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  #1  
Old 13-09-17, 11:08 AM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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Default RESEARCH GUIDANCE REQUEST PLEASE HELP

I would much appreciate any guidance from members regarding reseach into two Middle East Commando knives:

One bears the inscription:
Capt Emery 12633

The other
Major Emery 12633

No initials, or parent regiment are given.

This second item has some further illegible ink detail on the scabbard strap, it is possible one word reads 'Arab' but this is not certain.

Having looked through the London Gazette, there is a potential reference to our man as follows:

The undermentioned, from R.A.O.C. (No. 2
Officer Cadet Training Wing), to be 2nd Lts.
*6th Apr. 1940:

Cpl. Alan Harry Augustus EMERY
(126533).

It is interesting that the Service Number of Cpl Emery - per this reference (126533) - has just one extra digit than on the knives (12633).

I wondered if this could be the same Emery, given the same Surname and repetition of all but one digit of Service Number.

Does any one know what practice was adopted regarding Service Numbers when an 'other rank' was commissioned?

Many thanks for any thoughts

Mike

------------------------------------------------------

For completion and interest only:
Having looked further at the London Gazette I also find the service number 12633 with the following references:

H.L.I.
Capt. J. A. E. Ralston (12633), to be Bt.
Maj. 2nd Sept. 1941.

To be Additional Officers of the Military Division of
the said Most Excellent Order:
Captain and Brevet Major (temporary Major) John
Alexander Eben Ralston (12633), retired pay,
The. Highland Light Infantry (City of Glasgow
Regiment) (Res. of Off.) (Lewes, Sussex).

There are several other references.

.................................................. .

Any clarification would be gratefully appreciated

Mike
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  #2  
Old 13-09-17, 02:15 PM
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Hello Mike,

I'm afraid I can't help in regards the research aspect but do have experience with this knives. If you would like to post images or if you prefer (for privacy) to email me some photographs, I will be happy to take a look.

Cheerio,

Roy

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  #3  
Old 13-09-17, 02:55 PM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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Hello Roy
I do not have images at present but would certainly appreciate your thoughts in due course.
Many thanks for your interest, it is appreciated
Mike
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  #4  
Old 13-09-17, 02:56 PM
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Mike,

You might like to look at this link:
http://www.generals.dk/general/Ralst...t_Britain.html

Jon
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  #5  
Old 13-09-17, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B View Post
Hello Roy
I do not have images at present but would certainly appreciate your thoughts in due course.
Many thanks for your interest, it is appreciated
Mike
Hi Mike,

You are most welcome, always happy to help. Feel free to contact me/or send me images anytime time.

Cheerio,

Roy
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  #6  
Old 13-09-17, 03:49 PM
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The Army List for April 1944 lists Temp Capt AHA Emery as RAOC, specially employed.

He also turns up briefly in Burke's Peerage see
http://www.thepeerage.com/p37153.htm#c371530.1

Jon
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  #7  
Old 13-09-17, 04:07 PM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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Jon
Fantastic help ... I think you are on to something
'Specially Employed' is a euphanism that would appear to ring true.
I am finding it incredibly difficult to pin him down.
It looks like we may have some confirmation of the correct initials now at least.
Thanks
Mike

PS - I had spotted the brief reference in Burke's but could not get any where with it.
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  #8  
Old 13-09-17, 04:07 PM
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More grist to the research mill.

Jon
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Ralston for Mike beckett.jpg (100.5 KB, 33 views)
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  #9  
Old 13-09-17, 04:31 PM
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And more...

36 Beach Brick. Formed on 20 July 1943 at Kabrit in Egypt around the dismounted men of 8th Royal Tank Regiment. The brick was sent to Palestine in August, around plans for capture of Rhodes in late 1943. This was cancelled and the Brick transferred to the UK in early 1944. By this time, 8th Royal Tank Regiment had left the Brick and been re-equipped with tanks; 18th Durham Light Infantry took their place. For the Normandy landings, the Brick was in reserve for Gold.

