Just a pointer for those researching officers papers who haven't spotted it yet....
The National Archives have a reasonably new set of downloads that most people don't seem to be referring to yet.
The entire Index of the WO339 Officers Papers under the title "WO 338 War Office: Officers' Services, Index to Long Number Papers, 1870-1922", is now available as a series of 23 whoppingly large 100mb to 200mb size downloads.
For all of those of us searching for officers papers for Smiths, Browns, Martins, etc. we can now at least narrow down the files to look at!
The numbers quoted are NOT the modern file numbers but can be seen by opening the detailed file descriptions. You can usually gauge where to look on the list as the results on the NA Catalogue are by new file numbers which are generally in the same order as the Old ones (which the WO338 Index uses).
I'm looking for Harry Kingsley Percival Smith of the Northamptonshire Regiment (What else!?
Typing in H AND Smith into the Catalogue (with WO339 as the series), we get 219 entries, of which we can probably eliminate about 50 of those as they have other initials, etc., leaving about 150+ possibles! Oh, dear.
Anyway, with WO338/18 downloaded (183mb later....)http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documen...ject%20-%20free
From the PDF:
So, we can now look down the list (only a partial one, above!) (Note that the alphabetical order is by initials, so John Arthur Smith would come before James Reginald Smith in the listings...)
And we have a Harry Kingsley Percival Smith with a "48" notation, which is the 48th Regiment. (i.e. the old 1881 numbering system!) The one below that is the 5th battalion of the Northamptons (5/48).
From that his OLD reference is 163461.
I can't find any way of actually searching for this number in the Catalogue, but a rule of thumb for the higher numbers is to subtract about 70-90,000 from the old number.
So, we should be looking for a new number in the region of WO339/80000 to WO339/100000
So, page 8 of my results pages gives me the right whereabouts in the results, and a quick click on some likely numbers gives me, WO339/82153
Piece details WO 339/82153
WO 339 War Office: Officers' Services, First World War, Long Number Papers (numerical)
Subseries within WO 339 OFFICERS SERVICES (INCLUDING CIVILIAN DEPENDANTS, AND MILITARY STAFF APPOINTMENTS): LONG NUMBER PAPERS
Scope and content SMITH H
Covering dates [1914-1922]
Availability Open Document, Open Description, Normal Closure before FOI Act: 30 years
Former reference (Department) 163461
Held by The National Archives, Kew
And Bob's me auntie (I have some weird family history....
Also, note that Herbert Kendall Percy Smith has a P/ number next to his name - these are files retained by the MOD due to later service.
Hope this helps somebody,