Royal Marines

Historical Time Line

1850 - 1874

1850. The Rum Ration was reduced to half gill.

1850. The numbers were 12,000.

1850. During the period from 1850 -1914 and the start of the First World War, the Royal Navy did not fight any ship to ship actions.

1850. Saturday 5th October. John Small Royal Marine was laid to rest in the churchyard of St Anne's, Ryde, in the township of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. The last known surviving male convict of the First Fleet, and retired Constable for the District of Kissing Point, by the name of John Small.Born in Birmingham in early December 1761 to John and Rebecca Small, he was baptised at St Martin's Church (where St Martin's in the Bull Ring now stands) on the 11th December 1761. The Small family had lived in the Edgbaston quarter of Birmingham in Holloway Head for several years. This still exists and is a continuation of Small brook Street on the road to Worcester.

John was the sixth of their nine children, of whom eight survived to adulthood. Nothing is known of his early life other than that he had, by the age of 20, acquired a trade, that of 'Bitt' maker. On 16th April 1781 Small enlisted at Birmingham into the Plymouth Division of the Royal Marines. His enlistment was for life or until discharged. On arrival in Plymouth he was appointed to the 33rd Company where he received his uniform and accoutrements. His pay was 6d per day before stoppages for clothing, and the 12 pence in the pound to be disposed of as His Majesty thinks fit, one day's pay in the year for the Chelsea Hospital, and such other necessary deductions as shall be directed. His uniform and equipment would have consisted of:

A good full-bodied coat, well-lined (7s 2d).

A waistcoat (5s 3d).

One pair ofkersey breeches (4s 9d).

Four good white shins (5s 6dper pair).

Four pairs of good stockings (2 white and 2 worsted) (2s 3d per pair).

One checkered shirt (3s lode).

One pair trousers (3s Sd).

Three pairs good shoes (5s per pair).

One pair each long and short gaiters.

One set each of knee and shoe buckles.

Two pairs good Prussian drab drawers.

A brush, one wire picker & turnkey.

Two black Manchester stocks.

A good strong hat, well laced and a knapsack.

A Short Land pattern .75 Cal flintlock musket with steel rammer.

A Bayonet and Scabbard.

Small would have had several weeks of training in the use of his arms, drill routines, guards and sentry duties, and instruction in dress regulations before he was considered to be ready to embark a ship. 'Tony Cude, Brisbane RMAQ member and at one-time President.'

1851. Thursday 6th November. British, with Naval Brigade, defeated at Water Kloeff.

1851. Friday 26th - 27th December. The taking of Lagos by boats of HMS Bloodhound and HMS Tartar, Lieutenant J.W.C. Williams RM and E, McArthur RMA were present with 27 RMA and 47 Royal Marines, taking part. Lieutenant Williams was wounded.

1851. The numbers were 10,500. Lodging Money (In this year was held the Great Exhibition in London.) On 14th April a great boon was granted to married NCOs and men. They were put on the same footing as the Army for lodging money, viz 2 pence a day; the proportion allowed was 3 men for every 100. Later the allowance was increased to 6 pence a day. The difficulties caused by stagnation of promotion, however, were still extant. In November 1852 it was reported that four Lieutenant Colonels and four Captains were unfit for further active service (Order-in-Council Wednesday 10th November 1852) and again in August 1853, Inspection Reports say that four Lieutenant Colonels are unfit for active service owing to advanced age and ill health (Order-in-Council Monday 8th August 1853); they were all specially retired on full pay.

1851. Another old privilege of RMA Captains went: they had apparently drawn £20 a year Non-Effective Allowance - it is not stated for what it was granted. It was abolished on Wednesday 24th September 1851, and 1/1 added to their personal pay in lieu.

1852. Thursday 26th February. The Birkenhead, conveying troops to South Africa, was lost, 9 officers and 349 men being drowned, the troops remaining fallen in and keeping their ranks as the ship went down, after the women and children had been saved, providing yet another deathless story for the Annals of the Services.

1852. Thursday 26th February. ‘The Birkenhead Drill.’ The story began off the coast of South Africa on the night of 26 February 1852 at 0200 when H.M. Troopship Birkenhead hit an unchartered rock.  Fifteen minutes after the ship struck the bow broke off.  Five more minutes and the hull snapped in two; the Birkenhead was no more. However, in those fifteen minutes between striking the rock and the demise of the ship a legend was born. Onboard were 693 souls, 31 children, 25 women, 1 naval surgeon, 17 ships officers, 125 crew, 3 military surgeons, 12 military officers and 479 soldiers of other ranks.
In a matter of moments of the ship hitting the rock the captain, Captain Salmon was on deck issuing instructions in an attempt to save his ship.  Lieutenant-Colonel Seton the senior military officer onboard was organising the troops.  Seton ordered a Captain Wright to have the military officers and men bought up without delay and assemble on deck.   On the troopship were men of ten famous British Regiments.  These men numbered twelve officers and four hundred and seventy nine other ranks. The soldiers were to be replacements for losses suffered in the South African Campaign.  Men emerged from below decks in all states of undress although most had grabbed their tunics and were attempting to put them on. Lieutenant-Colonel Seton, hatless, tunic on but unbuttoned, and with his left arm resting on the hilt of his sword, beckoned his officers nearer and as they gathered around him, he addressed them in a voice and manner more befitting an after dinner speech in the officers mess, rather than a sinking ship.  ‘Gentlemen,’ he said, slowly and deliberately, and pausing, long enough, to look at each of them in turn.  ‘Would you please be kind enough to preserve order and silence amongst the men and ensure any orders given by Captain Salmon are instantly obeyed.’
Salmon had remained on the poop deck.  From the reports he was receiving he soon realised the seriousness of their position.  He turned to Colour-Sergeant Drake RMLI, one of six Marines onboard, and ordered him to find Mr. Brodie (ships Master) and have him bring up on deck the women and children.  He also gave instructions for the ship’s boats to be lowered and to lie alongside.  He knew that there was inadequate space in the boats for everyone onboard.  In all the Birkenhead only had eight boats.  The women arriving on deck had had no time to gather clothing and most were in their night attire, as were the children. 
The decks were now a scene of complete upheaval.  The ship was rolling heavily, and wreckage and debris was sliding everywhere, but despite all this the main body of troops maintained their positions on the quarter-deck.  At this time the horses belonging to the cavalry regiments were put over the side.  Many sharks had gathered and were tearing the horses apart as they hit the water.  The men onboard would have had no illusions as to their fate when the ship finally went down.  The soldiers and crew were finding the lowering of the boats an almost impossible task.  In all only three boats were to be successfully lowered into the water.  One gig and two cutters and it were into the cutters that the women and children were transferred.  This was made all the more difficult because of the reluctance of the women to leave their husbands.  In some cases, force had to be used to get the women into the boats.
Lieutenant-Colonel Seton stood by the gangway, afraid that some men may make a dash for the boats and endanger the women and children by crowding it.  He stood with his sword in his hand, determined to prevent any such move, but this proved to be entirely unnecessary as not one soldier, nor seaman, made any attempt to jump into the cutters other than those ordered to man the oars.  Rowland Richards, the young Masters Assistant was summoned by Captain Salmon.  As Richards crossed the deck, he noticed that Colour-Sergeant John Drake was fully dressed, even to his hat and immaculately polished boots.  He also had his regimental sash across his shoulder.  Must have been on duty, thought Richards, always very smart that man.  Salmon taking hold of Richards pushed him towards the rail saying, “The women and children are in the cutter.  Take charge and pull away immediately”.
The cutters and gig were ordered to stand away so as not to be dragged down by the vortex when the ship sank.  The ship was by now sinking fast by the bow.  The remaining crew and soldiers moved to the poop deck. Captain Salmon suddenly, perhaps on instinctive impulse of survival climbed two or three feet up the steps of the mizzen rigging and called out to the men.  “Save yourselves.  All those that can swim, jump overboard and make for the boats.  That is, you only hope of salvation”.
On hearing this Colonel Seton dashed forward and faced the men.  He paused long enough to quickly scan their drawn and pale faces, seeing in their eyes the pathetic and appealing look of tired, frightened men.  Men who wanted to live.  But he knew that any rush for the boats would mean certain death of the women and children.  He had no choice, no alternative, but to ask the men to go to their deaths.  To make the supreme sacrifice so that others might live.  Raising his arms above his head, his voice torn with deep emotion, Seton begged the men to remain where they were.  “You will swamp the cutters containing the women and children.  I implore you not to do this thing and I ask you all to stand fast”.  The request to stand fast in their ranks was heard by every man on the poop and this, to their eternal honour, they did to the very last man.
As the water swished across the decks the officers murmured goodbye to one another and shook hands, and someone shouted out “God bless you all”.  The troops, who had now regained their bearings, stood rigidly to attention like lines of living statues, each knowing in his heart the fate that awaited them.  But amongst this motionless mass of truly brave men no one murmured, and no one moved.  With fists clenched tightly, bodies erect and stalwart, heads held high, two hundred or more British soldiers prepared to sacrifice themselves rather than jeopardize the lives of the women and children. Hence the birth of the term, ‘The Birkenhead Drill’, where men are prepared to sacrifice themselves to save others.  As a postscript to this tale Colour Sergeant Drake managed to swim ashore and survived.  More about this redoubtable Marine in another issue.  In all only 193 persons were saved, this figure included all the women and children.  Altogether 445 lives had been lost
There were many poems written at the time, about this incident, for it was the time of the’ romantics’.  Rudyard Kipling wrote the following verse.
To take your chance in the thick of a rush, with firing all about,
Is nothing so bad when you’ve cover to ‘and an leave an’ liking to shout;
But to stand and be still to the Birken’ead Drill is a damn tough bullet to chew;
An’ they done it, the Jollies- er Majesty’s Jollies-soldier and sailor too!
(The information for this article and some quotes are taken from the book, ‘Drums of the Birkenhead’, by David Bean.) (Cleve Whitwrth. RMAQ President)

1852. Monday 5th April. Storming of Martaban.

1852. Sunday 11th April. Dallah Stockades.

1852. Wednesday 14th April. Rangoon stormed.

1852. Monday 19th May. Bassein stormed.

1852. Friday 4th June. Pegu captured.

1852. Friday 9th July. Prome captured.

1852. Thursday 30th September. Operations at Metha.

1852. Saturday 9th October. Attack on Prome.

1852. November. Operations in Irrawaddy.

1852. Sunday 21st November - 10th December. Pegu re-captured.

In these and the other operations of the second Burmese war Bittern, Cleopatra, Contest, Fox, Hastings, Hermes, Rattler, Salamander, Spartan, Sphinx, Styx, Serpent and Winchester, took part or were represented.

1852. Monday 20th December. Caffres defeated. (Naval Brigade ashore.)

1852. The (Second) Burmese War, in which a small portion of the Corps wan engaged, commenced this year.16 Rear-Admiral Austen was in command of the Naval Forces and Major General H Godwin of the troops who came from India. On Monday 5th April 1852, after a brief bombardment, the town of Martaban was captured.
On Monday 8th April the squadron was joined by the Royal Indian Marine squadron of six ships, bringing 4 transports with troops from Bombay and Madras, and 7 transports from Bengal.
Rangoon - The Burmese had persisted in their insults to British officers and refused to pay the indemnity of 10 lakhs of rupees, so an expedition was ordered to attack Rangoon. The following forces were available: HMS Rattler, Fox, Hermes, Salamander, Serpent 818 men, 80 guns.
Indian Navy - 8 ships. 952 men, 31 guns (mostly Bengal Marine 7 ships.500 men, 33 guns 8") The troops were the 18th Royal Irish (650), 51st (900), 80th (460), Artillery (517), 3 Regiments Native Infantry (2800), Sappers and Miners (170) with two 8" howitzers, six 24 pdrs, eight 9 pdrs field guns. On Saturday 10th April the Fleet anchored below Hastings Sand. On Sunday 11th April. each ship having two transports in tow crossed the Sand and anchored below the stockades protecting Rangoon: as soon as clear of the Sand the transports were cast off. At 9.30 am the Burmese opened fire, which was returned by the Indian ships Ferooz, Sesostrie, and Mozaffur as soon as they were anchored. A stockade mounting nine 18 pdr guns was blown up early in the proceedings. Fire was kept up on Dallah on the left of the British as well as on the Rangoon defences on the right. At first the Burmese replied with accuracy, but soon after the Fox and Serpent came up at 11 am and the firing on the British right nearly ceased. The ships kept up their fire on both sides till the large stockade of Shoe Dagon blew up. The fire cleared the coast for nearly a mile and made a clear landing place for the troops, who were to land the following morning. At 4 am on the 12th the 51st with the 9th and 35th NI were landed. 15 Afterwards 16 Authorities: History of Indian Navy; Fortescue's British Army; Officers' Services. 26 The Sesostris, Zenobia, and Mozaffur went up the river and anchored abreast of the Upper Stockades and burnt them without opposition. Proceeding on till abreast of the Great Pagoda the ships continued fire until ordered to cease by the Admiral. HMS Serpent and Phlegethon went on to Kemmerdine, where they found the stockade too strong for them, and were reinforced by the Fero. On 13th April Kemmerdine was found to be evacuated and was burnt.
The squadron anchored abreast of the Great Pagoda and shelled it during the night of 12/13th. At 2 am they ceased firing to allow the troops to advance, and Rangoon was captured during the afternoon, together with 98 guns and 70 gingalls. The troops also captured the White House Stockade and the Great Dagon Pagoda with a loss of 17 killed and 132 wounded. The troops had three days' hard fighting, the walls being 20 feet high, with spikes. On 7th May, 450 troops under Colonel Apthorp including the RM of the squadron under Lieutenants J Elliot and Nightingale RM, in the Medusa, Tennasserim, and Pluto, under Commander Tarleton RN left in pursuit of the Governor of Rangoon. After going about 45 miles up the river, the force landed and marched to Mawbee; the Governor had fled, so after burning the village they returned, having suffered a great deal of sickness. Bassein - On 17th May, General Godwin and Commodore Lambert proceeded with 800 men in the Mozaffur, Sesostris, Pluto, and Tennasserim to capture Bassein, which was strongly held.
The force comprised 400 of the 51st, 300 Madras NI, 67 Madras RA under Major Errington of the 51st, and included 44 RM under Lieutenants Elliot and Nightingale, and 16 Seamen with a field piece under Lieutenant Rice RN. Bassein was 60 miles above the Island of Negrais at the entrance to the Bassein River, which they reached on the afternoon of the 19th; on the 20th they sighted the fortifications of Bassein on the left bank; there was an extensive fort and stockade with a strong work round the Pagoda, having a brick parapet facing the river. The ships anchored unmolested and the troops were easily and quickly landed, when fire was immediately opened on them from the stockades. One party under General Godwin stormed and carried the Pagoda, and the ships fired whilst the boats' crews of the Sesostris and Mozaffur stormed the stockades opposite the town; 54 guns and 32 gingalle were captured. Two days were allowed for the occupation of Bassein, the Sesostris was then left in charge and the remainder of the squadron returned to Rangoon on the Sunday 23rd May. Pegu - On 3rd June an expedition started for Pagu, 75 miles from Rangoon, Major Cotton of the 63rd Regiment in command. With them went HMS Phlegethon with 5 boats from the Fox in which were the Royal Marines under Lieutenant Elliot, and the boats from the Mozaffur all under Commander Tarleton RN, of the Irrawaddy Flotilla. On the 4th Pegu was captured with small loss, the fortifications were destroyed, and they returned to Rangoon. Proes - In July an expedition was sent against Prome. Officers and men of the Medusa were sent to Yeanjue on the Wednesday 7th July, followed by the Prosperine, Mahannuddy, Phlegethon, and three boats from the Fox. The enemy were encountered on the bank opposite Komroughie and a sharp action took place, lasting about an hour. Lieutenant Elliot RM and three other officers were severely wounded. As it was inadvisable to land, they anchored. at sunset off Meaony. On Thursday 8th the flotilla weighed and proceeded up river till they sighted an extensive fortification on the end of a ridge of hills above the town of Akouktoung. The Chief Bundoola with 1000 men was reported to be here, so the flotilla proceeded on and the Medusa reached Prome on the 9th at daylight. She landed her troops and being joined at 7 am by the Prosperine with the Fox's boats, 13 guns were captured and brought off. The ships then withdrew and later, large reinforcements of troops having been received, they occupied Prome in September and the war was concluded. The Province of Pegu was annexed on Monday 20th December, 1852. The India Medal with clasp for Pegu was awarded for this-campaign. Lieutenants Elliot and Nightingale were mentioned in despatches (LG Tuesday 10th August 1852). (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.) (Sic)

1852. The numbers were 10,500.

1853. Friday 21st January - 3rd February. Operations in the River Bassein.

1853. Thursday 27th January. Engagement at Beling.

1853. Friday 4th February. British defeated near Donoobew.

1853. Friday 1st April. The numbers were 10,500. 1853. Friday 1st April. Employment of Marines. Continuous Service was introduced into the Navy for the first time, and in the following year it had its repercussions on the Royal Marines. The first was the Order-in-Council Friday 11th August 1854, when stoppages for rations afloat were abolished for NCOs and Men.
The wording of the Order-in-Council is so frank and gives such a picture of the duties of the Royal Marines afloat; that it deserves ,to be quoted in extenso: ''NCOs and Men, Royal Marines, are still liable for deductions from pay originally intended to meet most of sea provisions when afloat; this position has become more anomalous, compared with soldiers of the line, and their own officers, and in consequence of the increased pay to continuous service seamen of the Navy, no corresponding advantage having been granted to the Royal Marines.
''The grounds upon which additional pay to seamen entering for continuous service was granted, had reference to the value which unquestionably attaches to the services of skilful and trained seamen, and to the great demand for such men in the Mercantile Marine; but the bearing of this increase, as affecting the relative conditions of the Marines when embarked, was not taken into account, and it cannot be denied that the reasons which have led unavoidably to the increase of the wages of seamen in the Royal Navy, when entered for long periods, apply in many respects with equal force to the services of Royal Marines when afloat.
Of late years and more especially since Order-in-Council Sunday 1st July 1849 great care and pains have been bestowed in training Royal Marines ashore, not only in the exercise of the ships' gun batteries, but also to some of the duties of seamen, and the proficiency, which these men have acquired before embarkation, renders them so fully equal to those duties that in the recent equipment of the Fleet17 they have been found capable of rendering very efficient and valuable services. "Another consideration which should not be overlooked in weighing the claims of the Royal Marines, is the fact that at all times and under all circumstances, but more especially during the repair and equipment of ships in port, they are liable to the performance of many harassing and laborious duties, which have been known to deter seamen, when not entered for continuous service, from volunteering during the period of equipment.
The Royal Marines are exposed to much wear and tear of clothing without any additional remuneration, and that as regard. the general discipline of HM Fleet too much importance cannot be attached to the contentment and efficiency of the Marine Corps and therefore Their Lordships consider that the NCOs and Men should be placed on a more equitable footing as regards ration deductions." Therefore, all differences between pay of Royal Marines ashore and afloat, and deductions for rations afloat, ceased from lst October 1854; but it was 50 years exactly before the deductions for rations on shore ceased. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.) (sic)

1853. Wednesday 18th May. Diplomatic relations were broken off with Russia by Turkey, and Russia proposed to occupy the Danubian Principalities. The British Fleet of 7 battleships and 8 frigates was ordered to Besika Bay and arrived on 13th June, being joined later by 9 battleships and 4 frigates of the French Fleet. Here many weary months were spent. At the end of October, the Allied Fleets moved up to Therapia in the Bosphorus. Conferences took place without much result, and on 30th November the Russians attacked and destroyed a Turkish Squadron at Sinope, which was escorting troops to Asia Minor. The Allied Fleets entered the Black Sea on Tuesday 3rd January 1854 and going to Sinope escorted the Turkish troops to the Eastern end of the Black Sea and then returned to Constantinople. (sic)
As nothing came of the conferences, war was declared by the Allies on Monday 27th March 1854. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.) (sic)

1853. October - February 1956. The start of the Crimea War. The three-year conflict gets its name as it was mainly fought on the Crimean Peninsula, an area in the south of modern day Ukraine that sits within the Black Sea. The war saw Britain, France, Sardinia and the Ottoman Empire become allies against, Russia and eventually its defeat. The war is remembered for the poor leadership, communication and organisation of the allied forces, which resulted in a bloody and prolonged conflict. However, it's mainly remembered because of the Charge of the Light Brigade. The use of the new 'torpedoes' (mines) by the Russians in the Baltic made the campaign there particularly suited to Royal Marine raids and reconnaissance parties. Royal Marines served on all the Royal Navy's ships, and landed at Sevastopol.

However, the Royal Navy suffered a shortage of manpower in the Marines during these long wars and regular Infantry units from the Army occasionally had to be used as shipboard replacements.

1854. The strength was 15,500.

1854. Monday 30th January. Order-in-Council. Staff 72 12 Artillery Companies 2112 110 Divisional Companies 13310 Two Orders-in-Council published 9th March and 13th September made another effort to deal with the stagnation of promotion. (i) Lieutenant Colonels to be promoted to Colonels after 3 years. (ii) An establishment of 10 General Officers was fixed. (iii) Any Lieutenant, Captain, or Lieutenant Colonel may be rewarded for brilliant service in the Field or afloat; such promotion to be by brevet and to be converted into rank on the strength at the earliest period that consideration for the claims of other officer's senior will admit of. (iv) The retired full pay establishment fixed at £35,000 - i.e. an increase of £6,000. 17 i.e. for the Baltic and Crimean Wars. 28 (v) Two Officers were to hold the appointment of to the King and to be promoted to full Colonel. (vi) Rates of pay for Captains and Subalterns were laid down that remained in force for 50 years. The Staff consisted of 1 DAG, 1 AAG, 4 Colonels Commandant, 4 Colonels 2nd Commandant, 18 Lieutenant Colonels, 1 Instructor of Laboratory, 4 Paymasters, 4 Barrack masters, 4 Quartermasters, 9 Sergeants-Major (1 for Artillery), 4 QMS, 6 Barrack-master's Sergeants (1 for Artillery), 4 Surgeons and 4 Assistant Surgeons.
Arms - The Corps was at this time18, armed with the Mini Rifle, which had replaced the percussion muskets; it was superseded in 1857 by the Enfield Rifle. This rifle remained in use for about 10 years, when the Corps was ordered to be armed with its first breechloading rifle - viz, the Enfield converted on the Snider principle. The date of the order was the Saturday 19th January 1867. Thesimple carried a very heavy bullet (.577) and was fairly simple in action. it was superseded on Thursday 22nd April 1875 by the Martini-Henry (.45), the rifle with the falling block for insertion of the cartridge, and a needle acting on a detonating cap in the base of the cartridge. It retained the old long triangular bayonet with locking ring. The cartridges were very bad, as they were made of rolled strips of brass and there were constant jams till the solid drawn brass case was introduced. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1854. April. Retribution and Niger blockaded Odessa.

1854. April. Furious with a flag of truce was fired upon at Odessa.

1854. Monday 3rd - 5th April. Attack on Shanghai by Encounter and Grecian.

1854. Thursday 6th April. The Furious was sent to Odessa to bring off the British Consul and subjects, and though carrying a flag of truce, was fired on. Meanwhile British and French troops were arriving.

1854. Saturday 22nd April. Odessa bombarded by Samson, Niger, Terrible and consort.

1854. Friday 12th May. Tiger ran aground and was destroyed near Odessa.

1854. Friday 19th May. Agamemnon attacked Redoubt Kaleh.

1854. Saturday 20th May. Bombardment of Eckness by Arrogant and Hecla.

1854. Monday 22nd May. Attack on Forts at Hango Head by Dragon and others.

1854. Friday 26th May. Fury in disguise made a reconnaissance at Sevastopol.

1854. May. Amphion captured Russian merchant vessels.

1854. May. Gulf of Riga blockaded by Amphion and Conflict.

1854. May. Thirty-four vessels destroyed in the Gulf of Bothnia.

1854. Thursday 1st June. The Danube blockaded.

1854. Friday 2nd June. Troops harrassed by Niger at Adjalick Lake.

1854. Monday 5th June. Gunner Thomas. Wilkinson RMA (1831-1887) was awarded his Victoria Cross for outstanding bravery during the Battle of Sebastopol.

1854. Wednesday 7th June. Unsuccessful attack on Gamla Carleby, Gulf of Finland.

1854. Wednesday 7th June. Ineffectual attack on Bomasund by Hecla, Odin and Valorous.

1854. Monday 26th June. Recapture of Cuthbert Young by the Prometheus.

1854. Tuesday 27th - 29th June. Attack on Sulina batteries by Firebrand and Vesuvius.

1854. Saturday 8th July. Sulina batteries destroyed.

1854. Thursday 13th July. The action on Viborg. Lieutenant Dowell RMA won a Victoria Cross medal, and was presented the medal while serving in the Baltic.

1854. Tuesday 18th July. Destruction of batteries at Solovetskoi Island.

1854. Monday 24th July. Bomarsund blockaded.

1854. Sunday 13th - 16th August. Bomarsund bombarded and taken by squadron.

1854. Tuesday 8th - Wednesday 16th August. The attack on Bomarsund.

1854. Thursday 31st August 4th September. Unsuccessful attack on Petropaulooski by President and consort.

1854. August. Miranda defeated Russian garrison at Kola.

1854. Wednesday 13th September. Eupatoria surrendered to the allies.

1854. Monday 18th September. Royal Marines disembarked at Eupatoria.

1854. September - December. Defence of Eupatoria. (Naval force ashore.)

1854. Sunday 1st - 3rd October. Seamen and Marines landed at Balaclava.

1854. Wednesday 4th October. Attack on Fort Nicolaief by Sidon and Inflexible.

1854. Tuesday 17th October - 7th September 1855. Bombardment of Sevastopol, especially on 17th - 24th October 1854. The 9th - 28th April. The 6th - 10th June. The 16th - 17th June. The 16th - 19th July. The 6th - 9th August. The 5th - 7th September 1855.

1854. Wednesday 25th October. The battle of Balaklava.

1854. October. Operations on the West Coast or Africa.

1854. November. Operations in Macao River by O'Callaghan.

1854. Thursday 2nd November. Destruction of junks in Tym-Moon Bay.

1854. Friday 3rd November. Destruction of junks at Tyloo.

1854. Sunday 5th November. Corporal John Prettyjohns RM (1823 -1887) was the first Royal Marine to be awarded the Victoria Cross Medal (VC), during the battle of Inkerman in the Crimea War. A small party of Marines under the leadership of Sergeant Richards and Corporal Prettjohns were ordered to clear some cave's that were being held by the enemy. However, before they could complete their task they were seized by a Russian patrol, at a time when the Marines had almost run out of ammunition. Corporal Prettyjohns took control of the situation and seized the leader of the Russian patrol by capturing him with a West Country wrestling throw. He then ordered his men to throw stones at the Russians, which they did with great success. Later when the Victoria Cross was instituted by Queen Victoria, the Marines chose Prettyjohns to be the recipient.

1854. Friday 5th November. The Crimean War, Inkerman was an active day, 312 rank and file marched off from the heights of Balaklava, for the Light Division, under the command of Captain Hopkins, R.M.L.I., the detachment was divided into four companies, taking turn in the trenches. On the morning of the 5th, the relief, which had just returned, were preparing their rude breakfast; the firing from Sebastopol was gradually increased, and then commenced in our rear. Nothing could be distinguished but fog and smoke from where we were. The bugle sounded the "Fall-in" at the double, and officers were flying about giving orders, saying vast columns of the enemy were moving up to our rear. The roll of musketry was terrific; we were advanced cautiously until bullets began to fall amongst us, the sergeant-major was the first man killed; order given to lay down; it was well we did so; a rush of bullets passed over us; then we gave them three rounds, kneeling, into their close columns. At the same time some seamen opened fire from some heavy guns into their left flank, and this drove them back into the fog and smoke. Our Commanding Officer received several orders from mounted officers at this critical time; first it was "advance," then it was "hold your ground and prevent a junction or communication with the town." The Inkermann Caves were occupied by the enemy's sharpshooters, who were picking off our officers and gunners; between us and these men was an open space exposed to the broadside fire of a frigate in the harbour under shelter of the wall, but she had been heeled over so as to clear the muzzles of her guns, when fired, from striking the wall; thus, her fire raked the open part. The Caves were to be cleared, and the Marines ordered to do it; as soon as we showed ourselves in the open, a broadside from the frigate thinned our ranks; Captain March fell wounded. Captain Hopkins ordered his men to lie down under a bit of rising ground, and ordered two privates, Pat Sullivan and another man, to take the Captain back, and there he stood amidst a shower of shot and shell, seeing him removed. A division under Sergeant Richards and Corporal Prettyjohns, was then thrown out to clear the caves, what became of the Commanding Officer and the other I never knew, so many statements have been made. We, under Richards and Prettyjohns, soon cleared the caves, but found our ammunition nearly all expended, and a new batch of the foe were creeping up the hillside in single file at the back. Prettyjohns, a muscular Westcountryman, said, "Well, lads, we are just in for a warming, and it will be every man for himself in a few minutes. Look alive, my hearties, and collect all the stones handy, and pile them on the ridge in front of you. When I grip the front man you let go the biggest stones upon those fellows behind." As soon as the first man stood on the level, Prettyjohns gripped him and gave him a Westcountry buttock, threw him over upon the men following, and a shower of stones from the others knocked the leaders over. Away they went, tumbling over the other, down the incline; we gave them a parting volley and retired out of sight to load; they made off and left us, although there was sufficient to have eaten us up. Later in the day we were recalled, and to keep clear of the frigate's fire had to keep to our left, passing over the field of slaughter. On being mustered, if my memory is not at fault, twenty-one men had been killed and disabled, and we felt proud of our own Commanding Officer, who stood fine, like a hero, helping Captain March. Corporal Prettyjohns received the V.C., Colour-Sergt. Jordan the Medal and £20 for Distinguished Conduct in the Field, Captain Hopkins a C.B., others were recommended.
Prettyjohns was selected to have the one VC for the Marines on that occasion. The Colonel said, "Well, boys, there's only one, but you all deserve one each." The men called out, "Take it yourself, Colonel, for you saved all our lives when you ordered us to lie down." "No, no, lads, it's for one of you; which shall it be? Prettyjohns or Jordan?" So they said it should be Prettyjohns. "Then I shall recommend Jordan for the Medal and £20 per annum, for he is in his 21st year of service," said the Colonel.
The following morning we went into the trenches, as usual, on short rations and water; about 11:30 my section received a visit from one of the 'hen and chickens,' which squatted down close to us, so we lay down flat on the ground, when up she popped, throwing up an immense quantity of earth, and scattering her fire brood about the place. I was jumped and buried in earth; my memory became a blank until I found myself about half-way to Balaklava, in a waggon which was going to fetch ammunition. (Memories of an Old Soldier. Globe and Laurel, 1904)

1854. Thursday 12th November. Destruction effort at Dshmetic by Tribune and consort.

1854. Friday 13th November. Battery carried and junks destroyed in Coulan Bay.

1854. The Marines uniforms of the day. (taken from 'Britain's Sea Soldiers: Vol 1 by Cyril Field RMLI).

1854. Mounted Royal Marines fought in the Crimean war.

1854 - 1993. Only Twenty Seven Conspicuous Gallantry Medals (originally a naval decoration) were awarded to Royal Marines from its inception in 1854 until it was abolished in 1993. Sergeant Preston's exploits were unusual in that he was awarded a second gallantry medal, the Distinguished Conduct Medal, for the Defence of the Legations.
Sergeant James Edward Preston CGM, DCM, RMLI (by Anthony J Perrett)

1854. Could this have been the origin of the 'Special Boats Sections'? In the summer of 1854, during the Crimea War, the Frigate HMS Arrogant, commanded by Captain. Hastings YELVERTON with Lieut John BTPEESNA, was the senior ship of the British Fleet in the Baltic campaign and was standing off Wardo Island at the mouth of the Gulf of Bothnia. After one of his formal calls on the Commander-in Chief, Captain YSIVERTON remarked to Lieut. BITRESKA that he had just received a mild repDhland from the Admiral, which he was to pass on to his officers. The admiral has received information that the Russians - were constantly landing important despathces for the Tsar right under the nose of ENS Arrogant. On hearing this BrrEt was fired with an urge to stem the tide of Russian despatches and he began to formulate a plan to intercept them. He persuaded stoker William JOENSTONE, who spoke Swedish, to help him, and obtained his Captain's permission to carry out the mission. BTTBEA and JOUSTONE rowed. ashore on Wednesday 9th August, landing in a quiet little bay. They made their way to an isolated £anhous. where JSS!1?ONE spoke with the t.ner who agreed to help them. The farmer had a deep grudge against the Russians who had requisitioned his horses, thereby preventing him from gathering in his crops. He gave the two sailors shelter and told them that the Russian despatches must be of great importance because nine miles of road had been specially repaired to make their journeys easier.
The two British sailors leant that the Russian messengers were guared by an escort until they reacheda small co -ose clsoe to the shore. The escort would then leave and the messengers would hide until the dead of night,when they would head for their final destination by small boat.
Meanwhile the Russians had heard that the British aiIcn had landed a nd they began  searching S countryside, inclthng farms and outbuildings • BxmEL and JOHNZTONB were bidden in a barn and slept through the hunt. Three days after they landed they heard that the despatches would be sent that night. During the evening they took up their positions near the copse Soon after midnight the Russians cane stealthily down the road - the messengers hid, and the escort departed. As soon as the escort was out of sight BYPEESA and JOENSTONE leapt out of their hiding places and so startled the messengers that two of them dropped their bags and fled. The others were soon overcome. JOESTONE tying them up whileBrmR& kept them covered with his pistol. The Russians were convinced they had been attacked by a large
group of men - little did they know it was just two sailon The messengers, with all their despa tches, were marched down the beach, loaded into the boatand forced at gunpoint to row the British ship. Not long after the boatbad slipped out to sea, the Russian escort reappeared and seeing nothing amxa assumed that all was well. They returned to base and report the safe passage of the messengers. The Russians were taken prisoner aboard the Arrogant and their despatches were given to The Commander-in-Chief. Ile wt surprised and delighted, and both men were recommens for the Victoria Cross when this newly highly-prized dèóoration
was instituted. Their names appeared in the very first list in the London Gazette.
Acknowledgements to 'This England'. (Sic)

1854. The strength was 15,500.

1854.-1856. The Russian War - In 1855 the differences between the Latin and Greek Churches concerning the Holy Places in Palestine had led Turkey to appoint a Commission of enquiry. Russia, always a champion of the Greek Church, thought this to be a favourable opportunity to interfere with a view to breaking up the Turkish Empire. She demanded guarantees for the Greek Church and also that the Greek Orthodox subjects of the Sultan should be placed under her protection. This would have affected the independence of Turkey, and could not be entertained by the Porte, in which attitude she had the support of England and France. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1855. The separate title of Royal Marine Light Artillery was conferred upon the RMA. As RMA uniforms were the blue of the Royal Regiment of Artillery they were nicknamed the 'Blue Marines'. While the Infantry element who wore the scarlet uniforms of the British Infantry, became known as the 'Red Marines', often given the derogatory nickname by sailors as Lobsters.

