Thursday 14 May 2015

Help for Robert Oliveri who lives in Australia.

Robert is trying to trace any Information regarding the 39th Divisional Artillery Ammunition Column, Deptford. Is there an association??

Robert says

My grandfather was in WW1 in the 39th Divisional Artillery Ammunition Column.  And I think that the unit was formed in Deptford.  I was wondering if you can  point me to any associations or historical societies that may have more information.  l have some old unit photos in poor condition and I was hoping I could trace one in better shape. The first photo is very much like like a company of men although the title indicates it is section 3 of the Ammunition Column 39th Divisional Artillery.  

Roberts mother says he always kept the photos in a cylinder and that is both the reason for it's damage as well as its preservation.  The second photo is, he assumes, his small group, a section in modern infantry terms.  His grandfather was a black smith by trade and a shoe smith by rank. His name was Charles Walter Hollis.  

Robert is planning a trip next year that will probably see him on the Somme almost exactly 100 years after his grandfather arrived there in 1916.  Robert shares the only war time story he heard about his grandfather which was when he had an argument with a tent mate over a game of cards one night. He got angry and decided to sleep under a tree and that night a shell took out his tent.  He died aged 90. 

Robert says

Thanks for your help.  I would imagine it is unlikely that anyone else will have this photo unless there is an old association still active or a local library or historical society.   I plan to restore the photo very slowly.   In Australia our War memorial in Canberra has this type of photo on file, is that the case in the UK as well?