Thursday, 31 January 2013

The Kaiser’s Own

Interesting article in Great War London blog about  the role of German born and/or naturalised Londoners including Lewisham residents in the Great War 1914-18

"The Kaiser’s Own:
... In 1916, Army Orders established two new battalions in the Middlesex Regiment. These would contain recruits who were British citizens but the children of immigrants from nations with whom Britain was at war; the men were promised that they would not have to bear arms against the enemy. The units were named the 30th and 31st battalions and they served only in the UK. Some additional similar Labour Companies were also formed in 1917 and served in France. The units were known (rather cruelly) by some as “The Kaiser’s Own”.

Several Londoners served in the 31st Battalion – which ended the war based in Croydon.

"Hugo Max Norman Hotopf was born in Northumberland in 1881, the son of Hugo and Johanna who were German immigrants naturalised as British citizens in 1895. By the start of the Great War he was married, living in Lewisham, and had a son – William Hugh Norman Hotopf, born June 1914. Norman was working as a dye expert for the rather Germanic-sounding Badische Company in Brunswick Place near Old Street ....."

Read more on the Great War London blog
Posted from Great War London

Thursday, 3 January 2013

James Elroy Flecker (5 November 1884 – 3 January 1915)

English poet James Elroy Flecker died on this day in 1915. He was born in Lewisham at 9 Gilmore Road, SE13 on 5th November 1884. His most famous works include "To a Poet a Thousand Years Hence" and "The Golden Journey to Samarkand".

He was commemorated by the GLC in 1886 and you can see details of his Blue Plaque on the London Remembers website

You can read his works on Project Gutenberg at Works by James Elroy Flecker