The start of my research

Discussion in 'World War 1' started by liverpool annie, Dec 26, 2008.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    It was these few sentences that started me on the road to being enthralled with the subject of the Great War ! ... I can't even remember where they came from ..... but this passage ....... plus the fact that both of my Granddads were there - was enough to get me well and truely "hooked " !!

    What was it that started you off ?? ...... :)

    Annie :)
  2. WAK

    WAK New Member

    What started me off?

    Hi Annie! I have hardly had time to dip my aged toes in what seems a lovely pool of friendship......however.....for starters.....My interest in WW1 is due to the fact
    that my Dad, who left home in N.E. England to sail to Australia opted to join the Australian Army and served on The Western Front In France. I was called for service in 1942 and did my stint in R.A.F. until demobbed late 1946. So I have some knowledge of both fact....even after 64 years I still have nightmares of Normandy just after 'D' Day when my unit, a small mobile radar F.D.P.(Forward Directing Post) was 'up front' plotting and directing aircraft.

    If you had both Grandads serve in WW1 I can well understand your wish to delve into its history. Good huntin' :)
  3. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Hi WAK and welcome !! :)

    I suppose you've already done a lot of research on your Dad ... but if there's anything else you'd like to find out .... please give a shout - be glad to help if we can !

    ( And thank you for Normandy ... I for one - appreciate it very much ! )

    Annie :)
  4. kizmiaz

    kizmiaz New Member

    Not having done much on history past the age of 14, I didn't know much about WW1 other than the stuff shown in war movies. It was only when tracing my family tree and discovering the many various members of the family who had fought, and in many cases died, that I started to take a more detailed interest.

    After reading a copy of the letter sent to my gg-grandmother to tell her how her son had been killed trying to defuse a german bomb, or learning that a slightly more distant relative was trapped up to his waste in a bomb crater in Passchendaele and died of his wounds two years after the end of the war, or that my great grandfather had served with the RAF but very nearly died of Spanish Flu just at the close of the war it brought home to me how little I had actually thought of the individuals who made up the casualty statistics.

    Deeply sobering.

  5. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    I know what you mean Glen !

    Once I started reading War Diaries ... I couldn't believe what I was reading ... it felt as if I could have cried for days - imagining what they went through .... and then to top it off ... they had to come home and " just get on " with their lives ... get a job ... look after their families etc ... they weren't given the chance to grieve !

    No wonder my Granddad was an alcoholic .... him and thousands of others ... they had to take away the pain somehow !

    Very sobering !
  6. polldollagain

    polldollagain New Member

    Hi Glen and Annie ... nice to catch up with you .. It was the War Diaries that got me hooked too Annie ...whilst finding out what happened to husband's grandfather It really brought home the horror of it all ... It just seemed that until then it had all seemed very remote and unreal .... I've lost count of tears I've shed reading them ...and as no one else in the family seemed to know anything about him I felt a real duty and obligation to tell his story to my children and grandchildren . I am so glad I embarked on the journey as I have learned so much and it has made me appreciate the sacrifices made by a whole generation so much more...
  7. spidge

    spidge Active Member

    Re: What started me off?

    Welcome to the forum WAK!

    What a strong story of family participation in both world wars. I could not imagine the enormity of D-Day. Must have been a truly terrifying but fulfilling experience to have been part of that momentous period in history.


  8. forester

    forester New Member

    I think that I was always more interested in local history than family history (although I dabble in that too :D ).
    As a young boy, I was brought up on the edge of Ashdown Forest in Sussex. About half a mile away from our house, at that time in the middle of scrub-land, now in the middle of a golf course, there stood a small memorial constructed in the local sandstone. It commemorates a training camp which was only there for the duration of WW1. It was a place I was and still am drawn to. It's got that uneasy magic about it.

    I'm now determined to research it's history in as much detail as I can and it is the reason why you are more likely to find me on the "Home Front".