1855. January. 'The Royal Marines Light Infantry'. 'Her Majesty Has Been Pleased To Command That The Corps Of Royal Marines Shall In Future Be Designated:-
The reason for the bestowal of this distinctive title was not as a reward for the conspicuous services of the Corps in the Crimean War as many believe, but purely a utilitarian one, the Admiralty considering that the Light Infantry training was the best adapted to the nature of the service which the Corps is generally required to perform when employed on shore.
In those days it must be remembered that Light Infantry regiments . were the only ones - with the exception of the Rifles - which specialized in skirmishing and extended order, and the Admiralty was probably right in thinking that this would be more useful to detachments fighting on shore in all kinds of out-of-the-way places than battalion or brigade drill.
Nowadays the title "Light Infantry" is merely an honourable distinction, which in the British service is symbolized by the wearing of the badge of the Bugle, except in the case of the Highland Light Infantry, which like the French Chasseurs, the German Jaegers and other continental regiments of similar nature wear the French Horn.
The word "Chasseur" and "Jaeger" - both meaning "hunter" - are, by the way, both more appropriate to the badge and to the original ideas under which such corps were instituted than is our term "Light Infantry."
The Horn, whether Bugle Horn or French Horn, is distinctly the badge of the huntsman, not so much in the modern meaning of the word as in that inferred in the Bible, where Nimrod is described as being "a mighty hunter." Moreover, the chase - the hunting and killing of animals - which until recent years was termed "sport" was from time immemorial been always considered the best school for war.
Apart from this, the Bugle or Bugle-Horn, has an age long eminence on account of the peculiar honour in which it was held in the early centuries of the Christian era. The carved ivory horn or "olifaunt" was a distinctive sign of nobility. It carries us back to the "Song of Roland," sung by the Norman knight Taillifer at the Battle of. Hasting, which celebrates the death of the paladin, betrayed into the hands of countless hordes of Saracens in the Pass of Roncevalles (August 15th). Roland refused to sound his "olifaunt" for succour till all is over, and then only to call Charles, the French King, to see him and his comrade Turpin, lying dead but unconquered.
"And straight away" says the old legend, as he raised the horn to his mouth. Firmly has he grasped it and sounded it with vigour. Lofty are the hills and very loud the echo, and the sound is heard a full fifteen leagues away. And the Emperor Charles has heard it and all his host of vassals; and the King Spake, `Our men are giving battle'; but Ganelon (see Note 3) said, `Had another man said this it would have seemed a fearful falsehood.' With pain and great endeavour has Roland sounded his horn, and the bright blood is streaming from his mouth, and both his temples has he broken in the endeavour. But exceedingly great and loud is the noise, and Charles has heard it as he passed across the border; and Naimes the Duke has heard it and now the Frenchmen listen."
The horn was a much-prized item of the equipment of the old nobles and knights, but not everyone of these warriors could procure or afford to buy one made of the tusk of an elephant, elaborately carved and often mounted with gold and precious stones, they and their followers equipped themselves with the horns of oxen.
This brings us at once to our Bugle, for "bugle" was an old English word signifying a wild bull, probably from across the Channel, since the French word for the "lowing of cattle" is still "beugler."
Sir John Mandeville, in his Travels, speaks of "the homes of great oxen or of bugles. "
Such horns were not only used as bugle-horns, but as drinking cups - some ingenious knights making them do double duty by fitting stoppers to their mouthpieces - and later as powder-horns. But few are aware, perhaps, that one of the most ancient modes of transferring inheritances was that of conveying them by the presentation of a horn. Several of these are still preserved and accepted as evidence of rightful possession of property. One such is the horn of the Danish Prince Ulphus, by which he transferred his landed property to the Church of York, that by which King Canute bestowed a manor on the Pusey family, and the Borstal horn, a title to property bestowed by Edward the Confessor on the family of Aubrey.
Not only lands, but sometimes fishing rights, were conferred with the gift of a horn, as, for instance, the horn by which the town of Hungerford holds the fishing rights to the River Kennet. This horn is ornamented with a Crescent and Star. a badge assumed by Richard I`'' after his return from the Holy Land.
In German heraldry towering horns are often seen on the helmet. These were allowed to be worn after a knight had proved his prowess in the Tournament. They still appear in many coats-of arms of the German nobility. These were also "bugle" horns and so here again we find the "Bugle" as a special distinction of honour.
So much for the Bugle itself, a badge, it must be acknowledged, of great honour, interest and antiquity, and which appears in the armorial bearings of a great many English and Scottish families.
The origin of Light Infantry regiments must be traced, like many another matter connected with the British Army, to the Continent, and, considering the geographical position of the British Isles, this is only to be expected.
The first Light Infantry formation appears ` to have been the "Chasseurs de Fischer'' a French Corps raised in 1742 by a German adventurer of that name. Like the later Indian Corps of Guides raised by the British Army, it comprised both infantry and cavalry. It did not wear a Bugle badge, but a device of Three fishes, chosen by its leader, a man without crest or armorial bearings, as symbolical of his name.
In 1757, we find references in the press to a corps of German "Chasseurs" fighting with the British against the French.
"These Chasseurs or Hunters," said Lloyd's Evening Post of that date, "are said to be composed of gentlemen's gamekeepers, who are trained to shooting from ten years old, and are such dexterous marksmen that they will shoot a single ball to a butt no bigger than the crown of a man's hat at 200 yards distance; they are all clothed in green, have each a rifled gun, two pistols in holsters, two in their girdles, besides a short dagger and a broad sword, and are supposed equal to the same number of any troops in the world. By all accounts they are very formidable to the French. (Author Unknown)

1855. January. Once again the Royal Marines underwent another name change becoming known as the 'Royal Marines Light Infantry'. Under this title they served in the Crimean war carrying out several amphibious raids on the Russian forces. However, the Royal Navy suffered a shortage of manpower in the Marines during these long wars and regular Infantry units from the Army occasionally had to be used as shipboard replacements. The Royal Marines continued in their on board function after the war, taking a prominent part in the Navy's antipiracy and anti-slavery actions. At that time their strength was 16.500.

1855. Tuesday 30th January.  Light Infantry - The title of the Corps was changed to Royal Marines, Light Infantry. An Admiralty letter of that date says: "That the Corps of Royal Marines may be designated a Light Corps and equipped and designated as such agreeably to Your Majesty's Regulation for Light Infantry Regiments of the Line; this training being considered best adapted to the nature of the service which the Corps is generally required to perform when employed ashore."
During the Crimean War it also instituted the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal19. This was meant as the Naval counterpart of the Army Distinguished Conduct Medal instituted by Royal Warrant
From Monday 4th December 1854. The Admiralty were authorised to confer rewards of the medal with gratuity to any Petty Officer, Seaman, or Royal Marine who "shall, while serving in action, distinguish themselves in action with the enemy"; the same to be granted in the proportion of 8 Petty Officers or Sergeants and Corporals and 10 Seamen or Privates for every 1000 men, and the gratuities to be granted were also laid down. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1855. Thursday 1st February. Black Sea ports blockaded.

1855. Saturday 17th February. Support of Turkish troops in defence of Eupatoria.

1855. Thursday 22nd - 24th February. Troops defeated at Anapa by Leopard and boats.

1855. February. Straits of Kertch blockaded.

1855. Thursday 8th March. Viper destroyed fort and stores at Djimiteia.

1855. Tuesday 13th March. Attack on Soujak Kaleh by Leopard and consorts.

1855. April. Coast of Courland blockaded.

1855. Thursday 24th May. Straits of Kertch forced. Snake specially distinguished.

1855. Friday 25th May. Squadron forced Straits of Yenikale.

1855. Saturday 26th May. Destruction of vessels and grain at Berdiansk.

1855. Saturday 26th May. Capture of vessels off Hango Head by Cossack and Esk.

1855. Sunday 27th May. Magicienne destroyed two galliots in Biskopa Bay.

1855. Monday 28th May. Attack on Arabat by the British squadron.

1855. Tuesday 29th May. Destruction of vessels and stores at Genitchi.

1855. Sunday 3rd June. Destruction of stores at Taganrog.

1855. Tuesday 5th June. Capture of Marianpol by boats of squadron.

1855. Tuesday 5th June. Boat's crew of Cossack massacred by Russians at Hango Head.

1855. Tuesday 5th June. 24 year old Bombardier Thomas Wilkinson RMA (1831-1887) was especially recommended for gallant conduct with the advanced batteries during the Battle of Sebastopol in the Crimea war. He was later awarded the Victoria Cross for outstanding bravery after he carried out sandbag repairs to the defences of an advanced gun position whilst under intense enemy gunfire. His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Royal Marines Museum, Southsea, England.

1855. Wednesday 6th June. Surrender of Gheisk, Sea of Azoff.

1855. Wednesday 6th - 7th June. Dispersion of troops at Kansiala Bay by Magicienne.

1855. Saturday 9th June. Defeat of Cossacks by Ardent at Kiten

1855. Thursday 14th June. Basilisk destroyed ten grain-boats.

1855. Friday 15th June. Coast of Finland blockaded.

1855. Sunday 17th June. Engagement with batteries in Narva Bay.

1855. Monday 18th June. Bombardment of Narva by Blenheim, Snap and Pincher.

1855. Wednesday 20th June. Attempt by Snapper to capture boats at Nargen.

1855. Wednesday 20th June. Destruction of Fort of Roshensalm by Arrogant and consorts.

1855. Wednesday 20th June. Destruction of five sloops at Pernau by British boats.

1855. Friday 22nd June. Batteries at Sandham, Storholm, and Ertholm engaged.

1855. Friday 22nd June. Repulse of Cossacks at Kamishwa by Vesuvius.

1855. Saturday 23rd - 24th June. Capture of 47 vessels at Nystadt by boats of Harrier.

1855. Sunday 24th June. Petrouski forts silenced by Vesuvius.

1855. Wednesday 27th June. Destruction of stores at Genitchi.

1855. Wednesday 27th June. Destruction of batteries at Christenestad.

1855. Saturday 30th June. Ruby and consort destroyed 29 vessels at Werolax Bay.

1855. July. Jasper on shore at Krivaia, and abandoned.

1855. July. Ardent destroyed stores near Genitchi.

1855. Monday 2nd July. Boats of Driver and Harrier at Raumo.

1855. Tuesday 3rd July. Bridge at Genitchi destroyed by Beagle and Vesuvious.

1855. Tuesday 3rd July. Stores near Genitchi destroyed.

1855. Thursday 5th July. Defeat of Cossacks and destruction of Fort Svartholm.

1855. Monday 9th - 13th July. Destruction of salt boats at Bogs Karin Beacon.

1855. Thursday 12th July. Gulf of Bothnia blockaded.

1855. Friday 13th July. Salt boats in Siele Sound destroyed by Basilisk.

1855. Friday 13th July Attack on Viborg by Ruby and boats of other ships.

1855. Friday 13th July. 24 year old Lieutenant G.D. Dowell RMA (1831 - 1910) was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) while serving in the Fort of Viborg n the Gulf of Finland, after he rescued the crew of a rocket boat under. While serving in the Crimean War at the Fort of Viborg in the Gulf of Finland, an explosion occurred in one of the cutters of HMS Arrogant, Lieutenant Dowell, who was on board HMS Ruby, took three volunteers and went, under intense grape and musketry fire to the assistance of the cutter. He took up three of the crew, and having rescued the rest and also the Captain of the Mast (George Ingouville), he then towed the stricken boat out of enemy gun range.

1855. Sunday 15th - 19th July. Destruction of stores, by Vesuvius and gunboats.

1855. Tuesday 17th July. Basilisk and Ruby engaged batteries at Riga.

1855. Saturday 21st July. Attack on batteries at Fredericksham.

1855. Sunday 22nd July. Granaries at Berdiansk destroyed by Vesuvius and consorts.

1855. Monday 23rd July. Arensburg taken by boats of Archer and Desperate.

1855. Tuesday 24th July. Shipping and Town of Raumo destroyed.

1855. Thursday 26th July. Kotka Island taken by Arrogant and consorts.

1855. Sunday 30th July. Troops dispersed at Windan by Archer and Conflict.

1855. Wednesday 1st - 8th August. Magazines and shipping at Brandon destroyed.

1855. Sunday 5th August. Capture of guns at Taganrog by parties from Vesuvius and consorts.

1855. Monday 6th - 7th August. Barracks and stores destroyed at Petrushena.

1855. Monday 6th August. Repulse of cavalry near Domeness.

1855. Tuesday 7th August. Telegraph stations at Tolbourkin destroyed.

1855. Thursday 9th August. The bombardment of Sveaborg.

1855. Friday 9th - 11th August. Bombardment of Sveaborg by the fleet.

1855. Friday 10th August. Hawke and Desperate engaged at mouth of Dwina.

1855. Monday 13th August. Order-in-Council. 29 landed at Gallipoli. On 20th April HMS Terrible, Tiger, Furious and Retribution with three French Ships went to Odessa and on the 22nd commenced a bombardment. HMS Arethusa stood in to the Mole, the fort of which was blown up, and the batteries ceased firing. The British ships then stood in and set the enemy shipping on fire and destroyed the batteries and brought off the people.
On 29th they made a reconnaissance of Sevastopol but did nothing. An incursion to the East end of the Black Sea was then made and on 19th May, after a bombardment of Redout Kalch, Turkish troops were placed in occupation of it. At the end of May it was decided to blockade the mouths of the Danube, and to transport the Armies to Varna, which was done, but no further action was taken till the autumn, when an invasion of the Crimea was determined on. Meanwhile action was being taken in other quarters, first in the Baltic20 and also in the Pacific, where an abortive but instructive attack was made on Petropaulovski on 30th August. This place was very strongly fortified, but the Allied Commanders with inadequate forces proceeded to attack it. The British ships President (50), Forte (40), Pique (40), Virago and Amphitrite, with three or four French ships, attacked on 30th August. (For some reason the British Admiral shot himself during the engagement.)
It was renewed on the 31st against three batteries of 3, 5 and 11 guns. A party from Virago landed and spiked the guns of the three-gun battery, but the Russians also landed men from their ships and they had to retire. The other batteries were also silenced but were repaired during the night. Three American deserters came off and acting on their information a Council of War decided to attempt to seize the town and take the batteries in reverse.
On 4th September, 700 Seamen and Marines were landed under Captains Burridge and La Grandiere, after two batteries of 5 and 7 guns had been silenced by President, Forte, and Virago. There was a wooded hill in rear of the landing place and the Russians were driven back to it and one battery was destroyed. The Hill was then carried with difficulty, the top being covered with brushwood and brambles whilst skirmishers opened fire on the attackers; in a bayonet charge Captain C A Parker RM was killed, and the British had to retreat to the boats. This was effected, but not without loss and confusion, the British losing 107 killed and wounded, and the French 101. Besides Captain Parker, Lieutenants McCallum and A H Clements, RM were wounded, and the attempt had to be abandoned.
The landing place had been badly chosen, as the wooded hill commanded it and when they occupied the hill they could not be covered by the fire of the ships. The Campaign in the Crimea.21 Eupatoria - When it was finally decided to invade the Crimea and attack the great fortress and arsenal of Sebastopol, the British, French, and Turkish Forces put to sea on 7th September 1854 and were disembarked at Old Fort, near Eupatoria, on the 14th. The disembarkation was completed on 18th, when the Army began its march to the Southward; on the 19th was fought the Battle of the Alma, resulting in a victory for the Allies. The Corps took no part in these operations, except landing parties to cover the seamen working parties employed in removing the wounded after the battle. But in order to protect the flank of the Allied Armies HMS Vesuvius and Retribution had been sent on 15th September with a detachment of 12 Officers and 418 Royal Marines from the larger ships, the whole under Captain Brock RN, to hold Eupatoria and to act in conjunction with the French afloat and ashore, to secure the town from enemy attacks, and to defend the Bay when transports were anchored there.
They established a police and fortified three strong points: (i) the Lazarette at the South-West extremity of the Bay; (ii) a large house in centre of the Bay; and (iii) a strong stone magazine at the Eastern extremity. These were loop holed and strengthened with sandbags and breastworks. On 19th September a strong body of Cossacks attempted an attack but were repulsed without loss. On 23rd September, 300 French Marines reinforced the British, and later the Turks landed 200 Marines.
On 26th September, HMS Leander landed 100 men. The place was now strong enough to resist attack, but it was never used as a Base owing to the change in the plans22. It was left in peace until 12th October. On that day a force of Cossacks, apparently about 800 strong, was observed advancing on the town. Captain Brook mounted 30 Royal Marines with a 12 pdr howitzer and some Tartar horsemen sallied out to meet the enemy. When about 600 yards distant the Cossacks opened out and disclosed four Horse Artillery guns which opened fire. Captain Brook retired and took up a defensive position; after a few shots the Cossacks retired. HMS Firebrand arrived the following day with a reinforcement of 400 men of the Egyptian Army, with 24 and 12 pdr guns from the Fleet. These added to the defensive power of the place, which was not attacked again until November.
Balaclava - After the Battle of the Alma, the Armies marched towards Sebastopol; moving round the East side, they invested the fortress on the South and East Sides, the British on the right and the French on the left. It was therefore necessary to move the main bases of both Armies; the French moved theirs to Kameisch Bay, which was very convenient for them; the British had to be content with the small harbour of Balaclava, which was to their left rear and not covered by their siege lines and was also open to attack from the North-East. The British position was on a plateau with heights looking to their rear over the plain of the River Tchernaya; these were known later as the Marine Heights. In order to protect his rear and flank Lord Raglan, the British Commander, requested Admiral Dundas to land his Royal Marines.
On 28th September accordingly, a Battalion of 25 Officers and 988 NCOs and Men were landed from the squadron under Lieutenant Colonel T Hurdle RM, and two days later a further draft of 10 Officers and 212 Men were landed, making a total of 35 Officers and 1200 Men. They were formed into two Battalions. The Brigade was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Hurdle with Captain Aslett as Brigade Major. The 1st Battalion was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel F A Campbell, Adjutant Lieutenant H G Elliot; and the 2nd Battalion at first by Major McLeux and later by Lieutenant Colonel T Holloway. (* Check the name in the Navy List) They were stationed on the heights 1200 feet above the sea and proceeded to construct a continuous entrenchment about two miles long, extending to Kadikoi - a small village where Colonel C Campbell, commanding at Balaclava, had his Headquarters. At intervals along these entrenchments Batteries were made, armed with an assortment of guns from 6 pdr field pieces to 32 pdr ships' guns. To work the guns a certain number of Marines were allotted from the two Battalions23. General Fraser records that the tents were old and dilapidated and that they suffered great hardships from wet and cold and bad food. The outer line of defence was a chain of smaller redoubts upon a low range of heights, which stretch across the plain at a distance about one and a half miles from the gorge leading into Balaclava; these were manned by the Turks. The 93rd Highlanders with a field battery were in Kadikoi. The RM Batteries were manned, No 1 by Captain Alexander and 78 RM, No. 2 by Lieutenant Joliffe or Pym and 56 RMLI, No. 3 by Captain S Fraser and a company of Royal Marines from the 1st Battalion, No. 4 by Captain Blyth and a party of RMLI Lieutenant Bradley Roberts RMA acted as Gunnery Officer to the Batteries helping them cut fuses, etc. The landing of the RM allowed all available troops to be employed in the actual siege works. The Navy also landed a Brigade with 50 guns, which were employed in the trenches and siege batteries; to this Brigade were attached Lieutenants Douglas and Steele and a party of RMA. Both officers were wounded and specially mentioned in dispatches.
By 17th October the Fleet had landed 1786 Officers and Seamen and 1530 Royal Marines, besides 400 Marines at Eupatoria.24 The Royal Marines had their first brush with the enemy on 6th October when the Russians drove in a Marine picket, but the 12 pdrs opened fire and the Russians retired.
On 17th October there was a heavy bombardment by the land batteries assisted by the squadron. Owing to the position of the Allied investing lines, the isthmus of Perekop was open to the Russians, who were thus able to pour troops and supplies into the Crimea, and they had also a large field army operating outside the invested fortress. On 18th October the Russians, about 10,000 strong, appeared in the plain below the Marine Heights and with them large bodies of cavalry. They were met by our cavalry and retired across the river. The 2nd RM was moved to the lower part of the Heights to keep up communication with the Cavalry and Artillery; the 93rd Regiment were on the right, with one wing between the 1st and 2nd Battalions RM. It proved however only to be a reconnaissance in force.
On 20th October the Russians advanced again and the whole of the forces at Balaclava were under arms; two companies RM under Captain Timpson were sent to left of the RM lines, about the centre of the position, but it 23 Life of Sir E. Lyons. 24 Life of Sir E. Lyons. 25 Life of Sir W. Mends. 31 proved to be a false alarm.
On 25th October, however, the Russians really advanced in force on the redoubts held by the Turks before described. The Turks were driven out of them, but the guns of Nos I and 2 Batteries RM covered them, rendering useful service - "a fire was opened with good effect upon the Russians as they followed up the Turks who were running across the open after having been driven out of the advanced redoubts." The Russians came on and then took place the magnificent charges of the Heavy and Light Cavalry which are of immortal memory. Before the charge of the Heavy Cavalry, the RM Batteries opened fire on the Cossacks at about 200 yards range but had to cease fire after the first round as the Heavy Cavalry had closed with the enemy.26 No. 2 Battery however opened on the Russian cavalry reserve and caused them to withdraw. No. 1 Battery fired into the Cossack right as they were reforming to charge again and dispersed them and shelled them as they retired across the plain. No. 4 Battery was also heavily engaged27. Colonel Campbell in his reports says, "During this period our batteries on the hills manned by the RMA and RM made most excellent practice on the enemy cavalry which came up the hilly ground in front." General Fraser gives a graphic account of the firing of No. 3 Battery on the Russian Cavalry after the charge of the Light Brigade28* but it is probable that he refers to the Heavy Cavalry charge. Lord Raglan became doubtful of holding the base at Balaclava, but Admiral Sir E. Lyons was against any change, and it continued to be used as the Main Base until the end.
Inkerman - On 2nd November two Companies under Captains Hopkins and March29 were sent to join the Light Division before Sebastopol to replace a wing of the Rifle Brigade sent to Balaclava. These companies took part in the battle of Inkerman on 5th November, when the Russians combined a sortie by the garrison with an attack by the Army outside the fortress. Fought amidst fog and smoke, the British were more or less surprised, and this has become known as 'The Soldiers' Battle', in which the two companies of the Corps bore a distinguished part. The attack fell on the right of the British, the enemy coming up from the valley of the Tchernaya. The Companies were at first told to hold their ground and prevent a junction or communication between the troops and the town.
The Inkerman Caves had however been occupied by the enemy's sharpshooters, who were picking off the officers and gunners. A Russian frigate was covering the open space in front of the caves. The RM were then ordered to clear the caves, but as soon as they appeared the frigate opened fire; Captain March was severely wounded in the jaw and several men were killed and wounded. Sergeant Richards and Corporal Prettyjohns then proceeded to clear and hold the caves, which they did quickly, but they were promptly counter-attacked; ammunition was nearly all expended and Prettyjohns led them in collecting stones which they threw down on the advancing enemy. Prettyjohns gripped the leader in a wrestling grip and threw him. Later in the day they were recalled and had to avoid the fire of the frigate30. Corporal Prettyjohns was awarded the Victoria Cross and Colour Sergeant Jordan the Distinguished Conduct Medal and annuity. Captain Hopkins received the CB These two Companies remained in the trenches for several months, after which they re-joined the Brigade at Balaclava. The Brigade remained throughout the winter on the Heights and in the defences of Balaclava, suffering with the rest of the Army in the disastrous gale of November 14th, when the Fleet was much damaged, and several transports were wrecked. with the winter clothing for the troops and large quantities of ammunition. They shared with the Army the great hardships of that winter. On 10th December the garrison at Eupatoria was withdrawn and replaced by a Division of the Turkish Army, which was attacked again on Wednesday 17th February 1855, but assisted by the ships drove off the Russians. Light Infantry - In January 1855, as already stated, the Corps of Royal Marines was granted the title of Royal Marines, Light Infantry.
On 1st February, Sir H Keppel RN, records in his diary that making his way up to Army Headquarters in the snow, he passed the Royal Marines, who occupied the lower ground, and above them were the Guards, and on the higher ground the 93rd Highlanders.
In March the Russians made a sortie which was repulsed.
Life of Sir E. Lyons. Captain Portlock Dadson says four and Sergeant Turner 312 NCOs and Men. 30 Globe and Laurel, 1904. 32 On 9th April there was an ineffective bombardment by the Fleet and land batteries.
Attack on Redan - In May 1856 a Division of the French Army, having taken up a position on the Tehernaya River, the Royal Marine Brigade was advanced in support of the French to cover their extreme right31. This enabled a detachment of the RMA from the Balaclava Lines to be transferred to the Siege Train, to reinforce the Royal Artillery. This detachment, under Brevet Major Alexander, joined the right attack on June 17th, in time to take part in the bombardment preceding the unsuccessful attack on the Redan on 18th June; they continued with this attack until 11th July when they were transferred to the left attack, rendering valuable aid in both positions. But in the meantime, the detachment with the Naval Brigade had added yet another leaf to the laurels of the Corps. For on 5th June, Bombardier Thomas Wilkinson of the RMA had gained the Victoria Cross; a terrific fire from the Russian guns had knocked to pieces the advanced works of the British. Wilkinson, jumping on to the parapet, replaced the sandbags as they were brought to him, rebuilding the parapet under intense fire and so saving many lives.
On 6th June the Mamelon was taken by the French. Sea of Azoff - The Russians had their depots for supplies to the garrison from Middle and South Russia round the Sea of Azoff, to which the entrance was through the Straits of Kertch on the East of the Crimea. The Navy were anxious to destroy these if possible, but it was first necessary to gain possession of the forts defending the Straits. On 1st and 2nd May, an expedition of 8500 French troops with 2500 British and 4 Batteries of Artillery started with a large squadron of ships, but on 3rd May the French squadron was recalled by the French C-in-C and the enterprise had to be abandoned.
On 20th May there was another Council of the Commanders, and it was decided to proceed, the French providing 7000 Infantry and 3 Batteries of Artillery; the British 3000 Infantry, which included one RM Battalion and one Battery, the whole under General George Brown. Kertch - The troops embarked on 22nd May; there were six Battleships and a large number of small vessels and mortar boats. They steered for Kaffa Bay and the landing was effected at the Bay of Kanish Burnu, 5 miles from Kertch, covered by the steam frigates.
There was no opposition on 24th May, the enemy retiring and blowing up their Batteries. The troops marched to Kertch and occupied it the same day, the Russians again exploding the magazines and retiring.
Yenikale - The light draught vessels under Captain Lyons then pushed on to Yenikale to engage the Forts at the entrance to the Sea of Azoff till the Army could come up.
On 25th there was a loud explosion and the Russians evacuated Yenikale, where nearly 100 guns were captured, with large quantities of ammunition and grain, which were destroyed. Yenikale was put into a state of defence, with a Turkish garrison.
In “The Life of Admiral Mends”, who was Flag Captain, he notes that the French and Turkish troops were very lawless, plundering and massacring, and notes "to the honour of the Royal Marines and 93rd Regiment, the only British troops landed, they preserved perfect discipline and the 93rd extinguished a fire that had broken out." With the flag of Sir E Lyons in the Miranda, the squadron of light vessels entered the Sea of Azoff; among them were several mortar boats with RMA crews, the senior RMA Officer being Captain McNamara. The Admiral then made over the command to his son, Captain Lynne, and returned. The squadron went first to Berdiansk on 26th May, where they destroyed a number of Russian vessels with grain and stores.
On 28th they bombarded Arabat Fort, which blew up, but the garrison was too strong for the small Naval force to land. They then went on to Genitchi, which they fired and destroyed Passing on then to Taganrog, the principal place at the head of the Sea, on 3rd June the small flotilla anchored 1400 yards from the Mole. As their terms were refused. fire was opened on the Government stores and buildings which were set alight. The garrison of 3000 men were kept in check by the boats' crews. By 3 pm large stores of grain, etc, with the vessels building on the stocks, were set on fire.
On 5th June at Marianpoul, a small force was landed from the squadron33 and the stores were destroyed.
On 6th June, the stores at Gheisk were burnt and thus having swept the Sea of Azoff, they returned to Balaclava. Another raid was made in July under Captain Sherard Osborne with successful results. The siege continued; the Fleet and mortar boats participating in the bombardments. The RMA in the mortar Boats were under Captain Digby RMA, and the following officers were borne on the books of HMS Royal Albert for mortar boats; Lieutenants E H Starr, H Hewett, W Festing. When the weather was too rough for the boats 31 Life of Sir E Lyons 32 Life of Sir E Lyons 33 There is a picture of this landing, which shows the Marines in the boats. 33 they had to lie in Streletska Bay. They had been fitted on a plan devised by Captain Julius Roberts, RMA, which answered admirably34. The RM Brigade still consisted of two Battalions, the 1st commanded by Lieutenant Colonel F A Campbell, and the 2nd by Lieutenant Colonel T Holloway.
On 28th June Lord Raglan, the C-in-C, died, much regretted. At the funeral the RMLI furnished a Juard of Honour at the pier in the Bay of Kazatch, and also lined the road from the pier inland.35 Malakoff and Redan - In preparation for another attack on the Malakoff and Redan, a bombardment was opened on 5th September, and continued on 6th and 7th; the Russians were expecting an assault and had brought up large numbers of troops and so lost heavily. Bad weather prevented the Fleet taking part, but the mortar Boats lying in Streletska Bay were able to bombard the Quarantine Fort.
On 8th the French carried the Malakoff, but the British failed against the Redan. With the loss of the Malakoff the fortifications on the South side became untenable, so the Russians blew them up and retired across the harbour to the North side; during the night there were many explosions and the fortifications on the South side were seen to be in flames. The six remaining Russian battleships were sunk at their moorings, and the Southern portion of the Bridge hauled over.
The Russian Black Sea Fleet of 18 battleships and numerous frigates was no more. As the siege operations were finished, the Naval Brigade was withdrawn and re-embarked on 16th September. Sir H Keppel of the St. Jean d'Acre records in his diary: "5th October. Busy re-embarking the Royal Marines, the finest body of men in the Crimea." It is interesting to record that the Royal Marines were the first British troops to re-enter Sebastopol, when in December 1918 the 3rd Royal Marine Battalion after the Great War took over the town from the German occupying troops. The Admiralty letter to Admiral Sir E Lyons contained the following remarks about the RM and Naval Brigade: "They command me on the present occasion to desire you to convey their approval of the conduct of the Officers and Men of the Battalion of Royal Marines who have been serving on shore, and more especially the officers and men of the Naval Brigade. That Brigade has shown the most cheerful endurance of the fatigues and hardships of the trenches, as well as the greatest skill and gallantry in working the guns and bearing their part in the danger of the advanced works in the assault on the enemy lines." But the war was not over. Shots were still exchanged with the Russians on the North side of the harbour; though cloaks were being destroyed and plane were made for its further prosecution.
Kinburn - The British were anxious to attack Odessa, but the French would not agree; finally, the Emperor Napoleon III by a telegram of 20th September 1855, ordered his generals to attack Kinburn. Where the Rivers Bug and Dnieper flow into the Black Sea there is a wide estuary, and Nicolaieff, a large arsenal and Naval Station, is on the River Bug. There is a long spit of land on the South shore extending for some miles towards the opposite coast; the Dnieper flows into the eastern extremity of the Gulf. Not far inland from this point is the town of Kherson; through which troops passed to the Crimea via Perekop. Kinburn Spit was fortified; a large stone fort was situated some distance from its extremity. Two other earthwork batteries, offering a very small target, had recently been built with 10 guns each. Fort Kinburn was a solid structure, casemated and with earthworks above the masonry, mounting 55 guns, howitzers and mortars, mostly in barbette. There was a wet ditch on the North front and the garrison consisted of 1500 men.
On the opposite side of the channel was Ochakoff Point, on which was Fort Nicolaieff, with 22 guns and also several earthworks. The plan was to land on the Spit below Fort Kinburn to cut off the retreat of the garrison, and then to bombard the defences with floating batteries and mortars, as the battleships could not approach nearer than 1200 yards. The occupation of Kinburn would stop communication by sea between Nicolaieff, Kherson and Odessa, and would threaten the rear of the Russian Army and perhaps cause it to evacuate the Crimea.
By 6th October all was ready: the battleships Royal Albert, Hannibal, Algiers, Princess Royal, St. Jean a'Acre, Sidon, and Leopard, with two transports carrying 4000 British Infantry, including Colonel Hurdle's Battalions of Royal Marines (950 strong) and a Battery of Artillery, the whole under Brigadier Hon H B Spencer, a similar 34 Life of Sir E Lyon 35 Life of Sir W R Mends. 34 force of French under General Bazaine36, with a French squadron and a large number of steam frigates, sloops, and mortar vessels. The mortar vessels were under Captain Wilcox RN and Captain Digby, RMA; lst RM under Colonel C Campbell was reinforced by detachments of Agamemnon, Royal Albert, St. Jean d'Acre, and Hannibal from 15th to 30th October, and carried a colour lent by Captain King RN37.
The 2nd RM (Lieutenant Colonel Holloway) was reinforced by detachments of Algiers and Princess Royal for some time. The RMA detachment was under Brevet Major Alexander and Lieutenant Joliffe. They rendezvoused on 8th October and reached the anchorage on 14th. At night the Fancy, Boxer, Cracker and Climber (steam gun vessels) with 4 French gunboats forced the entrance into the estuary, under heavy fire. The following morning the British and French transports landed their troops about 3 miles to the southward of the principal Fort, thus cutting off the retreat of the defenders. In the evening the ships ranged on the forts. The swell prevented operations on 15th, but on 17th with a Northerly breeze the mortar and other vessels took up their position off Fort Kinburn. By noon the buildings of the Fort were in flames and the Eastern face had suffered considerably.
At noon 4 British and 4 French battleships approached Fort Kinburn in line abreast. Admiral Houston-Steuart and a small squadron pushed through between the Points to fire from the inside and cover the troops; 4 ships took on the centre battery and 3 the fort at the point of the Spit. The enemy's fire was soon silenced, and a flag of truce was sent ashore with a summons to surrender, which was accepted; the garrison of 1400 marched out with the honours of war. The British loss was only 2 wounded, but the Russians suffered heavily, and 81 guns were captured.
On the 16th the enemy blew up the Forts on Ochakoff Point and retired. Kinburn fort was put into a state of defence, which was finished by the end of October, and garrisoned with 1000 French troops and a small Allied Flotilla.
The expedition returned to Sebastopol on November 2nd. The troops were kept on hoard till 11th with a view to an expedition against Kaffa and Arabat, but the idea was abandoned. Part of the Squadron was sent to Malta to refit, and Admiral Sir Houston-Stewart was sent with 4 battleships to cruise in the Mediterranean and round the Ionian Islands. Admiral Mende records that the Royal Marines were sent to England on 2nd November, but these must have been supernumeraries as the detachments probably re-joined their own ships on 30th October. The war dragged on, but there were no great operations. Peace was proclaimed at beginning of May 1856, and in July the evacuation of the Crimea was completed, having begun on 3rd June with the embarkation of the Coldstream Guards. It was completed on 12th July.
Rewards - The following rewards were given for the Crimea: Colonel T. Hurdle - Brevet Colonel - 29.06.55. CB - 05.07.55. Brevet - Lieutenant Colonels: Captain W F Hooking RMLI 13. 06. 55. Captain G L Alexander RMA 02. 11. 55. Brevet Majors: Captain W F Hopkins, RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain S Fraser RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain W E March RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain G P Payner RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain H Marriott RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain W S Aslett RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain G B Rodney RMLI 02.11.55. Captain G S Rigby RMA 02.11.55 36 Of Metz fame. 37 See Appx. Divisional. Colours. 35 The following were awarded the Legion of Honour: Col T Hurdle Lt Col T Holloway Capt. G B Rodney Sgt C. Horner RMA Capt. G L Alexander Sgt G Yule RMA Capt W F Hopkins Sgt E Richards RMLI Capt W H Harch Sgt J Jordan RMLI. Capt G S Digby Bdr T Wilkinson RMA Capt D Blyth Cpl W Chappel RMLI Lt A A Douglas Gnr J Bull RMA Lt H.J.Tull Gnr F Kerr RMA Lt F G Pym Pte J Burton RMLI Lt A C Steel Pte J Coborn RMLI This list is probably not quite complete. (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.) (Sic)

