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Please note: We require 7 days notice to retrieve this collection as part, or all of it, is held off-campus.

Identity statement

Reference code(s)
GB0099 KCLMA Sym
SYM, Col John Munro (1907-1980)
Created [1944]
Level of description
collection level
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
1 box or 0.01 cubic metres


Administrative / Biographical history

Born in 1907; educated at Loretto School and Royal Military College, Sandhurst; 2nd Lt, Seaforth Highlanders, 1927; Lt, 1930; served on North West Frontier, India, [1930-1931]; served at Seaforth Highlanders' Depot, Fort George, 1937-1938; Capt, 1938; joined British Military Mission, Iraq, 1939; served in North Africa, 1942-1943, and Sicily, 1943; taken prisoner by Germans in Sicily, 1943, and taken to Italy; escaped, recaptured by Italians and sought sanctuary in the Vatican City, 1943-1944; Maj, 1944; commanded 5 Seaforth Highlanders, 1945; commanded Seaforth Highlanders' Depot, Fort George, [1945-1950]; Lt Col, 1950; commanded 11 Seaforth Highlanders Territorial Army, 1950-1953; Commander, 152 Highland Infantry Bde, 1953; retired, 1953; died in 1980.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Presented to the Centre by the family in 1981.

Content & structure

Scope and content

Typescript and manuscript versions of memoir covering his service with 2 Seaforth Highlanders in North Africa, 1942-1943, including the second Battle of El Alamein, 23 Oct-4 Nov 1942, and Sicily and Italy, 1943-1944, notably action around Francofonte, Sicily, Jul 1943, written in [1944]. Copy of 'The prisoners of the Vatican: the war-time life of the Diplomatic Corps', anonymous article from Catholic journal The Tablet, Apr 8 1944.

System of arrangement

6 files

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be provided for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Trustees of the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, attention of the Director of Archive Services.

Language/scripts of material
Finding aids

This Summary Guide, and in hard copy in the Centre's reading room.

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals
King's College London College Archives



Decorations: DSO

Description control

Rules or conventions

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal Place and Corporate Names 1997.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

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  • Armed forces
  • Documents
  • Information sources
  • International conflicts
  • International relations
  • Memoirs
  • Military organizations
  • Organizations
  • State security
  • War
  • War victims
  • Wars (events)
  • World War Two (1939-1945)
  • World wars (events)

Corporate names

  • British Army


  • El Alamein, Egypt, North Africa
  • Francofonte, Italy
  • Holy See
  • Sicily, Italy
  • Vatican

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