Research notes and correspondence concerning details of various military actions in the First World war; various items of research into the history of the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia), and unpublished articles; and research notes on the history of the 43rd Regiment of Foot (Monmouthshire Light Infantry)
A A M Lumsdaine, historical research papers on the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers Militia
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
Archibald Arthur Montague Lumsdaine was born in India in 1896. He served as an officer in the First World War, being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the East Yorkshire Regiment and subsequently promoted to Lieutenant in the Lincolnshire Regiment. He worked in Australia in the 1930s, and during the Second World war he was granted a commission as captain in the Australian Army Reserve of Officers.
In 1955, Lumsdaine began working as a civilian at Great Castle House, Monmouth, the Headquarters of the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia). Here he was a storekeeper in the clothing section of the Regimental stores, remaining in this post for a number of years. After his retirement, he continued an unofficial association with the Regiment and Great Castle House.
Lumsdaine was very interested in military history, and carried out a great deal of research, considering himself the historian of the Regiment. He was probably instrumental in saving some records from destruction, but he also removed some items from the Regimental records, and gave them – without permission and without the knowledge of the Regiment – to a number of different repositories. He corresponded widely with former members of the Regiment and with former members of the German armed forces as well as with a number of museums and archive repositories, gathering a considerable amount of information, especially about the First World War. He also carried out extensive research in the original records which he found in Great Castle House, although in so doing he usually disturbed the original order of the records, and frequently re-arranged them alongside his own notes.
Lumsdaine died in 1980, in Penyfai Hospital, Abergavenny.
Sources: Death certificate of A A M Lumsdaine; The Army List 1915-1918; Army Officers' files, file on Captain A M Lumsdaine (National Archives, reference WO339/5187); letters among the research notes and in collections in the Royal Engineers Museum and Library (ref. Regimental Histories RMonRE(M)) and the Imperial War Museum (ref. AD); and information from people who knew him.
The research notes are arranged by subject: research into the First World War; general research on the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia) (RMonRE(M)); research on the 43rd Regiment of Foot (Monmouthshire Light Infantry); short unpublished articles on the history of the RMonRE(M)
No restrictions on access
The Regiment, 1978
Gwent Record Office, 2009
Royal Engineers Museum and Library, 2009
Colonel A F George, 2021
Alternative Form Available
Lumsdaine made multiple copies of much of his research work, and deposited the copies in a number of different repositories. It is not always possible to determine which version is an original and which is a copy.
Description compiled by Rosemary Boyns in accordance with ISAD(G), March 2009, as part of a project part-funded by the Welsh Assembly Government through the Museums Small Grants Fund, and by the Army Museums Ogilby Trust. Revised July 2011 and May 2021 on the receipt of additional material
Conditions Governing Use
Documents may usually be copied, but permission should first be obtained from the museum trustees or honorary curator
Research notes and correspondence judged to be of no value have been destroyed
Some of the research papers seem to have been kept with the Regimental Archive in Great Castle House. Some were given to the Gwent Record Office, and subsequently transferred to the museum. Others were given to the Royal Engineers Museum and Library at Chatham, and were also later returned to the museum. In 2008 some were passed to Colonel A F George, then a trustee of the Castle and Regimental Museum, to help in identifying items which Lumsdaine had passed to other repositories; these were returned to the museum in 2021 along with Colonel George's papers.
No accruals expected
Location of Originals
Lumsdaine made multiple copies of much of his research work, and deposited the copies in a number of different repositories. It is not always possible to determine which version is an original and which is a copy