Remembering 180629 Sapper Harry Ernest Wilkinson, Royal Engineers

Some months ago the Society was contacted by Harry Wilkinson’s granddaughter who wanted to know more about his war service. Little is know about it, except that ‘he fought both against and later with the Bulgarians’ and ended up in Constantinople. Happily, he returned home safely.

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Faces of Salonika : a group from 1917

Another eBay purchase! Unfortunately this photo has few details, other than a note that it was taken in Salonika in 1917.  The greeting on the back reads: Fondest love to Mary, Salonica. May 1st 1918, so this seems an appropriate time to publish it. It may have been taken at a hospital as it shows (seated) a captain and corporal of the RAMC. The man standing in the centre has the cap badge of the Worcestershire Regiment, so that would be the 11th Battalion (78th Brigade, 26th Division on the Doiran Front).

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Faces of Salonika : Frank Whitehead, 13/Manchesters

My thanks go to  Caroline Booth and Joseph Travis for sharing with us their fascinating and detailed blog – A Year of War – about their grandfather/great-grandfather, Frank Whitehead, who served in Salonika in 1918. Frank served with 13/Manchesters, which was in 22nd Division, 66th Brigade on the Doiran Front. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Frank Whitehead, 13/Manchesters”

Faces of Salonika : photo album for sale

My thanks go to Brian Goodison-Blanks of Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood Limited, Fine Art Valuers and Auctioneers in Exeter, for telling us of a splendid photograph album which will be in their Sporting and Collectors auction on 15 and 16 November. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : photo album for sale”

Faces of Salonika : Somerset Miners

This rather small and tatty picture – another eBay purchase – shows a group of men sitting on a quayside, which may be Salonika. The mixture of service dress (as worn in the UK and on the Western Front) with a sun helmet would certainly be appropriate for men of the BSF after about mid-1916. The extremes of the Macedonian climate make all sorts of combinations of dress possible which, for me, is one of the fascinations of the campaign. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Somerset Miners”

Faces of Salonika : Bill Devereux and the Great Fire

My thanks go to Richard Devereux who provided this photo of his grandfather, Bill, enjoying a cigarette in the ruins of Salonika in the aftermath of the Great Fire, having done his bit to help.

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Faces of Salonika : Luigi Villari, Italian Army Liaison Officer

Luigi Villari (1876–1959) was an Italian historian, traveller and diplomat. He worked in the Italian Foreign Office and was later a newspaper correspondent. Villari served as Italy’s Vice-Consul in three American cities between 1906 and 1910. He devoted most of his life to the study of international problems, more especially to the relations between Italy and the English-speaking countries (Wikipedia). Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Luigi Villari, Italian Army Liaison Officer”

Faces of Salonika : Refugees

Refugees fleeing conflict are rarely out of the news today, but this is not a new phenomenon. With the Balkans facing its third war since 1912 it is hardly surprising that there were communities of refugees across the region, although they are rarely mentioned. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Refugees”