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Paul_1957

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  1. Man's service in the British Army commenced at the age of 18. Therefore, in the example you give the soldier who enlisted on his 16th birthday could not count his first two years of his service as pensionable time served. Soldiers under the age of 18 were awarded the 2 "bonus" years. At the time of the soldier's discharge the two years service was added to the amount of real pensionable service he had accumulated during his service. Men who had served at Waterloo had their entries in the regimental muster lists marked with the letters "WM" to indicate a Waterloo Man eligible for the two bonus years of service. Presumably, that was a device help avoid mistakes/disputes arising with the passage of time over who was and wasn't eligible for the two years. Paul
  2. The payment referred to in the original post arose due to the recipient being a Waterloo veteran. All British Army soldiers present at the battle were allowed to add two "bonus" years of pensionable service to the amount of service they had already accumulated. If soldiers qualified for a pension on discharge from the army one of the factors taken into account was their number of years of pensionable service. Put simplistically, the greater the number of years the higher the daily rate of pension awarded. Therefore, these two extra years were a significant boon. However, there was a further advantage. At the time of the battle of Waterloo an infantry soldier received an extra 1d (one pence) pay per day after accumulating 7 years man's service towards a pension and a further 1d extra after accumulating another 7 years (total of 14 years service) towards pension. So, someone joining the infantry on 1 January 1810 would receive an extra 1d pay from 1 January 1817. The effect on that person of receiving the two bonus years was that he suddenly became entitled to receive the extra 1d from 1 January 1815 (5 years actual service plus 2 bonus years). As 1 January 1815 had long gone by the time these bonus years were granted, the army had actually underpaid the man in my example by 1d per day from 1 January 1815. The army owed the man all those one pences. Therefore, regimental Paymasters had a major task to identify how much (if anything) was owed to each man who had been present in the battle. It all hinged on the soldier's date of enlistment and if he had any under age service which did not qualify towards pension. A man present at Waterloo but who had say only one year's qualifying service prior to the battle would not be owed any back payment of additional pay. That was because even with the two bonus years their pensionable service still came out at less than 7 years in total. That man would however receive his additional 1d two years sooner than he otherwise would have done. Paul
  3. Much of his personal story was pieced together from information contained in documents in the National Archives at Kew. It took perseverance and a bit of luck but it was well worth it. There are still some avenues of research open to me in Hanoverian records but that is a bit less straightforward for me. Paul
  4. Mike, Peter, Owen and Brett, Gents, thanks for your appreciative comments. Chillianwallah was a tough battle for the British whose troops lost over 700 men killed and over 1,700 wounded/missing. Within his regiment, Thompson was the most senior man killed that day. His personal possessions (mostly clothing and bedding) were auctioned off to his regimental colleagues on 10 May 1849 and the money raised was sent to his next of kin. Paul
  5. Hello Brett, Thanks for your comment. Within the British Army during the Napoleonic Wars the KGL was held in high regard for their discipline and fighting abilities; it was a well deserved reputation. Paul
  6. Hello Bernhard, Pleased that you enjoyed reading my post. Heinrich was born on 22 February 1787 in Harste, Hanover. Regards Paul
  7. Hello Owen, The recipient of your Royal Scots Waterloo Medal had an interesting career and an all too common premature ending due to disease. Having his commission documents is a nice bonus. Medals where the recipient had long campaign service and/or an interesting story are fun to research and they often lead you to delve into bits of long forgotten history. I've just posted two more topics showing medals in my collection (a Punjab Campaign medal and a MGS medal). Cheers Paul
  8. Corporal Heinrich Heise served in the King's German Legion from 1805 till 1816. Initially serving in the 7th Line Battalion he was transferred to the 5th Line Battalion in 1811. Heise fought in the Peninsular War and qualified for the Military General Service Medal with 9 battle clasps when it was instituted in 1848. At the battle of Waterloo Heise was attached from No. 5 Company to the Light Company of the 5th Line Battalion. During the battle, the Light Company was detached from the regiment and sent as reinforcements to Major Baring in the farmhouse at La Haye Sainte. On the disbandment of the King's German Legion in 1816 Heise enlisted in the Hanoverian Army. Significant events in Heise's military service: Volunteered to participate in the assault of Burgos made by 300 men of the King’s German Legion on 18 October 1812. Noted for his bravery at the attack on Tolosa on 25 June 1813. Wounded at St Etienne on 27 February 1814. At Waterloo he was wounded and taken prisoner during the hand to hand fighting when La Haye Sainte was captured by the French. In 1821 Heise was awarded the Guelphic Medal: The translation of his citation for that medal says: Sergeant Wilhelm Stegen, Corporal Heinrich Heise, and Rifleman Friederich Breithaupt. At the defence of La Haye Sainte, after these three had accounted for many enemy by their calmly directed fire, they were among the last, who defended the building, to withdraw from the farm. Heise engaged in hand-to-hand fighting with several of the enemy, until he sank to the ground after a blow to the head and was taken prisoner. He had previously fought extremely bravely at Tolosa and had taken part in the storming of Burgos as a volunteer. All three of the above named soldiers were serving with the Light Company, 5th Line Battalion, King’s German Legion. Heise is mentioned on page 51 of the book "The Longest Afternoon The Four Hundred Men who Decided the Battle of Waterloo" by Brendan Simms (published 2014). Simms records that Heise was part of the rear guard left by Baring to gain time for the remaining defenders to evacute the farm as it fell to the French . Medal entitlement: Military General Service Medal (clasps Talavera, Busaco, Fuentes d’Onor, Ciudad Rodrigo, Salamanca, Vittoria, San Sebastian, Nivelle and Nive). For the first three clasps he was serving in the 7th Line Battalion, King’s German Legion. Hanovarian War Medal for the King’s German Legion 1803-1814 – instituted 1841 British Waterloo Medal 1815 Hanoverian Guelphic Medal Note: A Corporal of the same name served at Waterloo in the 2nd Light Battalion of the King's German Legion. That soldier was taken prisoner in the Peninsula in 1811 and not released till the peace of 1814. Therefore, he cannot be the Corporal Heise mentioned in the citation for the Guelphic Medal because the 2nd Light Battalion man was in prison in 1812 and 1813 so cannot have been present at Burgos or Tolosa.
