Author Topic: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction  (Read 273 times)

Offline vapcq45

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1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« on: Thursday 14 October 21 20:25 BST (UK) »
I have an ancestor who was discharged from the 2nd Regiment of Life Guards in London on the 11th November 1818.  He had been slightly wounded at the Battle of Waterloo and also became ruptured (whatever that may mean).  However he continued service on his return in 1816.

I had assumed he was discharged purely due to the reason on his certificate which says because of rupture 'suffers from riding' and of course as a cavalry unit I thought that would be the reason, but I'm now reading of reductions in the number of men in the Army in 1818 and wonder if he was in fact dismissed more for that reason rather than medical.

I wonder if anyone knows about this and I would would welcome any thoughts.

Many thanks

Offline Hillhurst

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 14 October 21 22:22 BST (UK) »
Depends on the nature of his wound, and whether the rupture was a consequence of the wound or unrelated. As your document states "suffers from riding" could his rupture have been abdominal or groin related (as opposed, to say, a ruptured ear drum). Perhaps the rupture was hernia related, due to excessive riding on horseback. After all, he was in a cavalry unit.

Of course organs and tendons are at risk of re-rupture, so a continuous issue for war wound management.

Offline Bookbox

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #2 on: Thursday 14 October 21 22:41 BST (UK) »
reductions in the number of men in the Army in 1818 and wonder if he was in fact dismissed more for that reason rather than medical.

That seems very likely. When the hostilities were over, thousands of men were discharged and pensioned, in a major reduction of troops. There had been a huge increase in army grants during the wars with France, and saving money became a government priority.


Offline ShaunJ

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #3 on: Thursday 14 October 21 23:49 BST (UK) »
If the reason for discharge was reduction, the record would say that.
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Offline vapcq45

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #4 on: Friday 15 October 21 00:39 BST (UK) »
That’s very interesting both of you. Thank you. The rupture was never detailed, at last not in the certificate I have. Very interestingto hear about the reductions.

Would there have been a pension difference from discharge on medical grounds as opposed to reduction?

He returned to duties for a full 2 years after Waterloo before discharge. So it looks to me that as he was physically suffering when riding that this was a ‘handy’ reason to discharge him at a time of the reduction. Ie perhaps anyone not 100% fit went first for medical reasons that might otherwise be accepted as ok.

Or..could be his rupture had increased in it’s impact on his abilities. I suppose we will never know.

I do know he worked as a Labourer after discharge. But, some time after 1833 and by the 1841 census he became an in-Pensioner at The Royal Hospital Chelsea until he died in 1860 at age 72.

Thanks for your thoughts

Offline simpleboy

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #5 on: Friday 05 November 21 00:42 GMT (UK) »
Hi, With regard to your ancestor 'James' - thousands of men were discharged between 1816 - 1818 simply because there had to be a reduction. In the research that I have carried out throughout the years, I have found that only a small percentage were discharged with the citation 'Due to Reduction.'
Most of them were discharged 'Due to Rheumatism', 'Being worn out from service', or 'Length of service.'
Although it was really the wholesale reduction of the army.
The pension would have been the same. 

Offline vapcq45

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Re: 1818 2nd Life Guards - Reduction
« Reply #6 on: Friday 05 November 21 07:06 GMT (UK) »
Thanks so much for confirming this. I did have a look into the reductions and they were huge. It must have been devastating for those who’s lives were heavily invested in their service, like my ancestor. 

After a few years labouring he moved into The Royal Hospital Chelsea (for around 20 years I think) where I like to think he enjoyed the rest of his life with fellow service men in conversations and reminiscing. Not sure how his wife felt about that. Lol