A collection of ms diaries, notebooks, papers relating to the service of Arthur Hamer in the Royal Army Service Corps (RASC) (1939-1941) and later the Indian Army Ordnance Corps (IAOC), India and Burma, (1942-1945), and his involvement with the Scouting movement, consisting of: A detailed ms journal kept in six notebooks and diaries (c.1000pp) with ts transcriptions (164pp) written also as a record of his thoughts about his life in the Army, covering his service in the Royal Army Service Corps (RASC) during the period October 1939 to April 1943, the journey to a camp in Aldershot, descriptions of the camp and getting kit (October 1939), posting to Fawley, billeted in a pub, typing, working in an office and checking shipments from trains and ships, men he worked with, drill and gasmasks, on leave in London and Manchester (December 1939), getting new boots, moving to Southampton (December 1939), details of his checking duties, gifts of socks from Daily Sketch readers, Christmas in the Army, having to have a bath at the Public Baths (January 1940), visiting a friend in Netley hospital, home leave in Manchester (February 1940), moving to Old Docks Railway Transport Officer's (RTO) Office (March 1940), posting to Poole being cancelled, finding a local Rover Scout troop (May 1940), anti-aircraft fire and on alert (May 1940), rifle drill, guard and fire duties, finally being issued full equipment including a rifle (June 1940), air raids (July 1940), moving to RTO's Office in Aberdeen Station, promotion to Corporal (October 1940), involvement in HQ of Aberdeen Boy Scout's Association (January 1941), bombs dropping on Aberdeen with no air raid warning, hearing that Boy Scouts are now banned in Holland (April 1941), on leave (May 1941), one of the vessels being bombed near Aberdeen, learning German, a gun battery being bombed (June 1941), moving to a new billet and a trip to Ballater on station reconnaissance (July 1941), orders to proceed to No 2 Holding Battalion RASC, at Barrhead, Glasgow (August 1941), getting a job as Part 2 Order Clerk, his dislike of the billets, collecting an absentee prisoner from Stoke-on-Trent (September 1941), having to leave office and go back to parades, lectures, exercises and PT, acting as an Orderly Sergeant, 'C' Company, later joining a section of blacksmiths from various regiments as an NCO, witnessing a Sergeant reduced to ranks, embarkation leave (October 1941), buying an engagement ring for Peg, drawing tropical kit, hearing the story of a man who'd been captured and then escaped from France via Spain in June 1940, Christmas, New Year and preparations for draft, incidents while Guard Commander on New Year's Day (January 1942), hearing of drunken fights, and having to attend inquiries, getting tired of the holding battalion and its pettiness, finally getting a draft, embarking in a troopship at Gourock, the crowding and seasickness, the journey via Freetown, going ashore at Durban, South Africa (February 1942), thoughts of Durban, disliking the colour bar, boarding another ship and peeved that RAF men get better quarters (March 1942), getting a job as NCO in charge of the ship's hospital fatigues, hearing of the fall of Singapore, arriving in Bombay, India, first impressions, travelling to Deolali, the camp, hiring native servants, joining other RASC men, 24 hour guard due to shortage of men (April 1942), meeting a fortune teller on his 24th birthday, opportunities for promotions with the RIASC, putting a man on a charge for jumping the dinner queue, drafts coming through but his not moving, a dance at The Railway Institute, Igatpuri, and leisure trips (May 1942), thoughts on Indian attitudes to British rule in India and the war, learning Urdu, hearing he might be posted to Cawnpore, 12 weeks waiting, finally posted to Ferozepore with promotion to paid acting Sergeant in the Indian Army Ordnance Corps (IAOC) (June 1942), starting at the IAOC Training School, Lower Barain, Murree Hills, details of the training programmes, the journey and descriptions of Barain, the men on the course, finally getting mail from home (July 1942), passing fourth in the school, returning to Ferozepore (August 1942), learning to drive while waiting for draft (September 1942), learning that they might be joining Commandos, being sent on detachment for special intensive training including swimming, moving to Kasu Begu Depot, having no money, being put on the job of Pay Clerk (October 1942), leave in Lahore on tourist trip (November 1942), coming down with a mild dose of malaria, the draft splitting up (December 1942), boredom again, Christmas and New Year's Eve and reflections on his position after the last year, having to carry on in a notebook