John Dawson

Military Monday – Clifford Dawson (1900-1953)

Clifford is my 1st cousin 2x removed – he was my granddad’s cousin.  Our common ancestors are my 2x great grandparents John Dawson and Ellen Gawthrop. Clifford was born in Keighley, West Yorkshire, sometime in Q3 1900 to parents Joseph Dawson and Elizabeth Hannah Barrett.

Clifford enlisted in the army on 2 August 1918 and was called up for service on 27 August. His age is given as 18 years 24 days and his occupation is described as ‘iron turner’. He was assigned to the 53rd Durham Light Infantry. His service number was 113260.

Details of Clifford’s war activity are unclear. But I have been able to discover that he was stationed in Cologne, Germany during 1919. I know this because I have information about two misconduct charges in his service records on www.ancestry.co.uk.

On 16 May 1919 he was charged with ‘neglect of duty including a dirty locker’. I can’t make out the punishment for this offence.

Three months later on 24 August 1919 he was charged with being ‘late on dinner parade’. Clifford’s punishment for this was ‘3 days C B’ – confined to barracks.

Clifford was demobilized on 24 March 1920 and transferred to the Class Z Reserve.

Class Z Reserve was authorised by an Army Order of 3 December 1918. There were fears that Germany would not accept the terms of any peace treaty, and therefore the British Government decided it would be wise to be able to quickly recall trained men in the eventuality of the resumption of hostilities. Soldiers who were being demobilised, particularly those who had agreed to serve “for the duration”, were at first posted to Class Z. They returned to civilian life but with an obligation to return if called upon. The Z Reserve was abolished on 31 March 1920.

Military Monday – Arthur Dawson (1879-1944)

Arthur Dawson is my 1st cousin 2x removed – our common ancestors are my 2x great grandparents John Dawson and Ellen Gawthrop.

Arthur is the brother of Prince Dawson and John Dawson – his parents are John Dawson and Elizabeth Bradley. He was born 18 July 1879 and lived at Steeton with Eastburn about three miles from Keighley, West Yorkshire.

Before I found his WW1 service records I knew that Arthur married Lily Cockshott sometime in Q2 1906 and their marriage is recorded in the Keighley registration district. They had one child – a son, Eric born in 1909.

Arthur enlisted on 30 August 1916 in Keighley and was assigned to 7th West Yorkshire Regiment. His service number is 238029. He was 37 years old. At the time of his conscription he was living at 19 School Street, Steeton with Eastburn. His trade is given as ‘mason’.

The enlistment documents also show that Arthur had previous service in the Royal Engineers.

His service papers provided confirmation of the date of marriage to Lily – 10 April 1906. They also give Eric’s date of birth as 21 October 1909 – so more information for my tree. However his service record through up a bit of surprise. There is another son shown – Alan with a date of birth of 3 March 1911.

I have the 1911 census record for Arthur, Lily and Eric – but no Alan.

I have been able to find a birth for Alan Dawson at the right time and in the right location but no trace of him in the 1911 census. So, I searched for a death and found a record for Alan Dawson who died in Leeds in 1977 with a date of birth given as 3 April 1911.

Could this be the answer to my conundrum?  Maybe 3 March 1911 was incorrect. The 1911 census was undertaken on the night of 2 April 1911. So Alan could have been born the following day and that is why he is not recorded. I’m happy with this solution and have now added Alan to my family tree.

Anyway, back to Arthur and his war service.

It seems that Arthur was at home until 3 January 1917. The following day he embarked for France, returning home again after 105 days on 18 April 1917. There is reference to him serving in the Royal Defence Corps (RDC) – the role of this regiment was to provide security and guard duties inside the United Kingdom.

Arthur was finally discharged on 23 March 1919.

Military Monday – John Dawson

John Dawson is my 1st Cousin 2x removed – in other words he is my granddad’s cousin.  He was born about 1890.  His parents were John Dawson and Elizabeth Bradley.  He is the brother of Prince Dawson who I wrote about last September.

I found John’s army service records on www.ancestry.co.uk so I know that he enlisted on 11 May 1908 and was posted to the 6th Brigade West Riding Regiment.  His service number is 699.

The ‘Medical Inspection report’ was completed in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on the day he enlisted.  This shows that John was quite short – only 5 feet 3 inches.  His vision is described as ‘good’ and his physical development as ‘fair’.  Nevertheless the Medical Officer, Sergeant Major Will Gabriel considered John to be ‘fit’ for the Territorial Force.

It looks like John signed up for four years.  The ‘Statement of Service’ shows it would run from from 11 May 1908 to 10 May 1912.

He was assigned to Keighley for his preliminary training.  Over the next three years he had annual training in

Redcar from 25 July 1908 to 1 August 1908

Marske from 25 July 1909 to 8 August 1909

Peel (Isle of Man) from 31 July 1910 to 7 August 1910

Ripon from 30 July 1911 to 6 August 1911

Then on 10 May 1912 he was discharged in consequence of the ‘termination of engagement’.

On this day … 25th August

1847 … John Dawson was buried at Holy Trinity church in Cowling, West Yorkshire.  He is my 1st cousin 4x removed.

1872 … Frederick Espley was born in Biddulph, Staffordshire to parents Joseph Booth Espley and Christiana Boyle.  He is my wife’s 1st cousin 2x removed.

On this day … 10th July

1796 … John Dawson was buried at St. Andrew’s church in Kildwick, West Yorkshire.  He is my 3x great grand uncle.

1828 … William Dawson and Mary Overton were married at St. Andrew’s church in Kildwick, West Yorkshire.  William is my 3x great grand uncle.

1922 … Ada Buckley (nee Smith) died in Keighley, West Yorkshire.  She is the wife of my great grand uncle.

On this day … 31st May

1795 … John Dawson was born in Cowling, West Yorkshire to parents John Dawson and Ann Watson.  He is my 3rd great grand uncle.

1838 … John Dawson was born in Cowling, West Yorkshire to parents John Dawson and Elizabeth Benson.  He is my 1st cousin 4x removed.

1873 … Elizabeth Ann Turner was born in Kendal, Westmorland to parents Thomas Turner and Mary Jane Carradice.  She is my great grandmother.