Harry Dawson is my great uncle – he was my grandfather’s brother. He was born on 25 March 1895 in Keighley, West Yorkshire, to parents James Dawson and Emma Buckley.
I recently found Harry’s naval records on The National Archives website – before then I had no idea at all that he had served in the navy during WW1.
This is my first attempt at interpreting naval records so I am not very confident at deciphering the information.
It looks like Harry signed up on 24 June 1914 for five years service. Until 22 October 1914 he served on / at Victory II. From the research I have done I understand Victory II was the Crystal Palace / Sydenham training base.
His next posting was to the Lion class battlecruiser HMS Princess Royal on 23 October 1914. Harry served on this ship until 31 May 1919. This means that he would have fought in some of the major sea battles of the time – Battle of Dogger Bank and Battle of Jutland.
From 1 June 1919 to 24 June 1919 he served on the Edgar cruiser HMS Crescent. He was then back to Victory II until he was ‘demobbed’ on 26 July 1919.
When ‘demobbed’ Harry was transferred to the Royal Fleet Reserve.
His service record shows that he then served between 12 April 1921 to 7 June 1921 at Victory II.