

Online MaxD

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #4 on: Thursday 29 October 20 09:18 GMT (UK) »
You don't need to know what unit or indeed what regiment a person was in to apply for his record.  You don't need his service number either as long as you have his birth date and death cert.
The process does take time, and covid hasn't helped, but there is no alternative if you want to know  the service record of your man.

MaxD
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Offline tonythurston

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #5 on: Thursday 29 October 20 09:31 GMT (UK) »
Thanks MaxD - ill talk to the next of kin today

Offline T1

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #6 on: Sunday 01 November 20 14:17 GMT (UK) »
Hi

If you look at the way he has written the capital "A" in "love to All", I would say it does indeed say what it appears to say - "Agra".

Is the writing on the back of the large group photo, or on the one with two gentlemen in shorts?  If the latter, I would suggest it does refer to the place in India.

I believe the dark blue beret wasn't introduced to the army as a whole until 1950; the initial 'universal' beret was khaki.  In 1946 artillery should still bear wearing the khaki 'cap general service, so the large group photo doesn't quite add up.

T

Offline tonythurston

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 01 November 20 14:51 GMT (UK) »
Thanks T1

Agra is not on the group photograph but is on the twp individual pictures, so there is a possibility they could have been taken at different times- I had not considered that

I spoke to the family and they always had Asia and or Africa in mind but still difficult to pin down

Thanks for looking

Offline T1

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Re: Identification of Soldier from photograph
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 01 November 20 15:03 GMT (UK) »
OK; I'm sure MaxD was referring to the big photo when he said "wrong uniform".