Remembered Today:

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
starstrike

Connaught Rangers Regiment?

17 posts in this topic

Hi there

I've been reading through the Forums for the last few days seeking information on the Connaught Rangers. My Great Grandfather was from Belfast and joined up soon after the outbreak of war. I think he was 17 or 18 at the time so no census information is available on him. From anecdoatal accounts, he was captured as a POW early in the war (I'm assuming within the first year ) after seeing action in Flanders. He spent the rest of the war in a P.O.W. camp (or perhaps was moved I don't know) where he survived Spainish Influenza and was one of very few men in his regiment to make it back home. I have his MIC card but it doesn't have much information apart from the fact that he was awarded his Victory and British medals but no Star. It lists his regiment number as 4035. I was wondering if anyone can help me piece this information together a little better, in particular I would like to find out what Battalion he was a member of, I can't seem to find him in any records. Is there any reliable way to link a regiment number to a battalion as I know they are a little confusing prior to 1922?

Thank you for your time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Starstrike

Please tell us his name.

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Starstrike.

Was he Catholic? I think I see a possible link on the 1911 census. Son of Josiah and Rose Ann Duffy of 42 Killown Street, Belfast. Aged 13.

In the 1901 census he's aged 3 and living at 78 Greenore Street, Belfast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually, I should have said: I'm assuming that he was Andrew Duffy 4035 Connaught Rangers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From your description the only Bn. which fits is the 6th Bn. -

http://www.1914-1918.net/connaught.htm

6th (Service) Battalion

Formed at Kilworth in September 1914 as part of K2 and attached to 47th Brigade in 16th (Irish) Division. Moved to Fermoy. Moved to England in September 1915, going to Blackdown.

18 December 1915 : landed in France.

13 April 1918 : reduced to cadre, almost 300 troops going to the 2nd Bn, the Leinster Regiment.

3 August 1918 : disbanded in France after brief spells under 34th and 39th Divisions.

He entered theatre after 31/12/1915 and the only Connaught Rangers in F&F at the time were the 6th.

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Correction - he has two MIC's. One with the BW & V Medal and a second showing entitlement to a 14-15 Star and entry to Theatre on 17/12/1915 -

http://www.nationala...=1&mediaarray=*

Definitely 6th Bn.

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The war diary is available from Documents online -

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documentsonline/details-result.asp?Edoc_Id=8199356&queryType=1&resultcount=1

16 DIVISION, 47 INFANTRY BRIGADE: 9 Battalion Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) 1918 May - 1919 Apr./ 6 Battalion Connaught Rangers 1915 Dec. - 1918 July/ 6 Battalion Royal Irish Regiment 1915 Dec. - 1918 Feb./ 7 Battalion Leinster Regiment 1915 Dec. - 1918 Feb./ 14 Battalion Leicestershire Regiment 1918 Aug. - 1919 Apr.

All for £3.50.

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think his regimental number would have him enlisting at the end of Feb / start of April 1915.

Regards Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! I can not thank you guys enough, Ulsterlad2 you are correct he was Andrew Duffy. I'm completley shocked at the wealth of information you guys were able to come up with I've been searching for a while and was obviously out of my depth! I downloaded the war diary and am still going through it, some amazing stuff to read. It's like you all have helped really cement a piece of my family history, thank you for your kindness and willingness to help! I'll post a little more when I have sorted through the information.

Once again, many thanks

Duffy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
From anecdoatal accounts, he was captured as a POW early in the war (I'm assuming within the first year ) after seeing action in Flanders. He spent the rest of the war in a P.O.W. camp (or perhaps was moved I don't know) where he survived Spainish Influenza and was one of very few men in his regiment to make it back home.

I have come across a reference to a Private Andrew Duffy from an Irish regiment who gave evidence regarding Sir R Casement's visit to Limburg (POW?) Camp entreating Irish POWs to form a battalion of the German Army. It gives the reference 'Pro WO 141/15 - Sir R Casement's visits to Limburg Camp'. I have tried to locate this document in both PRO Northern Ireland and TNA Kew websites, without success. Admittedly, I am hopeless at finding archived documents but maybe someone else on GWF can locate this document and throw some further light on Starstrike's thread.

Paul.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks John, I hope Starstrike sees your link and investigates further.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was wondering what happened with the 1st Bn Connaught's on 7th April 1915, are there any war diaries extant?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

7th April 1915. Rouge Croix.

Lieut-Colonel Ravenshaw C.M.G. appointed A.A. & Q.M.G. 1st Division and relinquishes command of the battalion, his departure being much regretted by all ranks. Lieut.-Colonel S.J. Murray assumes command of the Battalion.

Party of pioneers promised last night to repair the communications trench to the Advanced Post did not arrive and another party promised for tonight.

Sanitary conditions of the Advanced Post now much improved as dead cow and all dead bodies inside the Post have now been in some way disposed of. The dead round the post it is impossible to reach though efforts to drag them inside the post with a rope and bury them were made. But with such heavy sniping going on it is almost impossible to move at night.

C Coy in Right Fire Trench relieved by A Coy from billets. D Coy proceeds to billets.

1 killed. 2 wounded. 3 to hospital.

The man killed was as you know 4240 Pte. Malachy Furey.

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Paul (and Starstrike)

Class WO141 used to be a "closed" class at Kew, as most of the documents in it were restricted for more than the normal 30 years. The documents in it are not available online but can (I believe) now be inspected by visiting Kew in person.

Starstrike - if a man form Belfast joined the Connaught Rangers I would agree with Ulsterlad2 that he was probably a Catholic, or he would have been more likely to have joined one of the Ulster regiments. As you have already found out, researching a soldier's service is not a straightforward affair but there are a lot of people on the Forum who have followed the same path and are willing to share their shortcuts and hints with you.

Good hunting!

Ron

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

7th April 1915. Rouge Croix.

Lieut-Colonel Ravenshaw C.M.G. appointed A.A. & Q.M.G. 1st Division and relinquishes command of the battalion, his departure being much regretted by all ranks. Lieut.-Colonel S.J. Murray assumes command of the Battalion.

Party of pioneers promised last night to repair the communications trench to the Advanced Post did not arrive and another party promised for tonight.

Sanitary conditions of the Advanced Post now much improved as dead cow and all dead bodies inside the Post have now been in some way disposed of. The dead round the post it is impossible to reach though efforts to drag them inside the post with a rope and bury them were made. But with such heavy sniping going on it is almost impossible to move at night.

C Coy in Right Fire Trench relieved by A Coy from billets. D Coy proceeds to billets.

1 killed. 2 wounded. 3 to hospital.

The man killed was as you know 4240 Pte. Malachy Furey.

John

Dear John, Thanks so much for that. No I did not know that it was my relative who was k.i.a, I never read that excerpt before and only found out about him when looking for my Great-Great-Grandad (same name). Malachy is buried nearby at Laventie. I just wondered if that action had a name (battle of Neuve Chapelle, Aubers) the dates did not fit. I hope to visit his grave before the years end, I managed his cousin Patrick in August, but public transport stymied me. Once again Dia dhuit! K.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0