Author Topic: R.H.Chelsea: Disability, & Royal Artillery Out-Pensions, Admission Books WO 116  (Read 220 times)

Offline venelow

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Hi Roots Chatters

Is anyone familiar with WO116 records? I have located a record for the soldier I am interested in but puzzled by some of the notations. The date of the examination was May 10th 1853 when the subject was stated to be 73 years old.

The Index of 1806 gives his enlistment date as 17th October 1796 and his Regiment was the 49th Foot. Aged 73 years in 1853 computes to a DOB of about 1780.  1853 minus 1796 gives a service length of 57 years joining at about 16 years.
The 49th Foot served in Canada 1802 - 1815 and took part in the War of 1812-1814. He was discharged on June 24th 1815. The cause was stated to be a wound in the right thigh sustained in 1812 but this did not stop him from taking part in a subsequent battle in 1813 for which he received a clasp. He did not return to Great Britain in 1815 but stayed in Canada and appears to have re-enlisted but I have no information on which regiment that would have been. When he died in Canada East in 1861 his burial entry stated he was of the 49th Foot.

The Admission Book mentions he was Fort Sergeant at Coteau du Lac Canada East (Quebec) but does not mention any other regiment. His regimental number for the 49th Foot is not stated.

To look at the records go here: 
http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C613536#imageViewerLink
The name is John Scott. Images 81 and 82


Rate of Pension s.     d.  (shillings and pence)
                       0      6  this is crossed out
                       0      1/6  added under the pence column

Does this mean one sixth or 1 shilling and sixpence? Would this be per week or per month?

Under Service it states:              16 yrs ? months  (months illegible)
                            Honourable     3 yrs
                                                 14 yrs  3 months
                                                   "   "
This adds up to approx 48 years. 
What would Honourable mean?

Under Foreign Service:    Station B  30 yrs
                                     Years  12
                                     Months 56

I don't understand what this would mean. 56 months is 4 years and 8 months.

Under Character it appears to give a code - No. 66.  Anyone know what that means?   

Any information on the above queries gratefully received.
Thanks for reading.

Venelow
Canada         

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Offline MaxD

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Rate of pension is always quoted as daily and in this case the clerk has been sloppy and put 1/6 (one shilling and sixpence) in the pence column, there is another example a bit further down.  So this is recording an increase which may well be explained by the entry a little above his which says "The following ten men etc.....)" and a WO (War Office?) reference 3 May 1853 which suggests that this entry is a late award of an increase after he had been already receiving pension for some 38 years.
The B 30 etc is not years and months.  It would have been the authority/letter that authorised that increase, note similar notations for increases elsewhere.  The 66 is a continuation of the B 30 entry and does not refer to service.  Again the clerks are sloppy and put this under the foreign service column where it doesn't belong.  Note similar administrative hieroglyphics with other entries .

His service was 16 years and some months (1796 - 1815) but there was a Disallowance (sometimes rendered as Disallowed) ie a deduction of two (not three) years giving a total service for which he was receiving a pension of 14 years and some months.  In his case he was getting a pension for having been discharged wounded.  Disallowance was for a number of reasons such as time served for an offence or the like.

My guess is that the reference to Coteau du Lac is that that was where he was employed at the time either of the entry or on leaving the service.  It could well have been a non regular army appointment.

It might be instructive to try to find him in the 1816 book where he should (no guarantees) appear for the first time.

I have to caveat this by saying that dealing with the administrative doings of the pension system of two hundred years ago is not an exact science and although the rules tend to be clear, how they were then dealt with by an army of clerks is another thing (but then nothing really changes does it!).

maxD

PS - The note about special pensions looks as if it is saying wounds "in the Peninsular" implying the Peninsular war.  This does not apply to John Scott but is explained by something often seen in written correspondence of the time.  It reads Peninsular squiggle squiggle which means Peninsular etc etc and you have to look at the remarks against each of the men to find out which war is relevant to them.  As you have seen, with Scott it was Queenston heights, the one above him was at Toulouse (in the Peninsular War)


Double  Essex/Suffolk
Randle/Millington Warwicks
Sokser/Klingler Austria/Croatia

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Offline venelow

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Hi MaxD

Thank you for your prompt and informative reply. I had not considered sloppy clerks being part of the problem. Thanks also for the suggestion to check the 1816 books.

I am still confused about his situation after his discharge in 1815. He was promoted to Corporal in Jan 1813 and according to the Admissions book he was still a Corporal when discharged.  How did he become a Sergeant? There is a handwritten document attached to several trees on Ancestry which reads like an obituary, possibly copied from a newspaper at the time of his death in December 1861 aged 82 years. It makes several claims as to things he did in the War of 1812, at least one of which I have proved is not true, so it is also possible that the account was written at a later date by someone who got the story muddled.

After listing various battles or engagements that the 49th Foot were involved in from 1798 to the War in Canada in 1812 and his discharge in 1815 it states he was employed in the Barrack Department (I think this was based in Montreal) and then was Fort Sergeant at Coteau du Lac. . . . . "and was discharged at the breaking up of the Military Establishments in Canada in 1854 after a period of 58 years service".

In the 1851/2 Census he was living in Vaudreuil County and his occupation was Sergeant. In 1861 his occupation was pensioner. Fort Coteau du Lac is on the St Lawrence River bordering the U.S.  My understanding is that there was not much going on in the period 1820 to the 1850s in the way of military action between Canada and the U.S. So a somewhat boring job defending Canada during those years. Was it usual at that time to employ people as soldiers and give them a rank but not count them as being in the Military? Would the title 'Fort Sergeant' be some type of desk job?

Venelow
Ontario

Offline MaxD

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Has to be (educated) guess work but it has the feel of a man who retires after his active service, stays in Canada and then becomes a Sergeant in the local militia (which is perhaps how I should have phrased non-regular army before). 

When they speak of his 58 years of service this would probably be  the sum of his 16+ real years 49th Foot service followed by his (presumably) militia service.  Fort Sergeant and Barrack Department have the ring of static garrison troops and jobs capable of being continued to be done by men as they got older.  I note the history speaks of militia http://www.pc.gc.ca/en/lhn-nhs/qc/coteaudulac/decouvrir-discover/e

In any event, I think the story post 1815 lies in Canada and in the Canadian archives rather than the UK ones.

maxD
Double  Essex/Suffolk
Randle/Millington Warwicks
Sokser/Klingler Austria/Croatia

Offline venelow

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Hi Max.

I think you are right and I shall have to pursue this in Canadian records. According to a history of the 49th I found on line, 115 men who were eligible for pensions stayed in Canada when the Regiment returned to England in 1815.

Thank you for your insight and suggestions.

Venelow
Ontario