1855. Tuesday 14th August. Troops repulsed and vessels destroyed near Domeness.

1855. Wednesday 15th August. Jackdaw and Ruby and boats of Pylades took four vessels.

1855. Thursday 16th August. Imperieuse and consorts at Tolboukin.

1855. Thursday 23rd August. Camp and trenches shelled at Genitchi.

1855. Thursday 23rd - 24th August. Stores destroyed at Kiril and Gorelia.

1855. Monday 27th August. Enemy repulsed near Genitchi.

1855. Monday 27th August. Enemy dispersed and stores destroyed at Kiril.

1855. Thursday 30th - 31st August. Bridge and stores in Bay of Arabat destroyed.

1855. Friday 31st August. Stores near Marianpol destroyed by Wrangler and consorts.

1855. Friday 31st August. Reconnaissance of Taganrog by Grinder while under fire.

1855. Sunday 2nd September. Engagement with batteries at Gamla Carleby.

1855. Thursday 6th September. Boat of Bulldog took two schooners.

1855. Saturday 8th September. Sevastopol taken.

1855. Wednesday 12th September. Transports destroyed in Bay of Virta Nemi.

1855. Wednesday 12th September. Pernau surrendered to Hawke and consorts.

1855. Thursday 13th September. Forage and consorts at Perebond destroyed by Cracker's boats.

1855. Tuesday 18th September. Destruction of vessels at Hummeliski by boats of Nile.

1855. Wednesday 19th September. Naval Brigade re-embarked at Sevastopol.

1855. Thursday 20th September. Battery at Dwinaminde engaged by Gorgon.

1855. Monday 24th September. Road and bridge at Temriouk destroyed by squadron.

1855. Monday 24th September - 3rd October. Capture of Tamari and Fanagoria.

1855. Wednesday 26th September - 5th October. Blenheim and consorts at Hango and Eckness.

1855. Thursday 27th September. Archer and consorts at Forts Comet and Dwinaminde.

1855. Sunday 30th September. Cossacks dispersed near Libau by Conflict.

1855. Wednesday 3rd October. Archer and Desperate destroyed vessels in River Rua.

1855. Wednesday 10th October. Corn in River Salgir destroyed by party from Weser.

1855. Sunday 14th October. Entrance into Dnieper Bay forced.

1855. Monday 15th October. Recruit destroyed boats at Crooked Spit.

1855. Wednesday 17th October. The bombardment of Kinburn.

1855. Thursday 18th October. Boats destroyed by Recruit at White House Spit.

1855. Saturday 20th October. Ardent dispersed cavalry at Crooked Spit.

1855. Wednesday 24th October. Vesuvius dispersed enemy at Bielosarai Spit.

1855. Wednesday 24th October. Recruit destroyed fishing and boats at Marianpol.

1855. Monday 29th October. The storming of Canton.

1855. Saturday 3rd - 6th November. Defeat of Russian troops at Vodina and consorts.

1855. Sunday 4th November. Corn destroyed under fire at Gheisk.

1855. The numbers were 15,500.

1855. Tuesday 30th January.  The Light Infantry - The title of the Corps was changed to Royal Marines, Light Infantry. An Admiralty letter of that date says: "That the Corps of Royal Marines may be designated a Light Corps and equipped and designated as such agreeably to Your Majesty's Regulation for Light Infantry Regiments of the Line; this training being considered best adapted to the nature of the service which the Corps is generally required to perform when employed ashore."
During the Crimean War it also instituted the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal19. This was meant as the Naval counterpart of the Army Distinguished Conduct Medal instituted by Royal Warrant
From Monday 4th December 1854. The Admiralty were authorised to confer rewards of the medal with gratuity to any Petty Officer, Seaman, or Royal Marine who "shall, while serving in action, distinguish themselves in action with the enemy"; the same to be granted in the proportion of 8 Petty Officers or Sergeants and Corporals and 10 Seamen or Privates for every 1000 men, and the gratuities to be granted were also laid down.

1855. Tuesday 30th January. Royal Marine Light Infantry in China.
Her Majesty Queen Victoria approved an Admiralty Minute designating the infantry of the Royal Marines a 'Light Corps' with the title Corps of Royal Marines' Light Infantry. 1856 - October - Canton1857 - June - Fatshan Creek1857 - 1st and 2nd Battalions left England for China.
1858 - January – Canton
1858 - May - Pei-Ho River, Taku Forts, Pekin. The Taku (Degu) forts were on the Hai River, 37 miles east of Tientsin (Tianjin), China. They were stoutly built and were improved in the 1850's by Seng-ko-Lin-Ch'in.
Second Opium War (20 May 1858). An Anglo-French force under British Admiral Sir Michael Seymour captured Canton (Guangzhou) on 28-29 December 1857. It then moved north and captured the Taku forts butheld them only briefly.
1859 - June -August - Taku Forts Second Opium War (25 June 1859) When the Chinese refused to admit foreign diplomats to Peking (Beijing), British Admiral Sir James Hope attempted to force passage of the Peiho (Han) River with eleven gun boats and a landing force of 1,100 men, but met severe resistance. He was himself twice wounded, and two ships were sunk beneath him. Of the eleven gunboats, six were sunk or disabled. The landing force became bogged down in mud and had to retreat. The British lost 89 killed and 345 wounded. (Author Unknown)

1855. Thursday 8th February. By Order-in-Council NCOs and Royal Marines serving on shore from the Fleet in the Crimea, were made eligible for the Army Distinguished Conduct Medal and corresponding annuity and pecuniary awards.

1855 - 1923. The Corps became two departments, the Royal Marine Artillery and the Royal Marine Light Infantry.

1856. Tuesday 29th January. The Victoria Cross medal was introduced by Queen Victoria to reward acts of valour during the Crimean War. The traditional explanation of the source of the gunmetal from which the medals are struck is that it derives from Russian cannon captured at the siege of Sevastopol. Recent research has thrown doubt on this story, suggesting a variety of origins. Due to its rarity, the VC is highly prized and the medal can reach over £400,000 at auction. There are a number of public and private collections devoted to it most notably that of Lord Ashcroft, which contains over one tenth of the total VC's awarded. It was made retrospective from Tuesday 1st August 1854.

The Victoria Cross (VC) is the highest military decoration awarded for valour 'in the face of the enemy' to members of the armed forces of some Commonwealth countries and previous British Empire Territories. It takes precedence over all other orders, decorations and medals. It may be awarded to a person of any rank in any service and civilians under military command, and is presented to the recipient by the British monarch during an investiture held at Buckingham Palace. It is the joint highest award for bravery in the United Kingdom with the George Cross, which is the equivalent honour for valour not in the face of the enemy. However, the VC is higher in order of precedence and would be worn first by an individual who had been awarded both decorations (which has not so far occurred).

1856. February. The end of the Crimea War.

1856. Wednesday 23rd April. A Review of the Fleets that had been employed in the Black Sea and the Baltic was held at Spithead. 240 ships being reviewed by Her Majesty. The Baltic Campaign 1854-185538 - Concurrently with the Crimea, operations were undertaken in the Baltic, with no very great results. It was almost entirely a Naval War on the British side; both the Admiralty and the C-in-C were so fully impressed with the folly of pitting ships against forts without an adequate landing force, lessons that have been so bitterly repeated, that they were almost unduly cautious. A Fleet was assembled at Spithead under Admiral Sir Charles Napier consisting of 13 screw battleships, 8 screw frigates, 8 paddle frigates and sloops, 6 sailing battleships and a large number of mortar boats, etc. The Press Gang could not be used, so bounties were offered and all sorts of riff-raff, not seamen, were entered; in fact, if it had not been for the Royal Marines and the Coastguard, the Fleet could not have got to sea. Continuous service for seamen had only just been instituted, and the Admiralty acknowledged the value of the Corps in this emergency by the Order-in-Council Friday 11th August 1854, when free rations afloat were granted.
1854. After inspection by HM The Queen, the armament sailed for the Baltic, and cruised off the coast of the Gulf of Finland doing nothing; the Admiral was too old and past his work and would take no risks, in which he was backed up by the Admiralty. Lieutenant Colonel Fortescue Graham RM had been embarked in the Flagship to take command of any landing party.
Bomarsund - The Russians had occupied the Aland Islands as an advanced post against Sweden and had erected there a big fort at Bomarsund. It was armed with 92 guns in two tiers. Its rear was protected by two smaller forts on hills in rear, Nottich and Tzee, and by a fort at Presto on a separate island. These were of granite and each had 24 guns in two tiers. Admiral Napier at last feeling that something must be done, reconnoitred the Channels on Friday 30th June and the Channels were surveyed by HMS Driver. Captain Sullivan RN found navigable passages, though they were difficult. On 2nd July the Fleet returned to Helsingfors. On 30th July the French troops arrived but would do nothing till the arrival of their artillery. The British troops were represented by the Battalion of Royal Marines from the Fleet, and some Royal Engineers under Brigadier-General Jone RE, who was in command of the whole force. It was then decided to attack Bomarsund.
The Royal Marines were under Colonel Fortescue-Graham ADC, with Major Nolloth and Captain W M Heriot; 38 Authorities: Life of Sir C Napier, Britain's Sea Soldiers, (Field); Diary of Lt Durnford-RMA.; Life of Admiral Moresby; MSS Records 39. Brigade Major, Captain W Elliot; Adjutant, Lieutenant O F Fraser; Orderly Officer, Lieutenant J M Lennox. The officers of the RMA Company were Lieutenants Mawbey, Poore, Hewett, J R Brookes and E C L Durnford (Acting Engineer). There were 8 RM Infantry Companies (Captains Hamley, Olavell, Naylor, Sayer, H Delacombe, McKillop, Fosbrook, John Elliot), Lieutenants H Evans, Jeffreys, Portlock-Dadson, J Sanders, T Bent, A Tait, W Sanders, Bland Hunt, Murray, with 18 Sergeants, 20 Corporals, 1 Bombardier, 7 Drummers, 70 Gunners, 541 Privates. On 5th August the bombardment began, assisted by three French steamers.
On Monday 7th August HMS Driver embarked 700 Marines and 120 RE under Brigadier General Jones, with some naval guns under Captain Sullivan RN, and went round to the Northern landing place near Hulta in rear of the Forts where, covered by the Edinburgh under Admiral Chads, they were landed on the 8th and were followed by 2000 French Marines. The Russians were summoned to surrender but refused. French troops in large numbers were also landed at Tranvick Bay, to the South of the Fortress. The RM advanced guard pushed on to about 1000 yards to the North of Fort Tzee, where it was encamped, and batteries were opened. The French Battery of four 16 pdrs and four mortars was ready and opened fire on morning of 13th; the British battery of ship 32 pdrs took longer to build as the guns had to be dragged up by the Sailors and Marines.
The Marines built themselves wigwams, but it took several days to build the battery of three guns; they were further delayed owing to the few real seamen available having to go on board again to help to get off the Penelope, which had gone ashore under the big Russian Battery. During the building of the batteries, the fire of the enemy was kept down by the rifle fire directed on the embrasures by the Royal Marines and French chasseurs. A line of skirmishers of Royal Marines connected with the French attack. The French attack on Tzee on the 13th commenced at 4 am and at 5 pm the Russians hoisted a flag of truce, but nothing resulted from the negotiations and the firing was continued. At 10 pm the other Russian forts opened fire and the French, finding no reply from Fort Tzee, crept up, found it deserted and at once occupied it. The fort caught fire the next morning and about 11 am it blew up. The British were occupied on the 14th in reforming their battery so as to fire on Fort Nottich. On the 15th the British ships commenced firing on the remaining forts and the British battery opened on Fort Nottich at 8.10. After a considerable time, some impression was made by the 32 pdrs on the granite, but it was not until the seamen had been relieved by the RMA, who had up till then been acting as infantry, that Lieutenant Mawby directed all the guns to fire simultaneously at one spot, when the granite fell in masses and a breach was made, and the defenders hung out a white flag. A hundred RM under Major Ord RE, then took possession of the Fort.
The Russians had suffered heavy losses. Presto Island Fort was next attacked; 800 men and 4 guns were landed at the back of the island, and Captain Ramsay opened fire at 1500 yards. This fort had suffered from the fire of the ships directed at the main fort and surrendered on 18th to Lieutenant Colonel de Vascoigne of the French Army and Captain S N Lowder, Royal Marines. The Main Fort, having suffered badly from the fire of the Fleet and seeing the preparations for the renewal of the bombardment from the rear, surrendered unconditionally and the garrison marched out on the 17th; the Royal Marines and a French regiment of Marines forming a line to the quay, to which the prisoners were played by the Drums and Fifes of the Royal Marines. As the French were in command they looted Presto Fort, which was blown up on the 30th, and Fort Nottich on the 31st. The Main Fort was blown up on 2nd September, and they were occupied till the 14th blowing up the works. The Russians had themselves burnt the villages on the 9th to prevent their offering cover to the besiegers. Admiral Moresby records that "none of the shot and shell from the Fleet had penetrated either the sides or the roof of the Fort.
The guns on shore had done the job in two days." The Allied casualties were very slight. The RMLI had one killed and one wounded but owing to the lack of sanitary precautions the French suffered heavily from cholera; out of 600 landed at Presto, 100 died, and out of 10,000 troops 800 were lost in three weeks. The British left for Revel on 22nd September and the French went home. Helsingfors and Sveaborg were reconnoitred and a few small raids were made, but nothing was done, and the 1854 campaign ended, the British ships having to withdraw on account of the ice. For the 1855 campaign Admiral Napier was replaced by Admiral Dundas, but the cautious policy was still 37 continued. Many of the battleships and Royal Marines who had served in the Baltic in 1854, had been sent to the Mediterranean, where they served on shore with the RM Battalions.
A French Corps d'Armee and floating batteries were to have taken part in the Baltic campaign but had also been diverted to the Black Sea. The Allied Fleet consisted of 21 battleships, 30 frigates and sloops, and 50 gunboats and mortar vessels, in which large numbers of the RMA were embarked. It also included some 'blockships' which were cut down old battleships armed with 60 guns. The Russian coasts were harried and Cronstadt was reconnoitred; a sketch of the Cronstadt Forts was made by Captain R A K Clavell, RMLI, who afterwards painted it on the wall of the Commandant's Office in the old Forton Barracks.

Viborg - On 13th July Viborg was attacked by the Ruby and boats from other ships under command of Captain Yelverton RN of the Arrogant, and another leaf was added to the Corps Laurels by Captain George. Dare Dowell, RMA, who earned the V.C. Anchoring close to the South of Stralsund, the boats of the Ruby, Magicienne, and Arrogant with a strong body of Marines under Captain Lowder, RMLI (Arrogant) was sent in; when Viborg was sighted the flotilla was stopped by a boom and other obstacles. A masked battery opened on them at 350 yards range with musketry and grape shot; they also came under the fire of the Russian gunboats and had to withdraw to Stralsund, covered by the Ruby, which had failed to break the boom. An explosion took place on board one of the Arrogant's cutters, which was swamped and drifted close to the Battery; Lieutenant Haggard RN of Arrogant with Lieutenant G D Dowell RMA of the Magicienne in the Ruby's gig with a volunteer crew, Lieutenant Dowell rowing stroke oar, succeeded in towing out the cutter under a heavy fire and saved the crew. For this Lieutenant Dowell was awarded the VC, as already stated.
On 21st July Captain Yelverton appeared before the batteries recently erected at Frederickshaun on the Finland coast between Viborg and Helsingfors and opened fire; the enemy abandoned their batteries and the British withdrew without landing. It was however considered necessary that the fortified island of Kotla should be examined. On 26th the Arrogant, with a small squadron including mortar boats and gunboats, anchored off Fort Rotchenholm; the Magicienne was detailed to destroy the bridge connecting with the mainland, and voceels were anchored to command the military road to Helsingfors and the channel. All the Royal Marines were landed under Captain Lowder RM, with Lieutenants Dowell, Mudge, and Holmes, who took possession of the forts without opposition as the garrison had evacuated them. The stores etc were burnt and on 27th the squadron sailed, the Cossack being left in charge of the island. Sveaborg - But nothing serious was attempted, as Admiral Moresby says "As a last useless act Sveaborg was bombarded by the Fleet at 3500 yards range" on Thursday 9th August 1855.
A certain amount of damage was done, but "it had no practical effect on the War". A considerable number of the mortar boats with the RMA were employed, and the mortars had fired so much that they became unserviceable and the boats were sent home. The Fleet returned in September. The Mortar Boats had however earned the thanks of the Admiral, who said: "My especial thanks are due to the officers and men of the Royal Marine Artillery for the manner in which their important duties have been performed. The cool and steady courage with which they continued to conduct the duties of their station deserves the highest praise; and I have much pleasure in calling Their Lordships’ attention to the services of Captain Wemyss as well as to those of Captains Lawrence and Schomberg of that distinguished Corps." Lieutenant Colonel Fortescue-Graham received the CB in Gazette of Thursday 5th July 1855. Brevet majorities were awarded in Gazette of Friday 2nd November 1855 to: Captain S N Lowder RMLI Captain J M Wemyss RMA Captain J F Lawrence RMA Captain G A Schomberg RMA By the Treaty of Paris signed on Sunday 30th March 1856, the War was terminated. (Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1856. Wednesday 8th October. The Second China War, or the Arrow War was a war pitting the British Empire and the Second French Empire against the Qing Dynasty of China, It was fought over similar issues as the First Opium War. With the British's strategic objectives of legalising the opium trade, expanding coolie trade, opening all of China to British merchants, and exempting foreign imports from internal transit duties. The Arrow War refers to the name of a vessel which became the starting point of the conflict. Although the importance of the opium factor in the war is in debate among historians. The Marines took part in many landings. These were all successful except one, the landing at the Mouth of the Peiho in 1859. Admiral Sir James Hope ordered a landing across extensive mud flats even though his Brigadier, Colonel Thomas Lemon RMLI, had advised against it. The campaine went on to 1860.

1856. Saturday 12th July. The Crimea War dragged on, although there were no great operations. Peace was finally proclaimed at beginning of May 1856, and in July the evacuation of the Crimea was completed, having begun on 3rd June with the embarkation of the Coldstream Guards. It was completed on Saturday 12th July.
Rewards - The following rewards were given for the Crimea:
Colonel T. Hurdle - Brevet Colonel - 29.06.55. CB - 05.07.55. Brevet - Lieutenant Colonels: Captain W F Hooking RMLI 13. 06. 55. Captain G L Alexander RMA 02. 11. 55. Brevet Majors: Captain W F Hopkins, RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain S Fraser RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain W E March RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain G P Payner RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain H Marriott RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain W S Aslett RMLI 12.12. 54. Captain G B Rodney RMLI 02.11.55. Captain G S Rigby RMA 02.11.55 36 Of Metz fame.
Appx. Divisional. Colours. 35 The following were awarded the Legion of Honour: Col T Hurdle. Lt Col T Holloway. Capt. G B Rodney. Sgt C. Horner RMA. Capt. G L Alexander. Sgt G Yule RMA. Capt W F Hopkins. Sgt E Richards RMLI. Capt W H Harch. Sgt J Jordan RMLI. Capt G S Digby Bdr. T Wilkinson RMA. Capt D Blyth. Cpl W Chappel RMLI. Lt A A Douglas. Gnr J Bull RMA. Lt H.J. Tull Gnr. F Kerr RMA. Lt F G Pym. Pte J Burton RMLI Lt A C Steel. Pte J Coborn RMLI. This list is probably not quite complete. (Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1856. Thursday 23rd - 26th October. Capture of Canton Forts by British squadron.

1856. Friday 24th October. The destruction of barrier forts in Canton.

1856. Monday 27th October. Canton breached and entered.

1856. Wednesday 29th October. The storming of Canton.

1856. Sunday 12th - 13th November. The capture of the Bogue Forts.

1856. Thursday 6th November. French Folly fort bombarded and junks destroyed.

1856. Tuesday 11th - 13 November. Bogue and Anunghoy forts captured.

1856. Friday 5th December. Sampson destroyed five piratical boats.

1856. Friday 5th December - 1st April 1857. The Persian Campaign, The causes of this war were an amalgam and included: the Persian siege of Herat in Afghanistan; the appointment of Sir Charles Murray, Head of the British Mission in Teheran; of Hashim Khan, a Persian Government employee, as Secretary to the Mission; the Persian arrest of the latter's wife; the final withdrawal of his Mission by the affronted Murray in December 1855; and the riots that followed.
An expedition was mounted from Bombay, which took nearly a year to receive approval and get underway; meanwhile Herat had fallen, War was declared, and the expedition finally sailed from Bombay on the 1st November 1856. The force included the fleet of the Bombay Marine, a mixed division of the Bombay Army and units of the Queen's Army. The first main objective was Bushire on the Persian Gulf and, having established a base on the Island of Karrack, the fleet arrived off the town on 5th December and embarked the British Resident, who was surprisingly still in residence, before landing the military force some 10 miles further south.
On the 9th, the coastal port of Reshire was carried after being shelled by the fleet. On the 1 0th it was the turn of Bushire to be bombarded for four and a half hours, after which the place surrendered. The Army was still encamped at Bushire on 27th January 1857 when General Outram arrived with a second division to set out in pursuit of the main Persian Army, at the foot of the mountains some 50 miles inland. There followed some exhausting marching and counter-marching culminating in the Battle of Koosh-ab on the 8th February, a battle in which virtually the only British troops actually engaged were two regiments of British and Indian cavalry. The Persians retreated into the mountains and the expedition struggled back to Bushire.
Meanwhile Outram's 2i/c, General Stalker, and the Naval Commodore Ethersley, had each committed suicide within three days of one another; an unpromising start for the next operation, designed to bring the Shah to terms. It had been decided to attack the town of Mohammerah (modern Khorramshahr) at the head of the Gulf upriver from the mouth of the River Euphrates. The expedition was in position by 25th March and at dawn on the 26th battle was joined, when mortars on a pre-positioned raft opened fire on the town, wounding the Persian brigadier and eleven others whilst at prayer. As at Bushire, the bombardment by the fleet, which lasted for over three hours, made the task of the army, once landed, relatively uncostly. The marines and sailors occupied the town, while Outram's Army confronted the main Persian army, drawn up as if for battle, but when the advance began the enemy melted away.
The war was all but over, which was as well, since the troops were sorely needed in India, I where the Bengal Army was still in rebellion. In fact, peace with Persia had been signed on the 4th March in Paris, but no one on the ground yet knew. In July Charles Murray returned with his Mission to Teheran, where he received formal apologies; Herat was evacuated by Persia, while Hashim Khan had made his own peace and was already back with his wife and working for the Persian Government. Casualties from enemy action had been comparatively few, but sickness and cholera had taken their toll.
There were no RN ships present, so that the only marines to earn the bar to the IGS medal were the detachment provided in the Honourable East India Company's ships by the Marine Battalion of the Bombay Native Infantry.
Historically the Bombay Marine provided the Indian Navy and relied, until 1777, on the soldiers of the Bombay native regiments for its marines. In that year a Marine Battalion was formed to relieve the rest of the Bombay Army of its marine commitment. In 1818  it became the 11th Native Infantry and in 1824, when the Army was enlarged by numbering separately the second battalions, it again became simply the Marine Battalion, taking precedence between the 20th and 2 1st Native Infantry Regiments. Recruits were drawn largely from Surat and its neighbourhood.
The Battalion officers seldom went afloat, and the small detachments sent to each ship were usually commanded by a Havildar (Sergeant). In some overseas campaigns, as in Burma and China, the detachments were replaced by an 'Artillery Guard', provided by the European members of the Bombay Artillery. The Bombay Marine was occupied extensively in Arabian waters and on the Indus; the battle honours of the Marine Battalion included the Persian Gulf 1819, Bern Boo All (Muscat) 1821, Burma 1825, Aden 1839, Hyderabad 1843, Mooltan & the Punjab 1848/9.
Havildar Sheik Ameer boarded the iron paddle frigate Semiramis on the 29th December 1856 and took command of the detachment. To augment the fifer, drummer and eight sepoys already on board, he took with him a lance naik (lance corporal) and a further eleven sepoys (privates). After the relatively bloodless capture of Bushire, the ship had been sent back to Bombay, where she had arrived on Christmas Eve, and when she sailed again for the Gulf on the 17th January '57, she carried Sir James Outram and his staff. On the 27th the ship reached Bushire and landed the General and his staff for the march inland, which was to lead on the 8th February to the battle of Koosh-ab. While preparations were being made for the subsequent attack on Mohammerah, Commodore Ethersley shot himself and Captain Young of Semiramis transferred to Ferooz as Commodore. Commander Selby taking over Semiramis, which ship he was later to handle 'in a most dashing manner'.
By the 24th March the fleet was gathered in Shatt-al-Arab and moved upriver to within three and a half miles of the town, where the river was only 300 yards across. The 25th was spent trans-shipping troops for the assault, and the ships' bulwarks were lined with hay trusses against small arms fire. Early on the 26th the mortars fired from their raft, the ships closed the forts at about 6.30 am and the cannonade began. At 10 am the magazine in the north fort blew up and, after three more explosions, the enemy fire slackened. Meanwhile Semiramis was engaging the forts at point blank range, the small arms of the marines adding to the fire of the guns, as she entered the Hafar channel to destroy an unsilenced Persian gun. She had an officer killed and lost a number of men killed or wounded, of which two were marines of Havildar Heik Ameer's detachment. The crowded transports were now pushing upstream through the narrow channel and close to the shore, engaged with small arms fire by some of the more resolute Persian infantry. The troops were landed directly onto the river bank to the north of the town, while ships' landing parties, including that from Semiramis, stormed the forts. The defence of Mohammerah collapsed.
For the next few days marines and seamen were engaged in repairs on board and garrison duties ashore, while the Army completed its task, aided by gunboats. Later Havildar Sheik Ameer returned to Bombay with his ship and came ashore with the rest of his marine detachment on the 3rd May 1857. His Indian General Service medal, with clasp 'Persia' and a ribbon of red and blue vertical bars, was despatched to his battalion on 30th December 1859.

Select References: 'John Company's Last War' by Barbara English, published by Collins, 1971. 'History of the Indian Navy (1813 to 1863)' by C R Low, published 1877. 'The Indian Army' by Boris Mollo, first published by Blandford Press 1981; republished by New Orchard Press, 1986. Papers in the India Office Records.

1856. Saturday 6th December. French Folly fort captured.

1856 - 1919. The Marines Drill Order and Service Kit. (taken from 'Britain's Sea Soldiers: Vol 1 by Cyril Field RMLI).

1856. December - April. 1857. Persian War in which a few Naval officers were employed.

1857. January. Unsuccessful attack by Chinese on Macao Fort.

1857. January. Squadron repulsed junks in Macao Channel.

1857. January the numbers were 15,500.

1857. Wednesday 6th May. Good Conduct Badges - By Order-in-Council the grant of Good Conduct Badges, which had been given to Seamen and Marines on Monday 15th January 1849, was extended to Sergeants. The Army had granted them on Saturday 8th July 1848. Promotion - Again the subject of retirement and promotion was dealt with by Order-in-Council Saturday 13th November 1858. This did not much alter the 1854 order but laid down that General Officers; Commandants and Staff were not to hold their appointments for more than five years, and that Commandants were to be retired at 60 years of age.
The growth of the RM Artillery had led to the creation of an additional 2nd Commandant to superintend the Artillery duties (Order-in-Council Monday 2nd February 1857) and also an additional QMS.(Sic)  (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1857. Sunday 10th May – Sunday 20th June 1858. The Indian Mutiny. Before dealing with the China War it is necessary to note the terrible doings in India. The Mutiny of the Sepoys broke out in May 1857, and though it was far removed from the usual duties of the Royal Marines, yet a small portion of the Corps was able to render some assistance in that terrible struggle.

