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Harold Ernest Whiteman, 7 Reserve Squadron


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#1 Flakdodger

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 03:54 PM

Assistance would be appreciated please, with a local history project.

Harold Ernest Whiteman was killed 23 October 1916 on his first (solo?) flight, whilst serving with 7 Reserve Squadron, Salisbury Plain.
I have not been able to trace him at Kew, nor National Archives of Australia.
A biography of him can be viewed at http://www.ggs.wa.ed...s-Scholars.aspx
What type of aeroplanes were in use by the unit at that time?
Much obliged for any guidance,
Dave

#2 Starlight

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 09:27 PM

Hi Dave, 2nd Lt Whiteman was killed in a Maurice Farnam Shorthorn aircraft, serial number A949. The Shorthorn was a two-seater type often used as a trainer. As no-one else is listed as being killed in the accident, it is quite possible that he was flying solo.
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#3 john_g

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 10:32 PM

Airmen Died, says he was serving with the CFS and was attached to 8 Hampshire Regt.

I cannot see an AIR76 but WO 339/82015 is for a H Whiteman, this may be him. WO 339/82015 listings usually only give first initial so it will mean you need to request the file and check it.


WO 374/73904 is for a H E Whiteman, this could be your man?


From RFC Casualties and Honours During the War 1914-17

Whiteman. Lt H E RFC 24/10/16.
Lt H E Whiteman, RFC, was accidnetly killed near Parkhouse on October 24 1916. At the inquest Captain Collins said it was his first solo trip. He had successfully come through his duel tests, and was quite a capable pilot. The vol-planed from a great height to within 150 fteet of the ground , when it turned and nose-dived to earth.


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www.66squadron.co.uk

#4 Flakdodger

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 09:12 AM

Steve and John,
Gentlemen, that detail is exactly what I was after, I'm very much obliged.
I have noted the WO references for my next visit to Kew.
Although death occurred in Wiltshire he is buried in Bexhill Cemetery, presumably arranged by distant family. He has a private headstone rather than a CWGC headstone. It is very informative, giving unit and circumstance of death.
Once again, thanks,
Dave

#5 mickdavis

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 03:04 PM

I wonder whether the fact that Chris Hobson lists him as being with the CFS is because Netheravon was in the CFS & Netheravon Wing, that replaced 4th Wing in August 1916.

#6 Flakdodger

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 07:25 PM

Could well be Mick, the family's trail ends with him enlisting in The Inns of Court OTC. A photograph shows him with Hampshire Regiment cap badge.
Dave

#7 GJH

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 09:46 AM

Attached File  F_20LG.jpg   99.06KB   3 downloadsDave,



I thought you might like a picture of the Henry Farman F20 (shorthorn) and if you click on the link you will find a complete description of the aeroplane from the war factory. Rgds Graham

http://www.militaryf...aircraft_id=847

#8 Flakdodger

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 12:17 PM

Graham,
that is terrific, thank you.
We plan to visit Whiteman's grave on a forthcoming cemetery tour and this will be a grand illustration to display to the attendees.
Looks like a Bristol (British & Colonial Aeroplane Company) structure in the background.
Regards
Dave

#9 GJH

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 01:44 PM

Dave,

The picture was taken at Larkhill in 1913. I hope you have a good trip.


Rgds Graham

#10 centurion

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 02:07 PM

Attached File  F_20LG.jpg   99.06KB   3 downloadsDave,



I thought you might like a picture of the Henry Farman F20 (shorthorn) and if you click on the link you will find a complete description of the aeroplane from the war factory. Rgds Graham

http://www.militaryf...aircraft_id=847


This is incorrect. The Shorthorn was a Maurice Farman MF11 - not a Henry Farman


This is a Shorthorn

Attached File  Farman_Shorthorn_MF11.jpg   41.65KB   0 downloads

#11 centurion

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 03:12 PM

 The London Gazette has him commissioned in the Hampshires 21 April 1916 from IOCOTC. It does not record his transfer to the RFC but does record the transfer of a 2nd Lt. F. H. Whiteman, Spec. Res to the RFC on 4th May 1916 The Gazette date for his commission  ties in with his school history 

#12 Flakdodger

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 10:28 AM

Thank you for the correction, Centurion. I wish now that I had paid more attention to Uncle Phil Jarrett and genned up on pre-war types!
Dave

#13 GJH

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 11:09 AM

The problem is that according to "RAF Squadrons" by Wing Commander C.G. Jefford No7 Squadron were never equipped with any SHORTHORN aircraft, they did however have Henry Farman F20 aircraft, which is very similar in appearance.

