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Skipman

,Pioneers Battalions

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Bart150

Was this concept of one battalion (out of 13 or later 10) in a division having the pioneer role used in other armies, eg French, German?

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Colin W Taylor

George - I'm wishing I hadn't read it either now. I'll stick to digging out war diaries. Regards, Colin

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dycer

Colin,
The Battalion History I quote from was printed in a local Newspaper shortly after the War ended i.e.separated the unvarnished fact from telling a story that will sell papers.
WW1 War Diaries tell a one-sided truth e.g..they never reveal the murder of "one of their own" or do they?.
WW1 fiction entertains but should not never be challenged for authenticity.apart from on this Forum.
In my view.
But then again I was "introduced" to WW1 by my Parents, by being encouraged to read "Biggles",as a school-boy, not for historical accuracy but for spoken and written English exam purposes. :D
George

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Ron Clifton

Was this concept of one battalion (out of 13 or later 10) in a division having the pioneer role used in other armies, eg French, German?

It doesn't seem to have been, according to the orders of battle I have seen.

But there was a difference between the French and Germans, who had an age-structured conscription system of regular and various reserve units, and the British, whose infantry battalions were not so age-structured and where the philosophy was to try to bring all battalions up top the regular level.

The French and Germans therefore had older reserve or Landwehr/Landsturm units which could be used on duties comparable to the British pioneer battalions.

Ron

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m.michelson

I am researching my ancestor: Andrew William Michelson. He served in the New Zealand Pioneer Battalion in WW1. I have a picture of him taken "while convalescing" in England. The badge, hat and QSA medal ribbon is very clear.Strangely, he is not on the nomination rolls of this regiment however, my reading has revealed that as a "pakeha" he must have been in the B Company (an all Pakeha/ European) company from 1917. Can anyone help me to access the roles/ lists of those injured soldiers that were sent to convalesce at "Sling Camp" or any other camp in England? I am desperate since his grandson is 84 years old and poorly. He never saw his grandfather who survived Gallipolli and the Somme then returned to Australia and married bigamously leaving 3 progeny and a wife in South Africa. The smallest nudge in a direction that would help me confirm his membership of the NZ Pioneer Battalion or his stay in a hospital in England with other NZ or Australian forces-perhaps would help.

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dycer

M,

Welcome to the Forum.

You state in the first line of your post that Andrew "served in a NZ Pioneer Battalion" but later ask if the Forum can confirm his "WW1 service" in a NZ Pioneer Battalion.

It will help the Forum experts, if you give his pre-War known details,if any,i.e.date and place of birth,pre-War address,etc

George

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woronora

Hi M

There is no mention of a Andrew William Michelson in either the Auckland Museum Cenotaph Database, at http://muse.aucklandmuseum.com/databases/Cenotaph/locations.aspx, which contains a list those personnel who served with NZ Forces in all the conflicts it has been involved in, nor the NZ National Archives, at http://www.archway.archives.govt.nz.

Perhaps he enlisted under a different name.

Regards

John

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generalist

One more data point for the original discussion: 20th (Light) Division was formed with thirteen battalions, the only "line" unit being the 12th Kings, which was kept as a divisional unit. (I'm not quite sure why it was added in, beyond presumably having formed some spare battalions...)

When it was decided to form a pioneer battalion at the end of 1914, they rotated the 12th Kings into one of the infantry brigades in place of 11th DLI, which was pulled out to become pioneers on the grounds that it was mostly miners (raised around Newcastle).

Andrew.

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Rocketman

Ref 11th Battalion Hampshire Regiment Pioneers.


My Grandfather William Joseph Wright was in the Hampshire Regiment, and as I have his 16th Irish Division shoulder badge, I guess he was in 11th Battalion Pioneers. I also have his shoulder titles for Royal Engineers. His Regimental number was 41437, and I know he joined in 10/04/1916 and served until 15/04/1919, as a private or lance corporal? (We have a photo and there seems to be one stripe on his left arm) His medal card states - Rank, Private. From a postcard home I know he was in Rouen for Christmas 1918.

Before & after he joined up, he worked for GWR railways, so I imagine this expertise may have been used in the Pioneers?
I have found his medal card, & I have his medals, but am unable to find any other information about him or his time in France.

Did the Pioneers also have RE units within them or were they only in their own Field Companies?

How would he have RE shoulder titles as a Pioneer?

I would be very grateful if someone would put me on the right track.

Jeremy

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Terry_Reeves

Jeremy

In 1917, some 8,000 REs were transferred to infantry pioneer battalions. Three months later the majority were all returned to the RE, for reasons I have not fathomed yet. This might explain your grandfather''s situation. Just as an aside, the Quartermasters must have been spitting feathers.

TR

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