Indefatigable Vanguard enthusiast Jonathan Saunders has provided this database of those men lost when the battleship sank in 1917. He has combed through the 1917 Imperial Wargraves Commission registers for Chatham and Portsmouth, as well as the current Commonwealth Wargraves Commission database to extract the data. Please contact Jon if you find any errors, or have any further information on the ship and her crew.
Ordinary Seaman John Richard Parsons J/39669, who was 18 when Vanguard was lost
(courtesy of his neice Wendy Noakes, nee Parsons (firstname.lastname@example.org))
Graves of Vanguard's Officers
(both photos courtesy of Brian Budge - click to enlarge)
Jon's own impressions are of interest:
I found a father and son. I think the surname was Cockerill. The son was 20 and had an earlier enlistment no. than his father. He was a Stoker 1st Class whilst his father, 40, had obviously joined later and was a Stoker 2nd Class. Possibly this seniority phenomenon wasn't so unusual during WW1, with volunteers, conscription, increased age for service etc, but I was shocked they had such close relatives serving on board the same ship but then again, this wouldn't have been any different to serving in the same line regiment.
The boredom of entering the names is offset by patterns, such as most of the widows had not remarried by time of the register's publication in 1924 - a scarcity of men post WW1? Next of kin for most of the seamen under 30 was their parents so people did not marry until quite late in age at the turn of the century, if at all.
A lot of the casualties came from Medway (nr Chatham) where I live, and the addresses given for their kin are familiar roads and streets to me, which is eerie. And so many of the casualties were very young - the youngest I have found was 16 but also many 18 and 19 year olds. There were quite a few men that died who were from the north-east. I thought most of these men would have been the ones on leave as they were obviously close to home. According to my Great Aunt, Oscar Cox had managed to swap his own leave entitlement so he could get home when she was born 2 months later, otherwise he would have been home in Chatham. A tough thought for her to live with for so many years.
The casualty lists are available in web-readable format here:
or may be downloaded in one of several common spreadsheet formats below (depending upon your browser, a "right click" will invoke the download function):
Jon Saunders has provided a few obituaries of Vanguard's losses.
Jeanet Stephan has also provided a copy of the telegram sent by the Admiralty to the Next of Kin. Click here to see it, and a letter home, which mentions Jutland and the death of Lord Kitchener is reproduced here.
Telegraphist J/35183 Henry ("Harry") James Maddock, courtesy of his Great-niece Jeanet Stephan
Private Henry Metcalf, RMLI, courtesy of his Grand-nephew Paul Austin
Chief Yeoman of Signals Oscar Cox
RN Able Seaman J/24544 CHAPMAN George William, 14 September 1897 - 9 July 1917
(courtesy of Marion Brown, his neice)
Lady Pamela McKenna, who launched the ship, sent letters and photographs to the Next of Kin (also courtesy of Jeanet Stephan):
Once again, Jonathan Saunders has provided a fascinating window into life onboard Vanguard: in this case, the sad story of William Clent and his intent to marry - click here to read about it.
Two of Vanguard's officers have some biographical information:
Vanguard's Memorial, at Lyness
(photo courtesy of Brian Budge - click to enlarge)
The Two Vanguard's Survivors
(photo courtesy of the Orkney Library Photo Archive - click to enlarge)
Private Williams RMLI (left), Stoker Cox (right) -- courtesy George Malcolmson
Jon Saunders has transcribed the following list of survivors from The Times of Saturday, 14 July 1917:
|RN||Stoker 1st Class||K.3300||COX||F.W.|
|Not on Board|
|The following are surviving officers of HMS Vanguard|
|The following are surviving petty-officers, non-commissioned officers and men of HMS Vanguard|
|Ratings belonged to the Chatham Port Division except where otherwise stated.|
|Stoker Petty Officer||309603||ADAMS||P.E.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.21357||BEVERLEY||W.|
|Stoker 1st Class||SS.112860||BINGHAM||H.S.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.21353||CHARLTON||A.|
|Ordinary Telegraphist||J.35251 (Dev)||DAVIS||R.G.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.15964||DEAL||J.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.33593||DIVER||F.I.|
|Stoker Petty Officer||310573||EMPSON||F.W.|
|Engine Room Artificer 2nd Class||M.1287||GARLAND||J.|
|Stoker 1st Class||SS.115050||GAYTON||A.O.|
|Ordinary Seaman||J.32866 (Po)||GOUFFINI||A.J.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.21031||GREEN||J.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.32250||HALL||P.J.|
|Chief Electrical Artificer 2nd Class||347649||HAWKINS||E.L.|
|Shipwright 1st Class||340282||HAWKINS||G.|
|Stoker Petty Officer||307561||HEWSON||A.E.|
|Acting Engine Room Artificer 4th Class||M.3776||HIGGS||F.R.|
|Chief Petty Officer||160879||JOHNSON||W.R.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.21122||JOHNSTON||F.C.|
|Electrical Artificer 1st Class||345057||KING||T.|
|Shipwright 1st Class||M.6733 (Dev)||MACEY||C.C.|
|Engine Room Artificer 2nd Class||M.1666||MONROE||J.|
|Engine Room Artificer 5th Class||M.4796||PARIS||S.W.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.19851||PETTIT||W.J.|
|Stoker Petty Officer||291868||POWELL||G.H.|
|Ordinary Seaman||SS.7755 (Po)||TOMLINSON||J.H.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.9160||WALLIS||A.|
|Stoker 1st Class||SS.112676||WEDD||A.G.|
|Stoker 1st Class||K.31160||WRIGHT||W.C.|
(courtesy Jon Saunders)
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