Glasgow University's Great War Project

Home » Letters & Diaries » A Tale of Two Bowmans

A Tale of Two Bowmans

By Kate Gordon, Glasgow University’s Great War project volunteer

Archibald Allan (A A) Bowman, a former student and later Chair of Moral Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, was captured at the Battle of Lys on 9th April 1918 and remained a prisoner of war in Germany until December 1918. His records include correspondence in the form of postcards and letters from family including his wife, Mabel Stewart Bowman, friends and colleagues and other officers that he met and formed friendships with during his time in the prison camps.

 

Archibald Allan Bowman. Glasgow University Archive Services Ref: DC077/9/2/18.

Archibald Allan Bowman. Glasgow University Archive Services Ref: DC077/9/2/18.

 

Whilst working on cataloguing the correspondence from 1918, I discovered a letter sent from A A Bowman’s colleague and friend Norman Kemp Smith to Mabel. The letter and a prior telegram, also from Smith, was in relation to a telegram sent from the War Office advising Mabel that her husband had been injured in the Battle of Lys on 9th April 1918.

 

dc077-5-9-5-5

Telegram from Norman Kemp Smith. Glasgow University Archive Services Ref: DC077/5/9/5/5.

dc077-5-9-5-6-b

Letter explaining the existence of 2 Bowmans. Glasgow University Archive Services Ref: DC/077/5/9/5/6.

 

According to Norman Kemp Smith, who was working in the Ministry of Information at the time, the telegram from the War Office had been sent to Mabel Bowman by mistake and was actually intended for a different Bowman. This Bowman was from South Africa and belonged to the Rifle Brigade and not the Highland Light Infantry, as A A Bowman did. Strangely enough both men carried the surname of Bowman and both were injured on 9th April 1918.

 


 

For more information about Archibald Allan Bowman, see his biography on the University Roll of Honour and the catalogue of material held by Glasgow University Archive Services

 


 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

@GlasgowUniWW1

Categories

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 5,612 other followers

%d bloggers like this: