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New Member - Archie Thomson

Printed From: The Gallipoli Association
Category: Gallipoli Association forum
Forum Name: New members
Forum Description: an area for new members to introduce themselves or seek advice etc.
Printed Date: 15 Oct 2019 at 23:43
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Topic: New Member - Archie Thomson
Posted By: cmcderment
Subject: New Member - Archie Thomson
Date Posted: 12 Feb 2014 at 15:44
Hi there,

I'm a new member here, although not new to family history research, but now I'm researching  my great-uncle Archie Thomson because of a local charity I'm involved with, (it's a long story) and wondered if anyone could help me.

 Basically I know he went to Gallipoli with the Argylls in 1915. He is also on record as being discharged on medical grounds in 1916. As far as the family is concerned, he died there, or of his wounds, but I can find no record of his death on Scotlandspeople either in the Service Records or anywhere in Scotland.
Does anyone know if wounded servicemen might have been shipped elsewhere, perhaps to field hospitals in France, where he might have died?

The research is not helped by the fact that he might have lied about his age when he enlisted, as he was only born in 1898.

Archie Thomson, born 28th June, 1898  in Greenock, Scotland.

Enlisted in the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders in 1915. (service number 940) Presumably before they moved from Greenock in April.

Embarked for Gallipoli, June 1915.

Discharged in June 1916, as unfit for active service.

I'd be really grateful if anyone can shed any light on this for me.

Many thanks,



Posted By: Mal Murray
Date Posted: 12 Feb 2014 at 16:21
Christine Welcome to the Forum.

Archie's Regimental Number should read as "1940" and not as stated in your post.

Archie enlisted 12/8/1914 and was discharged for wounds sustained in service on 30/4/1916.
He served in the 5th Bn Argyl & Sutherland Highlanders and was awarded a Silver War Badge.

The fact that he was discharged with a SWB means he did NOT die at Gallipoli or in France.

Wounded personnel from Gallipoli were hospitalised on Lemnos Island, Egypt, Malta, Gibraltar and in the U.K., I know of no incidences where a wounded Gallipoli soldier was hospitalised in France.

He is not registered on the Commonwealth Wargraves Commission either.
Do you know his full name as per birth cert?

To protect our history, we must secure it's future.

Posted By: cmcderment
Date Posted: 12 Feb 2014 at 16:36
Hi, Mal, and thanks. At least that rules out someone I found who died in France. It didn't seem right, but as I could find no closer match, I did wonder.

His full name as per his birth certificate was Archibald Ralston Thomson. He was born June 25th, 1898.

While you're here, could you possibly tell me if someone who enlisted in November 1915 would have arrived in Gallipoli before they were evacuated in January 1916? My grandfather joined then, (see below) we think because of Archie, as he had two very young children at home. I know he was in Egypt and later France, but I wondered if he would have spent even a short time in Gallipoli.

Private Alexander McKillop

Regimental number 201698

Date of enlistment: 24 or 27-11-1915

Date of discharge: 16-11-1918

Served with Unit 3758, 5th Battalion Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders

Many thanks,



Posted By: Mal Murray
Date Posted: 12 Feb 2014 at 16:47

Alexander Enlisted on 27/11/1915. 

There is no way that I can see him serving at Gallipoli between then and 9 January when the troops were withdrawn.

By the sounds of what you say after training he would have been sent to Egypt as a reinforcement.

To protect our history, we must secure it's future.

Posted By: cmcderment
Date Posted: 12 Feb 2014 at 16:50
Thanks, Mal.


Posted By: MacINNES6208
Date Posted: 08 Jun 2015 at 17:36
Dear Christine,
Was Archibald Thomson the brother of Andrew Thomson (1300/200084). Both resided at 33 Trafalgar Street Greenock? (they noted their n.o.k. as their father, James).  If so, Archibald was wounded on the 12th July. 
n.b. he left Greenock in January (due to issues arising with the Battalion locally). Colonel Darroch moved them to Dundee - then to Dunfermline.  The Battalion sailed from Devonport on board the Andania (which stopped briefly in Malta for re coaling and to collect Australian casualties). From there they sailed to Egypt, however (cutting a very long story short) they ended up several weeks under canvas near Abourkir Bay.  The 1/5th have an exceptionally detailed history, which started long before WW1.  Much detail/ photographs etc. survive of the Summer Camps etc. also literally hundreds of letters the boys sent home.
It must be noted the town gave the Battalion outstanding support (they sent crates of supplies to Gallipoli on a weekly basis).
The Battalion were know locally as the Greenock Terriers.
Elizabeth (Granddaughter of Archibald MacInnes, E coy 1/5th A&S.  

Posted By: GILLEN7016
Date Posted: 10 Jun 2015 at 11:40
Hello Christine,

More information on Alexander McKillop. I have him as having served with the 5th Argylls from 1908 - 1912. He was mobilised 31/5/1916 and then posted to the 1/8th Battalion 7/11/16

You may be interested to hear that the McLean Museum in Greenock is organising a few events for the 12th July including the unveiling of a plaque to the Battalion, cemetery walks, and a book give away of George Blakes 'Path of Glory' - a novel based on his time with the 5th Argylls at Gallipoli.

There is also a play being performed at the Beacon Theatre - Fair Broke the Day - based on the 5th Argyll story.

More information can be found at and we are tweeting daily updates on the 5th Argylls experience at Gallipoli

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