World War One Walt?

Is there any way I can establish with certainty whether a certain individual received the King's Commission during World War One?
Have tried the last three without finding any reference to him.

How conclusive would this be?
Should be in the LG if commissioned. I don't think that there are any exceptions to this, even early New Army commissions awarded by Lord Lieutenants and Mayors and such eventually were gazetted formally. Well there might be one exception, which I would have to check, and that is Geddes' appointment directly as a MG and later as a Vice Admiral. Which incidentally, if that's promotion then I'm all for it!
Engineer and Railway Staff Corps, Royal
Eric Campbell Geddes (formerly Lieutenant,
Nairn Tal Volunteer Rifles) to be
Lieutenant-Colonel. Dated 29th January,

Later Honorary Major General and Honorary Vice Admiral and First Lord of the Admiralty...both appointments gazetted.
Oh sod! Why do I do this to myself...I wondered what the Nairn Tal volunteer Rifles was, so I googled it. Nowt. So I searched on the LG...only one record - yep, Eric Campbell Geddes etc...

So if their is an expert on colonial volunteer rifle corps out there...HELP!!


Dangerous assumption No1 from me is that Geddes was a volunteer, the most probable context is the South African War. Now the best site that I know of for the imperial volunteer forces is: Index of Volunteer Units

No "Nairn Tal Volunteer Rifles" there. I did vaguely wonder whether it could have an LG typo (horror of horrors) - after all Nairn Tal, maybe that should be Natal? But no Natal Volunteer Rifles, though plenty of other Natal units of course. More to the point, Eric Geddes does not appear in the consolidated roll for all the units in the WO127 list - although there are some units still to be added, none of them come close to your unit name from the LG.

So, all I can otherwise think of is the 1st Nairn Rifle Volunteer Corps, raised in the 1850s-60s... but cannot explain the Tal unless some very very odd hypocoristic for Territorial... and in any case the Nairn RVC seems not to have survived in a recognisable/gazetteable form after the 1881 territorial reorganisation when I presume they disappeared into the the Volunteer Bn of the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders.



War Hero


Kit Reviewer
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Gentlemen - this looks like an interesting story - but the rest of us are only seeing half of it.

Could we perhaps have the original question from the PM and perhaps yuo should change the topic title as it appears that the gentleman in question was not a Walt.
I apologise for firing the starting gun on this one...I only meant to use Geddes as an example of how comprehensive gazetting was, as a source for officers commissioned in WW1. The Naini Tal thing is useful too. In the 1859-1880 period anyone who was anyone joined a militia, so to find Geddes had been a subbie in one was not unusual per se. His later "military" career is of course far more interesting, if you are a "Peter Barton" type student of the behind (or under) the lines type stuff!
Thanks Archimedes. Actually it's been put to bed. The man was not an officer but had never claimed himself to be during his lifetime; his family did (after his death) but that's their business.
Harry, that's no surprise.

One late veteran's granddaughter is convinced that her grandfather was awarded the VC during 1917 for some super-secret mission which meant that the award couldn't be publicly gazetted and writes to a variety of distinguished historians on a regular basis urging them to expose the fact that her dear old grandpa was a VC winner.

The old chap in question, on the other hand, maintained until his dying day that he had a relatively uneventful war as a gunner; it seems someone in the family started the hare running that he was a VC holder after the old boy died, and the poor grand-daughter was taken in completely.

So as well the world having its fair share of walts, it appears that there's also an array of familial walting going on- Walthausen's-by-Proxy syndrome, I suppose.

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