Thornley Family Unidentified Soldiers

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Surnames/tags: Thornley Unidentified photos
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Unidentified photographs of soldiers related to the Thornley family from Wetwood Staffordshire. The photos come from a collection owned by Mike Thornley. [Thornley-186]

Research Notes

Pic 24 is likely to be Samuel Jackson Thornley Samuel was in the Manchester regiment (see response from Richard Gough) and the photograph looks very similar to other family photographs of Samuel.

Pic 22 may be William Martin, the nephew of Mike’s great grandmother, Elizabeth Thornley nee Davies. William was in the Military foot police corps, service number 1293698.

Pic 21 bears a resemblance to John Henry Thornley. It will see if I can find a muster roll for the Shropshire Yeomanry.

Pic 53 The woman in this photo may be [[Davies-10298|Florence Davies] as she had 3 daughters born in 1913, 1915 and 1917.

Other possibilities are:
Geoffrey Parton 1886, son of Martha Alice Davies (Machine gun corps 120054)
Oliver Davies 1881, son of Martha Alice Davies
David Stacey 1884, son of Sarah Ann Boughey/Davies
Fred Boughey/Davies 1877, son of Sarah Ann Boughey/Davies
John Jennings 1895, Son of Margaret Davies
John Davies 1882 living with Emma Starkey Nee Davies in 1911

Response from Richard Gough, director of the Soilders of Shropshire Museum

...They all look to be WW1 era uniforms from a number of regiments – no regiment had a particular style of uniform different to the others (apart of course from the Scottish regiments who even wore Kilts in the trenches), so I can’t tell by the uniform alone which regiment the men belong to (Except pic 23). But from detail like their boots, badges or puttees (the bandages of fabric they wrapped around their lower legs) it is possible to guess what type of regiment they were in:

Pic 20: Cavalry – you can tell by the riding crop and spurs. He’s a private, and by the cap badge, served with the Royal Regiment of Artillery. Likely he was a ‘driver’ of a horse team… WW1

Pic 21: Private in a ‘Patrol Jacket’ and likely to be Shropshire Yeomanry. Probably prior to WW1, and black uniform, possibly C 1908 – 1910.

Pic 22: Lance Corporal in the Royal Military Police (Cap badge). WW1

Pic 23: This is really interesting – he’s a young officer, prior to getting his ‘wings’ in the Royal Flying Corps, the predecessor to the RAF. Early War, and whilst he has the Officer’s Side cap, he doesn’t yet have officer’s ‘pips’ on his epaulettes. He would also have ‘wings’ on his front left breast had he completed his flying training by the time the photo was taken… You can almost make out the ‘R’ of RFC on his left shoulder flash and ‘C’ on his right.

Pic 24: As far as I can be sure, this looks to be a soldier from the Manchester Regiment, going by the shape of the cap badge. WW1 and perhaps taken in the field given the state of dress and mud on his boots.

Pic 25: Another Cavalryman, Royal Regiment of Artillery Cap badge but an unidentifiable regiment or division badge on his epaulettes. WW1

Pic 53: Sadly no clues as to where he’s from…

Of course, all of this is guess-work, relatively speaking, and going by photographic references like these is always a bit risky – but that might be a starting point for you – I hope it’s helpful

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