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Flying Officer's Funeral 1915 Where is this?

#21 User is offline   PeterW Icon

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 17:10 PM

View PostNelson, on 04 February 2013 - 07:49 AM, said:

Thatís terrific news Pete and may correct a misconception weíve had for some time. We thought we had finished the Sharpe research when we found a record that he was buried at Bear Road cemetery in Brighton (which I thought was strange when we had photographic evidence of the RFC funeral march heading south down Mill Lane). Whereabouts in the cemetery is he buried? It also begs the question why was Canadian Lt Sharpe buried at Mill Lane when another RFC Canadian Major Carter was buried at St. Nicolas? Funnily enough Iím currently researching early flying and the fatalities at Shoreham so it would be useful to resolve this particular issue.
Incidentally, when digitizing more of the Marlipins archives we found another photo http://www.shorehamb...3-18a-3861.html showing a military funeral in a cemetery but it looks as if the men in it are Army rather than RFC. Despite the RFC and army fatalities buried at St. Nicolas churchyard the scene couldnít be matched there Ė there isnít much to identify the venue unless anyone else has any thoughts?

I think the new photograph could have been taken in Mill Lane Cemetry as well. There are fir trees there - but then there are elsewhere. Pat Tough found the gravesite location from the groundsman, who is standing on the spot, as its unmarked. I've cirlcled the location in red

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#22 User is offline   Spinalman Icon

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 18:16 PM

The unknown cemetry doesnt look like Shoreham. I wonder if we would see other features beyond the trees?

My initial thoughts were it was Brookwood Millitary Cemetry - a little clearer than Mill Lane and lots of Pines. Just a thought.
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#23 User is offline   Gerry Impey Icon

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 19:16 PM

View PostPeterW, on 05 February 2013 - 16:10 PM, said:

I think the new photograph could have been taken in Mill Lane Cemetry as well. There are fir trees there - but then there are elsewhere. Pat Tough found the gravesite location from the groundsman, who is standing on the spot, as its unmarked. I've cirlcled the location in red
If that is the location .....then where is the Military Headstone...placed by the Commonwealth war graves commision..........Free of charge.....My great uncle who died of wounds has a Military headstone , in Mill Lane Cemetary, he had a Military Funeral in 1918, his name Leonard Gilbert White Royal Fusiliers.
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#24 User is offline   Doug Attrell Icon

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 20:16 PM

View PostSpinalman, on 10 January 2010 - 21:54 PM, said:

a bit of delving and I found that the funeral marked the first Canadian air casualty of the war.: Lieutenant William Frederick Norman Sharpe , Died February 4, 1915

At Shoreham Camp in Sussex, 22-year-old Lieutenant W.F.N. Sharpe of Prescott, Ontario, whose commission appeared in the Gazette only yesterday, takes off for his first solo flight as a pilot of No 3 (Reserve) Squadron, Royal Flying Corps. Unfortunately, something goes wrong with the primitive aircraft and it plummets to the ground, killing Lt Sharpe and bringing an end to an odd episode in Canadian military aviation.

I found a Lieutenant William Frederick Nelson Sharpe, RFC listed on the Canada at War site. He died on February 04, 1915 & is buried at Prescott (Sandy Hill) Cemetery, Ontario. http://www.canadaatw...-nelson-sharpe/

If he was buried locally immediately following his death perhaps his remains were removed & taken home after the end of hostilities.

Photo of the headstone. http://twgpp.org/inf....php?id=2146494
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#25 User is offline   Nelson Icon

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 22:36 PM

Sorry not to respond sooner - the automatic notification of further posts doesn't seem to be working for me.
Interesting information and it seems to me likely as Doug says, that Lt. Sharpe's body was later removed to Canada (the records I've seen do state the initials to be W.F.N. Sharpe and the date of death 4th February 1915 so that must be quite conclusive).
Returning to the burial photo - there is only the central part that has any clue and that is scant. Two complete headstones are visible with a partial third between the soldiers and mourners and a kind of a post beyond but no buildings visible that I can see (below). Only one of the headstones seems to match Pete's photo but headstones break, are removed and of course trees are felled but the pathway bottom right in Pete's photo doesn't appear.
The old photo could well be the same area but with no obvious RFC uniforms there it looks more likely to have been an Army funeral perhaps?