The picture I posted earlier is of the Henry Farman F20 . aircraft of the type used by No 7 squadron.

the complete list of aircraft used by 7 Squadron upto 1919 is :-

on Formation on 1 may 1914 Longhorn, BE8, Tabloid, Henry Farman F20, Morane H, Bleriot XI, Avro Type E, Vickers FB 'gun carrier', RE5, Voisin LA, Bristol Scout, BE2c,Morane LA, BE2d, BE2e, BE2f, BE2g, RE8.

I have attached a picture of the Farman Longhorn MF7 for the complete picture.Attached File  farman_mf-7.jpg   24.38KB   1 downloads

Regards

Graham

#14 mickdavis

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 11:37 AM

I think there's some confusion between 7 Squadron and 7 Reserve Squadron, both of which had Netheravon as a base, although 7 Squadron was operational in France at the time of Whiteman's accident.

7 RESERVE AEROPLANE/RESERVE/TRAINING SQUADRON RFC/RAF
Bases
Formed in 4th Wing at Netheravon 28.7.1915. Designated as an Elementary Reserve Squadron and establishment at 23.12.1916 set at 18 MF. Function changed late 1917 to become a TS for BF pilots and re-equipped with BE2e, RE8 and F2B. To Witney and 21st Wing 30.4.1918. Disbanded into 33 TDS at Witney 15.8.1918.
Representative Aeroplanes
Airco DH6 A9688.
Avro 504 784.
Avro 504A/J 4028, 4745.
AW FK2 5328, 5330, 5334.
Bristol F2B B873, B8930.
Curtiss JN3 5636, 5910.
Martinsyde S.1 5449.
MF Se.7 358, 499, 549, 546, 4019, 6708, 6711.
MF Se.11 7371, 7372, A2193, A2462, A7002, A7054, A7055, A7062, B1953, B1986, B1994, B4743.
RAF BE2c 1681, 1795.
RAF BE2e B6176.
RAF BE8a 2138, 2150, 2151, 2152, 2160.
RAF RE5 2457.
RAF RE8 A4500, A4502, A4504.
Sopwith Camel C108.

#15 centurion

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 12:07 PM

The problem is that according to "RAF Squadrons" by Wing Commander C.G. Jefford No7 Squadron were never equipped with any SHORTHORN aircraft, they did however have Henry Farman F20 aircraft, which is very similar in appearance.

The picture I posted earlier is of the Henry Farman F20 . aircraft of the type used by No 7 squadron.

the complete list of aircraft used by 7 Squadron upto 1919 is :-

on Formation on 1 may 1914 Longhorn, BE8, Tabloid, Henry Farman F20, Morane H, Bleriot XI, Avro Type E, Vickers FB 'gun carrier', RE5, Voisin LA, Bristol Scout, BE2c,Morane LA, BE2d, BE2e, BE2f, BE2g, RE8.

I have attached a picture of the Farman Longhorn MF7 for the complete picture.Attached File  farman_mf-7.jpg   24.38KB   1 downloads

Regards

Graham

The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing) J M Bruce lists all the squadrons equipped with the Henry Farman F20 - No 7 is not amongst them. Training squadrons at Upavon that did were nos 2,3,4,6,8,9,10,19,24 and 27. It also lists all those equipped with the Maurice Farman Mf 11 shorthorn No7 reserve squadron is amongst the training squadrons that is (and also had MF 7 Longhorns)


I would disagree that the Henry and Maurice Farmans were very similar in appearance - apart from both being pushers and biplanes they are utterly disimilat . The HF has the nacelle attached to the lower wing - in the MF it is between the wings, The HF was essentially a 2 bay biplane and the MF 3 bay, The HF had a single rudder and a high set tail plane - the MF had twin rudders and a low set tail plane - I could go on.



