Thursday, 23 January 2014

Middlesex Appeals against First World War conscription

The (UK) National Archives is making the digitised records of over 8,000 individuals seeking exemption from conscription into the army in Middlesex during the First World War available online.
Men asked for exemption on medical, family or economic grounds, or as conscientious objectors.
Here's an example. A search for Reid found Evelyn John Reid of Station Yard, Twickenham. Occupation: Coal Merchant and Depot Manager, who appealed on the grounds that:

- serious hardship would ensure if the man were called up for Army service, owing to his exceptional financial or business obligations or domestic position.
- the principal and usual occupation of the man is one of those included in the list of occupations certified by Government Departments for exemption.
You have to order the original document images through TNA's Discovery system, even though there is no charge - for the next ten years. It takes about a minute to process the order, then you can download the original images in pdf.

The documents show he was granted a temporary, 4 month, exemption. Other documents show he did serve, received two war medals and lived until 1963.

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