Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Irish American soldiers repatriated to Ireland

In 1922, 64 soldiers in the American Expeditionary Force killed during WW1 who originated from Ireland were repatriated to Ireland.

A list of the soldiers can be found at :

Researcher and author Tom Burnell recently had a query on the Great War Forum re Edmond Brunick/Brunnock who died of wounds 1st October 1918. A short while ago the grave of Edmond Brunnock was rediscovered and a ceremony took place in 2012 at his grave to recognise his service in WW1.

News article can be found on the web re some of these soldiers e.g.

George Crefin

The American Legion have a couple of branches in Ireland and contribute to the upkeep the graves of US personnel buried in Ireland.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Major George Robert Playfair MC

George Robert Playfair was born in Hampshire (Southsea or Portsea) in 1869, the son of John and Sarah Playfair. John was born in Ireland and had served as a soldier.

George enlisted in the Garrison Artillery in 1887 and rose to the rank of SQMS. He transferred to the Ordnance Corps in 1900 with the rank of Sub-Conductor (Warrant Officer).

In the 1901 census, he is listed as a Sub-Conductor. The 3 eldest children (ages 7, 6 and 4) all listed as born in Nova Scotia; the youngest child (aged 2) is listed as born in Devonport.

George appears to have been a Conductor in 1902

In 1908, he moves from Conductor to Assistant Commissary of Ordnance/Lt :

In 1911, he is in Dublin, with 2 additional children (1 born England aged 9, 1 born Dublin age 1). He appears to have been the Superintendent at the Royal Magazine Fort in Phoenix Park, Dublin.

His Medal Index Card, shows he entered a theatre of war (presume France) 13th August 1914. Ranks are listed as Hon Lt, Hon Capt, Hon Maj and then Capt. Address is shown as Room 169, War Office, London SW1

In June 1916 he appears in the London Gazette as Honorary Captain for the award of a Military Cross but no information so far about what the MC was awarded for. While George was in France, his eldest son George Alexander Playfair (aged 23) was shot during the Easter Rising and died of his wounds, 29th April 1916.

In August 1918, he is DCO (Deputy Commissary of Ordnance) and Captain; steps down from Honorary Major and role of C of O (Commissary of Ordnance?)

In May 1922, he is a C of O and Major once again

George was posted to Sierra Leone in July 1922 but appears to have died of heart failure in August 1922. He is buried in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Number 2 Squadron

This is a garbled attempt to trace some information re the RFC pilots who flew from Scotland to Ireland in 1913.

The first serving officer of the British Army to be awarded a Pilot's Certificate in England
was Captain George William Patrick Dawes who was awarded Certificate No. 17 for qualification on a Humber monoplane at Wolverhampton on 26th July 1910.

Dublin born Captain Dawes died on 17th March 1960 aged eighty. He had served in South Africa between 1900 and 1902 when he was awarded the Queen's Medal with three clasps, and the King's Medal with two clasps. He took up flying privately in 1909 and was posted to the R.F.C. on its formation in 1912. He commanded the Corps in the Balkans from 1916 to 1918, during which time he was awarded the D.S.O. and the A.F.C., was mentioned in despatches seven times, and awarded the Croix de Guerre with three palms, the Serbian Order of the White Eagle, the Order of the Redeemer of Greece and created Officer of the Legion d'Honncur.

He served with the Royal Air Force in the Second World War as a Wing Commander, retiring in 1946 with the M.B.E. He thus was one of the very few officers who served actively in the Boer War and both world wars.


Becke at 17000ft in an RE8



Friday, 1 March 2013