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#1 ddycher

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 08:57 AM

All

Recently came across a ref where a territorial officer who went to India in October 1914 had his wife with him by 1916. Was this common ? How did it work ? Would have thought this would have been seriously frowned upon.

Any thoughts ?

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dave

#2 centurion

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 09:41 AM

All

Recently came across a ref where a territorial officer who went to India in October 1914 had his wife with him by 1916. Was this common ? How did it work ? Would have thought this would have been seriously frowned upon.

Any thoughts ?

Regards
dave

Would probably depend on his rank. There was the old mantra for regiments in India. Lts should not marry, Captains may marry, Majors must marry. I think the degree of frown or non frown would be similar. Married quarters were available for majors but I think anyone else had to arrange and finance it themselves.

#3 seany

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 05:04 PM

http://1914-1918.inv...l=&fromsearch=1

there is a bit on this link I started but never concluded satisfactorily.

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#4 CGM

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 06:52 PM

Have you looked at the 1911 census sheets for all the wives and children in India at the same time as your territorial officer, to see how many others were there before his wife joined him?

(Although I'm not sure how relevant these figures would be when it came to 1916 and war time but it would be a start....)

CGM



#5 centurion

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 07:16 PM

Figures for the wreck of the troopship Warren Hastings in the Indian Ocean in 1897 may give a pointer. There were 961 men and officers on board with 7 officers wives, 13 OR wives and 10 children

#6 ddycher

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 09:22 AM

Thanks for this. Understand in the pre-war years this was fairly common with officers of rank but was surprised that a Capt (a territorial at that) was able to wangle it during wartime. Am learning all the time here. Have another example where an officer had hounds sent out from UK so he could open a breeding kennel in India.

Not implying that wives and dogs are in anyway comparable you understand but ....

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Dave

#7 bushfighter

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 09:38 AM

Dave
I think that it is important to distinguish between regular army units serving in India, who had their own regulations based on peace-time procedures, and the war time Territorial units.

I will be surprised if many or even any Territorials were officially allowed to be "married accompanied".

Did he marry her in India?

Did she get out to India on her own through family or other connections?

Was he a staff officer in a headquarters that allowed him to "wangle" it?

Keep researching please - it is a very interesting point.

Harry

#8 ddycher

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 10:31 AM

Harry

Definately a territorial - he was Adjt of the 1/6th Devons - and never as far as I can tell served on Staff.
Had not even considered that he might have married her in India, will look into that and post if I find anything.

Regards
Dave

#9 LST_164

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 12:40 PM

Dave
Willing to be corrected, but I have an idea that pre-war TF battalions had Regular officers attached to them as Adjutants in the same way that Regular NCOs were attached as Permanent Staff Instructors or the equivalent.

What is this chap's commissioning history?

Clive

#10 ddycher

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Posted 28 December 2011 - 12:01 AM

Harry / Clive

Thanks for the feedback.

Digging a little deeper he married in 1904. His obituary states his wife joined him in India whilst he was stationed at Lahore. She remained there when he went to Mesopotamia at the beginning of January with the 6th Devons and was still there when he was killed in action on the 8th March.

Clive - he had been a professional soldier (a Lieut in the Argyl's) but had resigned his commission due to health reasons. After leaving the army he joined the 6th Devons and spent approx. 4 years with them before retiring in 1910. He rejoined from the Territorial Reserve in Aug. 1914 and was appointed Adjt before the unit shipped to India.

So she definately joined him in India when he was a serving territorial officer there. Still cant help wondering how common this was.

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Dave

#11 Heid the Ba'

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:00 PM

My first thought echoed Bushfighter, that the lady had an Indian connection, particularly as she stayed on after the battalion left.

#12 TonyWBaxter

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 11:18 PM

All

Recently came across a ref where a territorial officer who went to India in October 1914 had his wife with him by 1916. Was this common ? How did it work ? Would have thought this would have been seriously frowned upon.

Any thoughts ?

Regards
dave



#13 TonyWBaxter

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 11:37 PM

Hi Dave
My grand dad No 9274 Sgt James Edgar Baxter served in the 2nd Batt King's Liverpool Regt. They spent all the First World War in India.
I beleve he joined up in 1908. Born in Yorkshire he married his Yorkshire born wife in 1912. He took his wife out to India as it was then. He was stationed around Peshwar. They had three sons born out there in 1914, 1916 and 1918. My dad was the middle one in 1916. His christening certificate states that it is recorded in the Regimental Records. I also found the ships log for Konigin Louise which names gran, dad and my uncles as passengers comming home in 1919. Not sure when and how grand dad came home. How I wish I'd asked questions long ago!

Tony Baxter

#14 Stoppage Drill

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 12:01 AM

All

Recently came across a ref where a territorial officer who went to India in October 1914 had his wife with him by 1916. Was this common ? How did it work ? Would have thought this would have been seriously frowned upon.

Any thoughts ?

Regards
dave


Really can't see why not. No restrictions on civilians travelling to India. Do you know she travelled out there during the war, or was she perhaps already there ?