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#26 User is offline   Gerry Impey Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:57 AM

View PostNelson, on 05 February 2013 - 21:36 PM, said:

Sorry not to respond sooner - the automatic notification of further posts doesn't seem to be working for me.
Interesting information and it seems to me likely as Doug says, that Lt. Sharpe's body was later removed to Canada (the records I've seen do state the initials to be W.F.N. Sharpe and the date of death 4th February 1915 so that must be quite conclusive).
Returning to the burial photo - there is only the central part that has any clue and that is scant. Two complete headstones are visible with a partial third between the soldiers and mourners and a kind of a post beyond but no buildings visible that I can see (below). Only one of the headstones seems to match Pete's photo but headstones break, are removed and of course trees are felled but the pathway bottom right in Pete's photo doesn't appear.
The old photo could well be the same area but with no obvious RFC uniforms there it looks more likely to have been an Army funeral perhaps?
The RFC uniforms, were almost the same as the Army, both wore Puttees(Leg Bandages).The waist belts
do not appear to be Army, which were Wide Webbing belts, those worn by the rifle party, are not Army or RFC
pattern , so did the RCAF have their own pattern waist belts.....
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#27 User is offline   Nelson Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 12:10 PM

View PostGerry Impey, on 06 February 2013 - 08:57 AM, said:

The RFC uniforms, were almost the same as the Army, both wore Puttees(Leg Bandages).The waist belts
do not appear to be Army, which were Wide Webbing belts, those worn by the rifle party, are not Army or RFC
pattern , so did the RCAF have their own pattern waist belts.....

Could be - the Canadians were at the army camp at Shoreham in 1915.
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#28 User is offline   Doug Attrell Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 13:08 PM

View PostNelson, on 06 February 2013 - 11:10 AM, said:

Could be - the Canadians were at the army camp at Shoreham in 1915.

As I'm sure you're aware the RFC (Royal Flying Corps) was the air arm of the British Army - developed from the Air Battalion of the Royal Engineers. The uniforms were standard khaki. I don't know about Canadian officers. Many RFC officers came from other regiments & retained their original uniforms even after the formation of the RAF in April 1918. 'RAF blue' was not introduced until 1919 & the old khaki uniforms were worn by other ranks until 1924.

The link to the photo which is the subject of this topic leads to the History Portal main page. I can't find it anywhere. :?
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#29 User is offline   Nelson Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 13:24 PM

View PostDoug Attrell, on 06 February 2013 - 12:08 PM, said:

The link to the photo which is the subject of this topic leads to the History Portal main page. I can't find it anywhere. :?/>

Just looking through old black and white photos It seems that apart from 'bib' fronted tops for RFC uniforms the other difference looks to be that the top of the Army's puttees ended below the knee whereas the RFC's trousers were tightened above it.
Doug - I had a quick try of the link on my post on this thread of 4th Feb and it worked ok for me?
Roger
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#30 User is offline   Gerry Impey Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 20:12 PM

View PostNelson, on 06 February 2013 - 12:24 PM, said:

Just looking through old black and white photos It seems that apart from 'bib' fronted tops for RFC uniforms the other difference looks to be that the top of the Army's puttees ended below the knee whereas the RFC's trousers were tightened above it.
Doug - I had a quick try of the link on my post on this thread of 4th Feb and it worked ok for me?

The Bib front as you call it were for Aircrew, who tried to keep the draughts out....Puttees were Puttees Army
or RFC.....Some RFC trousers were jodpurs, the RNAS from which the RFC and RAF, called the blue material from
which RAF uniforms werre made was Stores Reference / Crabfat blue..hence the Navy called members of the RAF
Crabfats.......
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#31 User is offline   PeterW Icon

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 20:23 PM

View PostDoug Attrell, on 05 February 2013 - 19:16 PM, said:

I found a Lieutenant William Frederick Nelson Sharpe, RFC listed on the Canada at War site. He died on February 04, 1915 & is buried at Prescott (Sandy Hill) Cemetery, Ontario. http://www.canadaatw...-nelson-sharpe/

If he was buried locally immediately following his death perhaps his remains were removed & taken home after the end of hostilities.

Photo of the headstone. http://twgpp.org/inf....php?id=2146494

Thanks Doug. I dont think there can be two Lt Sharps, so it looks like you are likely to be correct.
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#32 User is offline   Doug Attrell Icon

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 09:54 AM

View PostNelson, on 06 February 2013 - 12:24 PM, said:

Just looking through old black and white photos It seems that apart from 'bib' fronted tops for RFC uniforms the other difference looks to be that the top of the Army's puttees ended below the knee whereas the RFC's trousers were tightened above it.
Doug - I had a quick try of the link on my post on this thread of 4th Feb and it worked ok for me?

No Roger. I mean the original photo mentioned in post #1 in this topic. This one:

View Posthistory, on 10 January 2010 - 14:01 PM, said:

Another rare image found whilst cataloguing the Winton photos and of which help in identifying the wherabouts of the scene would be appreciated. Being a Canadian airman's funeral the first thought is that these men were marching from the airfield to St.Nicolas church where a few early airmen are buried. But the buildings in the far background look more like army huts and the line of trees perhaps Parkside at Buckingham Park. If it is then the soldiers seem to be marching south-east away from the Upper Shoreham Road and the church at Southlands but where to? - there seems to be two thatched barns or cottages to the right middle distance which conversely suggests the Old Shoreham area, perhaps the Street, in which case the men would be going towards St.Nicolas. Perhaps the house in the near distance can be identified?
http://www.shorehamb...t...&Itemid=146Attachment Sharp.jpg