    I've put some pictures of the camp here:

    For some of the pictures I am indebted to an old neighbour from my childhood, who I recently made contact with and whose father trained at the camp. He knows more about the place than I will ever know.

  9. Emsworthy

    Emsworthy New Member

    Annie....three words - Private Ephraim Warner - you know him well!!

    I've since found out that my Gt Grandad served in WW1 and came through it and I have other more distant relatives that didn't, but somehow (and I don't know why), I'm affected more by Ephraim...perhaps it's the mystery surrounding him and the fact that he's been on my mind for the past decade or so...?!:rolleyes:
  10. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Hi Ems !

    Lovely to see you !! :D

    Oh yes ! I remember Ephraim .... ( and Henry too as a matter of fact !! :rolleyes: )

    Maybe we can help find some more of your family !!

    Annie :)
  11. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    I meant to tell you Phil ... I loved that website .... all techy and everything !! :D

    Seriously ... a lot of work there .... it's looking good !

    Annie :)
  12. forester

    forester New Member


    As I said to you before, one day when I don't get distracted (forums, Gorton :eek: ) I will put a website together. It's all there in my head, well in my dreams. In the meantime my ISP's freebie, ready made photo gallery will have to do. :D

    Phil :)
  13. Andy Pay

    Andy Pay Member

    Hmmmmmm where to start,
    I suppose it all started with my Grandfather, with whom I was fortunate to have taken my first few battlefield visits with. We started by visiting the sites where he saw action during WW1 and progressed from there, I must say that I was very lucky as his descriptions made the battlefield come alive. Whenever I now pass an area where we had visited together I always reflect on those visits and his descriptions and having done a little more research on the actions he talked about it only adds to his descriptions.
    I only wish that he was still with us with the knowledge I now have but a more gentler man you could never meet.

  14. Hill 40

    Hill 40 New Member

    No idea where it started really. My direct descendants were all either too young or too old to have taken any real part (Gt grandad was in the Boer war (though he did spend 3 months of 1917 in the army before being kicked out with a SWB!!!) and both grandads in WW2) and though some of their siblings were involved (quite heavily in a couple of cases), I didn't know of them until relatively recently. Can't say it's a "family thing" then, really!

    Something certainly started the interest though (after all, I must have been the only 5 year old on my street with Action men in uniforms altered to resemble WW1 and cardboard boxes after the weekly shopping expedition turned into A7V's!!!) but what, I don't know! Maybe a sub-concious memory of a family holiday in which the area of my grandad's war (which would have had to visit places such as the Somme (where he was billeted in 1939) and Arras (where he was wounded in 1940)) was visited when i was a very small child was instrumental? I honestly don't know, but I know I've always been fascinated with WW1 from a very young age (strangely though, that interest for me seems to have been waning for some reason over the past couple of years)
  15. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Sometimes "we" get a little blase about the knowledge we have Fritz ..... and the excitement and passion goes away for a while .... but then something sparks the interest .... and boy we're off again ! :D

    I seem to have come up with a few projects recently - that have started a whole new learning curve for me -

    and of course I love it when people like yourself and Andy are so generous with sharing your knowledge !!

    This is better than the "Learning Channel " here !!

    Annie :)
  16. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    I came across this Phil when I was looking for something else !! :rolleyes:

    Seems that there was a lot of Army and Air Force happenings there !

    Annie :)
  17. forester

    forester New Member

    That's my former home territory Annie. :)

    The Conservators ran an exhibition last summer called the Business of War. I just got to see it the last weekend it was open. They say it was very successful and are thinking of doing it again or putting up a permanent display. I've put my name down for contributing.

  18. sniper

    sniper Active Member

    Blimey where oh where to begin.

