2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

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2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

Postby BRIAN » Tue Feb 13, 2007 12:31 pm

TRACING INFORMATION AND RECORDS OF MY GREAT UNCLE 2ND LIEUT H.E BOSWELL D.S.O AND MC ALSO POSSIBLE MEDAL LOCATIONS
TRACING INFORMATION REGARDING MY GREAT UNCLE 2/LIEUT H.E BOSWELL D.S.O AND MC 1914-1918 2nd BATTALION .TRACING MEDAL LOCATIONS AND OTHER MILITARY RECORDS
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Postby scully » Tue Feb 13, 2007 10:11 pm

Hi Brian,

Some information about 2/Lieut H. E. Boswell for you.

In 1917 he was a 2/Lieut with the 2/7th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and was wounded on the night of the 4/5th December 1917 at "Corner Work" trenches (about 200 yards east of the village of La Vacquerie.

After recovering he rejoined the regiment but this time joined the 2nd Battalion Worcestershire Regiment in April 1918. Below are some extracts from the regimental history detailing the actions where he won both his M.C. and D.S.O. awards:

2nd Battalion (June 1918)
On the night of June 15th/16th 1918 the 2nd Worcestershire relieved the 1st Queen's in the front line south-east of Ypres along the shores of Zillebeke Lake. For some days the Battalion remained quiet, while the platoons worked busily on improving the defences; then arrangements were made for a raid to discover the identity of the enemy in front, who held the ruins of "Manor Farm" as a defended post. Plans were laid, and in the night of June 19th/20th the attack was delivered.

The raiders, five officers (2/Lieut. H. E. Boswell (commanding), 2/Lts. H. G. Hill, F. D. Barnard and C.E. Lively, also 2/Lt. Greene of the R.G.A.) and 138 N.C.O's. and men, moved out from the front trenches fifteen minutes after midnight. Creeping along the bank of the lake they reached a German outpost in front of the Farm. That outpost was rushed with the bayonet and the defenders were killed or captured. The raiders pushed on to "Manor Farm," attacked it with bomb and bayonet and dropped a large explosive charge down a dugout nearby. Then they came back, bringing five prisoners of the 457th Regiment (2/Lieut. Boswell was awarded the M.C.), and regained our lines with no heavier casualties than two men wounded.

That same night the Battalion was relieved and went back into reserve, first in trenches behind the line and then in Divisional Reserve at Brandhoek. On the last day of June the Battalion moved forward again and relieved the 5th Scottish Rifles in the trenches south of the canal previously held.

2 Battalion (October 1918)
2nd Lieut. H. E. Boswell commanding 'B' Company.
The enemy were strongly posted on the outskirts of the ruined village with machine-guns skilfully disposed to sweep the open ground. In spite of the crashing barrage the German machine-gunners opened fire as soon as the advancing platoons appeared out of the darkness. One machine-gun was shooting straight down the Landrecies road; but 2nd Lieutenant B. Kelly charged the machine-gun at the head of a small party, plunged in among the machine-gunners, killed two with the bayonet and captured the rest (2/Lt. Kelly was awarded the M.C.). Further along the line Sergeant H. Yates boldly attacked a second machine-gun, killed the machine-gunners and cleared the way (Sergt. Yates was awarded the D.C.M.). Nevertheless there were many casualties; and both the officers of one company were hit. Sergeant F. Field took command of the company and led his men forward into the village (Another Company was led very gallantly by Capt. E. L. Hopkins, who was later awarded a bar to his M.C.).

The British attack had been launched at the very hour at which the German troops in Englefontaine were being relieved (the German 58th Division was being relieved by the German 14th Division); and the inevitable confusion among the enemy greatly helped the attackers. The German battalions which had stood the strain of the previous three days of battle were at the end of their strength, and the fresh troops, ignorant of the situation, were easily demoralised. The attackers fought their way into the wrecked village and for a time a wild struggle raged around the ruins of the houses.

In the darkness individual German leaders reorganised their men and made fierce counter-attacks. One such counter-attack struck against the company commanded by Sergeant F. Field (Sergt. Field and Sergt. Darwood were both awarded the D.C.M.). The sergeant and his men opened rapid fire and the enemy fell back. Another counter-attack surged round both front and rear of an isolated Worcestershire platoon led by Sergeant J. Darwood; but the platoon held firm, shooting down all the enemy in their rear and then charging the enemy in front with the bayonet. The German infantry gave way, and the Worcestershire platoons fought their way forward through the village (2/Lt. H. E. Boswell led his Company with great bravery, and personally captured a party of the enemy. He was awarded the D.S.O.).

