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Challenge or impossible ?

If you didn't have a surname or the like do you get results and if so what format do they come in?

I think that @historicus has probably given the DS answer to that one.

Even with full service details (No, Rank and Name), I always start with the premise that 'less is more'. That way, if you turn rafts of similarly named people, you can use the information you have to narrow things down.

It also (usually) allows you to pick up any changes of Regt or Corps as such transfers meant the issue of a new Service number.

Much like Historicus, I also had a play around with trying to identify the KIA, only I used the time period 1 July to 30 November 1916: 'George', Cheshire Regt' and 'KIA' produced far too many hits. If that time period was extended to end December 1916, it increases exponentially.

. . . and, just to be really 'glass half empty', it's quite possible that 'George' was not his given first name but simply family usage of a second name, a trait that has led me on some really frustrating searches in the past.
 
Having done a fair few searches for WW1 soldiers it is often the case that families can get details mixed up or incorrect, especially if a good deal of time has passed. Even near contemporaneously there was often a lack of knowledge of specific battles and campaigns that took place among the general public and fatalities do get assigned to The Somme or Passchendaele simply because those were the most well known. As an example I did my wife's Great Grandfather. All of the Wife's older relatives swore on their lives he was killed on The Somme. Did some basic digging and no - he was a pre-war territorial in the 22nd London Regiment who died of wounds May 1915 after Festubert.
That's quite a common occurrence which any researcher or historian comes across.
"RAMC killed at Passchendaele" was the family myth for one of my family. Turned out he was 6th South Lancs died of wounds in Rouen in 1918.

I'll just make the observation that Dad's tunic looks newer than the other two and is devoid of pleated pockets.

Does this narrow down the date of the photo and confirm March 1916?

Not really. The seated men are wearing the standard 1907 Service Dress, and the standing man is in the simplified pattern which was introduced in 1914. Both patterns were issued and worn throughout the war.

Whilst it's true that many men suffered for years, and died prematurely from the effects of wounds, it is also quite common to come across stories that men died many years later as a result of having been gassed. I'd suggest that the effects of lifelong heavy smoking and the awful air pollution in some areas of UK were the real causes. My father-in-law was one such - I never met him, he died in about 1950 having fathered eight children, but my late wife's family always insisted that he died as a result of gassing.

The date of the photo, if correct, (March 1916) doesn't really provide too much of a clue. Conscription had commenced in January 1916 for single men between the ages of 18-41, and was extended to married men in May of that year. However, nothing really points to the men being conscripts - plenty of the 1914 volunteers were still in UK in March 1916, though the New Armies were rapidly building up in France in anticipation of The Big Push.
Maybe the photo was taken on the boys leave before embarking for France. Who knows?
Is there a photographer's or Studio mark anywhere on the card ? I cannot see one, but they were very common and can give some useful tips.

Can I suggest that you subscribe to the Great War Forum and post your pics there ? There are some real experts there who delight in this sort of thing.
 
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slick

LE
This is probably an exercise in futility but as I`m in self isolation and mightily bored, here goes....
(Usual caveats apply as stated by others above)

I carried out a search on CWGC using what is so far known/speculated, and came up with 90 "George`s" KIA in France whilst serving in the Cheshire`s between March `16 and the end of 1918.
The results are in a csv file which should open in any spreadsheet software.... Download link

I`ve also perused the SWB files for "Robert`s" serving in the Cheshire`s and narrowed it down to nine names whose surnames tie in with the surnames in the csv file.
These are....

Arnold, Robert, 38700
Clarke, John Robert, 5479
Davies, Robert, 29527
Davies, Robert Edward, 50520
Davies, Robert, 260155
Lloyd, Robert, 53212
Murphy, Robert, 16870/247908
Roberts, Robert, 49165
Wilson, Robert, B40536
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
This is probably an exercise in futility but as I`m in self isolation and mightily bored, here goes....
(Usual caveats apply as stated by others above)

I carried out a search on CWGC using what is so far known/speculated, and came up with 90 "George`s" KIA in France whilst serving in the Cheshire`s between March `16 and the end of 1918.
The results are in a csv file which should open in any spreadsheet software.... Download link

I`ve also perused the SWB files for "Robert`s" serving in the Cheshire`s and narrowed it down to nine names whose surnames tie in with the surnames in the csv file.
These are....

Arnold, Robert, 38700
Clarke, John Robert, 5479
Davies, Robert, 29527
Davies, Robert Edward, 50520
Davies, Robert, 260155
Lloyd, Robert, 53212
Murphy, Robert, 16870/247908
Roberts, Robert, 49165
Wilson, Robert, B40536
Fantastic, thanks - I'll pass it on.
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
Of the name tie-ins, my thoughts relating wounded to the dead are:

Arnold, Robert, 38700 - Arnold, George was 39 (too old)
Clarke, John Robert, 5479
Davies, Robert, 29527
Davies, Robert Edward, 50520
Davies, Robert, 260155
Lloyd, Robert, 53212 - Lloyd, George was 39 (too old)
Murphy, Robert, 16870/247908
Roberts, Robert, 49165
Wilson, Robert, B40536

The rest were either young enough, or age not recorded. Where parents are recorded/identifiable I assume death records would note year and possibly manner of passing, so father may be linkable to some..

And I do fully acknowledge all the previous caveats
 

slick

LE
A very wild stab in the dark from the 1911 census...
 
A very wild stab in the dark from the 1911 census...
Nice that you've found brothers Bob and George but Dad would be in his 50s. Looking at the photo, I think we need brothers aged 14-15 and Dad aged <35 in 1911. That's quite a tight age range.
 
Nice that you've found brothers Bob and George but Dad would be in his 50s. Looking at the photo, I think we need brothers aged 14-15 and Dad aged <35 in 1911. That's quite a tight age range.

census + 5yrs to 1916

Robert (Head) 45 + 5 = 50

George (son) 21 + 5 = 26

Robert (son?) 16 + 5 = 21

All suits the post card
 

slick

LE
Nice that you've found brothers Bob and George but Dad would be in his 50s. Looking at the photo, I think we need brothers aged 14-15 and Dad aged <35 in 1911. That's quite a tight age range.
Very true, I`m not sure they`d got to the point of taking 50 year old volunteers in 1916, although I wouldn`t be surprised if the older ones lied about age.
I did wonder from the outset if they could all be brothers in the picture, which would throw everything up in the air.
 
18050 Pte George Clarke 11th Bn Cheshire Regt, killed 3 July 1916, no known grave, commemorated on Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. 11th Cheshires were in 25th Division which moved to the Somme area just after the main attack, and made "a costly attack near Thiepval on 3rd July."

This very famous photo, reproduced in many books, shows men of A Coy, 11th Bn Cheshire Regiment near Ovillers.

However, 11th Cheshires landed in France in September 1915, 6 months before the OP photo postcard.

1604704356298.png
 
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