Calcutta - The detachment under Colonel Lemon RMLI of two Captains (S Little and T V Cooke), six Subalterns (Cobb, Inglis, A D Smith, Sparshott and two others), 22 Sergeants, 5 Drummers, 273 Corporals and Privates, with Colour-Sergeant Prettyjohns, VC as Sergeant-Major, which left England on Thursday 12th March for special service in China, were diverted to Calcutta, where they landed on 1st September, but were retained as garrison at Calcutta in Fort William and did not proceed up country.

On Friday 16th October they were reinforced by Captain Foote and 66 Royal Marines from HMS Sans Pareil, who however re-embarked on Friday 30th October and Colonel Lemon's detachment left Calcutta for China on 4th $September in the troopship Assistance. Their presence had released troops urgently required for service up country.

HMS Shannon and Pearl had also been sent from England to reinforce the China Squadron, but on arrival at Hong Kong, after disembarking their supernumerary RMA (1 officer and 25 other ranks) they were sent back to render assistance; they arrived in the Hooghly on Thursday 6th August and landed their Brigades, whose names have passed into history.

HMS Shannon's Brigade under Captain Sir William Peel included Captain T C Gray and Lieutenant William Stirling RMLI with 17 RMA and about 45 RMLI and was about 450 strong all told, with heavy guns and rocket tubes.

Further - They left Calcutta for Allahabad in the river steamer Chunar on Tuesday 18th August, with a flat in tow carrying six 88 pdrs, two 24 pdr howitzers and two field pieces. They arrived at Allahabad on Wednesday 2nd September and were joined on the 20th by a second detachment from HMS Shannon under Lieutenant Vaughan, making them all told 570.

The troops were concentrating at Cawnpore and were being pushed up in detachments. A detachment of the Naval Brigade, 104 Officers and Men, escorting the siege train, left Allahabad on Sunday 25th October, the second detachment under Captain Peel followed on Wednesday 28th with a wing of 53rd Regiment, a detachment of RE and various regiments under Colonel Powell CB. This detachment reached Fathpur - about half way – at midnight on the 31st, where information was received that about 4000 mutineers were occupying a strong position at Kajwa, 24 miles North-West of Fathpur. Colonel Powell decided to attack, and at 5 am on lst November set out with a detachment of about 530 men, including 103 Officers and Men of the Naval Brigade under Captain Peel, with two 9 pdr guns. At 3 pm on Monday 2nd November the enemy were sighted in position. Colonel Powell attacked at once, the 53rd in front, the Naval Brigade forcing back the enemy's left so that he was forced to face to left. Powell was killed, and the command devolved on Peel.

Peel gave them no time to rally and posting a strong force to secure his new position, he carried his troops round the upper end of the embankment and cut them in two, drove them from this position and captured their camp and two guns. Pursuit was impossible as there was no cavalry, and the infantry had 40.

Thursday 12th November - on the Alumbagh, which was held by a force of 950 men left by General Sir Henry Havelock in the first relief. After a short opposition it was relieved, and the force halted next day. On Saturday 14th they moved to Dilkusha Park and the enemy after some resistance was driven out over the crest to the Martiniere and retired across the canal to the city. The GOC was making arrangements to secure the ground won, when the enemy delivered a counterattack, which was soon defeated; but as the troops were settling down into bivouac, the mutineers at 5 pm made a fresh attack, which the British - who were now lining the Canal – repulsed. The Naval Brigade during the fight was posted on some high ground to the left of the bridge between the Martiniere plain and the Hazratgani main street and brought a heavy fire to bear on the enemy who were massed in this angle of the Canal and crushed them out.

On the 15th arrangement were made for the main advance to the Residency. The baggage was stored in Dilkusha Palace under cover of a strong rearguard. On 16th the advance was continued, the first point of attack being the Sikanderabagh. It is not possible here to describe all the operations, but only to indicate the part taken by the Naval Brigade and the Royal Marines. The Sikanderabagh and the Barracks were carried with great gallantry, but the troops now found themselves held up by the Shah Najif, which was a largs mosque situated in a garden, enclosed by a high loopholed wall, nearly square and very strong; also, between it and the plain was a fringe of jungle and enclosures. The afternoon was going on, and the GOC considered it essential to secure this point.

General Adrian Hope with his Brigade was at hand, "Captain Peel brought up his 24 pdrs, mortars and rocket frames and placed them in battery against the Shah Najif in an oblique line, with their left resting on the village. The musketry fire of the enemy was very severe and interfered seriously with the fire of the guns; Major Barnston's Provisional Battalion tried to clear the fringe of jungle and enclosures but was unsuccessful, and after three hours' battering the Shah Najif was still unsubdued. The narrow lane leading up from the rear was crowded and confusion reigned; some of the houses were alight; reinforcements and ammunition had the greatest difficulty in getting forward. At 4 pm the enemy brought up a heavy gun to bear from the opposite bank of the river, and the first shot blew up one of the Naval ammunition waggons, and their musketry caused Captain Peel to withdraw his men from one gun. The position was critical, retreat was impossible, and it was necessary for the infantry to do with the bayonet what the artillery had failed to do."

43 The GOC addressed the 93rd in this sense; Middleton's Battery RA passed Peel's guns on the right, got as close as possible, and opened with grape shot; Peel redoubled his fire44; the 93rd formed in open column on the plain and rushed on, Sir Colin leading them himself; but there was no breach or scaling ladders, so they halted and commenced a musketry fire. Two of the Naval guns were brought up to within a few yards of the wall and shot as fast as they could but could make no impression. The rocket frames were brought up and threw in a fire which, just skimming the top of the wall, plunged into the interior of the building and searched it out. Under cover of this the guns were drawn off.

Meanwhile Sergeant Paton of the 93rd had discovered a hole in the wall and General Adrian Hope with some of the 93rd got through about 50 yards on the right and officers and men were pushed through; the sappers enlarged the hole and supports rushed in and, gaining the gate, threw it open. The enemy appear to have been panic-stricken by the rockets, as they gave up the struggle just as victory seemed certain for them. The troops bivouacked on the ground won. On the next day the attack was made on the Mess House, which was carried under cover of the fire of the Naval guns from early morning till 3 pm.

The Mess House was actually carried by Captain Wolseley, who also continued his pursuit and carried the Moti Mahal as well. Though the intervening space was exposed to fire from the Kaisar Bagh, Generals Sir Colin Campbell and Sir James Outram met, and the relief was effected. The main point was how to withdraw the garrison with the women, children, sick and wounded, etc. It is impossible here to describe all the movements necessary, but on the 20th the Artillery and Naval guns commenced a heavy fire on the Kaisar Bagh, which they maintained all that day, also on the 21st and 22nd, and by evening of the latter day the breaches in the wall invited assault, but this was not intended, as the bombardment was to cover the withdrawal. The women and children safely reached the Dilkusha Park and during night of 22nd/23rd all the troops were withdrawn to the same place. On the evening of the 24th the convoy had reached the Alumbagh, and Outram - who had been forming the rearguard - re-joined on the 25th. 43. Malleson 44 From reminiscences of an old Marine in the Globe and Laurel, 1904. We know the RM were there.

41 Cawnpore - On the 27th a garrison having been left in the Alumbagh, Sir Colin arrived at the Banni Bridge to find that the garrison at Cawnpore were engaged in a desperate fight with the mutineers and the Gwalior Contingent. At Cawnpore there were 9 guns worked by a detachment of the Naval Brigade. On 26th November General Windham fought a very serious action, in which two 24 pdrs and two 24 pdr howitzers of the Naval Brigade were engaged; two of the pieces were for a time in the hands of the enemy but were recovered by the 34th Madras Native Infantry. Windham was only saved from disaster by the arrival of Sir Colin on the evening of the 28th.

During the night of the 27th/28th, the convoys and troops were arriving from Lucknow. The Naval Brigade with the heavy guns, after a 30-mile march, only reached the ground an hour before sunrise. The mutineers had brought down their heavy guns to try and break the bridge of boats. The Naval Brigade was only allowed one hour for rest and food and were then sent to a point above the bridge where they could fire on the enemy's guns. The guns from Cawnpore entrenchment were also turned on the same point. For some time, the artillery duel seemed equal, but gradually the British guns asserted their superiority and the Cavalry and Horse Artillery with Adrian Hope's Brigade were sent across, and by evening of the 30th the convoy was safely across on the Cawnpore side, though the rebels were still holding the town.

On 3rd December the convoy of women-and children with the wounded was dispatched to Allahabad. Allowing time for the convoy to get away, Sir Colin Canpbell determined to fight on 0th December The Naval Brigade took part in this battle, which is outside the scope of this History. It resulted in a great victory and dispersed tow enemy's troops and the dangerous 3walior Contingent. Captain Gray, RM , appeared to have been wounded in this battle. On 31st December the mutineers sent down a party to destroy the suspension bridge over the Kali Nuddi at Fathgarh (Futtegurh), but a party of Adrian Hope's Brigade with two 21 pdrs and one 8-inch howitzer of the Naval Brigade under Lieutenant Vaughan was sent on and saved the bridge and repaired it. They were soon after counterattacked by the rebels, but the main body was coming up, and a very severe defeat was inflicted on the rebels.

The next operation in which the Shannon's Brigade was engaged was the capture of Lucknow. The two 24 pdrs and two 6-inch howitzers of the Naval Brigade accompanied the force; the operations are outside the scope of this history, but it must be mentioned that in reconnoitring for a position for his guns in order to breach the Martiniere on 9th March 1858, Sir William Peel was severely wounded. Lucknow was in British hands by 19th March and on 1st April the Naval Brigade started for Cawnpore and Calcutta; on 2nd March Captain Peel had been created KCB and ADC to the Queen, but on 27th April at Cawnpore he succumbed to an attack of smallpox and died there.

In the London Gazette of 5th January 1853, Captain Gray and Lieut Stirling RM are mentioned in despatches, and Capt Gray is also mentioned in the London Gazette of 16th January 1858 as wounded and in the Gazette of 25 May 1858 he is mentioned as "deemed deserving of honourable mention" for service at Lucknow. A telegram from HMS Pylades dated Calcutta 7th September 1858 says; NCOs of Shannon's Brigade served during the whole of that Brigade's campaign in Provinces; Commander J W Vaughan RN and Lieutenant Stirling RM bear the highest testimony to their zeal and gallantry in the execution of their duties." 45 Chatham Division Sergeant Leo Hinder and Artillery Company Sergeant George. Young of HMS Shannon were mentioned in dispatches. Gorakhpur - We must now turn to the proceedings of the Pearl's Brigade. This Brigade of 125 men under Captain Sotheby, which included Lieutenant F G Pym RMLI with 5 RMA and about 25 RMLI, were attached to a column under Colonel Rowcroft, which had been organised to clear the rebels out of the districts of Benares and the East of Oudh.

The Column also consisted of 50 Bengal Police and 359 Nepalese troops with four 12 pdr howitzers. It was to move to Tirhut along the Gandah towards Gorakhpur. Leaving their camp at Mirwa, they attacked a force of 1,200 sepoys and 4,000 armed irregulars at Sohunpore on 26th December 1857. The enemy were occupying a strong position at a village, covered in front by a tank with high trees and on the right by a tope of trees. Colonel Rowcroft halted at a distance of half a mile and rode forward to reconnoitre; he decided to turn the enemy's left, which was done with great success. Captain Sotheby managed the Artillery.

"The Minie Rifles of the Royal Marines directed by Lieutenant Pym produced a striking effect." 46 The attack commenced at 11 am and by 1.30 pm the enemy was beaten back, pursued, and driven across the Gandah. "Rowcroft followed up his victory the 45 RMO Papers. 46 Malleson. 42 next day by crossing the river and destroying the houses of the leading rebels." 47 The Nepal Army in the meantime had turned the rebels out of Gorakhpur on 6th January 1858. On 17th February, Captain Sotheby, with a force of 130 Seamen and Marines and with 50 Nepalese and 35 Sikhs, when escorting the boats up the River Gagra assisted by the river steamer Jamna, attacked and captured the Fort of Ghandepur.

Phoolpore - On 19th February the Nepal Army reached Barari and that evening Rowcroft'a force arrived within four miles and landed on the right bank. On the morning of the 20th he was joined by a Nepal Brigade and six guns; the boats were brought up, so that the Nepalese could cross at Phoolpore, but as that place was in enemy hands, Rowcroft marched on, capturing it and dispersing the rebels; he also captured three guns. Lieutenant Pym and Sergeant F Butler were mentioned in dispatches for this action. General Rowcroft with the Pearl's Brigade, Yeomanry, and two Nepalese regiments garrisoned Gorakhpur, whilst the Nepalese continued the operations.

Amorah - Soon after Colonel Rowcroft, with Captain Sotheby, advanced on Amorah, 68 miles to the West of Gorakhpur, and on 4th March took up a position close to the enemy's entrenched camp at Belwa, which was occupied by a large force of rebels. On 5th March the rebels to the number of 14,000 advanced to attack the British camp which was distant about 7 miles. They were resolutely met. The Naval Brigade distinguished itself, and the enemy were driven off, followed by Yeomanry, and retired to their entrenched camp at Belwa. This was known as the Battle of Amorah, and besides Lieutenant Pym, Sergeant Argent (Portsmouth), and Sergeant F. Butler (Woolwich) were mentioned in dispatches. (London Gazette, 2 May and 4 August 1858).

Rowcroft was not strong enough to attack Belwa, but on 17th at the village of Thanrowlee, and on 25th at Puchewas, he again met and defeated them in the plain between the positions. On 28th April Rowcroft captured the Fort at Nugger; Acting Bombardier W Bates (Portsmouth) was mentioned in dispatches. The Brigade remained in the neighbourhood of Amorat; there was an engagement at Ranee's Cote on 9th June and another at Hurreah on 18th June. The Pearl's Brigade was engaged again in September 1858 in the relief of Bhansi; after which they were withdrawn.

But meanwhile large numbers of the Corps were being actively engaged in yet another theatre of war, namely China, where we meet again many of the places made familiar by the war of 1840-3. China War.  In 1858 there was a renewal of the trouble with China; non-observance of the treaty arrangements, interference with merchants, and general difficulties with the Chinese head officials culminated in the seizure of the crew of the British vessel Arrow, for which no redress could be obtained. The C-in-C on the China Station therefore determined to take action against Commissioner Yeh at Canton and the following details are taken from Sir M. Seymour's despatch of 14 November 1856.50 The Admiral moved HMS Calcutta (80 guns), his Flagship, above the Bogue Forts.

Canton - On 23rd October 1856, the force employed consisted of HMS Coromandel, Samneon, Barracouta, small steamers and gunboats with the RM detachments and the boats' crews of the Calcutta., Winchester, and Bittern, and the boats' crews of the Sybille and Encounter (the RM detachments of these ships were protecting the English factory at Canton). The Sampson and part of the force were sent up the Macao Passage to capture Blenheim Fort; the Admiral with the Coromandel and Barracouta went up to the Barrier Forts, below the City, where they anchored, and sent on the boats to capture the Forts; who, having effected their object and having destroyed the guns and ammunition and burnt the buildings, proceeded on to Canton at 2 pm. The Barracouta having joined the Sampson, they occupied Blenheim and Macao Forts armed with 86 guns; 250 Marines were placed in Macao Fort, which they 47 Malleson 48 A full account of the Relief of Bhansi is given by Sergeant Sutler in Britain's Sea Soldiers, Volume II. 49 Authorities: Life of General Hope Grant; Per Mare Per Terram. (:Major Poyntz); Life of Sir H Keppe1;War in China. (Times Correspondent); RMO Records. 50 London Gazette, 8 January 1857. 43 held till the expedition of the following year. The reply of the Chinese was unsatisfactory, so on the 24th the Admiral landed a portion of the Royal Marines to aid the Sybille's and Encounter's Marines in protecting the factory on the West side of the town. Bird's Nest Fort on Honan Island and the Shameen Forts on the West of Canton were occupied without opposition and the guns destroyed.

As still no satisfaction could be obtained from the Chinese the remainder of the Royal Marines and a body of Seamen with field guns were landed near the factory; posts and field guns were established at all available points, and boats kept watch against fire rafts. The work was in charge of Captain W K Hall CB , the Flag Captain. The Royal Marines were under Captain P Penrose (Winchester) "who showed great ability and promptitude". On 25th the Dutch Folly Fort in the river opposite the centre of the town was occupied by the seamen of the Calcutta. At 12.30 pm the Chinese made an attack on the factory; after being warned by the Consul, they were driven back by the Royal Marines under Captain Penrose.

On 27th October, demands for satisfaction were renewed; also for proper treatment of British officials and reception as at other Treaty Ports. As there was no reply, fire was opened by the Encounter with her 10-inch gun, which shelled the Yamun; Gough's Fort on the heights behind the town was shelled by the Barracouta. Eighteen Royal Artillerymen under Captain Rotton joined up and were sent to man the Dutch Folly Fort. On the 28th and 29th fire was kept up by the Dutch Folly Fort with some 32 pdrs from the ships and a breach was made in the City Wall. The landing party landed at 2 pm, the Seamen under Captain Stewart, and the Royal Marines under Captains Penrose and Hoyle. They seized the parapet and diverging left and right, within ten minutes they were in possession of the defences between the two gates. "Captain Penrose on gaining the wall hastened to the gate on the right on which he planted a small flag to show the position to Captain Hall, who then landed the boats' crews of Calcutta and Barracoota and having pushed his way through the streets to the City Gate effected an entrance; the gate was blown to pieces and part of the arch destroyed. There was only scattered desultory fire from the Chinese. Three Privates RM were killed, 11 Seamen and Marines were wounded.51 The Admiral landed and went over to the quarters of the Chinese Comnssioner, and the troops were withdrawn, re-embarking quietly and in good order. At 5 pm a fire broke out in the suburb; the breach was filled up again by the Chinese during the night but was blown down again on 30th and also on 1st November after further repairs.

The Chinese still continued refractory, sending inferior officers to treat and refusing to accede to the British demands. Therefore at 11 am on 3rd November slow fire was opened from the Encounter, Sampson and Dutch Folly Fort, which was continued on the 4th and 5th. On the 5th, the Chinese projected an attack on the factory and ships: as there were 26 war junks anchored off French Folly Fort, Commodore Elliot in the Barracouta, with the Coromandel and a detachment of Royal Marines and ships' boats was sent to disperse them and capture the Fort. At daylight on 6th he proceeded, towing the boats, and engaged the junks, who replied fiercely with 150 guns. After 35 minutes the Barracouta and the boats drove the Chinese out of the junks and turned on the Fort. The guns and ammunition were destroyed; only two junks escaped, one of which was the Admiral's ship. The other were burnt. On 11th November the Bogue Forte were destroyed. The Sampson and Niger were sent to protect the factory; the remainder of the Squadron went down river and attacked the two forts on the Wangtong Islands, which were taken possession of by the boats and the Royal Marines after considerable resistance, 201 guns being captured.

On 13th the Forts on Anunghoy, on the opposite side, were similarly taken without any casualties, and the command of the river was in British hands.

In the London Gazette of 6th January 1857, Captains Penrose and Boyle, with Lieutenants R P Henry, H Smale (wounded), C F Burton, W W Allnutt and Private Lye were mentioned in dispatches. Captains Penrose and Boyle were again mentioned in the London Gazette of 30 January 1857.

On 14th December 1856, the Chinese burnt the British factories at Canton, but the Admiral put the Church and Clubhouse in a state of defence with two Companies of the 59th Regiment, and the RM detachment of the Calcutta (Captain Boyle); the RM detachment of the Sybille garrisoned Dutch Folly Fort, and that of the Nankin 51 Times Correspondent: War in China. 44 Macao Fort. Reprisals continued, parts of the city being burnt, but hostilities ceased for a time.

Escape Creek - On 25th, 26th, and 27th of May 1857, an attack was made on 41 junks lying in Escape Creek, by Commodore Elliot with the Hong Kong and some gunboats; the junks were armed with 24 or 32 pounder guns in the bows and four to six 9 pdrs. There was a brisk action, after which the Chinese crews fled; five junks were brought off, the remainder being destroyed. The Royal Marines were. landed to clear the village and had 9 men wounded. Fatshan Creek - On lst June a large expedition under the Admiral himself destroyed 75 war junks in Fatshan Creek. The Coromandel, flying the flag of Sir M Seymour, towed up the boats with 300 Marines and arrived at Macao Fort on 30th May. Here she joined the gunboats which had been on watch. In Fatshan Creek two miles from the entrance, is Hyacinth Island; there is a steep hill on the left bank opposite the island, crowned by a fort with 19 guns.

Higher up two small creeks go off right and left. Along the creeks and across the Channel above the island were moored 72 junks, their bow guns commanding the two channels. There was also a six-gun battery on the shore opposite to the Fort. The Coromandel went first, towing the Marines under Captain Boyle RM in boats; she was to cover their landing. The gun-boats and boats were to follow her, but to wait till she was well up. At 3 am lst June they started; the Chinese opened fire at dawn from the junks and the Forts. Going up the left hand channel the Coromandel ran aground, on a line of sunken junks, under heavy fire. The boats were cast off and rowed under the land; Captain Keppel coming up in the Hong Kong stood-in between the Coromandel and the bank; the Haughty, towing the boats of the Fury, Inflexible and Cruiser, with other gunboats, came up. Sergeant Christian, RMA was killed here. The Opossum went up the right hand channel. Several gun-boats went ashore, but the boat. continued up the creek. As the tide was rising the Coromandel and gunboats floated off again and the scene was like a regatta52. The Chinese fire now slackened.

The Royal Marines and the boats’ crews had by this time landed and advanced up the precipitous side of the hill on which the fort was situated, where the Chinese had not expected them; the latter threw down 32 pdr shot as they could not depress the guns sufficiently. Led by Commodore Elliot and Captain Boyle, who ran a race up to the embrasures, the fort was captured; Boyle missed a mandarin, but Elliot shot him. The Admiral also climbed the hill. The Chinese resisted bravely and continued firing their guns until the attacking party were within 50 yards. The British turned the forts' guns on the junks, who replied. The Seamen then returned to their boats, followed Captain Keppel in the Haugty and made their way above the island. The Royal Marines descended on the far side of the hill, and wading into the water up to their waists, joined in the attack on the junks.

The gunboats and boats placed themselves alongside the junks, whose crews made off across the paddy fields; the junks were then blown up or set on fire. Commodore Keppel in his galley with some boats' crews, charged among the junks and forced his way about 6 miles up the creek, almost to the town of Fatshan, where the Chinese turned out and stopped him; he then returned with his captures. The British loss was 13 killed and 40 wounded, of which the RM had 3 killed and 6 wounded. In the London Gazette of lst August 1857 the following were mentioned in despatches; Captains R Boyle and T Magin; Lieutenants G L Blake, R P Henry, C W Burton, E Swale, A I Ozzard, A H F Barnes and A H Pascoe; 2nd Lieutenants W Allnutt, E T Cooper and C L Owen. In the meantime, the Government had decided on making the Chinese observe the treaties; reinforcements were being sent from England; Lord Elgin was sent out as a Plenipotentiary to arrange matters. HMS Shannon, Pearl and Sans Pareil were sent from England.

Royal Marine Battalions - Lieutenant Colonel Lemon with Captains Little and Cooke, and Lieutenants Inglis, J Cobb, A L Smith and E A Sparshott and 300 NCOs and Men, were sent from Plymouth for special service on 12th March. But the Indian Mutiny had broken out and they were diverted to Calcutta (q.v.) as were the troops under orders for China and did not reach the squadron off Honan Island till 10th December, where they formed the nucleus of the Provisional Battalion Royal Marines, which was completed by the detachments of the Fleet. It is interesting to note that Colour-Sergeant Prettyjohns VC was Sergeant-Major of the detachment. HMS Shannon, Pearl and Sans Pareil were also sent to India, where we have already seen their doings. A Brigade of Marines was also ordered to be sent from England.

The Admiralty Letter to the C-in-C in China, dated 8th August 1857, said: "In consequence of the troops originally destined for China having been unavoidably diverted for service in India, Their Lordships have determined to strengthen the forces employed 52 Cooke 45 under your orders by the addition of 1,400 RMLI and 100 RMA as stated in detail in margin. They will leave England in less than 10 days from this date.53 They are to be borne on the books of the Flagship as Royal Marines serving in the Fleet, but as far as practicable the Battalions are to be kept distinct for special service. "Captain J. C. Travers, now serving in China, shall act as Brigade Major, and is to be borne specially for that service."

Colonel Holloway was appointed to command, and the detail was: Lt Col Capt. Subs Sgts Cpls. Drs Ptes & Gnrs Artillery Coy - 1 4 5 8 2 80 1st Bn Chatham & Woolwich 1 8 18 34 32 8 600 2nd Bn Portsmouth & Plymouth 1 8 18 34 32 8 600 The Officers were: Lieutenant Colonel Holloway. Brigade Major - Major J O Travers ADC - Lieutenant C J Ellis Artillery: Brevet Major G A Schomberg. Lieutenants C Williams, Footing, Crease, and Crawford. lst Battalion: Lieutenant Colonel A S S Walsh Captains P M Croker, Gritten, Morrison, Masters, E L Pym, S J Tribe, E P Usher, R Parke. Lieutenants H L Evans, J F Hawkey, C F Coppin, E Willis, R J H Douglas, W Portlock-Dadson, C F Short, G O Evans. 2nd Lieutenants H Wolrige, H J Barker, J S Straghan, L Rokeby, A Fonblanque, M Heriot, S T Collins, E P Thomson. Adjutant - Lieutenant J C Travers. Quartermaster - Lieutenant Carrington. Sergeant-Major - J B Woon. 2nd Battalion: Lieutenant Colonel E Hooker. Captains Kinsman, Ward, Jackson, Driver, Fox, Budd, Spratt, J B Prynne. Lieutenants J de C Meade, W Connor, W H Wroot, W G Hale, E Bazalgette, C J W Napier, J D Broughton, F Parry. 2nd Lieutenants W H Smith, J A Godfrey, W Armstrong, J W O'Grady, J W Scott, W H Poyntz, C E Servante, C E W Oliver. Adjutant - Lieutenant J H Maskerry. Quartermaster - Lieutenant Gill. There were three medical officers with each Battalion, the senior being Dr Little. The Artillery, Staff, and Woolwich Companies embarked in the transport Adelaide at Deptford on 15th August 1857 and arrived at Hong Kong on 30th November 1857.

The Chatham and two Portsmouth Companies embarked in the P&O Imperatrix which sailed from Portsmouth on 12th August and arrived at Hong Kong on 5th November. Two Portsmouth Companies and the Plymouth Companies left Plymouth in the P&O Imperader on 13th August, and after a record passage arrived in 80 days at Hong Kong on 28th October. They were at once sent on to Canton and landed their Marines at the Wang-tong Islands below the City. The French contingent was also arriving, as well as the British gunboats.

On 18th November HMS Calcutta (flagship) left Hong Kong for Canton and anchored off Tiger Island where the Adelaide arrived on lst December. On 4th December the Assistance arrived with Colonel Lemon's Battalion from Calcutta. 53 As a matter of fact they left within three days. 46 The Admiral, Sir M Seymour, issued an order against looting, and took the opportunity of thanking the officers and men of the Fleet for their services during the past year. The force now available for the operations against Canton consisted of: Army: RA and RE, 59th Regiment, Madras Native Infantry 800 Royal Marines 2200 Naval Brigade 1500 French Troops and Sailors 900 5700 Major General Van Straubenzee was in command, with Majors Clifford and Crealock as his Staff Officers. Honan Island -