as there were no diaries to be had (January 1943), getting a new Commanding Officer for his unit, No 2 Ordinance Detachment Type 'B' (Beach), finally getting a typewriter, the new regime under Captain Burt, resumption of the training programme, trying to write more in his diary, contacting the Indian Boy Scout Association, high prices for goods, reading books, bad manners of troops at a cinema (February 1943), his loathing of Kasu Begu Depot, thoughts about scouting post-war, thoughts on women's clothing in India, getting an article published by Jaipur Bengal Scouts association, getting a dressing down from a Lieutenant, moving to a tented camp outside the depot, finally moving to Bombay (March 1943), the three day train journey, his detachment joining a combined operations division, sent up to work in ADOS Office as a Clerk at Divisional HQ, where the diaries end, with throughout details of games and leisure time, visiting shows and cinemas, books read, memories of being a boy scout and the Jamboree in Vogelenzang, Holland (1937), skating in Aberdeen, writing articles for 'Scouter' magazine, thoughts on international events, his poor opinion of Scottish locals (June 1941), places and people he met, poor opinion of Anglo-Indian soldiers in India, being fed up hanging about, officers he disliked, rare leisure time in India, a few football matches, reflections on his life in the Army and what he missed/learned, and his home in Manchester. Together with: his Certified Copy of Attestation form (AF E 531A), (2pp, 12 October 1939); Daily Orders part II Movement Control (North of Scotland) (2 December 1940) showing Hamer's promotion to paid acting Corporal; Daily Orders Part II North of Scotland Ports (7 February 1941) showing his War Substantive rank of Corporal; a memo about rulings regarding British Other Ranks and promotions when joining the IAOC (2pp); Income Tax Table 1943-1944 for IAOC NCOs (in Rupees); Daily Orders Part II, IAOC Ferozepore Arsenal (3 April 1943), showing his appointment as War Substantive Sergeant; memo from DDOS XIV Army regarding BOR's promotions (14 June 1944); 'The Not So Forgotten Front: An Account of Recent Publicity From the SEA Theatre' by Captain Roy McKelvie, PRO 36th Division; HQ 36 Division Weekly Intelligence Summary No 2, 18-24 December 1944 (4pp) with extracts from a diary by a Japanese Officer in the 128th Regiment (53rd Division) covering 19 September – 11 November 1944, and an article on the notorious Colonel Maruyam Fusayasu, commander of 114th Infantry Regiment (18th Division); a pro forma recommendation for special promotion recommending that Hamer be promoted to Staff Sergeant for his two years active service as a Sergeant; a ms notebook with notes from a gas course (September 1941, 33pp) with details on respirators, equipment, alerts, decontamination, and also notes on train timetables; a notebook (73pp), containing lists of photographs he had taken [?] with dates, places and subjects [see object number 2011-05-02 for some of these], as well as lists of addresses, books he had read, all his journeys 1942-1944 with dates, place names and arrival/departure times, Indian Scout 'yells' for leader and pack, and notes he made on the history of places he visited. Also a collection of typed accounts, some contemporary about recent events, some written later, all with word-processed transcriptions, including: 'Notes on Arakan' (ts, 7pp) covering the period January to March 1944, leaving Poona, travelling via Bombay, Calcutta, and Chttagong, to Divisional HQ at Bawli Bazar,the Division moving to Chota Maunghnama near milestone 123 and near Maungdaw (March 1944), fears when Brigade HQ was raided by Japanese, having to 'stand to' at dusk, hearing about infantry attacks against Japanese positions, crossing the Ngadyedauk Pass in a jeep, seeing the Divisional Commander, descriptions of the jungle, amusing warning signs he saw on the sides of the Chittagong-Maungdaw road, the dangerous and steep roads; 'Journey to Ledo' (from Shillong?), (4pp) 11-12 July 1944, the journey via lorry and train, descriptions of the scenery, the train, Ledo town, seeing American and Chinese troops, high prices for goods; 'Ledo-Myitkyina-Mogaung, and Beyond' (6pp) (12 August 1944), working in the cookhouse for a General and other officers, and describing the journey by air from Ledo, his first flight in a Dakota, view from the plane, landing in Myitkyina, the journey by truck and train to Mogaung, seeing Chinese and African troops and a Chindit officer, marching to Pahok, using parachutes as tents; 'I'm on the Road to Mandalay', (4pp) with further stories of the journey from Ledo to Myikyina, and Pahok, and continuing past scenes of battle and