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John Bell soldier in WW1

Geejay

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#1
Hi everyone. I've been researching my tree for about seven years and have never managed to get to the bottom of this puzzle so I'm hoping someone who has more knowledge about WW1 can help me, as I have very little! I have a photo of my Grandfaher John Bell in a WW1 uniform. I think he might have been a Northumberland Fusilier. On the back of the photograph are some numbers, they are F107 BELL 288198. I can't seem to find any reference to these numbers and don't even know if they are anything to do with his time in the army in WW1. I thought they might be a regiment number. If anyone could shed any light on this I would be hugely grateful.
Thanks in advance
Geejay
 

sterico

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#2
hi geejay.
F107 i think is his regiment the numbers after his surname are his army number. if you go on to the national archives website they would be able to assist you. it would be of further assistance to them if you could find out what his rank and job was in his unit. this is the link to the Website: www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

regards sterico
 

juliejtp

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#3
Hi Geejay,

I had a look online at the National Archives at Kew for medal record for a John Bell, but came back with no results, which I found as odd as I would have thought there would have been more than one John Bell anyway. Have you any more info such as dob, middle name?
 

Geejay

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#4
Hi again and thanks for the replies. I tried to look John Bell up but came back with nothing and this is where I got stuck because I wasn't sure what the numbers were anyway. I know his date of birth is 8th August 1881, he was born in Ellenborough Cumberland to parents Joseph Bell and Margaret Bell formerly Smith. Don't know if this is of any help but he was a miner both before and after the war. I have names of his siblings and other family information but know nothing about his time in the army. I have been told that he was missing for a while and that his wife Isabella would not take the pension she was offered because she refused to believe he was dead. I wouldn't take this story as truth because it sounds like one of those stories that gets changed as it goes from one person to the next.
Thanks again
Geejay
 

Ben

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#6
I found a fair few "J. Bell northumberland fusiliers" in the medal card index.

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/...atid=10&pagenumber=1&querytype=1&mediaarray=*

Another thing you could look for is him been absent on the electoral roll from 1914 to 1918 where he lived.
Some places have a special list at the main or local library in that area.
You could also post a picture of the man or just the cap badge, so people could have a go at identifying the uniform for you.
Ben
 

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