Author Topic: Chelsea Pensioner  (Read 3277 times)

Offline CarolBurns

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Chelsea Pensioner
« on: Wednesday 01 March 06 00:57 GMT (UK) »
My Great Great Great Grandad was William Thomas born 1780 in Llanbedrgoch. I have chased him through the census' from 1841 to 1861 and it is the 1861 census that is confusing me a bit

In 1816 he married Ellen Jones and he was a farmer. Also a farmer when his son William was born in 1817.
In 1841 he was a sailmaker living in Pentraeth aged 61
In 1851 he was a labourer aged 71
1861 he is 81 years old and gives his occupation as Chelsea Pensioner.

Now maybe I am just making myself out to be a bit stupid but I didn't think they had Chelsea Pensioners then. I thought they were soldiers who had fought in WW1 & WW2.

My history, as far as wars or battles of any kind, is rubbish so can anyone tell me which war or battle he may have been involved with between 1851 and 1861? And where would I find info on it?  And how would I be able to find out how he was involved?

Thanks for the time

carol
Thomas, Williams,Owen (s),Griffith (s), Jones - Anglesey<br />Burns, Wallace - Northumberland, Ireland, Scotland<br />Horsburgh, Sandilands, Blackhall, Rankine, Rankin, Hilson, Nielson - Scotland <br />Turnbull, Mills, Burgoyne, Burgon - Northumberland, <br />Davidson - Scotland, India, Burma<br /> Lopez - India, Burma<br/>

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Offline buttonmoon

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Re: Chelsea Pensioner
« Reply #1 on: Saturday 15 July 06 09:30 BST (UK) »
Hi Carol, me again. Are you still interested in Chelsea Pensioners?

The Chelsea Pension is all to do with the Royal Chelsea Hospital and was set up by King James II in 1689 to give soldiers injured in service or who had served for 20+ yrs their due. It was designed for those soldiers who were actual residents in the hospital but when it was set up the hospital wasn't built and by the time it was there were more pensioners than beds! So your ggg grandfather would have been an out-pensioner. The hospital ceased giving the pensions out in 1955. There's quite a lot about Chelsea Pensioners on the net, just google. As for which War, there was the Crimean 1854-55, I would imagine he was too old for that one. It was probably an earlier war, maybe between earlier census' or before the census' even started. Maybe he was in the Napoleonic Wars 1793-1815, Waterloo was in 1815 or there is the Burma Wars. You would have to know his regiment I guess, but I have no idea how you go about finding that. Maybe someone else will have a suggestion. Do we have a regiment or army site on rootschat? maybe post something there.

Good luck!

Kate.
Cavan - FLYNN & NEARY
Donegal - O'DONNELL
Dublin - BRADY, GREEN, NEILL & ST LEGER
Kerry - CRIMEEN, CROWLY & DONOGHUE
Longford - FLYNN, WHELAN & DAVIS
Sligo - FLYNN & HEALY
Wicklow - CLARE, COLEY, CRIMEEN, CUNNIAM, DOYLE, FLYNN, MURPHY, O'BYRNE & SUTTON
Devon, Som, Glam & Mon - BISSETT
Gloucs, Glam & Mon - ROBERTS
Here, Brec & Mon - WATKINS
Mon - ISRAEL, LEWIS, MATTHEWS, MORGAN & PROBERT
Salop & Mon - EVANS
Census info is crown copyright www.nationalarchives.co

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Offline Valda

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Re: Chelsea Pensioner
« Reply #2 on: Saturday 15 July 06 09:57 BST (UK) »
The National Archives has an online index for soldiers' pension records up to 1854.
Put his name into their catalogue search.

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp

and then search all the WO (War Offie records) for William Thomas. Be prepared for the fact there will be quite a few William Thomases not all of whom gave where they were born on their records or gave it  accurately.

I doubt he was serving soldier between 1851 and 1861 when he would have been at least 71 from the birthdate you give. He would have served as a soldier for 20 years or be invalided out of the service much earlier. He would then if he could, continued his working life while receiving his soldiers pension as well. It was only when he was too old to work that he stated on the 1861 census his only income i.e. his army pension.

You are therefore looking for a soldier serving at a much earlier date possibly in the early 1800s before his marriage (1800-1816) or in the very large gap you have between 1817 and 1841.

Regards

Valda
Census information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk