Re: Military Service

Adrian Bruce

It's very much a matter of preference but I found the Military History Fact Set to be rather too detailed for my family members - and for a One Name Study, I think that it would be overwhelming. Of course, you don't need to use all the fact types, you could just decide which you want to use and use Tools / Fact Types / Hide to hide the rest to avoid confusion.

I would suggest that you need to use at least
 - Military Service attribute, whose value is the name of each unit that someone served in, with appropriate dates;
 - Campaign Medal attribute whose value is the name(s) of all(?) the campaign medals issued to this guy;
 - Gallantry Medal attribute whose value is the name of a Gallantry Medal awarded - with the appropriate award date;
You'd need to think what to do about Mentioned In Dispatches - I'd be inclined to put it in the Gallantry Medal attribute, rather than have its own attribute. The Silver War Badge is another oddity, perhaps. I'd be inclined to put that in a separate Campaign Medal attribute for each soldier, rather than in with the Campaign Medal attribute for the BWM and VM, simply because it's easier to work with.

Military Service attribute - I record this at the battalion / battery / company level etc - whatever the basic unit is. Of course, at the start and end of his career, you might only know that they were in Training or the Reserve - you might not know a more detailed description. Most people will have several Military Service attributes.

Whether you have separate events for demobbed and discharged is up to you - for my purposes I will normally enter the discharged date in the end date of the last Military Service attribute, while the demobbed date is just in the notes for a Military Service attribute. But if you want to run off a query listing these dates, then you really need to record them as events in their own right. I've never found the need to do that so I've never bothered recording them as their own events. This also avoids me getting mixed up over exactly what someone's start date actually is! (This is not a silly question - if someone joined up under the Derby Scheme as a volunteer, arguably they joined the Army at their date of volunteering, and then went home until they were mobilised... Which is the "start"?)

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