Chap on my village war memorial, Captain Michael Hicks-Beach (Viscount Quenington) went to Egypt with Royal Gloucestershire Hussars, T.F.had his wife living in Cairo. Served at Suvla. He was mortally wounded at Katya, a lance corporal who had been second whipper-in with the Beaufort brought him in, but he died. His wife (one of the Dent-Brocklehursts) arranged for his body to be brought back to Cairo, where she herself died a couple of months later, and I believe they are buried side by side in a Protestant cemetery in Cairo.

#15 ddycher

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 04:42 AM

Thanks.

For me this was the point that I was missing. Had wrongly thought that on the declaration of war civilian travel would have been curtailed or atleast seriously limited but now seems that if you had the funds travel was still fairly open. Atleast the now seems to be the case to and from India.

Regards
Dave

#16 battiscombe

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 09:49 AM

I have encountered in some RFA papers requests for passage 'back' to India of wives of NCOs/ORs, who may have come back to England in 1914, but their husbands had been posted back to Middle East/Mesopotamia/India. So the possibility had certainly existed - the issue being assistance with the fare. What I cant remember was whether they did get travel warrants (or equivalent..)

#17 bushfighter

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 07:02 PM

The 2nd Bn The Loyal North Lancashires started the war as part of the British troops in India, it was a married accompanied posting for those lucky enough to qualify for married quarters.

The Bn then deployed to East Africa, from there to Egypt, and finally to France.

The Bn Depot was moved back to UK whilst the Bn was in Africa, and the officially approved wives enjoyed free passages back to UK.
(Whether they all enjoyed married quarters in the UK when they got there is not known.)

Some wives stayed in India by choice - some probably came from Anglo-Indian families and had never left India, and perhaps they were not regarded as being "officially approved" wives. (Getting "married accompanied" status was not automatic for a married soldier.)

Many years later I believe that some welfare activity was necessary for some of the wives that had stayed on in India - perhaps they had been widowed or abandoned, and had never been officially recognised as being dependents by the military authorities.

Harry

#18 ddycher

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 10:33 AM

Thanks Harry.

Interesting insight. I have some interest in the 2nd LNL from their time in the 75th Division. Had never come across any refs to they having left wives in India before. Will take another look.

The following from Hansard was interesting also :

TROOPS IN MESOPOTAMIA (OFFICERS' WIVES).

HC Deb 03 March 1921 vol 138 cc2032-3W2032W

žSir C. YATE asked the Secretary of State for India what provision was made for the wives of officers who were sent back to India from Mesopotamia last autumn?
2033W

žSir A. WILLIAMSON I have been asked to reply. The officers' wives have been accommodated and messed at Deolali under arrangements made by the Government of India. I am informed by the Commander-in-Chief that the cost of messing is about one-third the hotel charges.


Proving to be an interesting side line in my research. Puts a more personal touch on the men and the battalions in India.

Many thanks
Dave

#19 ddycher

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 03:21 AM

All

Came across further ref's to men in the battalions (in this case the 5th Devons) having wives with them whilst at Dalhousie as early as June 1915. Means wives must have headed out to India soon after the TF battalions were stationed. Still have no real sense on how many were there, or for how long, but for sure more common that I initially thought.

Anybody have any further insights on this ?

Regards
Dave

#20 Mike Donoghue

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Posted 07 October 2012 - 04:01 PM

An interesting topic. If I remember correctly, the way it was explained to me was, enlisted men had to serve seven years before they could marry. Also, that one would have to apply to be included in the Marriage Roll. I am assuming not too many, if any, enlisted men made it onto the Roll, most, if not all, opeings being taken up by the officers. Defying the seven year rule would certainly preclude one from being considered for the Marriage Roll.

My grandfather was single when he served more than four years in India. What I am wondering is ... assuming an enlisted man followed marriage regulations, and was married prior to deployment to India, what sort of leave would he be entitled to?

I understand the trip from Karachi to England was an arduous three week journey, (on a troop ship) one you would make as infrequently as possible.

Could a soldier save up his leave, and use it when he had enough to complete the return journey and have some time at home?

Just wondering how that all worked. I am assuming he wouldn't see his wife until he completed his posting to India.

Sorry to jump in with the above questions, I considered a separate post, but thought my addition was closely enough related.

Regards,

Mike

#21 ddycher

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 02:44 PM

Came across another example of this whilst going through old newspapers today. A wife (Mrs H.S. Reavel of Barnstaple) of an officer of the 1/6th Devons serving in India arrived in India in January 1916 only to find that her husband had just shipped out to Mesopotamia on active service.

Seems this was more common than I had imagined.

Regards
Dave

#22 Maureene

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 06:42 AM

The autobiography Under Ten Viceroys: the Reminiscences of a Gurkha by Major-General Nigel Woodyatt recounts how the author was in London on leave from the Indian Army at the onset of the War and was posted back to India, but was told he could not take his wife. However at that time there were no official travel restrictions about "ladies' passages to India" so his wife travelled to India on the same ship under an assumed name.

http://www.archive.org/stream/undertenviceroys00woodiala#page/207/mode/1up (bottom of page 207)

Cheers
Maureen


#23 ddycher

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 08:37 AM

Thanks Maureen. Paints quite a different picture doesnt it ? Seems that this was still relatively common throughout 1915.

Regards
Dave



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