WW1 Alumni

Carman, EL

Ernest Luther Carman

Corporal, Royal Engineers

Age 17, Class Tech. B: 'A good steady worker. He deserved his pass (Matriculation).'

Before the outbreak of war in August 1914, Ernest Luther Carman lived at 50 Winterbrook Road in Herne Hill with his parents and his younger brother and sister. He was a student at Alleyn’s until 1908 and worked as a chemist after leaving school. He decided to enlist in the Army in February 1916 and was quickly appointed to the 12th (City of London) Battalion. Ernest was with the battalion for only six weeks before he was transferred to Royal Engineers Chemical Section. This transfer was most likely due to his background in chemistry and he received the rank of Chemist Corporal upon joining. Ernest’s main role in the RE Chemical Section was to ensure that any poison gas used during an offensive was released correctly. He served with the Royal Engineers on the Western Front from March 1916 until August 1918 when he accepted a temporary commission in the Royal Garrison Artillery. Ernest trained for his role at the Officer Cadet School in Sussex and served with the RGA for the remainder of the war. For his wartime services, Ernest was awarded the British War and Victory Medal.