    I have always had an interest in WW1 and military history for as long as i remember. I guess i really got interested when i found out that three of of Gt Grandfathers' brother's and a nephew were killed during that war. Two were killed within a month of each other in 1915 and the other was killed on the first day of the Somme 1916. The nephew was killed at The Battle Of Jutland in 1917 aboard the Queen Mary. One of the brothers killed within a month of each other won the DCM but i am still trying to find out how he won that so hoping to be able to afford a copy of the Battalion War Diary on cd in the next few weeks. My Gt Grandfather fought during the Boer War and was pensioned out the army before the start of WW1 but i have since found out he went to Canada and joined the CEF where 6 months later he was kicked out for lying about his age and being a drunk. I found him again in 1917 gaining a commission into the Labour Corps but within 6 months he was court-marshalled and kicked out for being a drunk. I found out a couple of years ago that he had a bit of a fling with his brother's widow and got her in the family way. She was sent back to her family on Jersey and she had a daughter. I have been able to find that little off-shoot of the family and have actually spoken to the granddaughter of that little baby girl born in 1918. Of course it was against the law to marry your brothers widow so he was unable to do the gentlemanly thing but from what i believe he sent money back to her for the child.

    I have now found out why my Gt Grandfather was a drunk. Sometime between 1908 and 1914 he found out his wife had cancer and he couldn't bear to see her in so much pain and wasting away so he hit the bottle. It got to such a stage that i think she kicked him out and he just carried on drinking even more. I have found out that from the time he enlisted in the CEF he sent money back to her and the children right up until her death in 1915.

    I have now found why his brother won the DCM from the official regimental museum website.

    Company Sergeant Major Frederick Charles Lelliot DCM, number 8073, 1st King’s Own. KO1442/01
    “For gallant conduct and excellent work throughout the winter in the trenches. Company Sergeant Major Lelliot’s zeal, enterprise and example have had great effect on the men, and he has shown himself as always ready for any dangerous work, such as laying out wire entanglements, repairing parapets etc.”
    London Gazette 30 Jun 1915

    Just as an after-thought on adding more info my Gt Grandfather's son won the BEM for saving a pilot's life by pulling him from a crashed bomber at RAF Llanmaes in South Wales where he worked as a civilain engineer. He had previously worked with Barnes Wallis of Dambusters fame on the R100 project and flew to Canada on her trip there in 1929.
  19. Corky

    Corky New Member

    One of the most significant but understated aspects of any argument relating to the origins of The First World War is the factor of Oil. The arms race that had its start at the beginnig of the century had its prime mover in the construction of new naval fleets. By 1904 coal as a fuel for the ships in these fleets was being replaced by oil and it was seen also as the new "super" fuel in the technological and industrial changes being experienced by developed nations. It therefore became imperative for these nations to have control of oil resources round the world. The Americans and The Russians were self sufficient in oil with Russia being by far the biggest producer. The Austo-Hungarian Empire had oil in Romania. The French were actively exploring their possessions in North Africa and The British Empire had successfully negotiated supplies from Persian oil-fields. That left Germany in the precarious position of having to rely on The Ottoman Empire. When Germany proposed The Berlin to Baghdad Railway it insisted on the under-ground mineral rights for twenty kilometres on either side of the Railway when it entered Turkey and Northern Iraq having already had the evidence of oil confirmed along with the first wells opened at Mosul in 1888.
  20. joe curran

    joe curran New Member

    Elo Annie how u goin girl,nice to talk proper eh?we had words quite some time ago ,any way the folks on the long long trail ,found my grand dads wwi background his name Davd Patrick Walsh South lancs regt ,act sergeant promoted on the battle field lasted all through the war ,but i hasten to add he was affected by gas and passed on early in life.
    WW 1 My father was in the merchant navy fireman on board the white star liner the ALSATION she was taken over by the Royal Navy so ended up in a armed merchantman during the war ,He joined up in the army WW2 one of the many that escaped from Dunkirk finished up shooting at mines from a trawler,Mymother had six sons five in the forces ,one too young ,One daughter ,both mother and daughter working in R O Factory in Risely making munitions,one son pow of the japs one of the lads Churchill said had no chance in HongKong. google ,
    the sinking of the lisbon maru,lots of lads lost .cheers r kid,joe in oz

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