Advice how to find where a Canadian soldier served

Discussion in 'Canadian' started by Hh632, Jun 23, 2021.

  1. Hh632

    Hh632 Member

    Hi, I am trying to find the identity of my mum’s father. Through ancestry we have found who her grandparents are, but there are three men from the same family who could be her dad. Mum was conceived in Sussex , so they must have served over there in 1942. I know their names so I could find out when and where they served…..
    Any help would be appreciated.thanks
  2. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    Welcome aboard, it would be best to add what you already know and then the expertise here can have a look. Much of the expertise is British and Commonwealth, so help should be along. Do you have your mother's birth certificate, as that is one starting point.
    Hh632 likes this.
  3. Hh632

    Hh632 Member

    Hi David , yes I have a lot of information. I will post . Her father is not known by anyone apart from possibly my Grandmother. Like I said above atm it’s between 3 men, from the same family. All Canadian men.
    Arnold Edward Graham, born 1914 Mother is Annie Swackhammer
    William Lorne Harvey 1902 to 1978 mother is Mary Swackhammer
    Horace Reginald Harvey 1903-1983 mother is Mary Swackhammer
  4. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    You haven't mentioned a birth certificate as suggested in #2? I can only assume you have it, as that is the obvious place to start, but the father is left blank, is that correct? Would be helpful to know your mother's name, date of birth and location of where born?
  5. Hh632

    Hh632 Member

    I didn’t because it is complicated. Mum was born Sproston, but Sproston wasn’t her dad. She was adopted by Hinchcliffe later

    Moderator edit: Attachments deleted on request
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2021
  6. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member


    We have had one or two of these scenarios on here before and they can become complicated. You say it must be one of the three people named above, and the route you are taking is that if any of them were in a Canadian unit that was based in the right area at the right time then it must be him - I assume that is where your thought train is taking you.
    However if it was one of those three and at some time they all meet up on leave (as they are 'brothers'/'cousins') then who is to say which one could be the father. I havent done any DNA testing or know that much on the subject but it may be worth going down that route as well, i.e. have the closest relation provide a DNA sample, have it analysed and then post on a web site such as Ancestry or Find My Past that do DNA matching and see what turns up. This obviously would rely on the 'other side' having posted samples to compare, but as said I dont know the details of DNA comparison and if there would be sufficient difference between the 3 men involved to actually narrow it down to one in particular

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  7. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    Many Canadians were based in Sussex in the war, with the South Downs being used for training, and the port of Newhaven being used to launch the raid on Dieppe in August 1942.

    From 1942 the main Hospital at Cuckfield was taken over by the Canadian Military, with existing patients transfered to Chownes Mead & other nearby places. There are some memories of a local who worked for the canadians here.

    Overall their stay in Sussex in both wars is well remembered by locals.
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  8. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    I see your problem, I have found that tracing 'unknown' fathers is almost impossible, back in time there were Bastardy Orders where young men were hauled before the Magistrates and ordered to pay maintenance, not sure about modern maintenance records.

    It seems that you must have more information to know that it was one of three men - I can only suggest that you obtain each ones service record to determine their WW2 service in the hope that only one was in the right place at the right time. Other than that, DNA, as suggested may be a route.

    We are of course talking about events within the past 100 years so confidentiality may be an issue and particularly where adoptions are concerned. Afraid that is an area I am not familiar with. Good luck.
    Hh632 likes this.
  9. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

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  10. Hh632

    Hh632 Member

    Yes we have done/doing the DNA group,
    Just wondered if anyone here had the means to search for their military history?
  11. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member

    Compliments of forum member Klambie, I am in contact with a researcher based in Ottawa. For a nominal sum he can pull the service records for each of the three in question. I am not sure that will ultimately lead to what you are after. PM me for his contact info.
  12. Hh632

    Hh632 Member

    I would send a pm, if I knew how!
  13. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian Patron

    Click on "Inbox" in the upper right, then "Start a conversation" and enter 17thDYRCH and your message
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  14. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    There seems to be some small discrepancies

    The order of his names which may make a difference when searching further
    Lorne William Harvey
    BIRTH 6 JUL 1902 • Wentworth, Ontario, Canada
    DEATH JUL 1978 • Grayling, Crawford, Michigan, USA

    Horace Reginald Harvey
    Record information.
    Birth 7 Sep 1903 Wentworth, Ontario, Canada
    Marriage 30 Sep 1925 Wentworth, Ontario, Canada
    Residence 1972 Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
    Death 1983 Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

    UK and Ireland, Outward Passenger Lists, 1890-1960
    Name: Horace Reginald Harvey
    Gender: Male
    Age: 34
    Birth Date: abt 1904
    Departure Date: 31 Aug 1938
    Port of Departure: Swansea, Wales
    Destination Port: Montreal, Canada
    Ship Name: Windsorwood
    41039_b001528-00601 (2).jpg
    At age 34 this shows him leaving the UK to return to Canada for some reason, but the interesting part of his details in the passenger list is under the heading Country of Intended Future Residence he has specified England and Baldock as his address. So perhaps he was already over here working in the Hosiery trade in and around Baldock. I cannot yet find a return for him but another aspect of Horace would be his age. At the outbreak of war in Sep 1939 he would be 36 (born 7 Sep 1903), and so in 1942 would 39 years old - seemingly rather old for active service at least, and if you also take into account his brother Lorne (born 6 Jul 1902) he would be 40 at the time.

    I also note from Horaces family tree that he was married:
    30 Sep 1925 • Wentworth, Ontario, Canada
    Dorothy Hazel Allerston

    So you may need to tread carefully if and when details become available

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  15. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member

    I will wait for your Private Message. I don't want to jam the researcher's time unless you are wanting to move forward with your investigation.

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