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Help Needed Please

Hi everyone,
I apologise because I know this forum is aimed mainly at the early history of the 95th but I am hoping someone can advise me on a later period.

I have tried without success to uncover details of my grandfather's service with the 2nd Battalion Rifle Brigade but it seems he is a very elusive chap.

Henry Thomas Baker
Born Stoke by Nayland, Suffolk 24th August 1888
Enlisted in Rifle Brigade at Colchester circa 1905 while under age
No attestation or other papers survive.

What would have been considered as underage - under 18 years old?

Service assumed to be 12 years (7 colours and 5 reserve)  Was this the norm?
Served in India for 5-6 years
Presumably with the 2nd Battalion??
Returned circa 1911/1912 and placed on reserve

He does not occur in the 1911 census but in the return submitted by the battalion from Fort William in Calcutta a Rifleman Henry Thomas Baker is listed with an identical name born 1887 ( Henry joined under age and would have given his birth at least a year earlier than actual). However this rifleman was shown as born in Camberwell, Surrey as was the soldier on the list immediately above him. It is possible the clerk writing the return could have made an error from the line above. To support this view, there is no recorded birth of a Henry Thomas Baker in Camberwell between 1886 and 1891 and no suitable entry in the 1891 census.

Married in July 1914 in Essex
Recalled from reserve in August 1914 and immediately posted to France with 1st Battalion
Regimental service no.  927
Presumably he would have had this number at enlistment  in 1905?
Served throughout the war ending as sergeant.
Only medal cards survive
I have copies of the 1st Battalion war diaries and so can trace the battalion movements and engagements but I do not know which company he was with.

If anyone can help with any suggestions on the above queries I would be very grateful.
Ben Townsend

Hi Collers,
Apolgies for the late response, we have been camping out in a chilly field.
You might do well to talk to these chaps,

Who are a group dedicated to Great War Rifle Brigade. I could offer some general advice on researching military ancestors, but nothing you wouldn't find in the National Archives publications dedicated to the subject.

You could also consider the services of a researcher- which does take some of the fun out of it perhaps.. For instance,

Good luck!

Hi Ben
Many thanks - all tips and info are gratefully acknowledged.

Camping in this weather! You're obviously not a brass monkey!


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