In the last of our three World War One podcasts, NRS Head of Outreach Dr Tristram Clarke looks at the forgotten stories of the men who exchanged their pens and desks in Edinburgh’s Register Houses for rifles and helmets in France, Flanders and the Dardanelles, some never to return.

He also explores the contribution of those who toiled to keep understaffed departments running in wartime and discovers the pressure placed on officials to encourage more recruitment from General Register House and New Register House.

If you live near Edinburgh and would like to attend one of our free talks, you can find the programme for November and December at the NRS website.

Our current exhibition For You The War Is Over: Scottish POWs 1914-1918 is free to visit at General Register House on weekdays between 10 am and 4.30 pm until 23 November 2018.

Census group photograph
Staff of the 1911 Census near New Register House. Registrar General Sir James Patten MacDougall is shown in a panel on the right, while messenger Walter Urquhart is seated at the front.


Walter Urquhart
Walter Urquhart, a messenger at New Register House and later a Private with 1/5th Royal Scots. He was listed as missing in action in the Dardanelles in 1915 and like many who died at Gallipoli, he has no known grave and is commemorated on the Helles war memorial.
Sir James Patten MacDougall KCB, the last person to hold the combined post of Deputy Clerk Register and Registrar General, between 1909 and 1919.
Curator Charles Whitehead Yule, who was promoted to Captain with 13th Bn Royal Scots after the Battle of Loos in 1915.  He was killed near Vermelles during a massive artillery bombardment on 11 May 1916.

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