On 15th December 2nd RMLI and 150 French Sailors were landed on the back of Honan Island, an island facing Canton; it is about 11 miles wide and 4 to 5 miles long. They were followed by the lst RMLI and occupied the big warehouses on the shore. Colonel Holloway was in command. In his Report Colonel Holloway mentions the excellent work of Lieutenant Crease RMA, who, with only the artificers of the Brigade, constructed a fine magazine for the safe storage of their large amount of ammunition. Lord Elgin's demands were that Canton should be opened as the other Treaty Forts to commerce; compensation for the damage to British merchants to be paid (the factories had been burnt), and the occupation of Honan to 47 Sybille, Sanspareil, Esk, Highflier, to a strength of about 800 Officers and Men. Lieutenant C W Burton (Calcutta) was appointed Adjutant. The Artillery were under the orders of Colonel Dunlop RA Captain Morrison, lst RMLI, was appointed Provost Marshal. GENERAL ORDER Before Canton 26th December The Naval and Military Commanders-in-Chief of the Allied Forces before Canton have agreed to the following operations against the City. First bombardment to commence at daylight on Monday 23th December. The ships and vessels named in the note under Letter A (viz. Actaeon, Phlegethon, and Gunboats) on signal being given will open fire on South-West angle of the City walls, with a view to breach them and impede the communication of the Chinese troops along the parapets to the Eastward. Ships and vessels in note under Letter B (viz. Mitraille, Fusee, Cruiser, Hornet, Niger, Blanche) and the Dutch Folly Fort with a similar object will breach the City walls opposite the Viceroy's residence; the mortar in Dutch Folly Fort shelling the City and Gough Heights. Ships and vessels in note under Letter C (viz. Nimrod, Surprise, Dragon, Marcia and gunboats), between Dutch Folly Fort and French Folly will open fire on South-East angle of the New and Old City walls and walls forming East side of City. To commence simultaneously when White Ensign is hoisted at fore of Actaeon, and yellow flag from Phlegethon, Hornet and Avalanche will repeat these signals. Bombardment to be in very slow time and continued day and night, not to exceed per each gun 60 rounds during the first 24 hours; C ships to fire 100. Immediately bombardment opens, landing of Allied Troops will take place at the creek in Kupur, where British and French flags will be planted, in following order, commencing at daylight: 1. Sappers and Miners, 59th Regiment, RA Stores and Ammunition, etc. 2. French Naval Brigade, Stores, etc. 3. Naval Brigade under orders of Hon. C. Elliot. 4. Naval Brigade from Canton. 5. Colonel Holloway's Brigade of Royal Marines. etc., etc. . Following will be dispositions after landing: British Naval Brigade on left. Centre Brigade: Lieutenant Colonel Lemon's Provisional Bn RM. 59th Regiment. RA Sappers. French Naval Brigade on left. Colonel Holloway’s Brigade with RMA in reserve. After getting into position, Allied Force will remain in Line of Contiguous Columns of Brigade until further orders for advance, which will be made to a position for the night preparatory to active service in-the morning. M Seymour, Rear-Admiral. Regnault de Guouilly, Rear-Admiral. C V Van Straubenzee, Major General. 48 In the Dutch. Folly Forts platforms had been built for two 13-inch mortars and two 10-inch SS mortars and two 24 pdr rocket tubes. These were under Major Schomberg RMA and played on Magazine Hill, the City Heights and Gough's Fort. The slow bombardment began at daylight and continued all day; the gunboats embarked the troops and went down to Kupur, and the General made a close reconnaissance of Lin Fort whilst the troops were disembarking. The covering force of the 59th was posted to protect the RE and Volunteer Sappers and working parties, whilst constructing piers etc. to land the, guns, and making a road across the marshy paddy fields to the hard ground about 400 yards inland. The tide prevented the disembarkation till 9 am on 28th, but all were landed before nightfall. At 10 am the French force, having landed, moved forward to some rising ground where fire was opened on them, and part of the 59th advanced to the right of the French. The French drove the Chinese from the undulating ground, covered with Chinese graves in front, but it was difficult to cross the paddy fields in front. The French howitzers opened on Fort Lin, and the 59th moved to the Joss House within 300 yards, covered by the fire of the British howitzers. The troops pushed on and kept up a heavy fire on the embrasures until the 9 pdr field guns got into action. The Fort was partially surrounded, the storming parties carried the Fort and the Chinese fled up the hill to Gough's Fort, which our heavy guns could not reach. The British and French flags were hoisted on Fort Lin, where the troops bivouacked for the night. Fires broke out in various parts of the town during the night. On the next morning troops were formed up for the assault, the French Naval Brigade commanding the direct road to the East Gate, the 59th in rear and under cover of Fort Lin; the Provisional Battalion RMLI to the right on a range of hills fronting NNW; and on its right the Naval Brigade as if to advance towards Fort Gough, North of the City on the heights and the feint succeeded. The 3rd Division of the Naval Brigade was placed in rear and to the right of the Joss House, occupied by the Allied Commanders during the night. One Battalion of Colonel Holloway's Brigade was on the left, the other at the landing place protecting stores and keeping open the communications. The Artillery were in position in front of Fort Lin. The guns opened fire on the East Wall to clear off the Chinese; the assault had been timed for 9 am but the French started at 8.40, followed by the 59th, but fortunately Major Schomberg RMA, in the Dutch Folly Fort was able to stop the guns and the French, 59th Regiment, and the RE escaladed the wall about a mile to the North of the East Gate, and turning northward started clearing the walls. At daylight on the 29th the large Joss House had been occupied by parties of the Naval Brigade, supported by the RM Battalion under "that deserving old Officer" Lieutenant Colonel Lemon. The artillery bombardment was to continue till 9 am to give time to bring up the ladders, but this was effected with more despatch owing to the great exertions of all concerned, particularly of the "RA and RMA, whose energy and zeal were worthy of high commendation", by whom two guns were brought close up the ditch. Captain Bate RN was killed reconnoitring for a place to put the scaling ladders; Captains Blake and Cooke, RMLI brought up their two Companies of Royal Marines with scaling ladders and kept up a heavy fire on the embrasures, Blake's company losing one man killed and six wounded. When they had quelled the fire, the scaling ladders were placed, and the Naval Brigade and Lemon's Battalion escaladed the walls at a broken embrasure, 200 yards South of the North-East Gate; turning North, they swept along the Wall to Magazine Hill on the North side of the town. At this time a Chinese Army, now perceiving "we did not intend to attack Fort Gough, descended the hill, and necessitated my sending some companies of Colonel Lemon's RMLI Battalion to protect our right, and afterward to direct Colonel Walsh's Battalion to extend to their right to prevent advance of the enemy which was judiciously executed by all officers concerned, though I regret to say Colonel Holloway and some men were wounded."54 Colonel Holloway's Brigade had been posted to the North-West of Fort Lin to meet such an eventuality. The Tartars came on in skirmishing order but were driven off by the RN and it was difficult to prevent the Marines from charging the enemy; but they drove the Chinese out of a little village and a small wood, and were pressing forward to complete their defeat, when the General recalled the Brigade; there was much discontent among the RM at this order; the men had thrown off their knapsacks in the fight and when recalled Colonel Holloway and a few had to bring them in. 54 GOC’s Dispatch. 49 By 9 am the greater part of the force was on the Walls, the enemy making slight resistance except at the Gateways. The Naval Brigade and Royal Marines proceeding past the five-storied Pagoda and the Magazine, the enemy rallied at the North Gate; part of the Naval Brigade charged down the hill and the enemy were driven back. At this point he showed a bold front. Brigadier Graham with the 59th and the 38th NI took the East Gate and proceeded round the walls nearly to the South Gate of the City. About 2 pm Gough's Fort - above the town - was assaulted and taken. The British remained on the Walls for the next 3 or 4 days; no tents were available and there was heavy rain for 70 hours, during which Colonel Lemon's Battalion was in the open and consequently there was a good deal of sickness. In the London Gazette of 5th March 1858, the following were mentioned: Colonel Holloway ADC, Lieutenant Colonels Walsh, Hocker, and Lemon, Captain and Brevet Major Boyle, J A Morrison, Parke, Jackson, and Foote, Major J O Travers, Brigade Major, "whom from personal observation I recommend as a valued officer", and Captain Ellis. Brevet Major Schomberg, i/c Mortar Battery in Dutch Folly Fort, and that "indefatigable young officer" Lieutenant Festing, RMA were also mentioned. Gough's and Bluejacket's Forts were blown up, but without effect on the Chinese. After a pause to see if the Chinese would surrender, and as no move was made, on 5th January 1858 operations, were resumed and advancing from Magazine Hill, 250 of the French Naval Brigade entered the Yamen and secured the Tartar General where they were joined by the 2nd RMLI and two howitzers; two Companies of the lst RMLI with two howitzers, under Colonel Holloway, forced their way into the Yamen of the Governor of Kwang Tung and made Pek-wai prisoner. The Provisional Battalion with two guns first marched to the Temple, where the Imperial Commissioner Yeh was supposed to be hiding, but failed to find him, and later joined by 200 of lst RMLI - the whole under Captain Parke - they secured the Treasury and a large quantity of silver. Captain Cooper-Key and 100 of the Naval Brigade secured Yeh later in the day. Escorted by Colonel Hocker and two files of Marines, he was brought before the General and the Admiral; as he was still recalcitrant, he was eventually sent to India. In order to control the City, the Governor Pek-wai was reinstated with a council consisting of Colonel Holloway, Captain Martineau (French), and Mr. Parkes the Consul, who governed the City for the next year. Later a Constabulary was raised, to which the RM contributed 3 officers and about 30 men under Captain E L Pym, RM. The casualties had been; RMA, Colonel Holloway, 1 Sergeant and 2 Gunners wounded; Colonel Lemon's Battalion, 10 wounded; 1st RMLI, Lieutenant Portlock-Dadson severely, and 1 Sergeant and 3 Privates wounded. 1858 - The Royal Marines remained in garrison with two Sepoy Regiments. The 2nd RMLI were quartered in the monastery of Celestial Bliss, and one day a priest, waiting till the senior officers were out on a reconnaissance, presented an order from the General to recover his property, and carried off vast quantities of treasure that had been hidden in the idols, the guards being unable to prevent him. As fighting was still going on in India, the Army Staff Officers wished to re-join their regiments, so Major J O Travers became AQMG of the force vice Colonel the Hon. A Clifford, Captain T V Cooke became DAQMG vice Major Crealock and Captain Carrington DAAG. Captain Ellis became Brigade Major of the RM Brigade, Lieutenant J C Travers ADC to Colonel Holloway and Lieutenant J F Hawkey Adjutant of 1st RMLI. White Cloud Mountain - The garrison duty at Canton was varied by one or two expeditions. On 2nd June 1858 General Van Straubenzee made a reconnaissance of the White Cloud Mountain, where Chinese Forces were reported. He discovered an encampment and sent back for reinforcements; by 7 pm 1,400 men had started. Colonel Holloway with about 600 Marines and 100 of the 59th with 4 guns joined the General; the remainder consisting of the Naval Brigade, RA and Sepoys, embarked in gunboats, and went down the river to land next morning. The advance began at daybreak and it was found that only the two RMA rocket tubes could accompany them. At 11 am the enemy camp was sighted, and the Advanced Guard pushed on, 3 officers and 8 men being wounded. Owing to the great heat the troops had to halt until the evening, the Marines carrying a village in which they were able to shelter. At 5 pm the force again advanced and crossed the mountain, 1200 feet high, but found the enemy camp deserted. They returned to Canton on 4th, having burnt three villages. Lieutenant Rokeby and 26 men were wounded, but 50 a lot of men were lost from sunstroke. In the London Gacette of 28th July 1858, the following were mentioned55: Brevet Major R Boyle, Lieutenants G McCallum, W E Clements, E H Norton RMA, H B Savage RMA, 2nd Lieutenants W W Allnutt and H T Cooper. Nantow - In August another expedition was sent to the walled town of Nantow. They proceeded by water in gunboats and landed at 11 am on the 10th, to the South-East of the City, the covering party being provided by the Naval Brigade. This entailed an advance through a populous suburb. The advance was made in two parallel columns; 40 officers and 489 Naval Brigade formed the outer column; 3 officers and 64 men RA, 3 officers and 22 men RE, 5 officers and 104 men the 104th Regiment, 2 officers and 100 men 12th Madras NI, 5 officers and 140 men RMLI forming the inner column. The RMLI under Captain Foote were in reserve. They moved along the canal in great heat under constant fire from the right flank. After reconnaissance, at 1 pm the ladders were placed, and the Naval Brigade stormed the walls, covered by the 59th and 12th NI, whilst the RM covered the right flank. During the escalade of the walls the force under Colonel Graham was attacked by several hundred Braves who were most gallantly repulsed by Brevet Major Foote and the Royal Marines56 though not without loss. The wall was gained, and the enemy fled; the gate was blown in and then after burning the city they returned to Canton the following morning. Unfortunately, three officers were killed by the accidental discharge of the seamen's rifles. The Royal Marines lost 8 wounded, one mortally. On 23rd August Lieutenant Colonel Walsh was invalided, and on 1st October Colonel Lemon assumed command of the 1st RMLI. Provisional Battalion - On 22nd September 1858, a Brigade Order was issued that, as the Provisional Battalion had been so reduced by the re-embarkation of the detachments of which it was composed, the remainder were to be drafted into the 1st and 2nd Battalions, to take effect from lst October. Its strength was then only about 350. The Companies of the 1st and 2nd Battalions were made up to 75 men each, all above this and the NCOs w 51 But failing to make any impression on the Chinese Imperial authorities from Canton, the Allies decided to make an attack in the North, nearer Peking, with a view to getting them to observe the Treaties. In May 1858 the Squadron had attacked and occupied the Taku Forts with a naval landing party, but they had only been held temporarily, and the Chinese were now on their guard. Taku Forts.-.In June 1859, Vice Admiral Sir James Hope (who had succeeded Sir K Seymour) determined to attack the forts with a view to forcing the Chinese to admit the two Residents in accordance with the Tientsin Treaties. Colonel Lemon, with 400 of lst RMLI and a small party of RMA under Lieutenant Williams and Lieutenant Tuson were sent from Hong Kong; about 400 Royal Marines were provided by the Fleet and a half company of RE with 19 gunboats reinforced Sir James Hope, who with other vessels was lying off in the Gulf of Pechili. The Royal Marine were formed into a small Brigade under Colonel Lemon, with Captain Parke in command of 1st RMLI Captain Masters of a 2nd. Battalion formed from the ships' detachments; Captain Croker was Brigade Major, Lieutenant Rokeby ADC, and Lieutenant Evan Adjutant of the 2nd Battalion. The small party of RMA. were under Lieutenant Williams. These operations are worthy of careful study as an example of how not to do it: Colonel Lemon objected strongly to the plans. On 17th June a single vessel with the Admiral on board went to the anchorage off Taku; the rabble prevented any landing, and it was found that the Pei-Ho River was obstructed. On 20th the Residents arrived and told the Admiral to make his own arrangements to open the river. Against the advice of his military advisers in charge of the troops, the Admiral insisted on making a frontal attack on the Forts; on 25th under cover of the gun-boats the Seamen and Marines were landed on the mud flats, through which they had to struggle to attack; 4 gunboats were sunk, including the Admiral's and he himself severely wounded - he was rescued by the US ship. Out of the landing party of 1,100, 434 were killed or wounded and the Royal Marines lost Lieutenants Inglish and Wolrige, with 21 NCOs and Men killed or died of wounds, 15 officers and 142 NCOs and men wounded. The Reports of Colonel Lemon and Captains Parke and master's give an excellent picture of what occurred. Colonel Lemon's report says that the boats with the Royal Marines assembled round the Nimrod on the evening of 25th June and were joined by the RE and the Royal Naval Battalion under Captain Chadwell, RN. They attacked the fort on the right bank of the Pei-Ho River and landed on the mud in front; the 1st RMLI was the first to arrive and advanced in skirmishing order to cover the parties carrying the bridges and ladders; the RE acted as coverers on the left. The ground was tenacious, and the men sank knee deep in the mud, and could only advance slowly. Colonel Lemon says it was impartible and injudicious to adopt a regular formation as they were under heavy fire, and that he led the main body forward until cover could be obtained for forming; that on arriving at a wet ditch the covering party waited for the bridges, but as there were none available they crossed by wading; advancing until they arrived at another deeper and more difficult ditch which they also crossed, and advanced until they got cover from the advanced trench, where they waited for the ladders, and here Colonel Lemon was severely wounded in the head and handed over the command to Captain Parke. Captain Parke's report says that the 1st RMLI embarked in the boats at 5.45 pm and were taken in tow by an American steamer, Taiwan; as there was great difficulty in towing, all the boats except one had to cast off and were taken in tow by the Forrester. On arriving at the Stakes, the boats went alongside the Cormorant (1 Lieutenant and 46 NCOs and Men had been left in the American ship). Here Captain Willis RM ordered them all to follow him and pull ashore. The boats shoved off, the men pulling with all their might to be the first on shore. The Battalion landed without any order and there was great confusion. All efforts to advance in anything like military formation were futile; the men jumped out anyhow, some up to their waists in water. Parke says he tried to extend them, but they rushed on in masses, all arms intermingled, towards the fort under a tremendous fire of guns and gingalls, which told with great effect. The men and officers pushed on gallantly; the ground was tenacious, clayey mud, into which the men fell down and rendered their arms useless; they arrived at the first ditch; they had no ladders, or bridges, but the seamen brought up some ladders; only one was serviceable and they crossed by wading. Those who managed to keep their ammunition dry, kept up a heavy fire to cover the crossing of the rest. After a rest they advanced again and encountered another large ditch; there were then only about 100 men but many officers of the lst RMLI and they succeeded in crossing, but as the ammunition was quite wet their fire slackened. Colonel Lemon being wounded, Captain Parke took command of the Brigade. Night was falling and only one efficient ladder was up; as the British fire lessened the Chinese assembled in large numbers and kept up a heavy 52 enfilade fire. Under these conditions Parke - after consulting with Commanders Commerell and Heath RN, and Major Fisher RE - decided to withdraw; the men were ordered to move off noiselessly in parties of twos and threes; the retreat commenced at 2 am, the enemy firing light balls etc unceasingly. Most strenuous efforts were made to bring off the wounded; all behaved well and although invidious to mention any one, Captain Parke calls attention to acts of gallantry by Lieutenant Wolrige, who was shot dead whilst cheering on his men; by Lieutenant Rokeby who volunteered to advance with only one ladder; by Lieutenants Evans and Straghan in assisting to carry off the wounded under a very severe fire and by Sergeant Major Woon and QMS Halling, whose gallantry was most conspicuous. From Captain Master’s report of 2nd RM we learn that he himself and his party were transferred to the Forrester and proceeded inshore to well within range of the forts who were firing; Captain Willis ordered them to land and the Admiral ordered them to take the fort by assault and to lose no time, as the sun was setting. The first boat contained Lieutenant Williams and a party of RMA; Masters himself was in the next. The boats could not get near the land and they jumped into the water up to their middles under a galling fire of guns and musketry and were ordered to make the best of their way and to form up when they reached firmer ground; on arriving at the Stakes they formed up, some of the 1st and some of the 2nd. They were kneeling in the mud, which was over their ankles. Masters tried to get them to advance, but they were exhausted and could not use their muskets, which were unfit from salt water. Here he himself was wounded and taken off, and the Battalion was brought off by other officers. The Chaplain, the Rev W Huleatt, was severely wounded with the 1st RM After this reverse the 1st RM returned to Canton on 6th August in HMS Magician and the Northern operations were abandoned till the properly organised expedition of the next year. At this date the lst RMLI numbered 696 and the 2nd RMLI 625. Colonel Lemon was invalided to England on 26th July 1859 and in the London Gazette of 16th September 1859 the following were mentioned in dispatches; Colonel Lemon, Brevet Major Parke, Captains W G Masters, P K C Croker, Lieutenants Rokeby, J F Hawkey, H L Evans, J Straghan, Sergeant Major Woon, and QMS Halling. The following Brevets were given for the operations in 1857-59: To be Colonel - Lieutenant Colonel T. Lemon. To be Majors - Captain J C Travers Captain J C Morrison Captain W F Foote Captain G E O Jackson Captain P C Penrose Captain C J Ellis Captain R Boyle Captain R Parke Captain T V Cooke On 26th December 1859, the following Brigade order was issued by Colonel Holloway ADC at Canton. RM Brigade - broken up - "The Board has directed that the Brigade shall be broken up and formed into one Battalion of 8 Companies, each consisting of 1 Captain, 2 Subalterns, 5 Sergeants, 6 Corporals, 1 Drummer, 76 Privates, with the following staff, 2 Lieutenant Colonels, 1 Adjutant, 1 Acting QM, 1 Acting SM, and one Acting QMS." Lieutenant Colonel Hocker CB was appointed to command, but he was invalided on 27th January 1869, and Lieutenant Colonel J O Travers vacated his appointment of AQMG and assumed command. Lieutenant Carrington was appointed Adjutant, Lieutenant Meade QM, Lieutenant Cobb Assistant Adjutant, Sergeant Denslow to be Sergeant Major (died at Tientsin), Sergeant Brown to be QMS. The Medical Officers were Drs Little, Shin and Cope. Mr. Spark, Paymaster. The Company Officers were 1 and 2 Chatham: Captains Evans and Gritton. 3 and 4 Woolwich: Captains Prynne and Usher. 5 and 6 Portsmouth; Captains Symonds and Jackson. 7 and 8 Plymouth; Captains Budd and Spratt. NCOs and Men employed in the Military Train and Constabulary were formed into a Supernumerary Company; the Battalions were at once formed into four companies each of medically fit men; the men of the Bengal Artillery were attached to the RMA Company and 34 Privates were selected to complete the RMA Company proceeding to Macao Fort, and 51 Privates were sent to complete the Fleet; remaining Officers and NCOs to be borne supernumerary as well as the volunteers from the Indian Army. Colonel Holloway and the surplus officers and men returned home on 11th January 1860. A draft from England under Captain Slaughter arrived. 53 General Van Straubenze published the farewell order on 31st December 1850: "My sense of the efficiency, good order and high state of discipline of the Brigade, also much credit upon the Officers of the Battalions; the forbearance of the NCOs and Men of the RM Brigade since the capture of this city and their general very good character during the two years they have been quartered in it are most creditable to them, as soldiers, and to the splendid Corps of which they form part, and merit my highest approbation." As serious prosecution of the war was now inevitable and as the Indian Mutiny had been crushed, troops were now available and were sent from India and from England. Colonel Gaacoigne and Brevet Lieutenant Colonel March with a draft were sent from England to replace Colonels Hocker and Lemon. General Sir Hope Grant of Indian fame was sent to command. The French Commanding Officer was General de Montaubam, afterwards known as Count de Palikao. About 14,000 British and 7,000 French troops concentrated at Hong Kong and proceeded North in March 1860. Shanghai - The 87th Regiment relieved the Marines at Canton and the RM Battalion was the first to move North; the left wing arrived at Shanghai on 6th April under Lieutenant Colonel March, where the Taeping rebels were threatening trouble. Owing to want of accommodation they remained at first in the Assistance; they were accompanied by Lieutenant Williams' Company of RMA. The right wing under Colonel Travers went to Chusan. Lieutenant Colonel Gascoigne joined the left wing on 15th May and took up a defensive line from the Stone Bridge, by the grandstand of the racecourse, to Ning Po Joss House on the North-East extremity round the walls to the City gate. On 16th June General Sir Robert Napier approved of these arrangements. The French - about 200 strong - were on the South side. On 15th June there was considerable anxiety about an advance by the rebels, but it did not materialise then. A state of the Battalion dated 13th June 1860 gives an interesting account of their distribution: Location Officers NCOs & Men On board Transport Octavio at Shanghai 11 214 In Barracks, Shanghai 6 110 Ning-po Joss House 3 79 Souchon Bridge 3 80 Hospital - 6 At Chusan 12 228 On board HMS Encounter 2 58 (on passage) Hong Kong on Staff 2 8 Chinese Coolie Corps 4 33 Hospital Ships - 5 Canton Constabulary 3 132 Supernumerary 14 218 Captain E L P Pym RMA Shanghai 2 87 Macao Fort, Canton 1 9 Coolie Corps - 2 Barrack Sorgeant. at Canton - 1 54 On 21st July, leaving Lieutenant Colonel March as senior officer at Shanghai, with 300 RMA and RMLI and about 600 French, Lieutenant Colonel Gascoigne embarked with Nos 5 and 6 Companies (207 all told) but they did not arrive at the rendezvous till the 29th, too late to be present at the taking of the Taku Forts. Colonel Travers with Nos 1 to 4 Companies were not long at Chusan; leaving there on 11th June they joined the force in the North, where the ultimatum to the Chinese had been sent on 8th March. The British Force was organised into: A Cavalry Brigade – King’s Dragoon Guards, Fane's and Probyn's horse, and Stirling's Battery RHA. 1st Division - General Sir John Michel - Two Brigades. 2nd Division - Maj. General Sir Robert Napier - Two Brigades. Taku Forts - The lst Battalion RMLI was attached to the 4th Brigade, consisting of 67th, 99th and 19th Punjab Native Infantry. About the middle of May the force embarked for the Gulf of Pe-Chi-Li and the British landed at Talienwan and the French at Chefoo, where they formed depots. On 20th July the troops re-embarked, and on 26th anchored off Pei-Tang-Ho. On 30th Sutton's Brigade (2nd), the Rocket Battery, and a 9 pdr with a party of French were towed ashore, landing through the mud, and next day ,found Pei-Tang evacuated.

On 31st a storm prevented disembarkation, but it was continued next day. That night was spent in repairing roads, which occupied the next ten days; the British were kept making roads and building wharfs and so kept out of mischief, but the French went plundering. On 3rd August a reconnaissance was made of the causeway leading to the Taku Forts; and on 9th August it was discovered that the country was traversable by all arms. The RM Battalion under Travers, with Lieutenant G. Mairis as its Adjutant, had now joined the Army. On 12th August the French and the First Division advanced frontally along the causeway, the 2nd Division and the Cavalry Brigade followed the reconnaissance of the 9th instant; with the British were two batteries of the new 12 pdr Armstrong guns. The First Division pushed along the causeway and captured the village of Sinho. About two and a half miles South-East of Sinhoe the Chinese were holding an entrenched position about Tong-Ku to which the causeway led with a wet ditch on either side. On 13th August, General Grant caused the canals to be bridged, refusing to be hurried by the French. He ascertained that the Chinese forces had retired to the South (right bank) of the Pei-Ho end that there were no troops on his side of the river except in Tong-Ku and the Taku Forts to the South-East of him. The First Division advancing on the right and the French on the left, crossed the space between the causeway and the Pei-Ho. The 60th Rifles advanced under cover of the field guns, which silenced the Chines artillery; the 60th entered the works at Tong-Ku and found the Chinese in full retreat; the French further to the left met with some resistance. The Allies then arrived without difficulty within two miles of the Taku Forts. There was a halt of six days whilst ten day's supplies were collected at Sinho, and the heavy guns and ammunition brought up; a bridge of boats was thrown over the Pei-Ho at Tong-Ku and a close reconnaissance made of the forts. On each bank there was a detached fort to westward of the larger and principal fort; on the North bank this detached fort was only two miles from Tong-Ku and could be approached by a detour clear of fire and without cross fire from the Southern bank. If taken it would be possible to enfilade the large fort to the South-Eastward and it also overlooked the detached fort on the Southern bank. General Grant decided to attack this point. General Montauban refused but had to give way. By August 20th all was ready, the road built, and the canals bridged. Batteries were established against the North face of the detached fort; the Admiral had not brought up his gunboats, so the Chinese turned the guns in the cavaliers of the river forts to bear on the attackers. The obstacles to be surmounted were a deep dry ditch, then an open space with abatis, then a wet ditch and a strip of ground 20 feet wide with pointed bamboo stakes, and then another wet ditch and another staked strip; there was also a thick wall of unburnt brick with loopholes. At daybreak on 21st August the batteries opened vigorously, and the Chinese replied; at 6 am the magazine in the 55 forts blew up, and at 6.30 am a shell from a gunboat blew up another magazine. At 7 am every gun in the detached fort was disabled and two batteries of field guns and the storming parties of the 44th and 67th Regiments advanced to the gate; the French on the right approached the Western angle. The wing of the RM Battalion had been detailed to carry pontoons for crossing the ditches but owing to casualties unfortunately blocked the causeway and the stormers had to swim; it was sometime before sufficient troops were assembled; Major Anson - of the Staff - got to the post and hacked down the ropes of the drawbridge and some men got across, whilst Captain Prynne RMLI was the second man over the wall and shot the Head Mandarin with his revolver; Lieutenant Pritchard RE was the first. The garrison resisted bravely, but after three and a half hours the fort was taken. Captains Barker, Carrington, and Straghan RMLI were among the wounded, and were mentioned in dispatches. The heavy guns were brought forward to the attack on the main fort, when the Chinese on the South bank hoisted the white flag. They were told that unless the main fort was surrendered within two hours the Allies would reopen fire, and towards the end of that time the troops advanced; the enemy offering no resistance, they walked in and took possession. The Political Officer forced the Chinese commander to sign a capitulation giving up all the country and strong places on the river as far as Tientsin, including that city. After a day removing obstacles in the river, the Admiral and Mr. Parkes steamed up the river to Tientsin. On the 25th the troops followed, and by 5th September all had followed except the 44th Regiment, which had been sent to Shanghai on account of the Taeping Rebels. A party of Marines and a battery of artillery were left to garrison Tong-Ku. On 7th September the Convention was to have been signed, when it was suddenly realised that the Chinese authorities had not, and could not produce, any authority to treat; on which negotiations were broken off. Peking - Meanwhile Lieutenant Colonel Gascoigne and the two Companies from Shanghai had joined the other half battalion, and Colonel Gascoigne assumed command. On 8th September the First Division and the Cavalry Brigade, with the French, began their march on Tung-Chow, sixty miles up the river and twenty miles below Peking. The RM Battalion was now with the 2nd Brigade. The 2nd Division was left at Tientsin; they marched in small detachments, the siege train and part of the supplies going by water. Major Poyntz says that the regiments will remember how the Royal Marines managed to keep up a supply of bitter draught beer throughout the march, which was much appreciated. Captain C L Barnard with his party of RMA were brought to notice for the manner in which the heavy guns were brought up from Tientsin to Tung-Chow; the labour of pulling the boats over the flats was very great and it was "due to their exertions that the guns were brought up so rapidly and safely."57 On the 13th the troops reached Ho-Si-Wu, where the medical officers of the RM Battalion established a general hospital. On the 17th the Cavalry Brigade and 1st Division left Ho-Si-Wu. Mr. Parkes and other officers and officials had preceded on the 16th to Tung-Chow to make arrangements; but the force had hardly advanced two miles before hostile forces were observed, and whilst waiting for the return of the advance party, suddenly a commotion was observed and Colonel Walker, AQMG, and other officers were seen galloping towards the column, some of them wounded. As there were no signs of Mr. Parkes' party, General Hope Grant advanced in attack formation. Fire was opened by the Chinese, who were holding an entrenchment several miles in length with a battery of 16 guns. After a sharp engagement of two hours (the RM Battalion was in reserve), the enemy gave way and were severely cut up by the cavalry. Captain Usher RM, the Provost Marshal, was nearly cut down by a Tartar, having been unhorsed. Following up the enemy, the 99th and 15th Punjabis entered Ching-Kia-Wang, which was given over to plunder as a reprisal for the capture of Mr. Parkes' party. On 20th September there was a reconnaissance and the enemy were found to be in front of the Yang-Liang Canal, the waterway between the Pei-Ho and Peking, over which were two bridges, one of marble, at Pa-Li-Chao. The other - of wood - was about a mile to the West. The French were directed on Pa-Li–Chao, and the British Infantry on to the wooden bridge, with the cavalry to the left: the cavalry charged and, followed by three batteries of Armstrong guns and two Battalions, inflicted great loss. The pursuit was stopped six miles from Peking. The 2nd Division was hurried forward and by 2nd October the full force had arrived. On 6th October the advance was resumed through a tangle of ruined fortifications, and Tung-Chow was occupied. The Royal Marines and a party of French taking possession of the City, Colonel 57 Letter from General Hope Grant. 56 Travers disarmed and dispersed a lot of Chinese soldiers who were hovering about the suburbs.58 The letters of application show that they served in these actions, by which the Tartar covering army was driven off, and the road to Peking opened, together with occupation of Tung-Chow protecting the convoys of stores and supplies upon which the army before Peking depended. On 7th October the French reached the Summer Palace and started plundering. The prisoners from Mr. Parkes' party were restored on the 8th, but only 10 remained out of 39, the remainder having been tortured or murdered. General Grant threw up breaching batteries to blow down the city, and at noon on the 13th they were ready to open fire, when the Chinese surrendered and agreed to terms. On the 18th and 19th as a punishment for the treatment of our prisoners, the 1st Division burnt the Summer Palace. On the 24th a Convention and ratification of the Treaty of 1858 were at last signed by the Chinese Imperial Authorities. On 8th November the troops began the march back to the transports; on the 12th Desborough's Battery, Probyn's Horse, the RM Battalion and 99th Regiment, the whole under the command of Colonel Gascoigne, marched for Tientsin, where they arrived on the 14th and embarked in HM Troopship Adventure. As the transport was not big enough, 31 officers and 629 men went in Adventure, whilst 4 officers and 240 men went in HMS Sampson, Fury, Inflexible, and Minerva; the RMA went in the Highflier. Memorial - The RMA Battery and the RMLI Brigade erected a memorial to their comrades at Hong Kong. This shows that from 1857-60 the loss in all ranks was: killed or died, 3 officers, 2 staff-sergeants, 13 corporals, 214 gunners and privates; wounded, 27 officers, 16 sergeants, 20 corporals, 4 buglers, 155 gunners and privates. In a Board Letter it was said that, "My Lords observe with pleasure that the Marines, as usual, had conducted themselves with the spirit and gallantry which have always been evinced by that Corps."59 Colonel Holloway, Lieutenant Colonels Lemon, Travers, Hooker and Gascoigne were awarded the CB , and there were many mentions in dispatches and brevet promotions.

London Gazette - 6th November 1860. :Mentioned-in-Dispatches: Lieutenant Colonel J O Travers, Captains C W Carrington, G Mairis, W J Barker, J Straghan., J C Symonds, J C Morrison, J B Prynne; Lieutenant T H Brenan, Sergeants G Tearle, T Knapp, Privates F Kelly, Brady, R Bowerman, for the capture of the North-West fort at Taku, and Sergeant H Trent for ‘deserving all praise for exertions to get the pontoons up although wounded.' 

In the London Gazette of 15th February 1861, the following brevet promotions were awarded: Brevet Colonel Lieutenant Colonel J. H. Gascoigne. Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Captain & Brevet Major J C S Morrison. To be Brevet Majors Captains J C Symonds and J B Prynne. Taeping Rebellion - The RM detachment left at Shanghai was engaged on operations against the Taeping Rebellion from 1860 to 1863. In 1860 a fierce attack on Shanghai was driven off, and in the London Gazette of 14 November 1860, Lieutenant Colonel March, Captain Budd, Lieutenants O'Grady and O L Williams (RMA) were brought to notice; also, Lieutenant F R Phillips who volunteered to carry a flag of truce to the rebel camp, "a service of great danger". In April 1862 troops were sent from Tientsin under General Staveley to keep a radius of 30 miles round the city clear of the rebels. The Shanghai merchants also raised a force under European officers under an American officer named Ward. He was succeeded by an RM officer, Captain Holland, who was however defeated at Taitsan, 22 February 1863. He was replaced by Colonel Charles Gordon RE (Chinese Gordon) who with this force - named the 'Ever-Victorious Army' - eventually stamped out the Rebellion after two years. The RM detachments were engaged in the capture of the Walled Cities of Kah-Ding and Singpoo, and in numerous engagements in neighbourhood of Shanghai. The fact that they were present at these two actions of the 18th and 20th September was the grounds on which they were awarded the clasp for Peking. (W0 Letter, 20th February 1863.) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.) (sic)

1857. Monday 25th May. The battle of Escape Creek.

1857. Wednesday 27th May. Boats of squadron in Sawshee Channel.

1857. Monday 1st June. The battle of Fatshan Creek.

1857. Monday 18th June. Surrender of Chuenpee Fort.

1857. Friday 26th June., The First Presentation of the Victoria Cross.
Queen Victoria distributed the first Victoria Crosses at Hyde Park. On parade were a large body of troops under Sir Colin Campbell, comprised of Life Guards, Dragoons, Hussars, Royal Engineers, Artillery and Line Regiments, together with a detachment of Bluejackets from the Royal Navy. Just before ten o'clock in the morning, following a royal salute from the artillery, her Majesty, the Prince Consort, the Crown Prince of Prussia, the Prince of Wales and the Queen's son Prince Alfred (Duke of Saxe-Coberg-Gotha) rode into the park and took places near the dais prepared for them. The Victoria Crosses lay upon a small table covered with scarlet cloth. The 62 recipients stood at ease some distance off and came forward one at a time as Lord Panmure, Secretary for War, read their names. Of note is Lieutenant Lucas, R.N. who was the first man to be gazetted for the Victoria Cross. The presentation of the crosses was followed by a military review and the proceedings were finished.
The recipients are listed below in the order in which they received the award from the Queen that day. Note that the Navy and Royal Marines had their awards presented in order of rank, while the Army had their Crosses presented in order of regimental precedence.
Two Royal Marines were presented with the Victoria Cross.
13th to be presented was Lieutenant Dowel, G.D.
14th to be presented was Bombadier T. Wilkinson.(from

As of January 2018, there have been 10 Royal Marines who have been awarded the Victoria Cross.

Corporal John Prettyjohn kM 2nd November 1854 - Crimea Reported for gallantry at the Battle of Inkerman, having led his section to an advanced position, shot four Russian marksmen.

Bombardier Thomas Wilkinson RMA 5th June 1855 - Crimea Specially recommended for gallant conduct in the advanced Batteries in placing sandbags to repair damage to revetments under galling fire during the siege of Sebastopol.

Lieutenant George Dare Dowell RMA 13th July 1855 - Viborg. Baltic Sea An explosion having occurred in one of the rocket-boats of the Arrogant, Lieut. Dowell jumped into a quarter-boat with three volunteers, himself pulling the stroke oar, and proceeded under a heavy fire of grape and musketry, to the assistance of a beleaguered cutter's crew bringing them off safely.

Captain Lewis Stratford Tollemache Halliday RMLI 24th June 1900 - Peking Legations - Boxer Rebellion During a fierce Boxer attack on the west wall of the British Legation in Peking, Capt. Halliday led twenty Marines and engaged the enemy. Before he could use his revolver, however, he was shot through the left shoulder, at point blank range, the bullet fracturing the shoulder and carrying away part of the lung. Notwithstanding the extremely severe nature of his wound, he killed three of his assailants, and told his men 'to carry on and not mind him', while he walked back unaided to the hospital.

Lance-Corporal Walter Richard Parker RMLI 1st May 1915 - Portsmouth Battalion - Gallipoli Whilst in charge of the battalion stretcher bearers he displayed conspicuous gallantry under heavy and accurate enemy fire in leading his men to recover casualties. He reached a forward trench which had to be evacuated and Parker helped to remove and attend the wounded, although he himself was seriously wounded during this operation.

Major Francis John William Harvey RMLI 31st May 1916 - HMS Lion - Battle of Jutland Whilst mortally wounded and almost the only survivor after the explosion of an enemy shell in 'Q' gun house, with great presence of mind and devotion to duty he ordered the magazine to be flooded, thereby saving the ship. He died shortly afterwards.

Major Frederick William Lumsden DSO, RMA April 1917 - Western Front He personally led four artillery teams and a party of infantry through a hostile barrage to recover six enemy guns. By force of example and inspiring energy he succeeded in sending back two teams with guns, going through the barrage with the teams for the third gun. He then returned to await further teams, and with these he succeeded in attaching to two of the three remaining guns, despite rifle fire, which had become intense at short range, and removed the guns to safety. During actions on the Western Front in 1917/18 Lumsden was awarded the CL the 050 and 3 bars, besides his VC. He was killed in action in 1918.

Captain Edward Bamford DSO RMLI 23 April 1918 - 4th Battalion RMLI - Zeebrugge He landed on the mole from Vindictive with numbers 5, 7 and 9 Platoons of the Marine storming force, in the face of great difficulties. When on the mole and under heavy fire, he displayed the greatest initiative in the command of his company, and by his total disregard for danger showed a magnificent example to his men. He first established a strong point and, when satisfied that it was safe, led an assault on a battery to the left with utmost coolness and bravery.

Sergeant Norman Augustus Finch RMA 23rd April 1918 - RMA Detachment - Zeebrugge Sgt Finch was second-in-command of the pompoms and Lewis guns in the foretop of Vindictive. During one period the Vindictive was being hit every few seconds, chiefly in the upper works, from which splinters caused many casualties. It was difficult to locate the guns which were doing most of the damage, but Sgt Finch and Marines in the foretop kept up a continuous fire with pompoms and Lewis guns, changing rapidly from one target to another, and thus keeping the enemy's fire down to some considerable extent. Two heavy shells made direct hits on the foretop and all there were killed or disabled except Sergeant Finch, who was, however, severely wounded; nevertheless, he showed consummate bravery, remaining in his battered and exposed position. He once more got a pompom into action, and kept up a continuous fire, harassing the enemy on the mole. Before the top was destroyed Sergeant Finch had done invaluable work, and by his bravery had undoubtedly saved many lives. Capt. Bamford and Sergeant Finch were selected by the members of the 4th Battalion to receive the Victoria Cross under Rule 13 of the Royal Warrant dated 29th January 1856.

Corporal Thomas Peck Hunter kM 3rd April 1945 - 43 (RM) Commando - Lake Comacchio Whilst advancing across open ground he observed the enemy holding a group of houses. Realising they would cause heavy casualties as soon as they opened fire, Cpl Hunter seized the Bren gun and charged alone across 200 yards of open ground. Three Spandaus from the houses, and at least six from the north bank of the canal, opened fire and at the same time enemy mortars started to fire at his Troop. Cpl Hunter attracted most of the fire, and so determined was his charge and his firing from the hip that the enemy in the houses became demoralised. Showing complete disregard, for the intense enemy fire, he ran through the houses, changing magazines as he ran, and alone cleared the houses. Six Germans surrendered to him and the remainder fled across a footbridge on to the north bank of the canal. The Troop dashing up behind Cpl Hunter now became the target for all the Spandaus on the north of the canal. Again, offering himself as a target, he lay in full view of the enemy on a heap of rubble and fired at the concrete pillboxes on the other side. He again drew most of the fire, but by now the greater part of the Troop had made for the safety of the houses. During this period, he shouted encouragement to the remainder, and called only for more Bren magazines with which he could engage the Spandaus. Firing with great accuracy up to the last, Cpl Hunter was finally hit in the head by a burst of Spandau fire and killed instantly.

1857. August. Marines from Sans Pareil landed at Fort William.

1857. Thursday 13th August. Marines and seamen from Shannon sent up Ganges.

1857. Saturday 12th September. Brigade from Pearl sent up the Ganges.

1857. Monday 16th - 17th November. Relief of Lucknow. Brigade from Shannon.

1857. Tuesday 17th November. The relief of Lucknow.

1857. Monday 28th December. The bombardment of Canton and capture of fort Lin.

1857. Tuesday 29th December. The assault and capture of Canton.

1857 - 1860. This period, which saw large numbers of the Corps employed on active service ashore, was also one of reorganisation; one of the most important events being the formation of the separate Royal Marine Artillery Division in 1859. It is also notables for the presentation of new Colours in 1858, and a great enlargement of all the Barracks. (Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1857 - 1861. Operations against slave dhows in Persian Gulf.

1858. The numbers 'were reduced to 15,000 in 104 Divisional and 14 Artillery Companies; the officers of the reduced companies were however retained as supernumeraries.
Barracks - The RMA moved out of the Gunwharf Barracks into Fort Cumberland at Portsmouth. In 1867 and 1858 very considerable additions were made to the Barracks at Stonehouse, three passages being added to the main block and a new infirmary. The North Wing was not finished till 1864 and the fine Western Front with vane and clock not till 1867 and the Married Quarters in 1869.
At Chatham the Barracks were enlarged to their present boundaries in 1862; the C, D, E and F Blocks were added in 1864. A and B Blocks and the Paymaster's Offices and Quartermasters' Stores were added in 1866, and in 1867 the single Officers' Quarters and the Field Officers' Houses.
1858. Colours - New Colours were presented to all Divisions 40. These departed from the 1827 design in many particulars and were evolved by the Heralds College according to recent Army regulations. No ceremony was observed in their presentations, which were mostly made at the DAG's Inspections.(Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1858. Following the outbreak of war in the Crimea in 1854 and the Indian Mutiny of 1857, the British Regular garrison personnel in Canada had been stripped almost bare. The Canadian Militia Act of 1855 made the Dominion Government responsible for the defence of Canada through its Volunteer Rifle, Infantry. Cavalry and Artillery companies and promised that a standing or regular army would be raised some time in the future. The volunteer movement started off at a most successful pace and would continue to do so for many years to come. One area of defence had been overlooked, that of defending the Great Lakes and inland waterways that separated Eastern Canada and the northern United States. With civil war raging to the south of Canada between the United States and the Confederate States, tensions mounted along the border. In the fall of 1861 the US Coast Guard made a grave error in stopping the Royal Mail steam packet Trent on the high seas and removing two Confederate consular officials at gun point. This action almost brought Great Britain into the conflict on the Confederate side. The defence of the Great Lakes now assumed importance and its establishment was necessary in the extreme with the nearest Royal Navy assistance as far, east as Nova Scotia in Halifax.
The Militia Department again turned to its citizen soldiers, sought and received Volunteer Marine and Naval companies to carry out the defence of the Great Lakes and inland waterways. The majority of companies formed for what was termed Marine Militia were originally styled Marine Companies; however most had assumed the title Naval Company by April 1863. These companies were uniformed similar to the Royal Navy, trained in seamanship and naval gunnery where possible, and also trained as infantry. They were issued with short model Snider-Enfield and cutlasses. Between the years 1862 and 1879, eleven Naval Companies and one Naval Brigade were formed. As relations between Great Britain, Canada and the United States returned to normal prior to the close of hostilities between Union and Confederate armies in 1865, the need for the Marine Militia lessened. However, the Fenian forays into Canada from the north eastern United States in 1866 proved their value.
The Naval Companies called out for service during the Fenian raids in Upper Canada (Ontario) were the Port Stanley, Garden Island, Toronto. Dunnville and Hamilton Naval Companies. Their vessels included the Rescue, W T Robb, Magnet and Michigan. A total of fifteen vessels were used, part in patrolling the lakes and others in transporting men, supplies and other items of war stores and equipment. Both the Rescue and the Michigan were armed with two Armstrong guns (both 9 and 12 pounders) and manned by sailors and marines from HMS Aurora, hove to in Quebec. Pending the arrival of seasoned seamen from the Royal Navy, the provincial government chartered tugs and steam vessels, which, manned by Marine Militia, were relieved by Royal Navy sailors who provided the fighting crews while the Canadians provided the navigating crews. On the arrival home of the Marine Militia. General Napier specially thanked members of the Marine Militia for their services and for the creditable manner in which they had done their duty. The Adjutant General of the Canadian Militia dispatched the following letter to Captain McMaster of the Toronto Naval Company:
'1 am directed by General Napier CB, Commanding Her Majesty's Forces and Volunteers, Canada West, to express to you his thanks for the efficient services rendered by the Naval Brigade under your command.(Sic)

1858. January - February. Operations on West Coast of Africa.

1858. Tuesday 5th January. Canton entered and Commissioner Yeh taken.

1858. Wednesday 17th February. The assault of fort at Handipore.

1858. Friday 26th February. The battle of Phoolpore.

1858. Tuesday2nd March. Fort Betwa. Lieutenant Pym and detachment of HMS Pearl.

1858. Thursday 20th May. Taku Forts destroyed by Sir M. Seymour.

1858. Friday 21st May. The capture of the Petho Forts.

1858. Wednesday 2nd June - Thursday 3rd June. The battle at White Cloud Mountain near Canton.

1858. Tuesday 15th June. Massacre at Jeddah.

1858. Friday 18th June. Action at Hurryah in India.

1858. Sunday 25th - 26th July. Bombardment of Jeddah by Commodore Pullen.

1858. Wednesday 4th August. Staunch attacked pirate junks at Taon Pung.

1858. Wednesday 11th August. The taking of Nan-Tow.

1858. Monday 23rd August. Cresswell destroyed or took junks at Sing Ting.

1858. Thursday 26th August - 3rd September. Operations by Magicienne, Inflexible, Plover and Algerine against pirates near Coulan.

1858. Tuesday 14th September. The relief of Bhansl.

1858. November. Nankin bombarded and batteries destroyed.

1858. November. Chinese rebels defeated at Nyan King.

1859. Saturday 25th June. The attack on the Peiho forts.

1859. Saturday 8th January. The capture of Shek-Tseng.

1859. Tuesday 12th April.  An Order-in-Council 39 footing, by forming them into a separate Division to be called the Artillery Division of the Royal Marines with the same staff and advantages as the other Divisional Headquarters”. The officers however still remained on the general list of the Corps, and the men were drawn from the general recruits and were called 'volunteers for the RMA. (Sic)  (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1859. Saturday 25th - 26th June. Attempt to force passage of Peiho. Cormorant, Plover and Lee lost.

1859. June -August. The Royal Marines Light Infantry, (RMLI) and The Taku Forts
Second Opium War (25 June 1859) When the Chinese refused to admit foreign diplomats to Peking (Beijing), British Admiral Sir James Hope attempted to force passage of the Peiho (Han) River with eleven gun boats and a landing force of 1,100 men but met severe resistance. He was himself twice wounded, and two ships were sunk beneath him. Of the eleven gunboats, six were sunk or disabled. The landing force became bogged down in mud and had to retreat. The British lost 89 killed and 345 wounded.
The first China War, 1839-42, had not taught the lessons which it was designed to teach; and within a few years of its conclusion new difficulties began to arise between the British and the local authorities in various parts of the huge invertebrate empire. For a time, these were arranged as they arose, without resort to war; but they were arranged, unfortunately, in a manner which too often allowed the Chinese to remain in the belief that they had won diplomatic triumphs. The result was that both locally and at the capitals, the governing classes became steadily more and more inattentive to British remonstrances concerning acts of aggression, until, in 1856, the affair of the Arrow, and the vigorous action of Rear-Admiral Sir Michael Seymour, Commander-in-Chief in the East Indies, brought about the second China War, which lasted, with intermissions, for nearly four years.
The causes of the fresh outbreak of hostilities are set forth in a dispatch which was sent by Seymour to the Admiralty on November 14th, 1856; and they may be thus summarised (Perhaps the best account of the origin and early part of the Second Chinese War is in G. C. Cooke's 'China', which has been freely made use of).
On October 8th, 1856, the Lorcha Arrow, with a colonial register from the governor of Hong Kong, was boarded, while at anchor at Canton, by a Chinese officer and a party of soldiers, who, notwithstanding the protest of the English master, seized twelve of the crew, bound them, carried them off, and hauled down the British flag. Mr. Parkes, her Majesty's consul, brought the matter before the Imperial High Commissioner, Yeh, and demanded the return of the twelve men by the officer who had abducted them, together with an apology, and an assurance that the flag should be respected in the future. Ultimately the men were sent back, but not in the public manner required; nor was any apology or assurance offered. On October 11th, the matter was reported to Seymour by Sir John Bowring, British Plenipotentiary in China, who suggested that an Imperial junk should be seized by way of reprisals. The making of the seizure was entrusted to Commodore the Hon. Charles Gilbert John Brydone Elliot, C.B., of the Sibylle, 40, senior officer in the Canton river, who was reinforced for the purpose with the Barracouta, 6, paddle, Commander Thomas Dyke Acland Fortescue (Posted, Sept. 7th, 1857.), and the Coromandel, steam tender. A junk was duly captured, but, as it proved to be private property, it had to be presently released. Seymour then (Oct. 18th) sent the Encounter, 14, screw, Captain George William Douglas O'Callaghan, and Samson, 6, paddle, Captain George Sumner Hand, to join the Commodore, hoping that the display of force in the river would bring the High Commissioner to reason. It soon, however, became clear that that official was bent upon resistance.
In the meantime, Mr. Parkes proceeded to consult with Seymour and Bowring at Hong Kong, where it was decided to seize the defences of Canton, it being evident that any more moderate measures would, as usual, be interpreted by the Chinese as symptoms of weakness. Seymour accordingly moved his flagship, the Calcutta, 84, Captain William King Hall, C.B., as high above the Bogue Forts as her draft would permit; and, on the morning of October 23rd, proceeded towards Canton in the Coromandel, accompanied by the Samson and Barracouta, with detachments of Royal Marines, and boats' crews, from the Calcutta, Winchester, 50, Captain Thomas Wilson, and Bittern (she had been condemned, and had been for some time awaiting sale), 12, and with the Commodore and the boats of the Sibylle. On approaching Blenheim reach, the Samson and part of the force diverged up the Macao passage to keep that channel open, and to capture Blenheim fort, while the Rear-Admiral, with the Coromandel and Barracouta, went on, and anchored above the four Barrier Forts, about five miles below the city. The boats, being sent in, took possession of the works, two of which fired ere they were taken, and consequently suffered a slight loss. In the forts " were about 150 guns, from one foot bore (this was a brass gun) to four pounders."
The Barracouta was ordered to follow the Samson; and the Commander-in-Chief, having dismantled and burnt the forts, continued his route to Canton, off which he arrived at 2 P.M., and where he learnt that boats from the Samson and Barracouta had quietly occupied the Blenheim Fort, and also the Macao Fort, a strong island position mounting 86 guns.
Mr. Parkes formally announced Seymour's arrival to the High Commissioner, and explained not only what had been done, but also that further measures of like nature would be adopted unless reparation should be forthcoming. The High Commissioner chose to remain obdurate.
On the morning of October 24th, Sir Michael landed additional Marines to aid detachments which were already ashore in Canton from the Sibylle and Encounter for the protection of the factory and he himself went in the Coromandel to join the Barracouta off Macao Fort. Upon a preconcerted signal, the Bird's Nest Fort mounting 35 guns, and a small fort, which being opposite the city, might have annoyed the factory, were seized without resistance. The Shameen Forts, at the head of the Macao passage were subsequently treated in the same way; and all the guns and ammunition in them were rendered unserviceable or were destroyed.
Detecting no signs whatsoever of submission on the part of the Chinese, but rather a more intractable disposition than ever Seymour landed the rest of his Marines and a body of small-arm men to secure the factory, and stationed boats to guard against the approach of fire rafts, and attacks by water. This necessary work was superintended by Captain William King Hall, and the Marines on shore were placed under Captain Penrose Charles Penrose, R.M., of the Winchester, while Captain Cowper, R.E., who had been sent for the purpose from Hong Kong, advised as to the strengthening of the weak points of the position. For the protection of American interests, officers, seamen, and marines were landed at the same time from the U.S. corvette Portsmouth, Commander Andrew H. Foote, U.S.N.
On October 25th possession was taken of Dutch Folly, a 50-gun fort on a small island opposite Canton; and it was garrisoned by 140 officers and men under Commander William Rue Rolland, of the Calcutta. All the defences of the city were then in British hands; and the Commander-in-Chief desired Mr. Parkes to write to the High Commissioner that operations would cease when his Excellency should be prepared satisfactorily to settle the points in dispute.
His Excellency did not reply as Seymour had anticipated. At 12.30 P.M., a body of Chinese troops, part of a much larger force in its rear, attacked the position at the factory, in spite of Mr. Parkes's warning; but Penrose, with his Marines, drove back the enemy, killing and wounding about 14 of them. On the 26th, it being Sunday, the men were allowed to rest.
Early on the morning of the 27th, Seymour caused a new letter to be written to the High Commissioner, informing him that, since satisfaction had not been offered for the Arrow outrage, operations would be continued. At Bowring's suggestion an additional demand was made to the effect that all foreign representatives should be allowed the same free access to the city, and to the authorities at Canton, as was enjoyed under treaty at the other four ports and denied at Canton only.
No reply being vouchsafed, fire was opened at 1 P.M. on the High Commissioner's compound from the 10-in. pivot gun of the Encounter and kept up at intervals of from five to ten minutes until sunset. At the same time, the Barracouta, from a position which she had taken up at the head of Sulphur Creek, shelled some troops who were on the hills behind Grough's Fort. The High Commissioner retaliated by publicly offering a reward of 30 dollars for the head of every Englishman. A few gunners of the Royal Artillery, who had joined under Captain Guy Rotton, R.A., were that day stationed in the Dutch Folly, where two 32-prs. from the Encounter had been mounted.
On the 28th, these guns opened with the object of clearing a passage to the city wall. In the course of the day, Captain the Hon. Keith Stewart, of the Nankin, 50, joined the Rear-Admiral, with 140 of his men, and a couple of field-pieces; and 65 officers and men from the U.S. corvette Levant reinforced the American guard ashore. During the following night, the enemy apparently mounted guns on the city wall; and, anxious to give them no further opportunity for improving their defences, Seymour reopened fire early on the 29th. In the course of the morning, Commander William Thornton Bate, late of the Bittern, and acting Master Charles George Johnston, at some personal risk, ascertained that the breach was practicable; and a body of Marines and small-arm men, about 300 in number, was told off for the assault, under the command of Commodore Elliot. The Rear-Admiral accompanied the advance from the boats which landed the force, and two field-pieces at 2 P.M. The seamen were led by the Commodore, Captain the Hon. Keith Stewart, and Commanders Bate and Rolland (Posted, Aug. 10th, 1857.); the Marines by Captains Penrose and Robert Boyle, R.M.; and the gun-detachment by Lieutenant James Henry Bushnell and James Stevenson Twysden; Bate gallantly showing the way and carrying an ensign to the summit of the breach, the wall on each side of which was quickly occupied. Penrose moved to the gate next on the right, and, having signalled his presence there, opened it to a further detachment which was instantly landed under Captain William King Hall, Commander Fortescue, and Flag-Lieutenant George Campbell Fowler (Com., Aug. 10th, 1857.). The gate was then blown to pieces (By Capt. Rotton, R.A), and the archway above it partially destroyed. In the meantime, the guns had been placed in the breach, and had opened on some Chinese who began a desultory fire from their gingals, by which three people were killed, and eleven (two mortally) wounded. The latter were sent to Dutch Folly where they were attended to by Surgeon Charles Abercromby Anderson, M.D., and Assistant-Surgeon George Bruce Newton. The Rear-Admiral, with the Commodore and Mr. Parkes, visited the house of the High Commissioner, and, at sunset, re-embarked with all his force, his object being, as he said in his dispatch, to demonstrate his power to enter the city. It is right, however, to add, that in the squadron the retirement was attributed to the impossibility of making a lodgement. At all events, its moral effect was bad; and it is scarcely astonishing that, in the night, the enemy filled up the breach with sandbags and timber. On the 30th and two following mornings it was cleared again by fire from the ships.
Seymour once more wrote to the High Commissioner, sending him indeed two letters, neither of which produced a satisfactory reply. In the interval, in order to protect the factory from the dangers of incendiary fires, the houses between it and the city were pulled down; and copies of the Rear-Admiral's letters, with a précis of the whole affair by Mr. Parkes, were distributed among the people through the medium of the native boatmen, who, in spite of what was going on, continued to furnish supplies to the ships. On the 31st, Captain Thomas Wilson joined, with 90 officers and men from his ship, the Winchester.
On November 3rd, the Encounter, Samson, and Dutch Folly began a slow fire on the government buildings in the Tartar city, and on Gough's Fort, and continued it till 5 P.M. Seymour also addressed yet another letter to the High Commissioner. At night an attempt was made to blow up the English clubhouse, in which were some seamen and Marines; and, in consequence, no native boats were thereafter allowed to approach the sea-wall of the factory.
On the 4th, fire was resumed for four hours, and on the 5th, one of the Samson's 68-prs. in Dutch Folly threw shells into a distant fort on a hill behind the city. That day information was received to the effect that an attack was intended upon the ships and the factory, and that twenty-three war junks were at anchor below Dutch Folly, protected by French Folly Fort, which mounted 26 guns.
Commodore Elliot was ordered to take the Barracouta, Coromandel, and ships' boats, and disperse or capture the junks; and, Commander Bate having buoyed the narrow channel, the force proceeded at daylight on the 6th, and Fortescue presently anchored the Barracouta 800 yards above French Folly, and within 200 yards of the nearest of the hostile vessels, which were all ready for action. The Barracouta, in order to prevent the Chinese from training their guns on her, fired her bow pivot gun as she approached, and so provoked the enemy, who, from more than 150 pieces, retaliated ere she could bring her broadside to bear. In about five-and-thirty minutes, however, her grape and canister, and the approaching boats, under Captain Thomas Wilson, drove the people from their vessels; and the sloop was then able to give her undivided attention to French Folly, which, being soon silenced, was taken possession of by a landing-party under Captain King Hall. Its guns and ammunition were destroyed. Two 32-prs. in Dutch Folly rendered material help during the engagement. The junks, being aground, or sunk, were burnt, with the exception of the admiral's ship, which was brought off, and two more, which escaped for the time, though one of them was afterwards burnt by Captain King Hall. Seymour mentions with praise the conduct of Commander Fortescue, of his senior Lieutenant, William Kemptown Bush, and of Lieutenant Henry Hamilton Beamish, of the Calcutta, who, under a very heavy fire, carried out the anchor by means of which the Barracouta (her hull was pierced by 28 large shot, besides smaller ones) was enabled to spring her broadside. The affair, very bloody to the enemy, cost the British a loss of but 1 killed and 4 wounded.
Canton, May 1841
There was no opposition to the landing, and Gough, without bothering to make a reconnaissance, recklessly advanced on the outlying forts protecting the metropolis, bringing his infantry under cover just out of range, where it waited until the rocket battery and 6 heavy guns could be brought up. By 8 o'clock on the morning of the 25th May the artillery was in place; after an hour's bombardment he sent his infantry charging forward, with bayonets bared. By the end of the day the protecting forts had been subdued and the British were at the city's gates, ready for a frontal assault at first light, but dawn revealed a white flag floating over the ramparts. Under a pouring rain, tents were hurriedly erected between the There was no opposition to the landing, and Gough, without bothering to make a reconnaissance, recklessly advanced on the outlying forts protecting the metropolis, bringing his infantry under cover just out of range, where it waited until the rocket battery and 6 heavy guns could be brought up. By 8 o'clock on the morning of the 25th May the artillery was in place; after an hour's bombardment he sent his infantry charging forward, with bayonets bared. By the end of the day the protecting forts had been subdued and the British were at the city's gates, ready for a frontal assault at first light, but dawn revealed a white flag floating over the ramparts. Under a pouring rain, tents were hurriedly erected between the lines for a parlay, but Gough refused to treat with anyone other than the commanding general. As no Chinese general was willing to appear, the tents were struck and a four pronged attack on the city was prepared. It was never launched, for while Gough laid his plans the Chinese appealed to the plenipotentiary, and Elliot, without consulting either Gough or Senhouse, arranged a deal.
Within the next few days the Chinese paid 5,000,000 of the 6,000,000 dollars demanded and gave security for the remaining million. Holding Canton to ransom gave the expedition something of a buccaneering aspect, as Gough noted, but the old soldier was delighted to be again on campaign, and he wrote exuberantly to his wife Frances of his 'deep unaltered gratitude to that Being who in my old age (62) enables me to serve my country'.
Tinghai September 1841.
From the ransacked Amoy, the expedition moved northward on the 5th September 1841 to attack Tinghai, on the south shore of Chu Shan Island at the mouth of the Yangtze Kiang River. Gough and Admiral Parker worked well together, and the combined sea and land assault on the city walls was a complete success; 100 iron guns, 36 brass cannons, and 540 gingalls (heavy muskets or light guns mounted on swivels) were captured for the loss of two killed and 27 wounded. The expedition then moved on to capture Chinhai, on the left bank of the Ningpo River.
Although in every battle the British were outnumbered by their opponents, they were better armed and, more importantly, better disciplined. Invariably the Tartar and Chinese troops were forced to give way before their resolute assaults.
Honours were not slow in coming to the victorious commanders; Parker was promoted vice-admiral, Gough was given the local rank of lieutenant-general and raised to the dignity of Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath.
The war was not popular in Britain, it seemed unduly protracted. Lord Ellenborough, who had replaced Lord Auckland as governor-general of India, feeling the pressure of opinion at home, rashly promised Queen Victoria that the expeditionary force would be in the Emperor's palace by her next birthday; Gough was then pressed to fulfil his quixotic pledge. Chin-Kiang-Fu, July 1842.
Chin-Kiang-Fu, July 1842.Manchu General. Gough was often accused of being reckless, but never of being dilatory. With Parker, he planned and carried out an expedition further north: a 200 mile advance up the Yangtze Kiang River. After several smaller actions near the river's mouth, the expedition, now heavily reinforced by fresh troops from India (including the 55th), occupied Shanghai. From here, Gough and Parker launched an attack upon Chin-kiang-fu, the fortified town that protected Nanking, 45 miles upriver.
The British force sent by Gough to storm Chin-Kiang-Fu was made up of the 2nd and 3rd Brigades. The 2nd, consisting of the 55th Foot, 2nd and 6th Madras NI and one company of Madras Rifles, was led by Major-General James Schoedde who was to become the Colonel of the 55th fifteen years later. The 3rd Brigade, made up of the 18th Foot, 49th Foot and the 14th Madras NI, was led by Major-General Bartley. Schoedde's brigade was to scale the walls with ladders on the east side and Bartley's to go in by the main gate on the west.
Schoedde's plan was to have the Madras Rifles and 2nd MNI create a diversion along the east wall while the 55th and 6th MNI were to scale the bastion at the north east corner. The grenadiers of the 55th led the attack and were virtually unopposed due to the success of the diversion led by Captain Simpson of the Madras Rifles. The fortress was defended by 2,300 Manchu banner-men, called Tartars by the British, who were garrisoned there with their families. They were at first preoccupied by an exchange of fire with the diversionary group but when the alarm was raised, they hurried towards the north east section where they found two columns of British infantry formed up inside their walls.
The defenders were armed with matchlocks but managed to keep the columns pinned down for a while. The more easterly column which was led by Capt. F A Reid of the 6th MNI proceeded with difficulty to reach the north east gate where there were many Manchus in the guardhouse. When the 6th managed to break in and bayonet the remaining defenders they opened the gate to let in the 2nd MNI. Both regiments then rushed to the west side to catch up with the 55th, who were led by Major C Warren.
Chin Kiang Fu Map.
The grenadiers of the 55th led by Capt. Macleane had had some trouble with determined defenders who were firing at them from a two storey guardhouse on the north wall. They suffered most of their casualties at this point, however they were reinforced by the rest of the regiment and the grenadiers rushed in to take the guardhouse after a fierce hand-to-hand fight, bayonet verses sword. The main gates on the west side was reached after four hours of fighting that had started at 8 am.
Main Gate.
Meanwhile, the 3rd Brigade occupied buildings outside the main gates. Part of the Grand Canal ran the length of the west wall. The 18th, 49th and 14th MNI were on the west bank facing the city on the other side. The gate to the fortress was cleverly constructed for defence purposes. If the outer gate was breached, the attackers had to rush along a 500 yard open space to the inner gate. This space was overlooked by high walls from which the defenders could rain down heavy fire quite comfortably.
The brigade was assisted by a party of Royal Marines and seamen who reached the gate by boat and proceeded to scale the walls while the brigade provided covering fire. Sappers placed 3 powder kegs against the outer gate and blew it open. The high walls were cleared of defenders by the marines and seamen while the brigade stormed through expecting heavy resistance at the inner gate. Instead, the gate was opened and the 55th were lined up to receive them. One final and insane attempt by the Manchu to beat off the foreigners was put down and the two brigades settled down to occupy the city. The soldiers were dismayed to find that many misinformed Manchu families had committed suicide rather than suffer a terrible fate at the hands of foreign 'monsters'.
Chin-kiang-fu was stormed on 21st July 1842. British casualties totalled only 114, of whom the dead numbered 3 officers and 31 other ranks who were either killed in battle, died of their wounds or were felled by the intense heat of that summer in China. Chinese casualties were equally light, but in his dispatch, Gough described the horrors he and his men discovered on entering the town, mute testimony to the terror that the advance of the British barbarians had struck in the hearts of the Chinese, and particularly their Tartar rulers:
'Dead bodies of Tartars in every house we entered, principally women and children thrown into wells or otherwise murdered by their own people. A great number of those who escaped our fire committed suicide after destroying their families; the loss of life has been appalling, and it may be said that the Manchu race in this city is extinct.'
And he wrote home,
'I am sick at heart of war and its fearful consequences'.
In spite of an outbreak of cholera, the British army advanced on the great city of Nanking, second city of the Empire, while Parker's ships disrupted the normally busy river commerce. Gough was preparing to assault the town's walls when the Chinese capitulated. The Treaty of Nanking was signed on board a British warship on 29th August 1842. Under its terms the Chinese agreed to the cession of Canton, Amoy, Fu-Chou, Ningpo and Shanghai, cities that became known as the treaty ports. The treaty made no mention of the opium trade, although 6 million Chinese dollars of the indemnity was given in compensation for the destruction of the opium stores of British merchants at Canton.
With the end of the war in China, Gough returned to India. For once he could find no cause for complaint in the recognition given him for his services. He was rewarded with a baronetcy and given the thanks of both houses of Parliament. The Duke of Wellington himself praised both Gough and Parker in the House of Lords.
Taku is a village near the mouth of the Pei-ho River, which flows between low, muddy banks and runs into the Gulf of Pe-cho-li. Thirty-four miles above the river is Tientsin, constructed at the fork of the Pei-ho with the Grand Canal. Tientsin is the port of Peking and a place of much commerce. Peking is the capital of China and is about eighty miles above Tientsin. In the year 1858, French and British forces had battled their way to Tientsin, passing the Taku Forts at the Pei-ho's mouth with little difficulty, the works were insufficiently armed and held by a weak garrison which put up little defence. When Tientsin was occupied, the Chinese sued for peace, thus the first period of the war ended and a treaty was signed there containing among other stipulations, an agreement that the envoys of British and France were to be received at Peking within a year, and that the treaty was to be ratified there. Now the Chinese, as soon as the allies withdrew from Tientsin, began to regret having consented to allow the foreign ambassadors to enter their capital and attempted to have it arranged so that the treaty would be ratified elsewhere.
The United Kingdom and France insisted on the original agreement and the envoys of the two countries arrived off the mouth of the Pei-ho in June 1859 and announced their intention of proceeding up the river to Peking. A British fleet, under the command of Admiral James Hope, escorted them for protection against the Chinese fortifications. They had learned that they might be opposed, so prepared themselves.
It was found that not only had the forts at the river mouth, which had easily been silenced the year before, been put into a state of repair, also, the river was blocked for stopping anything larger than rowing boats by a series of strong metal barriers. The Admiral was informed that these had been placed on the river to keep out pirates and it was promised by the Chinese government that they would be removed. Despite the promise, the local Mandarins began to start work on strengthening the defences of the river. On June 21, Admiral Hope sent the Quig commander, Hang Foo, a letter warning him that if the obstructions were not cleared out of the channel of the Pei-ho by the evening of the 24, he would remove them by force. Three days of peace passed, and the Chinese failed to remove their defences, so the Anglo-French fleet began to prepare for battle.
The Engineers in the fleet surveyed the defences and watched a junk lowering an iron stake into the river, the base was three spiked legs, on top of the legs was a 25 feet (7.6 m) spike with an angled spiked arm pointing forward. At high water, this spike would be a few feet below water. The spikes were positioned so that they could pierce through the hull of a ship coming up the river at high tide. Beyond the spikes could be seen a barrier of logs fixed together to form cylinders, 24 feet (7.3 m) long, a cable passed through the centre of each cylinder and they were used to float two chains, run from bank to bank, below the water level.
Hope had several powerful ships in his squadron, none of these could take a direct part in the coming fight though. This was due to the entrance of the Pei-ho, which was obstructed by a wide stretch of shallows, the depth of water on the bar being only two feet at low tide, and a little more than eleven at high tide. Because of this, the British could only rely on eleven steam powered gunboats for the actual fight against the Chinese forts. The Royal Navy gunboats were small wooden steamers of light draft built during the Crimean War for service in the shallow waters of the Baltic and Black Seas.
Admiral Hope crossed the bar with his eleven boats and anchored below the forts on the June 23. The gunboats were; HMS Plover, HMS Banterer, HMS Forester, HMS Haughty, HMS Janus, HMS Kestrel, HMS Lee, HMS Opossum and HMS Starling all of four guns apiece. HMS Nimrod and HMS Cormorant, both of six guns, were also present. Each of the gunboats had a crew of around fifty or sixty officers and men, so that the eleven small steamers together brought forty-eight guns and 500 men into the battle. The more heavily armed steamers, outside the sand bar, were to offload another 500 or 600 men, marines and sailors via steam launches, boats and an unknown number of junks. This force was meant to be used as a landing party to attack the forts once they had been silenced.
A French frigate, the Duhalya, was also on the scene but was too large to engage in the battle. Her crew would participate in the final land engagement. None of the Britons expected that the ensuing battle would prove a difficult task. The Taku Forts consisted of many structures, a big Chinese fort on the south side protected the coast, with earthen ramparts stretching nearly half a mile long, and guard towers behind them. At the other end of the complex sat another large fortress on the north bank of the river, many other smaller forts sat in between the two larger forts. Though the British believed that only a small Quig garrison held the defences, this due to a previous bombardment and attack in which the British and French successfully captured the positions. After this engagement it was found that hundreds of artillery pieces protected the forts with hundreds of Qing Army troops.
Naval engagement
On the evening of June 24, no answer having been received from the Quig commander, Rear Admiral Hope announced that the attack would be made next day and after dark the Admiral sent in one of his officers, Captain George Willes, and a few enlisted men to examine the obstacles in the river and see what he could do to remove them. Three armed launches, filled with explosives, accompanied Captain Willes. Rowing up quietly under cover of the darkness, Willes discovered the row of iron stakes. The first barrier was just opposite the lower side of the big South Fort as it was called. After passing cautiously between two of the spikes, the British sailors rowed up the river for a quarter of a mile when they came to a second barrier. The barrier was a heavy cable of cocao fibre and two chain cables, all strewn across the channel, twelve feet apart and supported at every thirty feet by a floating boom, securely anchored up and down the river's flow. Two of the British boats were left to place a mine under the middle of the second floating barrier. Captain Willes pushed on farther into the darkness, headed for a third obstacle in the Pei-ho of two huge rafts, moored as to leave only a narrow channel in middle of the waterway, this passage was also defended with large iron spikes.
Willes got out on one of the rafts and got on hands and knees and after investigating the situation, Willes decided that mere ramming with a gunboat's prow would not be enough to displace the barricade. As he lay on the raft, he could see the Chinese sentries on the riverbank, but was unseen by them. Returning to his boat, he rode the Pei-ho's current back down to the second barrier. By this time the mine was ready and once the fuse was lit, the Britons pulled down the stream to the main flotilla. The resulting explosion revealed the Briton's presence to a Chinese artillery battery who proceeded with firing a few cannon shots from the South Fort, but the cannon balls missed. The small expedition was regarded as a complete success; despite Willes failure to destroy two of the three barriers. Before the next morning the Chinese had repaired the space blown clear by the mine, thus rendering Willes mission as pointless. On Saturday morning, June 25, reportedly a bright and hot day, the gunboat flotilla cleared for action. Admiral Hope’s orders were that nine of the ships should anchor close to the first barrier and bring their guns to bear on the forts, while the two others break through the barriers and clear the way for a further advance.
High tide came at 11:30 am, and it was intended that all of the gunboats would be in position by that time. However, the difficulty of moving so many ships in a narrow channel no more than 200 yards wide, with a strong current and with mud banks covered by shallow water on each side, moving gunboats through the channel proved to be a great risk and it was not long before Banterer and Starling were aground. During all of the initial manoeuvres, the Chinese forts had not shown any sign of life. Their embrasures were closed; a few black flags flew on the upper works, not a single soldier was seen on the mud ramparts. Plover, with all steam and Admiral Hope aboard, was close to the first barrier of iron spikes with Opossum, now commanded by Captain Willes. The task of Opossum was to destroy the first obstacle. At 2:00 pm upon a signal from the Rear Admiral, Opossum attached a cable, passed it over one of her winches, reversed her engines, and tried rip the spike up and out of the river bottom. It was so well emplaced that it was half an hour of work, to remove two obstacles and place buoys to mark the opening. The British commander in Plover now steamed through the gap opened by Opossum, followed in succession by other gun boats.
A gun battery of the Taku Forts
The two little gun boats approached the floating barrier. It was at this point the Chinese in the South Fort opened fire from a leftmost rampart. Immediately along the walls of all the forts; banners were raised on every flag pole, embrasures were opened, and guns pushed out. From about 600 yards away on the leftmost rampart and from the front of the North Fort, the Chinese artillery rapidly fired amazingly accurate cannon shots, aimed at the leading ships. General Hope Grant's signal came, "Engage the enemy," flew from the masthead of Plover; her four guns opened, three of them on the big fort to the left. Two hundred yards off, the other gun responded to the North Fort. After the other ten gunboats received the signal, they anchored and began to open fire on the Chinese positions. The battle was a close quarters gunnery action, the Chinese fire, instead of slackening from British return fire, seemed to have grown fiercer. The British later reported that when one gun and crew were killed by their fire, another gun and crew would quickly be filling the embrasure. Chinese troops fired so steadily and aimed that for years afterwards many of the British veterans believed that trained European artillerymen were actually firing the Chinese gun batteries. After less than twenty minutes, Plover had thirty-one killed or wounded out of a forty-man crew.
Her commander, Lieutenant Rason, was cut in half by a round shot; James Hope was wounded in the thigh but refused to leave the deck and Captain McKenna, who was attached to his staff, was killed while at Hope's side. Only nine unwounded men were left on board, but they, with the help of some of their fellow wounded crew, kept two of the guns in action. They fought on a deck covered with blood and bits of splintered wood. Around this time the American steamer Toey-Wan of the Pacific Squadron arrived and anchored outside the bar. Commodore Josiah Tattnall of the United States Navy was on board, and he went to Plover, under fire from the Chinese guns, to offer assistance to the British. Commodore Tattnall, a veteran of the War of 1812, put aside his mistrust of the British and justified his presence by stating "blood is thicker than water", a now famous saying. The United States government, as a neutral power, did not order any American vessels to proceed in this attack. Tattnall offered to send in his steam launch to help evacuate the dead and wounded from danger, an offer which was gratefully accepted by the Britons. When Tattnall left Rear Admiral Hope for Powhatan in his launch, he was forced to wait a moment at Plover 's port side for his men who had come aboard with the Commodore. A moment later a few men returned, covered in black powder marks and sweaty from excitement.
The American Commodore asked, "What have you been doing, you rascals?" "Don’t you know we're neutrals" "Beg pardon, sir," said one of the men, "but they were a bit short-handed with the bow-gun, and we thought it no harm to give them a hand while we were waiting." At 3:00 pm, James Hope ordered Plover, now nearly destroyed, to drop down the river to a safer station, and he transferred his flag to Opossum. A few minutes later, a round shot crashed through Opossum s rigging close to the Admiral, knocking him down and breaking three of his ribs; a bandage was fastened around his chest and he was seated on the deck of the gunboat where he still kept his command. Later on, he even insisted on being lifted into its barge in order to visit and encourage the crews of Haughty and Lee. "Opossum, ahoy!" called an officer from Haughty, "Your stern is on fire." "Can't help it", shouted back Opossum 's commander. "Can’t spare men to put it out. Have only enough to keep our guns going." After this Opossum was apparently relieved and gave up the fight for a while to steam down to the first barrier. Lee and Haughty now bore the brunt of the engagement, they suffered severely. Everything on the two gunboat's decks was turned into scraps from Chinese fire and Lee was hit well in several places at and below the water line.
Woods, her boatswain, informed her commander, Lieutenant Jones, that unless holes in his hull could be plugged Lee would sink, as her pumps and engine could not get the water out as fast as it was rushing in. "Well, then, we must sink," said the lieutenant; "you can’t get at the worst of the holes from inside, and I'm not going to order a man to go over the side with the tide running down like this, and our propeller going." Woods replied by promptly volunteering to go over the side and see what he could do. His commander warned him that the screw must be kept going, or the ship would drift out of place. Besides the possibility of drowning, Woods would risk being killed by the propeller blades; but Woods, went over the side anyway, with a line around his waist and with a few plugs and rags in his hands. when Woods dove in, he was almost swept up by the screw several times. Fortunately for him, he was capable of escaping the screw and successfully plugged several shot-holes. All of this became unnecessary though because Lee continued to fill up with river water and had to give up her place in the fight to run aground, preventing her sinking. Cormorant which was now the flagship, replaced the grounded Lee. Plover, after severe damage was sunk just after Admiral Hope transferred to the other gunboat. Hope suffered from fainting at some point, so his doctors persuaded him to send himself to one of the three steamships on the other side of the bar. Captain Shadwell, the next senior officer, then took command of the attacking fleet. At 5:30 pm and after three hours of fighting, Kestrel sank at her anchors. Of the eleven gunboats, six were sunk, disabled or put out of action.
Land engagement
The fire of the Chinese forts was slackening though and at 6:30 pm, after a rushed meeting aboard Cormorant, it was resolved to commence with a land attack of marines and sailors who had been waiting in small boats and inside the bar. Their objective was to capture the South Fort by means of a frontal assault. The time was after 7:00 pm and very little daylight was left for the landing party, when the boats were towed in by Opossum, Toey Wan and one of the armed steamships, being used by the American Commodore.
Captain Shadwell took command of the landing party, which was made up of sailors under Captain Vansittart, and Commanders Heath and Commerell. Sixty French sailors, under a Commander Tricault, of Duhalya accompanied Captain Shadwell. The marines were under Colonel Lemon and a party of engineers and sappers with ladders for scaling walls. As the boats pulled into the shore, the fire from the North Fort had ceased, and only an occasional shot was fired from the long rampart of the South fort. The landing zone area was 500 yards (460 m) in front of the rightmost bastion of the South Fort, below the stakes. The tide had fallen so far that it was not possible to get very near to the actual shore, this made the landing of almost 1,200 men more difficult than it could have been if the tide was still high. The column of land forces had to make its way across 500 yards (460 m) to 600 yards (550 m) of mud, weeds, and small pools of water, the ground was reportedly so soft in places that a man could sink to his waist if they step in the wrong spot. As soon as the men of the first landing boat stepped ashore, the entire front of the South Fort responded with a large salvo of cannon fire. The silence of the Chinese guns was obviously a ruse meant to lure the British and French into making a land attack. The plan of the Chinese worked perfectly. Once hearing the sounds of the South Fort, the gunboats resumed fire until the land force began their advance on the fort.
The Chinese gunners concentrated their cannons, swivel guns and rockets on the landing party. As the Britons and French came within range, Chinese riflemen and archers opened upon them from a crowded crest of the South Fort's rampart. As the Anglo-French shore party struggled onwards, round shot, grape shot and balls from the Chinese swivel guns, muskets, rockets and arrows, fell among the allies in showers according to survivors. It was very hard to return the fire as many rifles were full of mud and their ammunition was wet. Captain Shadwell was one of the first men wounded; Vansittart fell, with one leg wounded by a musket ball. Dozens of dead and wounded lay on the field. The wounded had to be carried back to the boats to save them from sinking in the mud. Three broad ditches lay between the landing zone and the fort. No more than 150 men reached the second of these and only fifty advanced to the third which was just below the Chinese rampart. The British and French ammunition cartridges were nearly all useless from moist terrain and had only one scaling ladder by the time they reached the wall. The ladder was raised against the rampart, and ten men were climbing up it when a volley of small arms fire from above killed three men and wounded five others.
The ladder was then thrown back by the Chinese and broken. The British and French were forced to retreat to their boats after facing firm resistance. At 10:00 pm the wounded were sent back to the boats. The sky was dark but was kept lit by the Chinese who burnt blue lights and launched rockets and fireballs at the retiring French and Britons. After this the battle was over. Sixty-eight men were killed in the land attack and nearly 300 wounded. Twelve of the dead were Frenchmen, along with twenty-three of the wounded, the French commander was also wounded. Eighty-one Britons in total died as result of the fighting with a total of 345 wounded. Sometime during the battle, an American launch, evacuating wounded and with Commodore Josiah Tattnall on board, was attacked by Chinese batteries, one American sailor was killed, and one other was slightly wounded, the Commodore was unharmed. Several of the landing boats had been sunk while waiting on the river bank during the land battle. When the Anglo-French force retreated, many had to wait in the water till they could be extracted. At 1:00 am on June 26, the last men of the landing party re-embarked their ships. The remaining gunboats retreated down to the bar. Another shore party was sent in later that morning, their mission was to blow up or burn the grounded gunboats that could not be freed and were in threat of being captured by the Chinese, whether this mission was completed or not is not known, though two of the grounded gunboats are said to have been re-floated. Chinese strength and casualties are unknown.
The battle on the Pei-ho river ended. The disaster put an end to further attempts to reach Peking.
The course of events was analysed, previous battles against the Chinese had been easily won and this may had led to underestimating the enemy. The stakes and barrier, apart from stopping the gun boats simply sailing past the forts had done little damage. The reduction in fire from the fort leading to the decision to send in the land force was a trick that the Allied force fell for. Making the land assault at low tide, leaving the troops to wallow exhausted in the mud would have been avoided if the attack had been made at high tide, when the small boats could have landed the troops almost under the fort walls.
Within the next year an allied force of British and French troops, under General Sir James Hope Grant and General de Montauban, launched an expedition. This engagement led to the 1860 Third Battle of Taku Forts in which the allies were successful, opening the route to Peking. The Second Opium War ended soon after.
Soon after Canton's capitulation, Gough received the good news that he had at last been appointed colonel of the 87th Foot and that he had also been named commander-in-chief of the Madras army, though he was asked to stay put until the war was over. There were at this time significant changes in the high command in China: Sir Le Fleming Senhouse died on board ship off Hong Kong and was replaced by Rear-Admiral William Parker. To Gough's delight, Captain Elliot was replaced as plenipotentiary by Sir Henry Pottinger. Under the new triumvirate a campaign against the island city of Amoy was undertaken with complete success.
British successes made little impression on the Emperor of China, for he was under the pleasant illusion that his armies were winning the war. Throughout the China campaign Gough exhibited a clear understanding of the rough, unprincipled nature of his soldiery and a fine regard for the lives and property of non-combatants. In general orders he reminded his troops: 'Britain has gained as much by her mercy and forbearance, as by the gallantry of her troops. An enemy in arms is always a legitimate foe, but the unarmed, or the suppliant for mercy, of whatever country or whatever colour, a true British soldier will always spare'. Before the attack on Amoy he warned, 'Private property must be held inviolable; the laws of God and man prohibit plunder; and the individual appropriation of the goods of others, which in England would be called robbery, deserves no better name in China'. His exhortation was unheeded. When his troops entered Amoy, they rampaged through its streets in a frenzy of destruction. In a letter to Frances he wrote,
'The moment a house is broken open... Every article is destroyed. The wanton waste of valuable property is heart-rending and has quite sickened me of war'.  ingeniously presenting defeats as victories in their dispatches kept him pacified. Amoy had fallen because his forces had burned and sunk five of the barbarians' warships and a steamer, they explained. 'The south wind blew the smoke in our soldiers' eyes, and Amoy was lost'.

1859. Saturday 22nd October. By Order-in-Council, a Commandant, Barrack master, Paymaster, Surgeon, Assistant Surgeon, and another Adjutant, Lieutenant and Quartermaster, and one Quartermaster were allowed; the strength of the Artillery Companies being 2,992 as against an Infantry Divisional strength of 3,472 each.
The wording of the Order-in-Council says: ''The Artillery companies have hitherto been attached to the Portsmouth Division; but the present establishment of Artillery Companies being nearly equal to the strength of a Divisional Headquarters, much inconvenience is felt at Portsmouth, in consequence of all arrangements for the accounts of the said Companies having to pass through the Commandant of that Division; and this inconvenience is now greatly increased, as the Artillery Companies are stationed at a considerable distance from the Headquarters of the Division, and on the opposite side of Portsmouth Harbour. It will therefore be desirable, for the benefit of the Corps generally, to place the Artillery Companies on a more efficient 40 to 41. (Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1859. Saturday 22nd October. The formation of a separate Royal Marine Artillery Division.

1859 – 1872. The Island of San Juan. In 1855 as it seemed impossible for Canada and the United States to settle definitely to which this island belonged, a provisional agreement was made under which it was jointly occupied by a small garrison from each nation. In 1859 however, General Harney the C.O. in Washington Territory largely reinforced the Americans contingent and made an unqualified declaration that the Island belonged to the United States. This brought a British squadron on the scene which, after some negotiation between the British and the United States Government, was withdrawn on the understanding that the joint occupation by small bodies of troops should be continued for the present. General Harning was removed from his commanded in 1860, and for the next twelve years the British government was represented by a detachment of Royal Marines, its first commanding officer being Captain George Bazalgette. The British and the American detachments continued on terms of good fellowship until their two governments decided to have the question of ownership of the Island arbitrated upon by the German Emperor, who on Monday 21st October 1872 decided in favour of the United States. The Royal Marines detachment then commanded by Captain W.A. Delacombe, evacuated the Island on the 22nd of the following month. The old block house erected by the Royal Marines to protect their camp on the shore was still standing in 1905 and was still a source of much interest to tourists. The sites of both the British and the American camps are now marked by marble and granite columns with suitable inscriptions.

1859. The numbers were 16,995, in 112 Divisional and 16 Artillery Companies. - (Order-in-Council Saturday 30 April). A considerable increase in officers was effected41 by placing all the Adjutants, Quartermasters, Gunnery and Musketry Instructors on the Staff, instead of being borne on the strength of the Companies as hitherto.
RMA Division - The great event of the- year was the creation of the separate Artillery Division, but the formation of the RMA as a separate Corps did not take place for another three years. (Sic) (H. E. Blumberg.  Devonport January 1934.)

1859 - 1919. The Marines uniform of the day. (taken from 'Britain's Sea Soldiers: Vol 1 by Cyril Field RMLI).

1860. Wednesday 28th March. Brigade from Niger took a Pah at Omata.

1860. Wednesday 27th June. The Fight at Pukitakaneri in New Zealand.

1860. Friday 6th July. The gun vessel HMS Leven was anchored close to HMS Acteon in Hula Shan Bay, about 60 miles north of Port Arthur. Lieutenant Arthur, after whom the Port Arthur was named, was in command of the Leveri. As he was sitting at breakfast with the second master a pistol shot was fired at him through the skylight by his servant, a marine, who was in trouble owing to some irregularity in connection with the Commanding Officer's wine. The following extracts are taken from a contemporary Journal kept by an officer:
'July 9th, 8.30am - Lieutenant Commander dangerously wounded, and second master wounded, by pistol shots fired by a Marine. Sent to Acteon for assistance.
10.45am - weighed and proceeded under steam. 7pm rounded Liau-ti-Shan.
July 10th, 2.15am - anchored in Ta-Liau-Wan (Dalny).
July 12th, 8am - sent ship's company to attend a court martial;
2.30pm court martial concluded - prisoner condemned to death.
July 13th, I pm - beats of all ships assembled round to witness execution;
1.3Opm - prisoner executed by hanging by the neck from the fore yardarm starboard side;
2pm - lowered the body; enclosed same in two hammocks.
July 14th, 4.30 am - weighed and proceeded out of Ta-Liau-Wan;
6.40am - committed the remains of the late Private John Dalliger to the deep, Cape Rock bearing S.E. 1 miles. Expended hammocks 2, round shot 10.'
From  the book 'Michael Bray' by 'Taffrail'. (Sic)

1860. Friday 13th July. The last man to be hanged from the yardarm in the Royal Navy was Marine John Dallinger, aboard HMS Leven in the River Yangtze, China.  Dallinger had been found guilty of two attempted murders.

1860. Tuesday 21st August. The storming of the Peiho forts.

1860. Thursday 23rd August. Surrender of Tienstsin to Coromandel and consorts.

1860. August. Battery at Tangkoo stormed and junks destoyed.

1860. Tuesday 18th September. The fight at Chang-Kia-Wan.

1860. Friday 21st September. The fight at Tung Chow by the Britsh squadron.

1860. Saturday 13th October. The taking of Pekin.

1860. A battery of mounted Royal Marines fought in Mexico during the Civil War.

1860. Captain Edward Lawes Pym RMLI. Testimonials of Service. Since Marines (whatever their name, i.e.'! Marines", "Naval Infantry", "Infanteria de Marina", "Corps do Fuzilerios", etc) have been raised, they have combined unique qualities and skills which have made them invaluable for general and specialized duties. Initially combining the expertise of land soldiers and sailors of the sea, in the 20th Century, they have added various skills associated directly or indirectly with the air. Thus governments or their military representatives in various operational areas or stations have used Marines in a variety of ways to accomplish diversion missions. To them has devolved many tasks not necessarily associated with their primary expertise linked to their being "soldiers of the sea". Not only have they been given such assignments, but Marines have been expected to accomplish them; these expectations come from the governments they serve, their commanders, and of course the general public.
Through the centuries, expected and unexpected missions have come in all parts of the world, in various locations, amongst various peoples, and within many cultures. As time passes, most of these have been forgotten. But the expectations, demands, and concepts remain. This
was true when such missions have been assigned in America, Africa, China, Korea, the Middle East, or Europe in the 17th to 20th Centuries, or in the last decade in such diverse places as Beirut, Lebanon or Northern Ireland.
The below citations refer to duty Royal Marines performed in Canton, China, between 1858-1860. Although the reference is to their commander, the then Captain Edward Lawes Pym, the personalized praise of course is a tribute to the service of all Marines who served under
him. Although the dates, places, and events described refer to a China of the mid-19th Century, in concept the tasks, dangers, and accomplishments are equally applicable to the recent past, contemporary present, or possible future.
Below are reproduced two testimonials to Captain Pym. These were found in his record of service, placed there at his request in 1875. There they have remained until today. They can be found in the Public Record Office, in the Records of Service, Royal Marine Officers, ADM 196/59, p. 121. After the two letters are details of the career of General Pym in the Royal Marines, extracted from his record of service. These present, al-be-it in abbreviated from, some sense of the type of career he had in the Corps of the 19th Century as it slowly made the transition into the "modern era" of military professionalism, warfare linked to major technological advances, and the mass conflict in which the total resources of both state and society were committed to victory or defeat.

The praise is not just diplomatic language from inexperienced officials. The British author of Testimonial 1, (Sir) Harry S Parkes, had extensive experience in Asia, especially China, His detailed biography can be found in the Dictionary of National Biography, Volume XLIII, pp. 296-304 (published in 1895). The addressee of Testimonial No 1, and the writer of Testimonial No 2, Major General Sir Charles T Van Straubenzee, KCB, likewise was experienced in colonial service and wars, to include extensive duty in India and China; his detailed biography can be found in the Dictionary of National Biography, Volume LVIII, pp. 146-147 (published in 1899). (Sic)   (By Lt Cal Donald F Bittner TJSMCR (RMHS).

1861. The Royal Marines moved into the existing barracks at Deal in Kent. Sometimes referred to as the Walmer Barracks. They consisted of adjacent Cavalry and Infantry barracks, and separate hospitals for the Army and Navy, later to be known as the South Barracks. The hospitals were also turned into Barracks and were known as North and East Barracks.

1861 - 1865. The Maori Wars in New Zealand.

1861. Wednesday 2nd January. The Band of the Royal Marine Artillery, Bandmaster Thomas Smyth, was formed at Fort Cumberland Portsmouth.

1861. Thursday 21st February. Saba in Gambia.

1861. Monday 25th February. Porto Novo in Lagos. Royal Marines and seamen from HMS Brune, HMS Bloodhound and HMS Alecto.

1861. Thursday 25th April. Battle of Saba. Brune, Bloodhound, and Alecto engaged.

1861. Friday 26th April. Enemy defeated at Porto Novo. Brune, Bloodhound, and Alecto engaged.

1861. Saturday 4th May. Depot Royal Marines. There appears to have been a detachment of Royal Marines at Deal; but on Tuesday 7th May of that year the CO, Lieutenant Colonel W R Maxwell is addressed as Commanding Depot RM Deal, so that it is evident that the decision to form a depot for training recruits had been made, and steps were promptly taken to carry it out. On Wednesday 8th May detachments from Chatham and Woolwich Divisions were sent for duty, shortly after followed by 100 Recruits from each Division to commence training. They were accommodated in the East Barracks and by August of that year the Depot was in full swing. All recruits for the Corps were sent there, those of the requisite standard being allowed to volunteer for the RMA, until the removal of the RMA Company in 1897 to Eastney. At first the Depot was commanded by a Lieutenant Colonel, but later by a Colonel Second Commandant. As it expanded they took over the South and Cavalry Barracks, and later the North Barracks was built.

1861. Tuesday 10th December. Attack on Massougha. Brune, Bloodhound, and Alecto engaged.

1861. Thursday 19th December. Attack on Madonika. Brune, Bloodhound, and Alecto engaged.

1861 - 1862. A Royal Marine Battalion served in Mexico. England, France and Spain sent combined expeditions to demand guarantee for the safety of their subjects living in Mexico, and to urge their claims to the repayment of money borrowed by the Mexican Government, which had recently suspended payment. The British Contingent consisted of 4 officers and 63 RMA gunners and 28 Officers, N.C.O.s and Privates of the RMLI Lieutenant Colonel S.N. Lower RMLI was in Command. On Wednesday 8th January 1982 the combined expedition consisting of 600 Spanish and 2,600 French troops besides the British Marines landed and occupied Vera Cruz. The French had already 5,600 men in Mexico, and their claims on the Mexican Government became so extortionate that the British and Spanish Governments withdrew their troops on receiving a promise of repayment of the sums their countries had advanced, and the Royal Marine Battalion returned home disappointed in its expectation of seeing active service. (Author Unknown)

1862. Friday 11th April. An act to enable Her Majesty to issue Commissions to officer of Her Majesty's Land Forces and Royal Marines, and to Adjutants and Quartermasters of Her Militia and Volunteer Forces, without affixing Her Royal Sign Manual thereto.

1862. Thursday 1st May. Ningpo stormed and carried by Naval brigade ashore.

1862. Monday 12th May. Tsingpoo stormed.

1862. Saturday 17th May. Najaor captured.

1862. Friday 24th October. Kahding stormed and captured.

1862. The RMA & RMLI became a separate Corps.

1862 - 1870. The last small force of Marines served at Cape York in Northern Queensland Australian.

1862. The Marines name was once again slightly altered to that of the Royal Marine Light Infantry.

1862. We have all heard the haunting song, 'The Last Post.' It's the song that gives us the lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes. But, do you know the story behind the song?
If not, I think you will be interested to find out about its humble beginnings. Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the American Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.
During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment.
When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead. The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.
The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted. The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral. The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate. But, out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician. The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform. This wish was granted. The haunting melody, we now know as 'The Last Post' used at military funerals was born.
The words are:
Day is done.
Gone the sun.
From the lakes.
From the hills.
From the sky.
All is well.
Safely rest.
God is nigh.
Fading light.
Dims the sight.
And a star.
Gems the sky.
Gleaming bright.
From afar.
Drawing nigh.
Falls the night.
Thanks and praise.
For our days.
Neath the sun.
Neath the stars.
Neath the sky.
As we go.
This we know.
God is nigh.
I too have felt the chills while listening to 'The Last Post'. But I have never seen all the words to the song until now. I didn't even know there was more than one verse. I also never knew the story behind the song and I didn't know if you had either, so I thought I'd pass it along. I now have an even deeper respect for the song than I did before. Remember those lost and harmed while serving their country. Also remember those who have served and returned; and for those presently serving in the Armed Forces.
Author Wayne Fitzgerald. Editor of Cosantóir Magazine. (Irish Defence Forces Magazine)

1863 - 1865. Operations in Japan involved a Royal Marine Battalion and Fleet Marines who occupied the batteries at Simonoski and were involved in other landings.

1863. Saturday 1st August. Reconnaissance of Paparoa. (Brigade from Harrier).

1863. Saturday 15th August. The bombardment of Kagoshima in Japan.

1863. Monday 16th - 25th November. Miranda and Esk in Thames, New Zealand.

1863. Friday 20th November. The capture of Rangariri Pah in New Zealand.

1864. Eastney Barracks was first occupied.

1864. Monday 22nd February. The Maories were defeated at Ta Awamuta and Rangiawhia.

1864. Thursday 28th April. Maketu shelled by Falcon and evacuated.

1864. Friday 29th April. The attack on the Gate Pah near Tauranga.

1864. Friday 29th April. Assault on Te Papa, Brigade repulsed.

Lieutenant Robert J. Pascoe. C.O.

Sergeant Morris Guiver. Acting Store keeper.

Corporal Daniel Dent. Supervising.

Charles Jarvis. Charles Jarvis.

Edgar Baxter. Shepherd.

Samuel Wilkinson. Carpenter.

Alias Barnes. Labourer.

Thomas Colwell. Drayman.

William O’Regan. Labourer.

George Tucker. Labourer.

John Saich. Labourer.

John Smith. Carpenter.

Edward Wallis. Carpenter.

William Carmichael. Supervisor Lance Corporal.

Chas Copley. Gardener.

Thomas Rice. Blacksmith.

James Bosworth. Carpenter.

Richard Whele. Carpenter.

William Timms. Labourer.

1864. August - July. A Royal Marine detachment commanded by Lieutenant Robert J. Pascoe RMLI (a Chatham Officer) and twenty men from Portsmouth, having been seconded and arrived at the Somerset settlement on Cape York in Northern Queensland Australia. (a distance of 7600 miles). They were to spend the next three years in isolation. The Officer and four men eventually returned to Sheerness in the UK on Wednesday 18th December 1867. While seven Marines chose to stay in Australia and did not leave until Monday 27th January 1868 when they were picked up by HMS Virgo.

The Somerset Settlement Royal Marine detachment.

1864. Sunday 21st August. On the official Foundation of the settlement of Somerset on Cape York in Northern Queensland Australia, a guard of honour was formed by the Royal Marines, in full uniform with Commander the Honourable J. Carnegie representing the Imperial Government. Mr John Jardine, the Police magistrate represented the Queensland government. The 17 year old Royal Marine bugler C. Clayton, sounded the appropriate bugle calls, and the settlement was founded. Somerset was unique at the time being the only port on the Queensland coast created for reasons other than as an export location of primary produce.

The early days of Somerset were far from peaceful. It is recorded that five Marines were speared at different times. One of these was Marine John Saich who, whilst on sentry duty, was speared and killed. Saich was the youngest of the Marines at only 22. He was to be the only Marine who was to lose his life at Somerset. The first few months proved to be the most vulnerable for the Marines. Having travelled from England to a new and very different environment a time of adjustment was required. It has been said that the Marines, having been trained to fight from the deck of a warship, they were no match for the Aborigines in their native bush. With no further deaths or wounding’s of Marines after the first few months, it would be difficult to sustain this argument. Acclimatisation was necessary and the Marines were no exception. Subjected to a minimum of supervision and parade ground routine, the undress uniform would have been the 'rig of the day' for much of the time.

