Jul 10 2009
Second battalion: Lisbon Citadel
The battalion is still in Lisbon, awaiting further orders. Any hope of becoming part of Wellington’s force as it continues north to deal with Soult in Oporto is fading fast.
Captain Thomas Williamson has been appointed to the department of the Assistant Adjutant General to the forces in Portugal; another officer who has been seconded to the staff.
There have been two sergeants reduced to the ranks, Joseph Jackson and James McDoole, and three corporals, John Wire, John Hamilton and James Reeves. This is a high number for a period of two weeks. In their place, Henry Hunt, William Hill, William Hassell and John Surety have been promoted from corporal to sergeant, while John Morissey and George Burrows have been appointed corporal.
First Battalion: Trichinopoly
At Trichinopoly on May 6th, General Wilkinson inspected the regiment. In a letter to the Adjutant General he explained that he had “the Honor to command the battalion from the 4th of last August to the 1st February. In fact, it may be said to have been under my Command until the 16th April last, as it formed part of a Detachment which I commanded when in the Field during that period.”
The actual inspection report criticises many of the manoeuvres and the slow rate of loading but the excuse is offered that “two Hundred of the Men, with a proportion of the Officers and non-commissioned Officers were upwards of nine months at sea, and thirty above one Year and a half serving as Marines, and the whole of them only joined a short time before the review; in addition to which the Battalion itself was near three months in the Field, most of the time on the March and only arrived in quarters a little more than three weeks before the Review.” Wilkinson, of course, has a great fondness for his old regiment.
There were six complaints. Five of them concern men who came in from the Army of Reserve or Militia units and are still waiting for their bounty. The sixth, Owen Brennan, having been taken sick on furlough, was posted as a deserter. He has a sick certificate for the period, and wants the back pay to which he is entitled.
The strength at this point is 947 English NCOs and privates, 27 Scottish, 192 Irish and 4 foreigners (including one from the West Indies).
Of the officers attached to the battalion, although not necessarily serving with it, 27 are English, 6 are Scottish and 14 are Irish.
In both respects, the first battalion is a much stronger unit than the second.
Captain Beaumont is serving on a court martial, while Lieutenant Jones is under sentence of a court martial, for the second time in fifteen months.
Lieutenants O’Brien and Champion have been posted absent without leave. Both officers have already left the 3oth, but the time taken to sail from Britain to India means this information is not available to the battalion.
Captain Christopher Williamson remains with the heavy baggage at Kinsale, along with Ensigns Light and Herring (who joined the regiment within a day of each other), two sergeants, two drummers, two corporals and ninety-seven privates.