GUNNER STANISLAW RAUCH
ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
17TH FEBRUARY 1918 AGE 22
BURIED: ROCQUIGNY-EQUANCOURT ROAD BRITISH CEMETERY, MANANCOURT, FRANCE
Stanislaw Rauch is known as Stanley Stanistaw Rauch by the War Graves Commission, and Stanley Ranch on his Medal Index Card. However, he was registered at his birth as Urbon Stanislaw Rauch, the son of Wilhelm Rauch and his wife, Stanislawa Baderski.
All the couple's ten children were born in London, where Wilhelm and Stanislawa were married in 1892. In the 1911 census, Wilhelm gives his birthplace as Warsaw, Russia and Stanislawa as Mikstadt, Germany. In the 1891 census, she describes her place of birth as Prussian Poland. As both places are now in Poland, it gives you an idea of the situation in the country, which at the start of the First World War was partitioned between Russia, Austria-Hungary and Germany.
America's entry into the war, and Woodrow Wilson's attempt to use the war to spread democracy and national self determination, gave Poles the hope that the war might liberate their country. This is how the Rauch's could say that their son had died in the defence of Poland. I like the way they included their adopted country in this too.
In 1911, Stanislaw was a hairdresser's assistant. He didn't join the army until after 1915 when he served with D Battery, 79th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery. He died of wounds at a Casualty Clearing Station close to the villages of Rocquigny and Estcourt, which were overrun by the Germans just over a month later.