Alfred James Holley, known as Jim, was one of my grandfather's six brothers. (Another was Jesse, whom I posted about a couple of weeks ago, who had the severe hand injury.) Jim was born 4th November 1881 in Southampton (birth registered as Holly without the "e"). It looks like he didnít volunteer, but waited to be conscripted in 1916, when he was 35. At that time he was a Southampton bricklayer with a wife called Florence (Flo) and three little children.
I think the Pension and Silver War Badge records on Ancestry refer to a different man with the same name, because THAT Alfred James Holley had a wife called Ada. He was Pte 28513 in No 6 Protection Company, Royal Defence Corps. Not my great uncle Jim.
The man I think is MY Alfred James Holley is Pte 516124 who appears in the Service Medal records, awarded the War and Victory Medals, 14th Bn London Regiment. His service is listed as
6 Dorset R Pte 30508 1(a) 22 3/18 to 27/3/18
1 /4 Lond R G/75038 1(a) 28 3/18 to 10/4/18
14 Lond R S/43822 1(a) 11 4/18 to 11/11/18
I know Theatre of War 1(a) was France and Flanders. Don't know what the numbers after that mean. The dates appear to show that he was in the Dorsets, and he didnít land in France until just before the German's big offensive in March 1918, and then he was shuffled into two different battalions of the London Regiment in quick succession, before ending the war at the Armistice. Usually a change of regiments suggests wounds to me, but in this case possibly just reflects the general reorganisation following the Spring Offensive. It looks to me like he managed to avoid injury.
I know he survived the war, he lived to 1976, aged 95. His building company built the Flower Road Estate in Southampton. Can anyone add any more? Do all those numbers mean anything to anyone?
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Thread: Alfred James Holley in WW1
21-11-2020, 3:07 PM #1
Alfred James Holley in WW1
21-11-2020, 3:27 PM #2
Do you mean the numbers before 1(a), Barbara? I think they are old-style service numbers. Before service numbers were standardized, each regiment had its own numbering system and men who moved changed numbers as well.
Sometimes they changed regiments because a regiment became very short-handed, or because they were found to have an unknown skill. I know of one soldier (not mine) who was moved to a support regiment because of dental troubles!
21-11-2020, 3:55 PM #3
I was thinking of 1(a)22 and so on, but of course they are the first parts of the dates! Silly me! They were typed with an extra space between the day and the month, to dodge into the next printed column, so looked like sub-divisions of the Theatre of War.
But the numbers after the name of the Regiment, 30508 and the G/ and S/ numbers don't seem to be service numbers. There is an earlier column, headed Regtl. No. which gives his number as 516124.
21-11-2020, 6:43 PM #4Sometimes paranoia is just having all the facts.
21-11-2020, 8:23 PM #5
Thanks Christina. I looked at that useful list, and see G and S meant General and Service and were very common. He had different number in each battalion, and a fourth number on the medal record. None of it tells me much.
I looked at the Long, Long Trail website for the movements of the battalions in their brigades and divisions, so that was helpful. And I've tried TNA Discovery, but nothing came up. Some soldiers have nothing much to find, sadly.
21-11-2020, 8:54 PM #6
It does not help it is indexed in Ancestry as Albert J Holley, for those who are looking!
Have you searched newspaper articles for wounded lists, my Grandfather was wounded 4 times and was sent to another battalion after each wounding. Look here - https://search.findmypast.com.au/sea...keywords=false
Then you have some idea of when he was with each regiment and then you can look at the War Diary of each regiment (on Ancestry)to see what they did and where they were. His name will probably not be mentioned.
My Father 1819170 Lance Bombardier Robert Simpson 39/14 L.A.A. R.A.
22-11-2020, 2:50 PM #7
- Join Date
- Aug 2008
if you look at his MIC ,medal index card , it shows the number's next to each regiment .
the last number 516124 - 14th London regiment .
If the regiments and service numbers are listed in correct order , its possible that the last number was issued to him ,if he re enlisted after the war end , ie November 1918 , to continue in the Army .
do you know if he did this ?
23-11-2020, 10:21 AM #8
As far as I know, he didn't re-enlist. He was a bricklayer and builder, and spent the rest of his life doing that.
23-11-2020, 10:24 AM #9
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