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First Name: Thomas John Last Name: BROWN
Date of Death: 29/08/1914 Lived/Born In: London
Rank: Corporal Unit: Hussars4
Memorial Site:

Current Information:

Born-Bethnal Green

Mons (Bergen) Communal Cemetery, Belgium


The Battle of Mons  August 23, 1914

This was the first battle fought by the British Army (BEF) in the war. Since landing in France ten days earlier the four infantry divisions and five cavalry brigades of the BEF had advanced to a position on the left flank of the French Armies only to find themselves directly in the line of the advance of the German First Army as they swept through Belgium and headed for Paris.

With orders to hold the German advance for 24 hours and outnumbered two to one, the BEF dug in along the Mons-Conde canal. The battle commenced at 9 am and lasted all day. By nightfall the BEF had withdrawn to the Valenciennes-Maubeuge road, a position from which the Great Retreat began the next day. British casualties, killed, wounded or missing, amounted to 1600 for the battle. German casualties were higher.

On 23rd August, the 4th Hussars of 3 Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, were at Elouges where they remained in billets all day and were not involved in the fighting. Things changed however on the following day when 3 Cavalry Brigade assisted the withdrawal of 5th Division from Mons and 4th Hussars found themselves in dismounted action near Elouges. They sustained 35 casualties here before breaking off the action and continuing south. The records show the death of Thomas Brown as being on 29th August when 4th Hussars were many miles further south, but as he is buried in a cemetery at Mons, it is likely that he was wounded and captured on 24th August and died shortly after.

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