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What does Mentioned in Despatches mean?

Family History Tips: Mentioned in Despatches

When we set out researching some of our ancestors from the past we may discover that they served in the military. We may find records that prove that they were awarded medals, or that they were wounded, taken prisoner, or killed in one of the wars that this country fought. In some cases we may even discover that they have been Mentioned in despatches (MiD). But what does this term mean?

The Gazette, the official public record which publishes awards including MiDs, has a useful article that can be read here:


The article takes as its example Captain Bernard Law Montgomery who served in World War 1 in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and was first MiD in 1915. Later awarded many medals, including the DSO to which his oak leaf is pinned (see the Gazette – issue 28992), Montgomery served between 1915 and 1918, ending WW1 as a lieutenant colonel. He was to go on to become Field Marshal Montgomery and 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein in WW2.


The handwritten MiD card records can reveal detail such as the military clerk’s corrections and messy amendments. You can see this on Montgomery’s 1915 MiD card, as found from a search of the Military Records on TheGenealogist.co.uk

Mentioned in Despatches

You can read the full article on The Gazette's website:



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