Before Ernest Needham left the UK, he had been in the British military. On the 1911 UK Census he is listed as a Corporal in the Royal Fusiliers in Hounslow, England. You can read an article about the Royal Fusiliers on Wikipedia to learn more about their history, and see uniforms similar to what Ernest would have worn. His commanding officer Sergeant Charles William Chilcott recieved medals for his actions during the Anglo Boar War (1899-1902), and is listed in this medal roll. I have yet to locate Ernest Needham in the 1901 UK Census, when he would have been about 18 years old. It is possible he was in the military at that time but have not yet found any definite records during this gap. If you have any information on him please contact me via e-mail or post a comment on the blog.

1911 UK census