#16 centurion

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 12:12 PM

I think there's some confusion between 7 Squadron and 7 Reserve Squadron, both of which had Netheravon as a base, although 7 Squadron was operational in France at the time of Whiteman's accident.

7 RESERVE AEROPLANE/RESERVE/TRAINING SQUADRON RFC/RAF
Bases
Formed in 4th Wing at Netheravon 28.7.1915. Designated as an Elementary Reserve Squadron and establishment at 23.12.1916 set at 18 MF. Function changed late 1917 to become a TS for BF pilots and re-equipped with BE2e, RE8 and F2B. To Witney and 21st Wing 30.4.1918. Disbanded into 33 TDS at Witney 15.8.1918.
Representative Aeroplanes
Airco DH6 A9688.
Avro 504 784.
Avro 504A/J 4028, 4745.
AW FK2 5328, 5330, 5334.
Bristol F2B B873, B8930.
Curtiss JN3 5636, 5910.
Martinsyde S.1 5449.
MF Se.7 358, 499, 549, 546, 4019, 6708, 6711.
MF Se.11 7371, 7372, A2193, A2462, A7002, A7054, A7055, A7062, B1953, B1986, B1994, B4743.
RAF BE2c 1681, 1795.
RAF BE2e B6176.
RAF BE8a 2138, 2150, 2151, 2152, 2160.
RAF RE5 2457.
RAF RE8 A4500, A4502, A4504.
Sopwith Camel C108.


Neither No 7 or 7 reserve appear to have had the Henry Farman




#17 GJH

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 02:19 PM

Don't shoot the messenger, I am quoting from a very well respected tome Namely "RAF Squadrons" by Wing Commander C.G. Jefford where he lists the Henry Farman F20 as an aeroplane used by 7 Sqn on its formation in 1914.

Sorry if this dosen't fit with your reference material.:unsure:

I can't add any further clarification.

#18 ShirlD

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 03:00 PM

Graham,
that is terrific, thank you.
We plan to visit Whiteman's grave on a forthcoming cemetery tour and this will be a grand illustration to display to the attendees.
Looks like a Bristol (British & Colonial Aeroplane Company) structure in the background.
Regards
Dave


This thread is of great interest to me, as Harold Ernest Whitemen is one of my 'lads', I work at the school and we had a special Anzac ceremony last year, especially remembering the Fallen in the Great War. This year the emphasis will be on WW2, with relatives as special guests for the ceremony. We are commemorating those who have died in all wars, leading up to 2015.
Please place a flower on his grave for us, it is lovely that you are visiting him.
:poppy:
Shirley

#19 Flakdodger

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 08:18 PM

Mick, thanks for the details of 7TS. What was your reference? I tend to use Jeff Jefford's books for (regular - if that is the term) Squadrons. I never did purchase Jack Bruce's 'The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing)' - was it from that?
Shirley - of course we shall be delighted to leave a floral tribute when we visit this summer. You will be pleased to know that the grave is in very good order and not derelict as some are. I found a very detailed account of his schooling at www.trove.nla.gov.au - but of course, if you work at his school, you have got all that at your fingertips. Silly me! I will PM you.
Cheers to all
Dave

#20 ShirlD

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 06:00 AM

Thanks Dave, it is good to know his grave is being looked after.
I understand there is a good conversation happening around the aircraft and squadrons, hope you don't mind me adding a few other l details I have in some notes :)
He was obviously quite a character. Letters of his survive in the School Archives. The School magazine 'The Swan' December 1916 reports the news of his death:

