Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Statement of Henry Elijah Baker HMS Wryneck 18th October 1919

The subject of food or rather the lack of adequate suppies for Seamen being sent out to the Baltic during 1919 is a common theme when looking through some of the documents in the National archives.
Henry's statement, which was taken following his arrest shows that the shortage of food caused consideable discontent and unrest amongst the crew resulting in a group of seamen leaving their ships and travelling to London by train.

"in London several upon seeing the Police broke from the party. The Inspector was informed we wanted to go to Whitehall. We formed fours by common consent and marched to the police station. I had the petition on arrival at the Police station, and also on arrival here on Tuesday. We left on on Wednesday and I gave it to someone else in our party. No civilian has at any time been on board to address a meeting on bolshevism or has any attempt been made to cause us to refuse duty. None of us would have left the ship had we been sure of better food conditions in the Baltic. I refuse to give the names of the other men in the party with it now or who have left it"
 signed Henry Elijah Baker Cell 69

ADM 1/8570/291