Composition (Normandy)[30]
Unit
18th Battalion Durham Light Infantry
Royal Artillery HQ 100th Heavy Anti Aircraft Regiment
305th Heavy Anti Aircraft Battery
328th Light Anti Aircraft Battery
R.A.M.C. Detachments
R.A.O.C. Detachments
R.E.M.E. Detachments
R.A.S.C. Detail Issue Depot
Royal Engineers 503rd Field Company
Mechanised Equipment Company
Military Police Provost Detachment
Royal Air Force 15th RAF Beach Flight (?)
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  #10  
Old 13-09-17, 05:18 PM
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Default with interest

I will watch this with interest
Ivan
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  #11  
Old 13-09-17, 08:56 PM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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Jon
Many thanks for the further findings.
I am confused as to how both Emery and Ralston could have the same Service number - The knives are marked 'Emery'
There again I found three men with the same service number when looking at service numbers with similar digits to 12633, two were Indian Army.
If only the objects could talk ...
All the best, and thanks again
Mike
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  #12  
Old 13-09-17, 09:45 PM
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Mike,
126533 is definitely Emery's number as a commissioned officer in the RAOC. The London Gazette entry shows sequential numbers for the other NCOs and soldiers being commissioned at the same time (6 April 1940).
https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/.../2147/data.pdf

I would suggest that 12633 on the knives is a "typo"!

Tim
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  #13  
Old 14-09-17, 07:42 AM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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Tim (and all)
Many thanks - I much appreciate your guidance on this. That is in deed the source entry I refer to in the first post of this thread. I did wonder if a digit may be dropped upon his Commissioning to 2/Lt. I believe one knife is 'Scratched Emery 12633' the other has an ink inscription on the scabbard strap 'Major Emery 12633'. This would mean he made the same typo twice.
I also acknowledge use of 12633 by J. A. E. Ralston (12633), as expanded upon by Postwarden. This is confusing. But I did find three different people using the service number 12533 - I agree with you regarding the initial reference to Emery - to which which you kindly provide a link - (fourth from bottom on left) - it clearly states 126533. Given the nature of the items (knives) I think it may be consistent with the 'Special Service' reference Postwarden found but the trail runs cold at present.
It would be useful to know if Service Numbers of Other Ranks were retained upon gaining a Commission, or whether an alternative approach was adopted. According to Wikipedia - For Other Ranks - it appears "Soldiers in the British Army are given an eight-digit number, e.g. 25232301. Prior to 1920 each regiment issued their own service numbers which were unique only within that regiment, so the same number could be issued many times in different regiments." Evolution of the system from 1920 would be interesting, particularly any changes to service numbers - if any - on Commission from the ranks.
Very may thanks for your interest and for taking the time to look it up - much appreciated. I am sure we can solve it given time, perhaps he did make a typo twice, but it is still niggling me.

Mike

Last edited by Mike B; 14-09-17 at 07:48 AM.
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  #14  
Old 14-09-17, 09:54 AM
Mike B Mike B is offline
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It occurred to me to check subsequent London Gazette references to Other Ranks receiving a Commission at the same time as Emery. I chose TD Fahie 126534 and JB Green 126538. Both retain these numbers in full in subsequent London Gazette postings as Tim suggested. I find it all very puzzling ...
Am I missing something? Would there be a reason Emery may drop a digit?
Mike

Last edited by Mike B; 14-09-17 at 10:34 AM.
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  #15  
Old 14-09-17, 05:36 PM
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Mike,
I think most of those who have served would confirm that they never forget their service number! Indeed an other rank would have been allocated a number when attested and if/when commissioned allocated another new number.

I wonder if the number scratched and inked on the knives were not added by Alan Emery himself but by someone else?

Of course in the years before computers and databases, numbers were allocated by dispersed Regimental Manning and Records Offices and to avoid duplicate issues the details of the recipient were recorded in "copperplate" in bound ledgers.

Tim
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