The IWM have an ongoing Lives of the First War project and I had a gt uncle, Henry Townson, who lost his life whilst serving with the 4th Battalion of The Rifle Brigade in 1918. He was actually the brother of the two gt aunts in my biplane post back here but this aside there is no aircraft connection. However I checked the record that the IWM project holds and it is very scant and it occurred to me that I am probably now one of the few people who knows anything of him so I’ve uploaded some details and will see what else I can find so that he will at least have a deserved place in the archives.

Below is his picture which I acquired some years ago from a late aunt. The reverse has a message that was written by my gt uncle’s cousin in 1970 that inspired me to look in to the cousin’s background a little more too. I knew that, unlike my uncle, he had emigrated to Canada with his family in 1907 but I found a newspaper obituary of his death in 1978 that referred to a serious injury sustained fighting in WWI. So it was back to the IWM project where there were also limited details of this chap except an attestation he signed in 1915 when he joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force and went off to fight. The thing that I noticed on this was that he lied about his age stating he was 18 rather than the actual 17 presumably so he could join up that much sooner. I wonder what his family made of that.

Anyway, in this centenary year of the end of WWI I have been able to add a little about the lives of two brave soldiers that might otherwise be lost so, off topic as it is, I thought it worth a mention.