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Thomas Jacobs


Jesse Jacobs
Susan Kate Alexander  


William (Ted)
Harry George
Elizabeth (Betty)
Dorothy (Dot)
Louisa Jane ( Jean)
Ellen (Nell)

Tom was born on September 26th 1899 at 19 Eastfield Buildings, Andover, Hants.

He moved with his parents and their growing family to the Avon valley around Netheravon, and after 1912 to Cliff End, Figheldean.

He appears in the 1901 census as ‘Thomas J’, age 1, and the 1911 census as ‘Thomas James’, 11.

Late in the Great War, at the age of 18 he enlisted in the Army at Salisbury but oddly he was assigned to the Warwickshire Regiment. Before returning to action in August 1918, he spent a weekend at home; this was the only occasion on which the entire family was together, Jesse junior having been born the previous January.

No. 50404 Private T J Jacobs, Royal Warwickshire Regiment

In the final month of the war, his unit was still fighting in the Ecaillon Valley, Nord.
Tom was serving with B Company, 2nd/6th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment. The regimental diary has this entry for October 24th:

Tom Jacobs

04.00  Under cover of artillery barrage, the village of VENDEGIES was attacked and the river ECAILLON crossed, but the Battalion had to withdraw West of the river, owing to strong enemy resistance.
Fighting continued throughout the day and at about 18.00 hours the enemy withdrew. The village was occupied immediately. Casualties sustained 5 officers, 182 O.R.

One of the 182 other ranks killed in that bloody action was Tom Jacobs. Less than three weeks later the war was over.

He is listed in “Soldiers Died in the Great War”, which gave the vital clues that he was born in Andover and was in the Warwicks

His parents were sent his British War Medal and Victory Medal

Tom was buried at
Crucifix Cemetery, France,
Plot A, Grave 3

Click on the above to see his Commonwealth War Graves Commission “Certificate”.

Tom PC inscription

It is not clear whose in whose hand are the two annotations on the back of this postcard. The blue writing says Tom Jacobs, elder brother of John Archibald Jacobs. The Commonwealth War Grave Commission, Soldiers Died... and the Warwickshire regimental diary all give the date of death as October 24th.

Thomas Grave

Tom’s grave:

Left, a photo from the CWGC.

Right, a photo from Kathleen’s granddaughter Pippa and her husband, April 2012.

24TH OCTOBER 1918  AGE 19

Vendegies plaqu


Plaque commemorating the battle where Tom was killed, erected on the 50th anniversary of the recapture of Vendegies-sur-Ecaillon in 1918.


Three copies of this photograph are known, held by Kathleen, Jim and Katie.
All mutilated to some extent, as can be seen.


Cousin Jim has found this explanation of why Tom from Wiltshire found himself in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment:

Knowing that an old Army mate had served in Korea with the Royal Warwickshires, I showed him the photo on the website of my Uncle Tom who was killed in WW1, to see if he could ID the cap badge he is wearing in the photo. I already knew that the Warks cap badge was an antelope, and the explanation is that when the photo was taken he was in a training Brigade before being posted into the Warks. That is exactly what still happened when I was in the Army. A training Brigade consisted of men destined for any one of the 3 Regiments in the Brigade on completion of basic training, and he would then have been posted to whichever regiment was short of men due to battle casualties, etc. I have no idea what Tom's regiment was before he was killed in the Warks, his cap badge was no doubt of one of the county regiments that were disbanded or amalgamated long ago.


 I have finally discovered the cap badge Thomas Jacobs wears in the photo (s) on the website is the Devonshire Regiment, which would almost certainly have been brigaded with the Wiltshires as far as training was concerned, when I believe the pic was taken. 
The castle on the badge is Exeter Castle with a scroll reading Semper Fidelis ( ever faithful), and a crown replaces the star point at the top.
How he died with the Warwickshires is a mystery.
Jim. 26 July 2011


In October 1917 Tom was given a bible by his parents. It was probably with him when he was killed, and it was returned to the family and eventually given to his brother Harry, and is now with me.

These pictures show:

The button-down cover which has now lost its popper

The inscription from Jesse and Kate, referring to an extract from Proverbs 1, 10-15.

Plus the page referred to.

“My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not
If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit:
We shall find all our precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil:
Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:
My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:”

Further pictures below from Pippa

Crucifix Cemetery

Crucifix Cemetery, where Tom Jacobs is buried

Cricifix Graves

Tom’s grave, with Pippa’s flowers, Crucifix Cemetery

A wider view below

Crucifix Cemetery II
Vengegies village

Vendegies-sur-Ecaillon, April 2012


will tell you all you want to know about the village for which Tom gave his life.

(Use the translate button if your French is as bad as mine.

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