2x Great grandfather's service records.

Discussion in 'Service Records' started by The Viking, Nov 17, 2019.

  1. The Viking

    The Viking Active Member

    OK so here I have my 2x great grandfather's service records it isn't ww2 related so please forgive me if not allowed but you guys are experts and il like you lot take a look see what you can tell me. I am unfotunily a little deslexic and find it really hard to read the writing as well.

    Attached Files:

  2. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    It’s the 4 page Discharge forms completed for a then 41 year old Pte 144 John Conway a shoemaker of Tullamore, Kings County, Ireland who enlisted in the 62nd Regiment of Foot in 1860 at Birr, Kings County, Ireland (now County Offaly) and served for 21 years of which 6 years was in British North America (Canada) and 11 years in the East Indies.

    He intended to return to Tullamore on his discharge which occurred in early June 1880 at Netley, Hampshire (likely at the Military Hospital there after he had a medical after his voyage from Aden) shortly after he landed from his troopship at Southampton.

    62nd (Wiltshire) Regiment of Foot - Wikipedia

    From the above Wikipedia entry - “The regiment returned to Canada in 1857 and remained there until 1864 when it came home.[16] A year later, the regiment returned to Ireland and engaged the Fenians in an action at Kilmallock while defending some police barracks in March 1867. Two years later, the regiment returned to India and traveled through the Punjab in July 1879.[26] The regiment then transferred to Aden in 1880.[16]

    As part of the Cardwell Reforms of the 1870s, where single-battalion regiments were linked together to share a single depot and recruiting district in the United Kingdom, the 62nd was linked with the 99th (Lanarkshire) Regiment of Foot, and assigned to district no. 38 at Le Marchant Barracks in Devizes.[27] On 1 July 1881 the Childers Reforms came into effect and the regiment amalgamated with the 99th (Lanarkshire) Regiment of Foot to form the Wiltshire Regiment.[2]

    His Military Character was assessed as “ very bad” on Page 1 with P2 & 3 (duplicates) recording his various brushes with Military law. It also states on P1 that he is listed in the Regimental Defaulters book 85 times and was tried by Court Martial 7 times. The marginal note states he is given to drunkenness and absence but is otherwise a clean soldier and respectable to his officers - some might say a typical mid Victorian era soldier.

    Thanks for posting the images.

    Steve (Tullybrone - as in Tullybrone, County Armagh :salut:)
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2019
  3. The Viking

    The Viking Active Member

    thanks Tullabrone i appreciate you taking the time. 85 time hey ? so the defaulters book would there be copy's ? i cant say iv have come across any on the popular sites. iv also managed to come across just a transcriptions of the British Army, Worldwide Index 1871 National Archives reference WO 12/7227 and WO12 / 7217 again when searching it brings nothing up does this mean anything to you ?
  4. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    I’ve no idea whether the defaulters books exist but I suspect not.

    You’d have to look on the National Archives Discovery system for further information re the reference numbers.

    I would’ve thought that this record would be part of the Chelsea Hospital pre 1913 discharge papers on Findmypast?

  5. The Viking

    The Viking Active Member

    hi and thank you again for all your help. so i know he was chucked out for being drunk all the time typical Conway lol w have a few of them in this family. looking at his discharge forms again which iv uploaded, on the last page it give me a description of him and iv noticed he signed up at age 18 years old in 1854 ? now i know thats not true he was born in 1840 according to his marriage certificate to his wife Bridget in 1868 he was 28 years old. so i eaither have the wrong man on the documents or hes telling porkies and telling them hes 18 when infact hes 14 years old. 14 years old ? could this be ? which would mean if there is any sign up forms for him he would have said he 18. would these have survived for 62nd foot ?
  6. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    I think you will find that during those days lads would be joining up from probably as young as 12. They would be drummer boys and the like - as an example I have somewhere a grave photo of a 14yr old drummer boy from WW1.

    Times were different then

    The Viking likes this.
  7. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Is this his wife?

    Spouse BRIDGET GALLAGHER(1848-1934)

  8. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    It was also the case at the time that a great many people had only a hazy idea of how old they were. "About" was the normal prefix when quoting someone's age. In Ireland in particular schooling was haphazard or non existent so many didn't have the regular progress though the school years as a guide. Sometimes if one was born in the same year as a notable event this might act as a pointer so that, for example, someone might say "oh I was told I was born the same year that there was a great fire at ....." but being illiterate could not apply a date to it. Parish records would tell one but these were literally a closed book to those who were illiterate. If one was innumerate as well, and although rarer it was not unknown, then giving one's age was near impossible.
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2019
  9. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    I think you've misread the documents. They say (Page 4) he attested on 9 Oct 1859 (it's a 9 not a 4) at the age of 18 6/12 (ie. 18yrs 6mths). This ties in with his discharge (Page 1) on 8 March 1880 with 20yrs 299 days service. Date of birth is therefore 1840.

    Tullybrone, ozzy16 and Tricky Dicky like this.
  10. The Viking

    The Viking Active Member

    well that solves the problem im no good at reading old style writing haha iv ovbs got the date wrong i thought it was a 4 that threw me off a little thanks alot guys il take this as a learning curve and not as humiliation.
    Tricky Dicky likes this.
  11. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    No problem, we're here to help.

    Tricky Dicky likes this.

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