silver war badge

The stories of Edward and Henry Moan – Soldiers of WW1

The Moan brothers were from Wallsend and their surname originated from Ireland.Their father James was found to be from there.
The youngest Edward was actually born in Jarrow but the family moved in 1911 to Willington Quay. He worked in the Castner Kellner Chemical works as a labourer.
He joined up in June 1913 and by the start of the war in 1914 was a professionally trained soldier with the Northumberland Fusiliers. He sees action early on by receiving a 1914-15 Star as well as Victory British War medals and the Silver War badge(often given to those soldiers who received wounds or who were somehow incapacitated during the fighting).
During his service he rises to Corporal. He dies on November 25 1918 two weeks after the armistace at home.
Researchers at the Northumbria World War one project at Linkskill Centre North Shields have uncovered a very telling Army Medical Report after an examination on Edward takes place on November 8th. He had been discharged in 1916 after suffering from a gas attack the previous year and his condition deteriorated in the interim.In their report he was described as “thin and emaciated who had great difficulty breathing because of lung damage caused by the inhilation of the deadly gases fired by the Germans”. Had had returned to his old job briefly in his final months but was unable to work. He was in terrible distress and must have suffered greatly in his final months.Despite all this there is no record of his existance in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission records.
Older brother Henry was also a professional soldier but when war is declared in 1914 he had been discharged three weeks before war was declared. The nature of his illness is unknown but he dies five months after his brother Edward. He also has not been awarded any records in the CWGC database.His only war medal is the Silver War badge.Research continues to find out more about these brothers. If you would like to know more please contact the WW1 project at Linkskill Centre North Shields.

  1. Hi Vicki, It may well be that further information may reveal some of the gaps. Northumbria University are currently collected studies from around the country relating to WW1 life and times in different regions. They have a researcher who was involved in Tynemouth Commemoration Project who specialized in this subject. However, this was before the article about the brothers went to press..

  2. Hi Vicki,

    We have a PHD history student coming to see us on Wednesday 3rd May at 3.00 pm to discuss findings relating to previous HLF project. I’ll mention this to her, It might inflame the passions?

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