As you already know I am always intrigued by the messages and addresses on the back of old postcards that I buy and sell and I have recently found a postcard of South Parade Pier in Southsea sent in October 1917.
The postcard was sent to Mrs W F MOON at Hillside, Battle Road, Hailsham in Sussex and the message on the back reads:
The doctor put catarrh on my medical card and I have to attend Sick Bay 3 times a day for medicine. He is going to examine my chest again on Monday. They treat me far better here than they did when I was at Barracks and do not regard me as a malingerer. I am eagerly waiting for the ‘ weekly budget’.
Your ever loving son
Firstly I was curious to see if Reg had survived World War 1 and thankfully could find no record of his death on the Commonwealth War Graves website – however when I traced his family further it would appear that Reg was indeed his middle name!!
As the postcard was addressed to a Mrs W F MOON I started by looking for her and found that Edith Maud BEAVIS married Walter Finnis MOON on the 3rd May 1898 in Ventnor on the Isle of Wight.
The 1911 census record, as below, shows Walter MOON aged 41 born in Peckham London working as a Pastry Cook / Baker, Edith MOON aged 35 born in the Isle of Wight and three children Reginald aged 11, Constance aged 3 and Iris aged 2 living in a shop in Perrymount Road in Haywards Heath.
Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1911 England Census Source Citation: Class: RG14; Piece: 5001; Schedule Number: 171
Reginald was born Arthur Reginald MOON on the 13th June 1899 in Ventnor on the Isle of Wight and I found UK Navy Service record for him dated 30th July 1917, when he would have been aged 18, as below, and just four months before his postcard home saying that he was sick;
|Name:||Arthur Reginald Moon|
|Birth Date:||13 Jun 1899|
|Birth Place:||Vetnor Isle of Wight|
|First Service Date:||30 Jul 1917|
|First Ship Served On:||Victory I|
|Last Service Date:||28 Mar 1919|
|Last Ship Served On:||Kingfisher|
Source Information: Ancestry.com. UK, Royal Navy Registers of Seamen’s Services, 1848-1939 Source Citation: The National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Royal Navy Registers of Seamen’s Services; Class: ADM 188; Piece: 797
As already mentioned I could thankfully find no death record for Reg during World War 1 and on further investigation I found his death and probate records, which show that he died on 19th July 1980 aged 81 and amazingly he was living at 55 Marine Parade in Leigh on Sea in Essex, which is about two miles down the road from where I live in Southend on Sea.
Source Information: Ancestry.com. England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966, 1973-1995
Therefore this random postcard that I found at a fair in Clacton on Sea in Essex during the summer last year not only had links to World War 1, but also to my home town and Essex – I am now going to look for a relative to see if I can reunite this interesting postcard sent home from Reg in October 1917!!