Research on my grandfather

Discussion in 'Searching for Someone & Military Genealogy' started by Sarah950, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. Sarah950

    Sarah950 New Member


    I've just joined this site in search for some information if possible?

    My mums father passed away when she was 11 years sold and we cannot find any pictures of him at all.

    He served (we believe) in the 4th battalion Welsh fusiliers during ww2.
    Would anybody know if men drafted to the war would have had their picture taken when enlisted for their files? And when we request his service history from the mod a copy will be supplied?
    I cannot find the answer anywhere.

    Many thanks

  2. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Hi Sarah
    Welcome to the forum.

    No photos of individuals are on service records, that I know of anyway. However, chances are a photo of him & his training squad exists out there somewhere - in someone else's family memorabilia.

    If he was taken POW there might be a small photo with his file at ICRC. (No point in applying unless you know for certain.)

    So, as we say to everyone starting out: get a copy of service records from MOD, share them here and see where the info might lead you. Often the more information posted, the more likely it is that someone who might have info will get in contact.

    Some photos were printed in local newspapers, might be worth searching archives - eg FMP have newspaper archives online.

    Good luck.
    4jonboy and Tony56 like this.
  3. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    If you post his full name, and any other info you might have, there might be a chance of finding a little information on the various ancestry sites.
    Tony56 likes this.
  4. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Sarah Welcome
    As suggested send of for his service records. Get a copy of military service records
    You will not find the service records anywhere else apart from the official route.
    One of our members on here did receive a photo of his Father but that is quite rare so do not get you hopes up.
    Once you have the service records post as Diane suggested.
    You will then know which regiments he served with and then you will be able to get the war diaries.Then you may well find a group photo of his unit

  5. Sarah950

    Sarah950 New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    Thanks for the replies, I will certainly be applying for his record. I've found a few bits. There is a record of a Herbert Sydney Smith (1922-1972) in the royal Welsh fusiliers who was wounded in 1945 (would match my grandad as he was shot in the knee). The service number would be 4190656. If this is him.
    The information on the archive site is attached to this, but it is very little. I'm also on local groups from our home town in the hope that someone has a picture somewhere. It seems people remember him and his wood model boats well, but no pictures as of it.
    Hopefully his service records will help.
    He was born in Walsall but moved to Anglesey as a boy and remained there through his life after the war.
    Thank you again for all the advice,


    Attached Files:

  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Now you have posted his name im sure forum members will assist further.
    The route for info is via the official route plus you will get info here.
    Do not pay for info elsewhere the promise of info will be disappointing.

  7. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    On Find my past I have so far found 2 other possibles with your criteria. 1 x 1940 = POW. 1 X 1944 Wounded in Burma. All Welsh Fusiliers. Was his mothers maiden name Williams?
  8. Sarah950

    Sarah950 New Member


    Yes his mother's name was Ann William and he was named after his father of the same name. He never mentioned being a Pow but maybe he wouldn't as my mum was so young?
    She wasn't close to her mum so when he dies when she was 11 she never heard any stories or more information about him.
    He was wounded, shot in the knee, she remembers that much.
    I'll definitely be going through the proper channels.
    Thank you all so much.
  9. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Just to clarify the Casualty Lists do not give the name Herbert Sydney Smith.

    Casualty List No, 1691 dated 26 February 1945
    Western Europe
    4th Bn Royal Welch Fusiliers
    4190656 Smith Cpl H date of casualty 10.2.45

    Casualty List No. 1696 Dated 3 March 1945
    Army number should read 4190565

    So you need to be careful, without his service record you may end up researching someone elses grandfather. Also the service number you quote in your post #5 is incorrect. However you do not need to know his service number when applying for his records, just a death certificate.

    Unfortunately searching for someone with the name Smith is exceedingly difficult without a lot of other facts. I would also query your dates of 1922 - 1972, I believe that his death was registered Q3 1973.
    CL1 and Owen like this.

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