The Chaplain of the Battalion, the Reverend E. Victor Tanner M.C., had gone forward alone into that wild fight, following the advancing companies. In the pitch darkness, lit only by the momentary blaze of flares and bursting shells, he stumbled into a group of soldiers sheltering in a door-way; and found them to be Germans. At sight of his British uniform they shrank back into the house. Risking his life, the padre followed them into the building; which was crowded with men of the enemy, taking shelter from the fight. He promised them that their lives should be spared; and the brave Chaplain walked back to Battalion Headquarters followed by twenty-two prisoners, their hands raised in surrender.

Before dawn the German resistance was broken; and in the first light (October 26th) the last enemy in the village gave themselves up. By sunrise Englefontaine was entirely in our hands, with more than five hundred prisoners and many machine-guns (25 machine-guns altogether were captured in Englefontaine, but is was not easy to apportion them among the different battalions, which had been intermingled in the fighting, and whose claims overlapped.).

2/Lieut. H. E. Boswell was promoted to Acting Captain on 30th October 1918 whilst he was commanding a Company of the 2nd Battalion. He retired from Army Service on the 12th June 1919 and was granted the rank of Captain.

I hope this helps,

Regards,

Louis
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Postby BRIAN » Tue Feb 13, 2007 11:35 pm

thank you Louis thats great information and i really appreciate your contacting me,I will treasure that information and will continue my search of the archives for more information on this great man and relative.

thank you once again
REGARDS Brian White
TRACING INFORMATION REGARDING MY GREAT UNCLE 2/LIEUT H.E BOSWELL D.S.O AND MC 1914-1918 2nd BATTALION .TRACING MEDAL LOCATIONS AND OTHER MILITARY RECORDS
BRIAN
 
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Re: 2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918,Lieut. Boswell, Manor Farm

Postby coemar » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:23 pm

Hello Brian,

I live at Manor Farm where 2nd Lieut Boswell laid the raid against the 457th German Regiment.
I organized a Remembrance and all information can be found back on my website. sites.google.com/site/154siegebattery/
I'm also still looking for more information about the raid on Manor Farm 19/20 June 1918. Could you help me? Also a photo of Lieut. Boswell would be wellcome. Thanks

Perhaps also other members could give me information? Would there still be information to trace in the war records of the 2nd Worcesters? Please all information wellcome
s
Kind regards,
Marc,
Manor Farm
Zillebeke, Ypres
coemar
 
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Location: Ieper, Belgium

Re: 2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

Postby Simon_Fielding » Sat Jan 21, 2012 11:32 pm

Researching the 75 men of the Great War Memorial of St Anne's Church, Bewdley, Worcestershire .
Simon_Fielding
 
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Re: 2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

Postby coemar » Sun Jan 22, 2012 6:42 pm

Hi Simon,

I tried to open the link to www.... but it seems not to work.Please check is something is wrong in adress to other.Thanks.

Kind regards,
Marc
Ypres
coemar
 
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Location: Ieper, Belgium

Re: 2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

Postby coemar » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:06 pm

Hello,

Hereby a question for the moderators please.
Could you please forward my message concerning the great uncle of Brian? (see posts hereunder)
Orignal post "TRACING INFORMATION AND RECORDS OF MY GREAT UNCLE 2ND LIEUT H.E BOSWELL D.S.O AND MC ALSO POSSIBLE MEDAL LOCATIONS"
This post from Brian was dated 13 February 2007, so the reason Brian does not answer might be he is not looking frequently to the Forum.
Could you please forward following message by mail to Brian.Is this possible? Thanks. Marc

Hello Brian,

I live at Manor Farm where 2nd Lieut Boswell laid the raid against the 457th German Regiment.
I organized a Remembrance and all information can be found back on my website. sites.google.com/site/154siegebattery/.Yougreat Uncle is also mentioned on my site.
I'm also still looking for more information about the raid on Manor Farm 19/20 June 1918. Could you help me? Also a photo of Lieut. Boswell would be wellcome. Thanks

Perhaps also other members could give me information? Would there still be information to trace in the war records of the 2nd Worcesters? Please all information wellcome

Kind regards,
Marc,
Manor Farm
Zillebeke, Ypres
coemar
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 8:35 pm
Location: Ieper, Belgium

Re: 2 ND BATTALION 1914-1918

Postby Simon_Fielding » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:49 pm

Can't post a link...

it's in Supplement to the Edinburgh Gazette p.1105 12th March 1919
Researching the 75 men of the Great War Memorial of St Anne's Church, Bewdley, Worcestershire .
Simon_Fielding
 
Posts: 128
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2006 9:31 pm
Location: Cirencester Glos UK


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