From the office: A new addition to the WDYTYA? Magazine team!

By Sarah Orme, 25 August 2016 - 4:17pm

New WDYTYA? Magazine production editor Sarah Orme chats about her role and the desire to learn more about her great grandfather's military career

Sarah OrmeThursday 25 August 2016
Sarah Orme, production editor
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Frederick Passmore Dorothy Moon wedding
Sarah's great grandparents, Frederick Passmore and Dorothy Moon, were married on 4 July 1919

My name’s Sarah Orme and I’m the new production editor on Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine.

It’s my job to proofread all of the articles and ensure that they’re as accurate as they can be. I’m fascinated by social history and I’m looking forward to learning more in my new role.

I was born in Cornwall and most of my family originated there. As you’d expect, many of my ancestors were farmers, miners and fisherman, and my family tree is peppered with old Cornish names such as Chynoweth and Bolitho.

Orme is not a Cornish name, so I’d love to find out how the Ormes arrived in Cornwall. The name may come from the French word for elm tree, but one of my sisters discovered while studying in Svalbard that it’s also the Norwegian word for worm – much to her annoyance!

Enthusiastic family members have already traced many branches of the family tree, particularly on my father’s side, so my personal challenge is to find the stories that they haven’t fully investigated yet.

I’m especially interested in finding out more about my great grandfather, Frederick Passmore, who served in the First World War. As he was born in 1900, we think he may have served in the Second World War as well. Fred was a quiet man and – like many of his generation – he didn’t speak about what he did during the war, so there’s very little information to go on.


Frederick Passmore, marked with an 'x', is seen on the Hohenzollern Bridge during Peace Day celebrations on 28 June 1919

I was looking through old family photos with my mother recently when I came across a commemorative postcard taken shortly after the end of the First World War, showing a large group of soldiers. It was taken on the Hohenzollern Bridge in Cologne during the Peace Day celebrations on 28 June 1919. 

My mother told me that Fred was there on the bridge that day and picked himself out in the photo, casually leaning on the railings. It’s fascinating to see my great grandfather there – watching the celebrations alongside his comrades.

This may have been the end of Fred’s service, because on 4 July 1919 he was back in his hometown of Camborne getting married to Dorothy Moon. He was fortunate enough to get a job as chauffeur after the war and settled there.

I’m planning to investigate Fred’s life and learn about the conditions he would have experienced in the army. Even my grandmother knows very little about his wartime service, so it will be interesting to shed some light on his story.

 

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