After a little research I've discovered that No 3 (Reserve) Squadron, RFC was in the process of moving to Shoreham at the end of January 1915. http://www.apw.airwa...lying%20trg.htm

I've no idea how large an organisation it was at the time but I'm wondering if the squadron had sufficient personnel to organise a funeral parade in early February 1915. I think it's quite possible that numbers were made up with squaddies from the Army camp across the river. That would explain the question of uniforms. Your photo of 4th Feb appears to be of the band members & firing party who I doubt would be RFC. (Had you noticed the significance of the date?)
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#33 User is offline   Nelson Icon

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 12:56 PM

View PostDoug Attrell, on 07 February 2013 - 08:54 AM, said:

No Roger. I mean the original photo mentioned in post #1 in this topic. This one:


After a little research I've discovered that No 3 (Reserve) Squadron, RFC was in the process of moving to Shoreham at the end of January 1915. http://www.apw.airwa...lying%20trg.htm

I've no idea how large an organisation it was at the time but I'm wondering if the squadron had sufficient personnel to organise a funeral parade in early February 1915. I think it's quite possible that numbers were made up with squaddies from the Army camp across the river. That would explain the question of uniforms. Your photo of 4th Feb appears to be of the band members & firing party who I doubt would be RFC. (Had you noticed the significance of the date?)

Firstly, my apologies Doug as I see now you were earlier talking about the funeral march photo. This was lost with the hacking all that time ago and I'm still gradually replacing the final Winton Collection images in between times. I've put this particular one on again in a temporary spot until I get round to it:- http://www.shorehamb.../w9ik-3862.html
Yes, I wondered too if the firing party was from the main army camp. If the two photos relate to the same event then most of the men are wearing greatcoats and forage caps as opposed to the firing squad's attire but of course although the officers seem largely to be in the front we don't know if there were more men before them? I know it's difficult to be sure from old photos when different exposure settings are used for different photos but the 'march' photo looks to me to be a far duller and colder day than the graveside image which shows a sunny scene with soldiers and civilian mourners alike less muffled agains the cold?
..... and 'no' I hadn't twigged with the date coincidence but nowadays obvious things like that elude me! :sad:
Roger
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#34 User is offline   Doug Attrell Icon

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 18:14 PM

View PostNelson, on 07 February 2013 - 11:56 AM, said:

Firstly, my apologies Doug as I see now you were earlier talking about the funeral march photo. This was lost with the hacking all that time ago and I'm still gradually replacing the final Winton Collection images in between times. I've put this particular one on again in a temporary spot until I get round to it:- http://www.shorehamb.../w9ik-3862.html

Thanks Roger. At last the dog can see the rabbit. :wink:/>/>

Quote

Yes, I wondered too if the firing party was from the main army camp. If the two photos relate to the same event then most of the men are wearing greatcoats and forage caps as opposed to the firing squad's attire but of course although the officers seem largely to be in the front we don't know if there were more men before them? I know it's difficult to be sure from old photos when different exposure settings are used for different photos but the 'march' photo looks to me to be a far duller and colder day than the graveside image which shows a sunny scene with soldiers and civilian mourners alike less muffled agains the cold?
..... and 'no' I hadn't twigged with the date coincidence but nowadays obvious things like that elude me! :sad:

I can now see what you mean about the forage caps. I think it's quite likely that these photos are of two different funerals.
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#35 User is offline   Gerry Impey Icon

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 21:03 PM

[quote name='Doug Attrell' date='06 February 2013 - 12:08 PM' timestamp='1360152539' post='55899']
As I'm sure you're aware the RFC (Royal Flying Corps) was the air arm of the British Army - developed from the Air Battalion of the Royal Engineers. The uniforms were standard khaki. I don't know about Canadian officers. Many RFC officers came from other regiments & retained their original uniforms even after the formation of the RAF in April 1918. 'RAF blue' was not introduced until 1919 & the old khaki uniforms were worn by other ranks until 1924

The RCAF uniforms were khaki same as RFC , except buttons and badges, Aircrew wore a side button tunic,with
Jodpurs puttees and boots, ground crew dress was button down the front from dog collar, jodpurs, and puttees
and boots.Forage caps, were used by RCAF, and many RFC Officers who purchased their own uniforms, had both
Peaked caps and Forage caps......A Sqd strength of serviceable aircraft was usually 15, but did vary on Aircraft type, they may have up to 20, Pilots usually amounted to between 17, and 20 per sqdn, a Groundcrew
with Fitters and Riggers plus admin staff and very often a Medical Officer, would amounto 200 men.. The
Commonwealth countries based their Flying Corps on the RFC from 1 April 1912 when RFC was formed, the RAF as you know was formed on 1 April 1918, when the RNAS who had fought the Army for control of all Military Flying
had to relent, and the new colour of crabfat blue, was adopted by the RAF.
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