dead Japanese, the resupplying from the air, and his companions, Sgt Albert Wood of Failsworth, Sgt Harry Temperley of Middleton, Sgt Bernard Dalton of Hale, and Sgt Jack Ewings of Blackley; 'The Birth of a Division' (2pp) about the birth of 36th Division in November 1941, written in Sahmaur, Burma in September 1944, and Sgt Kiddy of the RASC being the first NCO to join; 'Sahmaw, North Burma' (5pp), about the jeep journey from Pahok to Sahmaw (1 September 1944), the bomb damaged roads, passing Hill 60, descriptions of Sahmaw, learning about the battle for Pinbaw from an official photographer, surrendering Japanese being killed by a Corporal, receiving an order for 40 gallons of oil for burning dead Japanese bodies, finding bodies and skeletons all round his position; 'Namkin, North Burma' (3pp) (13 October 1944), the fifth anniversary of his joining the Army, the journey from Sahmaw to Namkwin on a jeep train (modified jeep dragging waggons), a nice camp next to the Namkwin Chaung river, seeing more Burmese people; 'Afternoon in the Jungle, or In the Trail of the Chindits' (4pp, 18 October 1944), about a journey to try to find landing strip 'Blackpool' to salvage equipment, not finding it but finding foxholes and trenches, the hard conditions in the jungle; 'Two Yanks in Burma' (6pp, 18 October 1944) about Sergeants Brown and Quaid, two photographers in the US Army, Quaid having been in Merrill's Marauders, details of their life and work back in the US; 'Namma, North Burma' (3pp) (31 October 1944), visiting a pagoda and Buddhist temple; 'In a Monastery Garden' (3pp, October 1944), living in a monastery in Namma, bartering with Burmese, friends buying cheap precious stones; 'White City' (2pp, 18 November 1944), based in the Chindit base 'Whte City' seeing the results of Chindit occupation of the area eight months earlier, booby traps and mines causing casualties; 'Manalay Express' (3pp, 23 November 1944); 'Shillong' (3pp, March 1945) memories of the Khasi women and the town of Shillong; 'Burra Bazar, Shillong' (3pp, March 1945) about the busy crowded bazar in Shillong; 'Across the Irrawaddy' (1p, March 1945) about crossing the Irrawaddy in a sampan at Katha in January 1945; 'VJ Anniversary Thoughts' (5pp, written August 1946), with musings on his erstwhile enemy, wondering if the Japanese were sub-human when he could read transcriptions of diaries written by some of them and realising they were not different from him, and seeing that they were interested in nature, were patriotic, and 'happy to die'; 'Bombay Tram Ride' (4pp, written 13 July 1947), about a journey across Bombay and the sights and sounds encountered; 'Fascinating India' (7pp, written 1 June 1947), about his impressions of India from his arrival in Bombay to leaving the same place in 1945; 'Soya Link Memory' (2pp, written 17 July 1947), about Sgt Joe Wolfe of the Manchester Regiment making an impassioned speech about the poor morale implication of serving men soya sausages; Transcriptions and translations of an excerpt from a Japanese soldier's notebook of June 1944, (1p) including poetry and saying he would 'have a smile when I die'; Ts transcription and translation of extracts from a Japanese Signal Post diary found in the Myitkyina area in August 1944, covering the period 27 June to 24 August, with details of their withdrawal from the Allied advance around Pahok, the effects of Malaria and the lack of rations, carrying radio equipment through the jungle, and the author coming down with a fever due to Malaria, also including transcriptions of a farewell message from the Japanese Division commander on 28 June 1944; Ts transcriptions of three Japanese marching songs (3pp), 'Song of the Great Southern Army', 'Song of the Army in Greater East Asia', and 'Song of the Warrior's Spirit'; 'A Jap Soldier Gets to the Front' (3pp) a typed translation of part of the diary of Japanese soldier Suzuki Zensuke of 119th Regiment, Yasu Butai (53rd Division), recovered by 72nd Brigade (36th Division), with extracts covering 18 June to 6 July 1944, his arrival at Mohnyin Station, being impressed at Mandalay, crossing the Meza River, being equipped with machine guns, seeing casualties from Kiku Butai (18th Division) returning from the front with Malaria and beri-beri, anger at the Japanese airforce not stopping the constant strafing and bombing by the Allied planes, fears at going to the front, and being unafraid of death. Along with a photocopy of a photograph of Hamer in uniform in India (1942); another copy of a photo of Hamer in the 1960s; a photocopy of an obituary for Hamer from a local newspaper (August 2007); and items he found on a dead Japanese soldier, 'dog tag', pay book, photograph of a child.