  9. Unhorsed during a cavalry charge and attacked by enemy troopers, Sergeant Thompson was killed on 13 January 1849. He was last seen alive on foot defending himself with a double-barrelled pistol. At the time of his death in action he was a few weeks short of what would have been his thirtieth birthday. This incident took place in India in the battle of Chillianwallah during the Punjab Campaign against the Sikhs. Thompson was a SNCO in the British Army's 3rd Light Dragoons cavalry regiment. He had served in the army for eight years and was a veteran of the battles of Aliwal and Sobraon during the First Sikh War (1845-46). At Chillianwallah, some Sikh cavalry attempted to turn the left of the British line. Part of the 5th Bengal Native Cavalry and the "Grey Squadron" of the 3rd Light Dragoons (commanded by Captain W Unett) were ordered to charge them. Unett's squadron rode through the Sikh cavalry which then reformed so that the dragoons had to force their way through the mass of Sikhs for a second time before they could return to the British line. The charge successfully nullified the threat from the Sikh cavalry on that flank but in doing so Sergeant Thompson lost his life. A picture of the charge of Unett's squadron was painted by Henry Martens. Incorporated within the painting were several incidents that had occurred during the charge. One of the persons included in the painting is Sergeant Thompson. He is depicted with his arm outstretched firing his pistol at the enemy horsemen closing in on him. Below is a photo of a section of the painting by Martens showing Thompson on foot with his Sergeant's rank on his right arm. In addition, I am also showing Thompson's medal for the Punjab Campaign which he never got the opportunity to see or to wear. Paul
  10. Hello Simon, Glad you liked Clements' medal. I was attracted to it by the recipient's breadth of service and the look of the medal. I also have interests in the early Victorian campaigns in India (Sutlej to Mutiny). I'll dig out some photos of a couple of other medals that I have which I think have interesting stories. Paul
  11. Owen, Thanks for reading my post. I too like the Waterloo medal. Clements saw quite a bit of action in his time in the army. He was discharged in 1819 by which time he was a Sergeant (he had previously lost that rank a couple of times during his career). Paul
  12. Just thought I would share with you an image of a Waterloo medal in my collection. William Clements was a soldier in the 40th (2nd Somersetshire) Regiment of Foot who was a veteran of the campaigns:in Holland, Egypt, South America, Peninsula War, North America and Waterloo. During his service he was wounded in the Egyptian campaign (1801-02) and again at the attack on the city of Buenos Ayres (1807). In addition, he survived the wrecking of the transport ship Baring in Bantry Bay, Ireland in October 1814 when en route to North America during the war of 1812. Returning from America in 1815 his regiment was sent straight to Flanders where Clements was engaged against Napoleon's forces at the memorable battle of Waterloo. I particuarly like the unofficial engraved suspension and engraved slide fitted to his Waterloo medal. He did not survive long enough to claim a Military General Service Medal for his services in the Peninsula War (1808-14). Paul
  13. I have Gohlisch's Waterloo Medal in my collection. He was then still serving in the 2nd Line Battalion KGL but he had been promoted to Corporal. Does anyone have contact with the person who owns his 9-bar MGS medal? Back in 2011 when Rick saw the medal I imagine that it was located somewhere in North America. Regards Paul
  14. Type in RE101B119 in the search box on the website link I provide later and then use the page number from the medal card to distinguish which piece you want if the roll is split over several pieces. The link is http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/ Paul
  15. Tim, The "DO" is "Do" an abbreviation for Ditto or "the same as above". It is quite normal for there not to be anything in the theatre and date of entry blocks where the person was not entitled to to either the 1914 Star or 1914-15 Star. The Stars had specific date qualifications and those blocks were used to record the date/place where a man became entitled. The men without anything recorded in the theatre/date blocks would have served in one of the various theatres of war. To work out which one you would need to identify the man's unit and then research what that unit did in the war. For a man serving in a large corps such as the artillery, engineers, medical, Army Service Corps etc that can be difficult. The figures in the roll and page columns are not unit designations they are the references used to identify an individual volume of the various regimental/corps medal rolls. Each of these medal rolls are held in the National Archives in London and they have their own archives numbering system. For example roll RE101B119 is in the archives as document reference WO 329/410. Kirkham's name will appear on page 25543 of WO 329/410. Paul
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