Author Topic: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896  (Read 2822 times)

Offline Dugie4

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Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« on: Tuesday 04 November 08 21:35 GMT (UK) »
Greetings!

I'm looking for some help please: I want to get the Army career history of an ancestor.

His name is Dugald Blair Brown and he joined the Army as a surgeon in 1871, and died in service (in the Punjab) in 1896. He served in the Zulu Wars, the early Boer Wars, and in India and Burma, rising to the rank of Surgeon Lieutenant Colonel by the time he died.

There's plenty of information about him on the internet, and I've got copies of censuses, birth certificate, medical qualification, and death certificate.

But what I'm interested in is his early Army career, and particularly where he was and what he was doing in 1877-8, just before he was shipped off to South Africa.

I've tried the Military Records Information section of the National Archives website and got nowhere.

Is there some way of getting access to Army records on line, or do you have to go to Kew?

And if you do go to Kew, how easy is it to get an individual officer's Army record?

Is there a separate section for Medical Officers around 1877-8?

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Offline km1971

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 07:53 GMT (UK) »
You are lucky as the RAMC in the entries for its officers in the Army Lists gives the station they are serving in. Without that you would have had to go to Kew and search through 20 + Muster Books.

I do not have an Army List for 1877-78. In 1884 he was stationed in Dover; in 1887 he was in Bombay. You should consider a new thread asking for an Army List lookup of the years you are interested in.

If you can get to Kew there is a complete set of Army Lists there. If you do not know his DoB there is a special 'Graduated' List that gives officer's DoBs

Ken


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Offline John Young

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 09:15 GMT (UK) »
Dugie,

Just to clarify he served in the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879 and the 1st Anglo-Boer War of 1880-81.  He published an article entitled Surgical Notes on the Zulu War in The Lancet in 1879.

I've got a 1878 official Army List at home, I'll check that this afternoon and see where he was stationed prior to embarking for South Africa.

There is another, more recent, source which mentions his service record in its indices that is The Rorke's Drift Doctor by Lee Stevenson, published in 2001.

I believe that The Wellcome Library in London holds copies of his published works.

Isandlwana
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline Dugie4

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 11:49 GMT (UK) »
Many thanks to both km1974 and Isandlwana for your replies.

I knew about his service at Rorke's Drift (and Ulundi) and about his article in the Lancet but the book that you mention, Isandlwana, is new to me and I will order it today.

I work in the Cayman Islands so it's difficult for me to get to Kew.........if you have an Army List for 1877-8 that really would be very helpful.

Offline John Young

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 17:02 GMT (UK) »
Dugie,

The official Army List for April to June 1878 has him stationed at Woolwich, which was Depot Barracks of the Royal Regiment of Artillery.

I have in my collection a contemporary photograph of the "Fort" at Helpmekaar where he performed his operations after Isandlwana & Rorke's Drift.  I also have a photograph of the camp at Ladysmith where he was transferred to when he was placed on "sick-list" to recuperate due to the insanitary conditions at Helpmekaar.

Isandlwana

...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline John Young

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #5 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 17:20 GMT (UK) »
Further to my entry above I've just checked my Hart's Army List 1879, which was compiled in December 1878, and he is still shown at Woolwich.  I'd hazard a guess and say he embarked with the 2nd Battalion, 4th (King's Own Royal) Regiment in the second week of December 1878 onboard either the Dunrobin Castle or the Teuton.

Isandlwana  
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline Dugie4

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #6 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 18:05 GMT (UK) »
Dugie,

The official Army List for April to June 1878 has him stationed at Woolwich, which was Depot Barracks of the Royal Regiment of Artillery.

I have in my collection a contemporary photograph of the "Fort" at Helpmekaar where he performed his operations after Isandlwana & Rorke's Drift.  I also have a photograph of the camp at Ladysmith where he was transferred to when he was placed on "sick-list" to recuperate due to the insanitary conditions at Helpmekaar.

Isandlwana



Isandlwana

Many thanks for your two very informative replies.

Do you know what sort of establishment that might have been, at Woolwich? Would it have been a barracks, or might there have been a hospital there too?

Are your photopraphs digitised? If they are, might I have copies?

Best regards

Dugie

Offline John Young

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #7 on: Wednesday 05 November 08 19:17 GMT (UK) »
Dugie,

Woolwich was very much a 'garrison town' during the Victorian era, with the Artillery Depot and the Royal Military Academy.  The barracks were an impressive site and were only vacated last year by the Army.  There was military hospital in Shooter's Hill - the Herbert Hospital built in the 1860's - it is now luxury apartments.

If you Private Message me re-the photographs I'll arrange to send you the scans.

Regards,

Isandlwana
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline Jules100

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Re: Army Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, 1847 - 1896
« Reply #8 on: Wednesday 26 November 08 10:29 GMT (UK) »
Dugie

I am a descendant (great grand daughter) of Dugald's brother, William a tea planter based in Ceylon, and have recently started researching family history. I grew up in South Africa but now live in the UK. I know Dugald was stationed at Woolwich at some point as I have a photo of him there with his mother, Alexandrina (I think). Also have some photos of him in Edinburgh circa. 1895 which was just before his death in the Punjab in 1896.

I visited the archive in Kew and found the following:
b Renfrew, Scotland 4/3/1847
d Mian Mir, Punjab 27/1/96 as a result of a fall from his horse.
Campaigns: 1879 - 81 South Africa. Mentioned in Despatches 21/8/79 re: Battle of Ulundi;
                    1885 - 86 Burma.
Asst Surgeon 30/3/1872; Surgeon Major 30/3/1884; Surgeon Lt Col 30/3/1892.

Let me know if you want to get copies of photos - I'm happy to send them.

Jules100