Become our sponsor and display your banner here
Results 1 to 8 of 8

AB 64 RA & Italian company?

Article about: I picked this one up today and the mention of him being in 2638 ITALIAN Company is not something I recognise, though earlier he is listed as being a Gunner and Driver in the RA, with the 53r

  1. #1

    Default AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    I picked this one up today and the mention of him being in 2638 ITALIAN Company is not something I recognise, though earlier he is listed as being a Gunner and Driver in the RA, with the 53rd Field regiment (Bolton?). They were part of the 42nd inf div and went to France with the BEF. They left the 42nd in 1941 when it became an Armd div and they moved to the 76th inf div, then in 42 became part of the Middle east forces in N Africa, then in Jan 43 they became part of the 8th Indian div and served with them in Iraq, Syria and Italy including Monte Cassino until July 45 when they transferred back to the UK as part of the Home forces.

    He enlisted with the TA in Bolton in 38 and was from Wigan.

    Anyone help to make sense of the Italian company part of this?

    It also mentions him getting the Africa Star (with Xth Indian), without clasp and has a notification of him being issued a Pith Helmet. It has some other documents loose inside the rear flap cover.

    PS the doc with the blue line through it is the reverse of the doc next to it and showed they recycled the paper.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5442.jpg 
Views:	56 
Size:	156.8 KB 
ID:	379240   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5443.jpg 
Views:	71 
Size:	232.1 KB 
ID:	379241  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5444.jpg 
Views:	71 
Size:	248.6 KB 
ID:	379242   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5445.jpg 
Views:	58 
Size:	231.2 KB 
ID:	379243  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5446.jpg 
Views:	76 
Size:	218.0 KB 
ID:	379244   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5447.jpg 
Views:	82 
Size:	216.2 KB 
ID:	379245  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5450.jpg 
Views:	85 
Size:	175.7 KB 
ID:	379248   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5451.jpg 
Views:	84 
Size:	205.4 KB 
ID:	379249  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5453.jpg 
Views:	74 
Size:	215.1 KB 
ID:	379250   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5454.jpg 
Views:	55 
Size:	228.0 KB 
ID:	379251  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSCF5455.jpg 
Views:	203 
Size:	244.9 KB 
ID:	379252  
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Jerry B; 08-04-2012 at 08:00 PM.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  2. #2

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    When Italy surrendered a large number of Italians joined the allied side, I think at least 6 Batallions. They were called Italian co belligerents and served alongside the men of the 8th. Army in Italy, John.

  3. #3

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    Quote by Blackpowder44 View Post
    When Italy surrendered a large number of Italians joined the allied side, I think at least 6 Batallions. They were called Italian co belligerents and served alongside the men of the 8th. Army in Italy, John.
    Thanks John,

    I assumed it was something along those lines, but I tried doing a search and could not find out anything concrete about the unit, well nothing at all so far, but I have looked at the Co belligerent army and found out which Italian units served with which British corps as part of the Eighth Army.

    I'll carry on trying to track down more details from the British end of things.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  4. #4

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    Bumping this in case anyone can add any info.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  5. #5

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    Looking carefully at the Record of Specialist Employment in his paybook, I would tend to think the whole 'Italian Company' thing is postwar, possibly an occupation unit? He was a Battery Quartermaster-Serjeant in the 2638 Italian Company, and the one document you have for 8th January 1946 shows he handed over the Quartermaster's stores on this date, and presumably moved on to something else. He was promoted to Unpaid Acting BQMS on 26 August 1945, and them immediately granted Paid Acting BQMS the same day (or possibly retroactively). Note that the Granted P/A/BQMS entry is countersigned by the OC 2638 Italian Coy (Captain D E C Davies), whose signature looks like "Den Dais".

    His discharge papers say he was with 53rd Field Regiment, RA on discharge, so I would suggest the strongest possibility is that he was seconded/attached to 2638 Italian Coy (whatever that was) to run their stores between Aug 45 - Feb 46.

    During the war itself he was a Driver Mechanic with 53rd Field Regiment, for sure. He passed the Dvr-Mech course with a Class II qualification and would have been entitled to wear the Star Badge, or the commonly worn unofficial DM in Wreath tradesman's badge.

    Rob

  6. #6

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    Hey Jerry... I got it

    The unit is the 2638 Italian Pioneer Company, of the Pioneer Corps. I found their War Diary is stored at the Public Records Office. This must have been one of the 'alien companies' set up by the Pioneer Corps

    There are further clues I spotted in the Paybook too. Obviously there is the 24 Dec 1944 date which sets my theory back a few months, and the discharge certificate is actually 1942, when he was sick with thyrotoxicosis, which threw me off there. However, at the bottom of the Description on Enlistment section it says:

    A+S ??????? 26
    WOS Williams, Lt
    for OC 2638 Ital Coy

    the A+S of which I am reading as "Ammunition and Stores". So I am now confident that he went into the Italian Pioneer Coy to deal with their stores, but probably late 1944 rather than 1945. This could be the result of his illness perhaps, as it is a lighter duty? Interesting that he is listed as a Battery Quartermaster-Serjeant rather than Company QMS, which suggests he is still an artilleryman, seconded as I first thought.

    Sorry this is a bit rambling, just me thinking out loud in public... interesting group though

    Rob
    Last edited by Battery Command Post; 09-03-2012 at 07:38 AM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    As always Rob, you can be relied upon to come up with the goods. A last question if I may, but you mention the unit as being comprised of Aliens, so would this mean it was part of the co belligerent forces or some other form of Alien unit. I am sorry, but it has still got me somewhat confused as to the finer points of this unit, though I just found this link which suggests it or similar units were formed prior to the collapse of the Italian fascist regime in 1943.

    Royal Pioneer Corps & Royal Pioneer Association
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  8. #8

    Default Re: AB 64 RA & Italian company?

    Thank you, I was really chuffed with myself for finding that

    As for more information, the info in that link is more than I have. All I know is the Pioneer Corps made use of friendly and enemy aliens throughout the war. The Pioneer Corps is another of those underappreciated and largely ignored units that made a great contribution to the war. The unit certainly went on after the war, until 1946 at least.

    Rob

Similar Threads

  1. Luftwaffe company seal

    In Field Equipment And Accessories of the Third Reich
    04-10-2015, 05:04 AM
  2. Question Luftwaffe company seal

    In Photos - Papers - Propaganda of the Third Reich
    05-13-2012, 06:30 PM
  3. SS Company Commander Soldbuch

    In Soldbuch, Wehrpaß, Ausweis, etc
    03-29-2012, 11:19 PM
  4. 12-05-2011, 08:42 PM
  5. 1st Independent Company puggaree

    In Cloth headgear-Western Allies
    10-15-2011, 01:05 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •