Author Topic: 1st Foot Deserter in 1838  (Read 411 times)

Offline Crawfordburgess

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1st Foot Deserter in 1838
« on: Wednesday 21 February 18 05:19 GMT (UK) »
Can anyone give advice on where more information can be found on my army deserter?
I am seeking information about Robert Crawford who appears on the Army Deserters list in 1838.
The record states he was born in 1813 at Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland although I can find no record of this birth.  He deserted from the 1st Battalion, 1st Foot on 27th October, 1838.
I found a reference that the battalion was stationed in Edinburgh in June, 1838 (Caledonian Mercury, page4).
Where can I go with this?  Is it a dead end?
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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Offline GrahamSimons

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Simons Barrett Jaffray Waugh Langdale Heugh Meade Garnsey Evans Vazie Mountcure Glascodine Parish Peard Smart Dobbie Sinclair....
in Stirlingshire, Roxburghshire; Bucks; Devon; Somerset; Northumberland; Carmarthenshire; Glamorgan

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Offline Crawfordburgess

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Re: 1st Foot Deserter in 1838
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 21 February 18 23:07 GMT (UK) »
Thanks.   I've found a reference to a court martial.

Offline Ians1900

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Re: 1st Foot Deserter in 1838
« Reply #3 on: Saturday 30 June 18 11:04 BST (UK) »
I recommend finding the Regiment's Muster Rolls, which were compiled monthly and his Attestation and Discharge papers, but be aware that the details it may give will not be nice.

My Great Great Grandfather deserted from the 62nd Regiment of Foot in 1861. He was a youngster of seventeen who had lied about his age to be able to claim a man's wage. He met a girl, who later became his wife and ran off. When he was arrested, he was branded with a D for Deserter, given fifty lashes and spent 112 days in a military prison doing hard labour and living off bread and water! This was all documented in his Discharge papers.  He was obviously a stubborn sort and took a man's punishment just to keep his pay!

He ended up serving 22 years and received his Long Service and Good Conduct medal, but was employed as an officers  servant and never allowed promotion.

Good luck with your research.
Smith - Sileby + Coleorton, Leicestershire.
Chamberlain - Sileby, Leicestershire.
Heath - Coleorton, Thringstone + Coalville, Leicestershire.

Offline Crawfordburgess

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Re: 1st Foot Deserter in 1838
« Reply #4 on: Tuesday 03 July 18 22:58 BST (UK) »
Thanks Ian for the interesting and very helpful information.  The penalty for desertion was certainly severe.  It provides insight into what was likely to be my ancestor's motivation to migrate to Australia under a false name in 1838. 
How did you access Regiment Muster Rolls?  Where are these records held? 
Thanks,
Peter

Offline GrahamSimons

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Re: 1st Foot Deserter in 1838
« Reply #5 on: Tuesday 03 July 18 23:05 BST (UK) »

How did you access Regiment Muster Rolls?  Where are these records held? 
Thanks,
Peter
They are at the National Archives at Kew. Hard copy. I've explored some and it's very slow going but fascinating.
Simons Barrett Jaffray Waugh Langdale Heugh Meade Garnsey Evans Vazie Mountcure Glascodine Parish Peard Smart Dobbie Sinclair....
in Stirlingshire, Roxburghshire; Bucks; Devon; Somerset; Northumberland; Carmarthenshire; Glamorgan