"The news that Harold Ernest Whitemand had been killed as a result of an aeroplane accident in England came as a great shock to all. Whiteman joined the school in 1908 ....
he became the Rhodes Scholar for this State in 1915. He remained with us until the time came for him to proceed to Oxford and report there, and he attached himself to Exeter College, before joining the Inns of Court training corps. In March he received his commission, in a Hants regiment, later being transferred to the 4th Hants, and was under orders to proceed to Fance at the end of July when this was cancelled and the regiment was ordered to proceed to India. Whiteman, who had all the time felt that he was not having the same risks as others of his school-fellows, was bitterly disappointed that he was destined for garisson duty in India and obtained a transfer to the Royal Flying Corps. In the flying school near Reading he obtained a 'very good', and in his last letter tells some of his experiences and the risks involved in training for flying. Old boys in England saw Whiteman at the beginning of October, and we heard on October 23rd that he had been killed. Almost the same day a donation of 2 pounds was received from him for the Athletic Sports Funds, but the committee felt that it would be a pity to apply this money to ordinary sports prizes, and decided to use it for placing an enlarged portrait of Lieut. Whiteman in the Library.
May God grant to all the faithful, rest and peace".

I laughed at a comment of his in a letter when he had been promoted to 2nd Lieutenant with the 2nd Battalion of the 8th Hampshire Regiment with a rise of 10 shillings per day. In May he was transferred to Newtown, on the Isle of Wight, to do musketry shooting and bombing. He claimed his success at throwing bombs was 'due, no doubt, to the fact that I was a fast bowler in cricket!'. He also found being commanded to grow a moustache frustrating 'it's a deuced nuisance as you know. I hate all idea of moustaches. However, it has to be done. I am jolly glad the photo has been taken before the order came out'.
Not Forgotten

Cheers
Shirley

#21 centurion

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:21 AM

Mick, thanks for the details of 7TS. What was your reference? I tend to use Jeff Jefford's books for (regular - if that is the term) Squadrons. I never did purchase Jack Bruce's 'The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing)' - was it from that?
Shirley - of course we shall be delighted to leave a floral tribute when we visit this summer. You will be pleased to know that the grave is in very good order and not derelict as some are. I found a very detailed account of his schooling at www.trove.nla.gov.au - but of course, if you work at his school, you have got all that at your fingertips. Silly me! I will PM you.
Cheers to all
Dave


The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing) does not contain lists of types by unit. What is does for every aircraft described is list all units that used the type and in what theatre together with the range of serial numbers (including renumberings) assigned to the type. It is very thorough (for example it provides the individual serial numbers of Henry Farman F20s equipping those squadrons that did have them in 1914) and makes it very easy to check if a particular squadron used a particular type - even if only briefly. Neither no 7 squadron nor reserve squadron 7 are shown as using the Henry Farman F20. Indeed checking all the 4 types of Farman used by the RFC neither of these units used any type of Henry Farman nor did they use the Graham White 'copy' of the Henry Farman. However No 7 squadron does appear to have had a Maurice Farman MF7 Longhorn when first formed. I imagine that is the source of Jefford's error.


In any case it seems clear that your man was in a Maurice Farman MF11 Shorthorn when killed. The Henry Farman F20 was never referred to as a Shorthorn.


#22 GJH

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 03:21 PM

The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps (Military Wing) does not contain lists of types by unit. What is does for every aircraft described is list all units that used the type and in what theatre together with the range of serial numbers (including renumberings) assigned to the type. It is very thorough (for example it provides the individual serial numbers of Henry Farman F20s equipping those squadrons that did have them in 1914) and makes it very easy to check if a particular squadron used a particular type - even if only briefly. Neither no 7 squadron nor reserve squadron 7 are shown as using the Henry Farman F20. Indeed checking all the 4 types of Farman used by the RFC neither of these units used any type of Henry Farman nor did they use the Graham White 'copy' of the Henry Farman. However No 7 squadron does appear to have had a Maurice Farman MF7 Longhorn when first formed. I imagine that is the source of Jefford's error.


In any case it seems clear that your man was in a Maurice Farman MF11 Shorthorn when killed. The Henry Farman F20 was never referred to as a Shorthorn.

