Help on my Great Great Grandfather in WW1 - missing medals

Discussion in 'Prewar' started by bleaseydoesit, Apr 5, 2023.

  1. bleaseydoesit

    bleaseydoesit Member

    Hi all,

    I’m posting about a third family member that I need help on again. My fathers side of the family are notorious for not “bothering” to keep track of important info like this or to pass down stories so I unfortunately have quite a few ancestors who’s military stories are hard to track especially since I am not knowledgable on military history.

    this person in particular is my Nana’s grandfather.

    His details;

    Name: Thomas Arthur Arnold

    DOB: born 1883 in Manchester
    DOD: 1942 in Manchester
    Parents: Thomas Arnold and Hannah Sheldon
    Rank, regiment, service number: unknown

    Spouse: Alice Gresty (born 1886) married 14.04.1906 in Hulme

    the story is that he had 3 medals from his time in WW1, they were then passed down to his son Thomas Arnold (born 1909) but were stolen by one of his nephews and the family has no idea where they’ve been since so we can’t say what the medals were for.
    All that we know is that there were 3 (there could have been more) and one of the medals was a cross with the colour purple, this could have been a purple ribbon or even in a purple box.
    The information has to be taken with a grain of salt as it’s from people who have not seen or discussed this in many decades.

    We also had a photo of him in his uniform but unfortunately when my father was 6/7 he accidentally destroyed it and as far as we know we do not have another copy of said picture.

    The ancestry website keeps trying to connect this document to his son, as I believe it is getting confused with the fact 3 generations of people are called Thomas Arnold, his son was born 1909 so obviously can not connect to him, but I wonder if this is of help for his father Thomas A Arnold who was the one in WW1 - I have attached screenshots of the document on ancestry in question

    I’ve also attached what I think is his burial on findagrave

    I have a few people that I need to apply for army service records for at this rate, and I know of two more family members that I’m yet to find info on too.
    once again I appreciate everyone’s help on this, you’ve all been a fantastic help so far on my other family members.

    Attached Files:

    Dave55 likes this.
  2. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member

    Ancestry free WW1 Medal Index Collection database give 8 Thomas A Arnold of whom only one had “3 medals”. He served Royal Field Artillery - MIC attached. There are in excess of 50 Thomas Arnold listed.

    The Thomas A Arnold RFA may or may not be your relative. There are other record sets on Ancestry that may be helpful but you need to sign up to search them - they include service record and WFA pension record databases.

    Findmypast also have the service record dataset.



    You might be better posting on Great War Forum.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 5, 2023
    bleaseydoesit likes this.
  3. bleaseydoesit

    bleaseydoesit Member

    Thanks Steve, I will have a look at this and try to determine which one is the Thomas A Arnold in question. It’s extra confusing when there are multiple generations in my family with the same name!

    I did have the free 2 week trial for ancestry so will pay for the next month now as it will make things smoother.
    I know ancestry also has forces war records but that is also accessible through payment. I wonder if that is worth using. I’ve never used it before so do not know if it is helpful if anyone has any experience using it and can tell me if it’s worth it or not ?
  4. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member

    Usual forum advice is to steer clear of FWR. Very little original stuff there. Mostly harvested and repackaged from “open source” material.
    4jonboy and bleaseydoesit like this.
  5. bleaseydoesit

    bleaseydoesit Member

    Well I’ll follow that advice and avoid using that then, will stick to updating my free trial of the normal ancestry website. Good job I asked as I’m always a bit weary of things like that.
    I’ll update here if I manage to find anything.
  6. bleaseydoesit

    bleaseydoesit Member

    If it is helpful at all I should note that my great aunt told me that he was a gunner in WWI
  7. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    bleaseydoesit likes this.
  8. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    You will get the best help for WW1 from the Great War forum so I'll keep this brief.

    The most common trio of medals from on WW1 was the 1914/1914-1915 Star, British War Medal & Victory Medal, known as "Pip, Squeak, and Wilfred" after cartoon characters of the time, although the pair of BWM & VM was more common I think.
    Pip, Squeak and Wilfred - Wikipedia

    The cross & ribbon you describe is closest to the military cross which in WW1 was only awarded to officers up to the rank of temporary Major & also Warrant Officers, so the trio could have been the MC plus the BWM & VM pair.
    Military Cross - Wikipedia

    Both the BWM & MC were made of silver so had a meltdown value, as well as the intrinsic value that an MC awarded for bravery would have.

    Royal Artillery Attestations from 1883-1942 is a record set on the findmypast website.

    bleaseydoesit likes this.
  9. GeorgyB

    GeorgyB Active Member

    Last edited: Apr 5, 2023

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