I take it you do no believe the information pubilished in the RAF Squadrons book and I quote again "a comprehensive record of the movement and equipment of ALL RAF squadrons and their antecedents since 1912" by Jefford MBE RAF when he clearly states Henry Farman F20 aircraft being used by 7 squadron. He does not include any "shorthorn" aircraft as being in service with 7 squadron, although as stated in my earlier post they did use "longhorn" aircraft.Perhaps The Aeroplanes of the Royal Flying Corps is mistaken who knows, certainly not me thats for sure, perhaps a third tome can corrobate wih either of the above, or perhaps the squadron history if someone has access to it.:whistle:

#23 Trevor Henshaw

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 08:12 PM

Thanks Dave, it is good to know his grave is being looked after.
I understand there is a good conversation happening around the aircraft and squadrons, hope you don't mind me adding a few other l details I have in some notes :)
He was obviously quite a character. Letters of his survive in the School Archives. The School magazine 'The Swan' December 1916 reports the news of his death:

"The news that Harold Ernest Whitemand had been killed as a result of an aeroplane accident in England came as a great shock to all. Whiteman joined the school in 1908 ....
he became the Rhodes Scholar for this State in 1915. He remained with us until the time came for him to proceed to Oxford and report there, and he attached himself to Exeter College, before joining the Inns of Court training corps. In March he received his commission, in a Hants regiment, later being transferred to the 4th Hants, and was under orders to proceed to Fance at the end of July when this was cancelled and the regiment was ordered to proceed to India. Whiteman, who had all the time felt that he was not having the same risks as others of his school-fellows, was bitterly disappointed that he was destined for garisson duty in India and obtained a transfer to the Royal Flying Corps. In the flying school near Reading he obtained a 'very good', and in his last letter tells some of his experiences and the risks involved in training for flying. Old boys in England saw Whiteman at the beginning of October, and we heard on October 23rd that he had been killed. Almost the same day a donation of 2 pounds was received from him for the Athletic Sports Funds, but the committee felt that it would be a pity to apply this money to ordinary sports prizes, and decided to use it for placing an enlarged portrait of Lieut. Whiteman in the Library.
May God grant to all the faithful, rest and peace".

I laughed at a comment of his in a letter when he had been promoted to 2nd Lieutenant with the 2nd Battalion of the 8th Hampshire Regiment with a rise of 10 shillings per day. In May he was transferred to Newtown, on the Isle of Wight, to do musketry shooting and bombing. He claimed his success at throwing bombs was 'due, no doubt, to the fact that I was a fast bowler in cricket!'. He also found being commanded to grow a moustache frustrating 'it's a deuced nuisance as you know. I hate all idea of moustaches. However, it has to be done. I am jolly glad the photo has been taken before the order came out'.
Not Forgotten

Cheers
Shirley


Shirley,

That's a most evocative set of reminiscences and reflections - a brave, spritely and intelligent lad, to be sure. Thanks for sharing them.

Trevor

#24 Trevor Henshaw

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 08:21 PM

For those interested in the aircraft of 7 Squadron RFC in its early days, ie the one that went to France in April 1915, these are the aircraft I have that were used by them before they went to France.

No.7 Sqn RFC Pre War and until April 1915 in UK
BE2a 667
BE2b 492
BE8 373
Bleriot XI 297, 323, 681
MFSH 343
MFLH 223, 338, 355, 358, 360, 495, 501
RE5 335, 361, 677, 678, 688, 2458
Sopwith Tabloid 392, 394
Vickers FB4 664
Vickers FB5 649, 682, 686, 1617

They began service in France with two Vickers FB5s and seven RE5s.

The 7 Sqn UK aircraft serials largely come from a log book at Hendon (Lt FP Adams), Jack Bruce's Serial Ledgers, Bruce Robertson's Serial Ledgers, and an article in US Cross and Cockade Vol.22 - I think this was a Sqn history.

Regards,

Trevor

#25 Flakdodger

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 08:27 PM

Grateful for the description of Bruce's book. Kicking myself now, as in the past my aviation interests had been elsewhere.
Wonderful description by Shirley. The handful of photos do not show a moustache.

I will take a photo of the grave and post it up in the coming week.
Dave