James Bosworth. RMLI. Age 27 Cost of discharge £20 Died NSW 1916 Wife Elizabeth Belligen.

Charles Jarvis. RMLI. Age 38 Cost of discharge £15.

Johnathon Lawton RMLI. Age 26 Cost of discharge £20 Died NSW 1874 Wife Mary Darcy.

Thomas Rice. RMLI. Age 39 Cost of discharge £20 Wife Tereasa.

John Smith. RMLI. Age 25 Cost of discharge £20.

Richard Whele. RMLI. Age 25 Cost of discharge £20.

William Young. RMLI. Age 25 Cost of discharge £20.

Royal Marines who remained at th Somerset settlement for passage to Sydney and eventually discharge.

1864. The Rifle used by the Royal Marines at this time was the .577 Enfield percussion musket.

1864. Monday 5th - Tuesday 6th September. Action with the Japanese at Simonoseki. Lieutenant Cononel Suther and 2 battalions of Royal Marines.

1864. Wednesday 7th September. HMS Salamanda left the Somerset settlement (Cape York in Northern Queensland Australia) to return south, leaving the settlers and Royal Marines on their own with no support. The first serious problem arose with the Aboriginals the day after HMS Salamander departed. Corporal Daniel Dent and Marine John Smith were attacked by a group of Aboriginals. Dent was found by John Jardine, after his son had raised the alarm, running back to the settlement with a spear protruding from his shoulder. On arrival back at the camp it was discovered that Smith was quite seriously wounded, with two spear wounds, one spear had entered the right breast, passed through the ribs and had punctured a lung. Doctor Richard Cannon treated both men, and decided that Smith should be returned south to Sydney military hospital at the first opportunity. Jardine had seen the perpetrators of the attack and had recognised six of them. The next day Jardine with a party of Marines set out in the 30 foot whale boat to look for the Aboriginals who had attacked the two Marines. A canoe was seen and the occupants identified as the six they were seeking. They were shot and killed by the Marines and the canoe confiscated. Upon their return, Jardine gave the canoe to the Gudang tribe who were surprised as they had no missing canoes.

Not only had the Marine Detachment at Somerset been isolated, but the Salamander's crew had also felt insolated from the Royal Navy. Desertions and Absence Without Leave had been very high on the Salamander. During her three years stay these offences had been committed 104 times.

HMS Salamander Royal Marines detachment:

C/Sergeant John Bartley RMLI.

Corporal James Caines RMLI.

Bugler Charles Clayton RMLI.

John Evans RMLI.

John Brennan RMLI. AWOL 13th June 1864.

Joseph Easling RMLI.

Thomas Morris RMLI. AWOL 4th November 1864.

Edward Wigfall RMLI. Died 24th April 1865 Brisbane hospital.

Thomas Jarrett RMLI. Invalided to England 14th December 1865.

Henry Brown RMLI.

George Winter RMLI. Died Typhus 6th November 1867.

William Seaman RMLI. AWOL 13th October 1864.

Daniel Armstrong RMLI.

John Davis RMLI. AWOL 18th October 1864.

Peter McCarthy RMLI.

Robert Leitch RMLI. AWOL 7th March 1865.

John West RMLI. AWOL 7th March 1865.

Mathew Waterfield RMLI. Pensioned 29th June 1866.

Daniel Hambleton RMLI. On return to England in Hasler Hospital.

William Biggs RMLI.

William Young RMLI. Transferred to Somerset detachment.

1864. Friday 21st October. The official founding of the new colony at Somerset in North Queensland Australia, policed by a detachment of Royal Marines.

1865. Sunday 5th February. Edward Nicolls RM died at his residence in Blackheath, London. His widow, Lady Eleanor Nicolls, survived her husband by 15 years. Having suffered an injury in an accident at home on 14th November 1880, she died ten days later at the age of 88.

Promotions, awards, and titles:

Nicolls's promotions are noted in the Hart's Annual Army List editions of 1840 through 1865. The commissions of 18th and 19th century officers of British Marines were issued by appointment and promotions in the Corps respected seniority. Appointments and promotions were not open to purchase.

Second Lieutenant (H.M. Marine Forces) Tuesday 24th March 1795.

First Lieutenant (H.M. Marine Forces) Wednesday 27th January 1796.

Note: His Majesty's Royal Marine Forces were redesignated as the Royal Marines (RM) by George III in 1802. In 1855 the Royal Marines became the Royal Marines Light Infantry (RMLI). In 1862 their title was again modified to become the Royal Marine Light Infantry. Sir Edward Nicolls retired from the Royal Marines in 1835 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

For his dashing courage in the action of Saturday 5th November 1803, 1st Lt Nicolls was awarded by the committee of Lloyds with a sword valued at £30. On the same occasion a naval officer who had taken no part in the action was promoted in rank by application to the Admiralty.

Captain (Royal Marines) Thursday 25th July 1805.

Specially mentioned in the 'Gazette' in 1807, 1808, and 1809. Major by Brevet (British Army List) Wednesday 8th August 1810.

Lieutenant Colonel (Local Rank by authority of Vice Admiral Cochrane as Commander of a "battalion" of the Corps of Colonial Marines, from July 1814 in the Bahamas until after his departure from Spanish West Florida in May 1815.

Awarded a pension of £250 annually on Thursday 28th December 1815 for a total of 24 serious battle wounds suffered; and awarded a 2nd sword by Britain's Patriotic Fund. Lieutenant Colonel by Brevet (British Army List) Thursday 12th August 1819.

Although a titular (Brevet) Lieutenant Colonel on the British Army List, for purposes of seniority, and receiving an additional pension for serious wounds from 1815 on, General Edward Nicolls was paid as a Royal Marines Captain from 1805 until 1823. While Commandant of the garrison on Ascension, and later at Fernando Po, he received the pay of a British Army Lieutenant Colonel. Major (Royal Marines) confirmed Thursday 8th May 1828;

Major (Royal Marines) on reserve half pay status from Wednesday 8th April 1829 until Friday 15th May 1835 when placed in the retired full-pay status of a Royal Marines Lieutenant Colonel.

Friday 15th May 1835 Promotion to Lieutenant Colonel (Royal Marines) on full retired pay Tuesday 3rd November 1840 War Office (Brevet) of Colonel (British Army List), to date from Tuesday 10th January 1837.

Awarded a good-service pension of £150-a-year on Thursday 30th June 1842. Major General (British Army List) Monday 9th November 1846.

Lieutenant General (British Army List) Tuesday 20th June 1854.

Wednesday 20th June 1855 Brevetted General (British Army List) to date from Tuesday 28th November 1854 in conformity with Her Majesty's Order in Council of the Wednesday 13th September 1854.

Knight Commander of the Bath. KCB Thursday 5th July 1855.

Edward Nicolls RM

1865. Friday 12th May. Boats of Wasp captured a slave dhow.

1866. Thursday 8th November. 'Prostitute, Pawn Shop and Parliament'. The Fate of a Group of Royal Marines Medals by Captain K 3 Douglas-Morris DL, RN (Member of RMHS)
Man made rules and regulations are never perfect, and changes to them might sometimes stem from peculiar happenings; this is one such story.
On 8th November 1866 at a Magistrate's Court in Plymouth a woman was brought before the local Justices of the Peace. She was Eliza Bourne, a prostitute who resided at the Post Office Inn, St Andrew Street. Her crime was somewhat different to that normally associated with her professional Work, for she was accused of:
"Pawning three silver medals and clasps, the property of Robert Luscombe, a Private,
Royal Marines, of 23 Company, contrary to Section 89 of the Marine Mutiny Act."
On the face of it, such a seemingly trivial and petty offence would not arouse a ripple of interest in the Court or elsewhere; but this misdemeanour was more of a rock than a pebble in the legal pond. Little did the two miscreants realise that their naughty venture would lead to a proposal to alter the Law of the land, and thus bring their names to this degree of prominence well over a century later. This curious case which escalated to an Act of Parliament came about in this manner.
In 1851, Robert Henry Luscombe lost his job as a Tinplate Worker when he was 20 years old, and unlike so many others seeking employment he found his height and physical bearing an attribute when applying for enlistment that same year in the Royal Marines. His subsequent service life was to include, ashore and afloat, combative action in the two successive wars in the Crimea and China, for which he was awarded three medals and a number of clasps commemorating various phases of those military operations. He was, however, constantly getting into trouble with authority, and knew his way round various gaols in differing parts of the country and ships; eleven times he was so incarcerated during his tenuous service in the Royal Corps.
In February 1866 he returned to the RM Barracks at Plymouth after spending the previous three years with the RM Battalion at Yokohama, Japan, where he took part in the destruction of Japanese batteries guarding the Straits on Simonoseki. By September of that year he was 'broke', having spent two more spells in confined circumstances totalling two months. It was at this time he devised a seemingly foolproof scheme to raise a little cash to sustain his desires.
His asset was his group of medals, but he was aware that he should not pawn his awards, which remained Government property as long as he still served actively in the Corps. He also seemed to know that pawnbrokers would not accept medals belonging to a marine, if he chose to break the former rule mentioned, since such dealers had no immediate wish to compound a felony, thereby subjecting themselves to possible imprisonment. To overcome such a direct approach with a high probability of failure, he devised a scheme which had every prospect of becoming a marketing success.
His plan was based on the correct hearsay knowledge that sailors could pawn their medals with absolute 'civil' immunity, to themselves and dealers. He was also fully cognisant of the fact that his three medals were officially issued un-named, and therefore it was impossible for anyone to tell if the group had been awarded to a sailor or a marine. With all this in mind, he then enlisted the aid of his friend Eliza Bourne who was induced to pawn his medals as those belonging to a sailor.
The obedient Eliza did as she was told, and one fine day she walked down to her local pawn shop in Frankfort Street, Plymouth, owned and run by Mr Moses Lyons. She pledged the medals and took the proceeds back to her inamorata, Marine Luscombe - her Bob. Shortly afterwards his scheme was uncovered; the official records miss out the denouement of this erring 'Leather Neck' - could it have been another kit muster or a ceremonial parade? Whatever the event, the Marines authorities soon destroyed his thin cover story for the loss, and Luscombe came clean with the full saga of his sale. Whereupon the marine provost section enlisted the assistance of the local Constabulary.
The Police went to visit the Pawn Shop, where on this first occasion they were met by an employee of Mr Lyons. This young man, in answer to their demands, immediately fetched the group of three medals in apparent innocence, showed them to his uniformed visitors, who seemed quite àatisfied and departed. The pledged articles were replaced in the shop, at least until Mr Lyons returned to hear the account of the recent visit by the 'law' to his premises.
A few days later the Police revisited Mr Lyon's establishment, and this time he was available in person to. answer their queries. With an air of complete innocence he denied ever having had the three medals, and went on in strong terms that he had absolutely no knowledge whatsoever of the medals to which the Police were referring. A search warrant was then sought and issued to the . infuriated officers of the law, and on this their third trip to the Pawn Shop, sought out the medals but to no avail. The 'cat and mouse' game between Pawbroker and Police was well underway, with Mr Lyons being the winner of this 'round'.
On the fourth and final visit by the Police they were conspicuously accompanied by Marine Luscombe and a Provost Sergeant RM. Luscombe had not forgotten his briefing, and the silence after entry to the premises was broken by his demand to see his medals and re-possess them. The wily pawnbroker acquiesced immediately to the first request, seeing it as the legal right of the owner. After a brief visit to his back parlour he re-appeared with the medallic trio consisting of a Crimea Medal with the clasps for Balaclava and Sebastopol, a Second China War Medal adorned by bars for action at Fatshan 1857, Canton 1857 and Taku Forts 1860, and finally the concomitant award given for the Crimean War by the Turkish Government. The errant marine identified the medals as the group, awarded to him, but to his insistent demands for re-possession the crafty pawnbroker gave equally forthright refusals, based on the belief that no-one could prove that the un-named medals belonged to anyone in particular, and that he had accepted them as being the property of a sailor which was certainly no crime. He won his point, and the Police and Military lost yet another skirmish when they retreated empty handed from territory distinguished by those three large balls hanging outside.
The scene was now set for legal action, with the Counsel for the Police posed with a difficult decision as to the tactics to be adopted in framing the 'charge'. His initial reaction was strongly to advise prosecution against Mr Moses Lyons for detaining the medals contrary to Section 89 of the Marine Mutiny Act, and no doubt as a revenge against a man who had seen fit to use his dubious rights in apparently obstructing Officers of the Law in the execution of their duty. The records show that this initial idea was discarded. A little time later, after more sober and less emotional reflection, Counsel thought that the Magistrates would not convict Moses, since he might honestly and properly state that he had received the articles in pledge as sailor's medals. Furthermore, if Moses was charged then Eliza Bourne could only aid his case if she as brought as a prosecution witness, and could not herself have been subsequently prosecuted if so employed.
Based on this logic, the 'charge' was brought against Luscombe's conspirator, the poor prostitute of the Post Office Inn, Eliza Bourne - and proved. Not only was Eliza found guilty, the medals were also proved to belong to Marine Luscombe, and the prosecution stressed this latter point to the Court. Application was made to the Magistrates for Mr Moses Lyon to be ordered to pass over the medals, and after considerable discussion by the Bench, which itself had found that Moses had more than a dubious case for retaining the group on two previous occasions, the request was eventually agreed. The three medals were then passed to the safe hands of Provost Sergeant Thorne RM in that courtroom.
Luscombe continued to serve in the Royal Marines for another eight years, mostly at sea in HM Ships Revenge, Invincible and Audacious He was invalided from the service whilst serving in the latter ship suffering from chronic ulcers and hepatitis on 10th April 1874. He died in Plymouth Hospital a little over six months later on 22nd November 1874. As to Whether Luscombe ever got his medals back, or if he did, whether he lost or pawned them again, well that part of history must remain a mystery. What we do know for certain is that at the time of his disability discharge from the Marines, an officer wrote on his papers: 'No record obtainable by Discharge Board of whether he is in possession or not of Medals' A somewhat sad but apt epitaph to this serviceman.
The effects of this naughty pawning episode did not lie dormant when the Courtroom closed that fateful day in November 1866. The 'case' had highlighted a legal nonsense as between Army and Royal Marines on the one hand, and the Royal Navy on the other. Shortly after conclusion of these events in the Court, the matter escalated to more exalted plains. This instance of 'case law', which had exposed the differing treatment of certain property of Sailors from that accorded to Marines, was written up at length by the the Colonel Commandant at Plymouth and sent to his Head Office, the Royal Marine Office in Spring Gardens, London. Colonel George Beatty had voiced his view that the Navy should adopt the robust rules prevailing in the Army and his Corps. We are left to guess whether or not he knew about the original reason for the Navy apparently scorning similar regulations, for which there were very justifiable reasons which will be exposed later in this text.
Upon receiving this letter, it is reasonable to assume that the Staff of the Deputy Adjutant General, Royal Marines, must have refreshed their memories of this subject and rare crime. Turning to Section 89 of the Marine Mutiny Act they would have seen the relevant passages were as follows:
Penalty of purchasing Soldier's necessaries, Stores, etc.
Any person who shall knowingly detain, buy, exchange or receive from any soldier, deserter or any other person, . or shall be employed by any soldier to sell Arms, Ammunition, Medals for Good Conduct or for distinguishment or other service, clothes, furniture, sheets or forage for any horses, etc.
Conviction of such an offence attracting a fine not exceeding £20, together with treble to value of the articles possessed, with the additional prospect of being committed to the common Gaol or House of Correction, there to be imprisoned with or without hard labour for a term not exceeding six calendar months as the convicting Justice should think fit.
The Royal Marine Office then put together all the facts and submitted them in a proposal to the Admiralty, where the subject was quickly recognised as inequitable treatment, due historically to the totally different method of employing sailors.
Up to 1853 sailors had been engaged to serve in the Navy on the hire and fire' principle, the personnel on the Lower Deck were in effect casual labour contracted to serve for a commission of three years' duration, at the end of which they were 'paid off' to shore as civilians. The laws of the Navy could only apply during the time the sailor was entered on the ship's books, and therefore any medal he received passed into his hands as his own possession when he was 'paid off', to do as he wished with as a civilian. Albeit he might well 'sign on' for another commission in a different ship within a few weeks and once again be subject to Naval rules, which certainly did not state that he must besport any medals he may have previously been awarded.
In 1853 sailors were given the option of serving continuously in the Navy for varying periods of time, as had been the case in the Army and Marines for nearly two centuries; but even now this more secure method of employment did not appeal to all sailors. A large number preferred to be 'hired and fired', since this gave them the opportunity to join the ship of their choice when they next went to sea - known 'flogging captains' could be avoided! Not until 1st January 1873 was the Royal Navy manned completely by a permanent professional force committed to terms of engagement from 7 to 20 years or more, with the introduction of 'Official Numbers' for all men already serving on ship's books and subsequently given to every new recruit.
But in 1866 the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty were well aware that they possessed two very different breeds of men, some short term casual labour, and others signed on for lengthy periods, which made the task of framing equitable rules difficult, let alone trying to bring this motley 'body of men' into line with the Army and Marines. The aid of the Solicitor to the Admiralty was sought, and in no time that office produced detailed proposals to produce the equality asked for.
This package of new rules was placed before a Sea Lord, Rear Admiral G A Seymour CB, MP, who neither agreed nor disagreed with the schedule of changes, but he did pen a minute stating that'. the proposal should be noted for consideration when the Naval Defence Act was brought forward for amendment in 1867" Unlike the Army and Marine Mutiny Acts which were usually debated and amended by Parliament at annual intervals, the more widely drawn Naval Defence Act (NDA) did not often come before members of the House of Commons for discussion and alteration. In fact the NDA was not brought before Parliament for debate and amendment until 28th July 1884, seventeen years later than the Admiral expected!
Nevertheless unseen by outsiders, Admiralty clerks worked hard on the Admiralty Solicitor's advice, and on End August 1869 saw the result of their work in an Act of Parliament (22 & 33 Victoria, Ch 57) under the heading 'Protection of Seaman's Clothing and Property', to be cited as "The Seaman's Clothing Act". The effect of this Act did not extend beyond the Dockyard Towns, and only affected seamen who had 'signed on' as continuous service men since 1853 for the protection of their property meaning, 'any clothes, slops, medals and necessaries for sailors on board ships which belong to any seamen.'
The Act showed that it was an offence for both the seller and the buyer to 'detain, buy, exchange, take on pawn' any 'seaman's property' with a penalty upon conviction, of a £20 fine or three months term of imprisonment. It is surely no coincidence that this Act followed so closely, the deeds of Marine Luscombe, Miss Eliza Bourne and Mr Moses Lyons three years earlier.
In 1879, when 'Queen's Rules and Admiralty Instructions' were first introduced, having been issued subsequent to the 'Queen's Instructions for Her Majesty's Service at Sea', the opportunity was taken to write in some mention of constraint upon men who were in possession of medals. The new punishment rule was concisely hidden away in Chapter 22, Article 680 which covered:
'Index of Offences and Maximum Summary Punishment' Section h (Headed) Hammocks, clothes and bedding:
Selling or making away with Medals or Clasps. No 5. (Penalty) (Punishment No 5 = Up to imprisonment for three months)
Editor's Note: It is with much regret that I heard of the death of Captain Kenneth Douglas-Morris since receiving this article. He has been a long and staunch member of the RMHS as well as a generous benefactor. At a recent Council meeting it was decided to set up 'The Douglas-Morris Bequest' with the £2,500 he bequeathed to the Society and use the interest for an an award for services to the Society.”

1865. November. The Admiralty advised that the whole Detachment of Marines under Lieutenant Pascoe, stationed at Somerset, Cape York, to be borne for the future on the books of the HMS Curacoa which will bring them under the jurisdiction of the Commodore of the Station.'

1866. Registered Numbers. The prefix ‘Depot’, followed by a number of up to three digits (Depot/1-Depot/688), indicates a rank entered on the establishment of the Depot, Royal Marines Deal, between 1866 and 1931. Ranks would have originally had a Divisional number, i.e. with Prefix CH, PO or PLY, but on being accepted for the staff of the Depot, they were allocated a new register number; ‘D’ or ‘Depot’ followed by three digits. The last number so allocated was in fact Depot 1688, after which in 1925, in common with all other RN and RM numbers an ‘X’ was added. In 1931 this practice was discontinued and the final number of these was Depot/X 45. Records were then transferred to Chatham, Portsmouth or Plymouth Divisions as appropriate and the next available register numbers were allocated.

1866. Attack on Katif Forts, Persian Gulf.

1867. Thursday 17th January. ‘The Life and Times of a Royal Marine Detachment. Somerset’, Cape York, Australia. In a letter from the Admiralty to the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, Commander Nares commanding H.M.S.S Salamander asserted that, ‘the Royal Marines’, of Somerset, ‘are entirely unfit as a guard against the attacks of hostile natives. Clumping around the bush for a while in their heavy boots and red coats, proving useless...’ This assertion, by Commander George Nares, has been perpetuated by later historians but has little reality in its historical truth. The situation facing these Marines was far from easy and at the very least a difficult assignment.
Although the period of time spent at Somerset was from August 1864 until July 1867 the Marines commitment to this Queensland settlement was of a somewhat longer duration. The Royal Marine detachment of one officer and twenty men’s secondment to Somerset began on January 7, 1864 at Portsmouth, England and ended with the officer along with four men returning to Sheerness, England on December 18, 1867. Seven Marines had chosen to stay in Australia and did not leave Somerset until January 27, 1868 when picked up by H.M.S Virago.
The Somerset Royal Marine Detachment:
Lieutenant Robert J. Pascoe O.C
Sergeant Morris Guiver Acting Stores Keeper
Corporal David Dent Supervisor
Privates Charles Jarvis Labourer
Edgar Baxter Shepherd
Samuel Wilkinson Carpenter
Alias Barnes Labourer
Thomas Colwell Drayman
William O’Regan Labourer
George Tucker Labourer
John Saich Labourer
John Smith Carpenter
Edward Wallis Carpenter
William Carmichael Supervising (promoted to L/Corporal)
Chas Copley Gardener
Thomas Rice Blacksmith
James Bosworth Carpenter
Richard Whele Carpenter
William Timms Labourer
Jonathon Lawton Labourer
Joseph Blake Hospital Orderly
A scarcely less powerful incentive than patriotism for the performance of the deeds of the Royal Marines, which have rendered them famous, was the ambition and Esprit de Corps, necessary sentiments in the breasts of those who would excel in this Corps. Their training was military, and their discipline was, even then, quite extraordinarily high. Yet they were essentially sea-soldiers and, since 1755, entirely under the direction of the Admiralty. The proud history of this remarkable Corps dates from 1664, when Charles II created, by Order in Council, ‘The Duke of York and Albany’s Maritime Regiment of Foot’, usually known as the ‘Duke of York’s Regiment’ or ‘The Lord High Admirals Regiment’.
Since their inception the Marines had established a reputation for complete trustworthiness and exceptional loyalty. These men were different from the sailors with whom they served. The typical sailor of the time came from a seaport town and knew something of ships, seafaring and the sea. Marine officers were recruited from all over the country and the marine recruit was often agrarian in nature and new the land or had a trade. At the time sailors went directly to sea and learnt their work in the world of masts and yards, but the Marine was ‘disciplined’ on the barrack square prior to seeing service on land or sea.
Their loyalty to the Crown and the Naval and Marine officers was unquestioned after the mutinous years of the 1790’s proving themselves to the very foundation of naval discipline. In the spring of 1797 sailors of sixteen line-of-battle ships refused to put to sea as part of the Channel Fleet. There were mutinies on various men-o-war at the Nares anchorage at the mouth of the Thames.
Throughout this turbulent period the Marines were always found to be loyal to their officers. Consequently, the Marine Corps was justly proud of the verdict passed upon it by one of the greatest, yet most exacting of all naval officers, Earl St Vincent. From a man renowned for being particularly difficult to please, such a tribute is indeed unique.
There never was any appeal made to them for honour, courage or loyalty that they did not more than realise my expectations.
If ever the hour of real danger should come to England, the Marines will be found the country’s sheet anchor.
These then were the men, the inheritors of a proud tradition, to whom the task of establishing a settlement, at Cape York had been given.
Cape York in the Torres Strait was first discovered by, and taking its name from, the Spanish navigator, Luis Vaes de Torres who had spent two months in the intricate navigation of the strait dividing Terra Australis from New Guinea, in 1606. It was Captain Bligh of H.M.S Providence in 1792 who first suggested that a refuge for seamen in distress should be established in the Torres Strait. Thereafter the first considerable hydrographic survey of the Queensland coast was made by Commander J.C Wickham, R.N in H.M.S Beagle in 1838 and in 1839, making a thorough examination of Torres Strait. Lieutenant Charles B. Yule had surveyed the inner route of the Torres Strait during 1845 and 1846 as Commander of H.M.S Bramble. Yule suggested that Port Albany, named by him, would be suitable for a coaling station.
Many years of consideration in the corridors of power in Whitehall were given to this settlement at Cape York. It appears that the decision was deferred whilst Port Essington, also established and maintained by Royal Marines continued its existence. This settlement failed, mainly due to lack of fresh water, in 1849.
Serious consideration was then given to finding a new site on Cape York for a settlement.
The colony of Queensland, at that time, was expanding at the rate of two hundred miles a year. Sir George Ferguson Bowen, seen on the left, Queensland Administrator, advised the Colonial Office in London of his intention to go north to Cape York to find an appropriate site. The Secretary of State, the Duke of Newcastle, instructed Bowen to take possession of Pabaju (Albany Island). Upon this instruction he wrote back to Newcastle expressing disbelief that there was any doubt as the island being within Queensland’s jurisdiction as Pabaju lay less than half a mile from the coast of the mainland.
In August 1862 H.M.S Pioneer, under the command of Commodore George Burnett, the Senior naval Officer on the Australian Station, left with Governor Bowen as a passenger to select the site for a port of refuge and a coaling station.
Bowen firmly believed that, from such a tiny outpost of civilisation, an entrepot, that would rival the great Asian port of Singapore, would grow.
From September 10th to the 22nd H.M.S Pioneer was anchored near Cape York, principally in Evans Bay and Port Albany. During this time Commodore Burnett and Governor Bowen deliberated as to the ideal site. After full consideration; Lt Yule’s recommendation; Port Albany, was chosen. Governor Bowen was so struck by every facet of this site that, in his correspondence to Newcastle, he ‘waxed lyrical’: - Near the North East point of Albany Island, a sill of pure water, fringed with flowering shrubs and grasses of Australia, trickles over the cliff into a small natural reservoir which was named the ‘Fountain of Arethusa’ from its close resemblance to the Homeric Fountain in Ithaca.
The Colonial Botanist, Walter Hill, had also travelled on the Pioneer and he established that Albany Island, and the pasture thereon, could support one hundred head of cattle and five hundred head of sheep.
The settlement was to be named Somerset in acknowledgement of the readiness with which the present First Lord of the Admiralty, the Duke of Somerset, had lent his aid to an undertaking of such great importance to the interests of the British Empire in Australia. H.M.S Pioneer had travelled nearly three thousand miles, entirely in the waters of Queensland, by its return to Moreton Bay on November 24th, 1862.
Bowen continued to urge for the establishment of the new settlement. He even spoke of its value as a naval base from which gunboats of light draft might conveniently operate. The sum of £5,000 was submitted, by the Lords of the Admiralty, to parliament, as the figure they would be prepared to contribute to the establishment of Somerset at Cape York. Bowen, with the assistance of Sir Robert Herbert, who was Queensland’s first Premier 1859-1866, also managed to secure a Royal Naval ship, the H.M.S.S Salamander, to service the settlement three times a year, and carry out further surveys of the Queensland coast.
Furthermore, a guard of twenty Royal Marines and one officer was secured to defend a settlement plus the services of a naval surgeon to look after the detachment. The size of this Royal Marine detachment was based on the friendly reception that Bowen and Burnett had receive on their visit there.
Commodore Beauchamp Seymore C.B, relieving Commodore Burnett as Officer in Charge of the Australian Station, arrived in Brisbane on May 22nd, 1862. His picture can be seen on the right. His immediate task was to arrange the details for the new settlement at Somerset. It was felt, at this time, that the success of Somerset would depend, in no slight degree, on the character of the first gentlemen selected respectively as the Chief Civil Authority and as the Officer in Charge of the Royal Marines. This was to put an enormous responsibility on Lt Robert Pasco who was only 21 years of age. Seymore stressed the importance and care to be taken on the selection of said officer. The ability as a gentleman to be able to work together with the Civil Authorities was of prime importance.
The Royal Marines were selected for their different skills, abilities and the contribution these men would make to the construction, maintenance and defence of the settlement. Care was taken, as recommended by Bowen, that the Marines selected would treat the aborigines with kindness and humanity. These Royal Marines were to be exceptional men even amongst their own regiment.
Apart from the requirements already stated Bowen thought it desirable that the non-commissioned officers and privates of the detachment should be chosen for their steadiness and good character. These requisites, obviously, called for a degree of maturity in the men. This is borne out with the average age of the detachment being 28 years and six months. Even with careful selection these men would have been in no doubt as to the problems they may face with the Aborigines. Some horrendous stories were appearing in the English newspapers relating to the troubles new settlers were having with natives in Queensland.
Henry Jordon, Queensland’s Emigration Commissioner in a letter to ‘The Times’ on Monday January 20th, 1862 informed readers of murders taking place against settlers by aborigines.
The lifeline of Somerset, H.M.S.S Salamander was Commissioned in England at Sheerness on December 9th, 1863 by Commander, the Honourable John Carnegie. She was a barque-rigged paddle steam sloop and carried the following officers: -
Commander Hon J. Carnegie
Lieutenants R.A Edwin (Government Meteorologist)
H.A Grimston
Sub-Lt’s W Henning (Clerk)
J.A Dashwood
Surgeon Dr. A. Rattray
Asst Surg Dr. R. Cannon
Master & Pilot Thomas H. Hayman
Paymaster J.S Moore
Midshipmen W.V Bayley
J.O Burgess (Staff Surveyor, NSW)
Navel Cadet H.H Boteler
Master’s Asst E. Eshelby
Engineer Jasper Orchard
Asst Eng’s Wm. Bremmer
H. Hawkins
Gunner Wm. Longford
Boatswain John Whiting
Carpenter John Hill
A full complement of 106 officers and men, 14 boys and a ships detachment of 20 Royal Marines. With the detachment of 20 for Somerset it would have been crowded for the trip to Australia.
In the 1860’s Sheerness was the only Naval Barracks. All other seamen, in the different ports, were lodged in hulks, often moored as much as a mile out in the stream. The sailors and officers of the Salamander had joined the ship at the beginning of December 1863 to prepare the ship for its passage to Australia and ultimately Cape York. A voyage of 7,600 miles. Lieutenant Robert Pascoe R.M.L.I, a Chatham Marine, joined the ship, in Sheerness, prior to its departure on January 5th, 1864. The other 20 Marines, of the detachment, for Somerset were embarked at Portsmouth.
Enroute H.M.S.S Salamander touched in at Madeira. Madeira is an autonomous region of Portugal. An archipelago comprising 4 islands off the northwest coast of Africa. Her last port of call before Australia was at the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa. She sailed from the Cape on April 13th and arrived at Sydney Heads on June 3rd, 1864. As night was falling and due to poor visibility, she did not enter the heads but ‘stood off’ until morning. During the night and in the morning the ship was surrounded by a pod of whales. On the 4th June she moored in Farm Cove after a passage of 147 days. Farm Cove as it was in 1864 on the left. The crew and marines were able to take some well-earned shore leave. The detachment for Somerset also took leave as they would be in isolation for the next three years. After coaling and taking on fresh water, meat and vegetables the Salamander departed the mooring on 22nd June, minus four of the crew who had deserted whilst in Sydney. Arriving in Moreton Bay she anchored in Brisbane Roads at the mouth of the Brisbane River on June 26th. During their stay in Brisbane the officers were invited to attend the Royal Birthday Ball at Government House on June 28th and whilst there they had the opportunity to meet Governor Bowen. This fact was published in the ‘Brisbane Courier’ on Saturday July 16th, 1864. Government House is shown above.
This was Brisbane as it was at the time of the arrival of the Salamander in 1864.
Prior to H.M.S.S Salamander’s departure from Brisbane the ship Golden Eagle, (on left) having won the Queensland Government contract to carry materials, supplies and personnel, the civilian officers and their wives, to Port Albany, had left Sydney on June 25th, 1864. She was already carrying 300 tons of coal for the coaling station at the new settlement.
The Golden Eagle, arrived on June 29th and moored at Yule Roads. She was joined there by Salamander for ease of loading. The crews and marines worked hard to load the two ships with the Golden Eagle carrying the bulk of materials and stores. By far the bulkiest of the items for Somerset were the pre-fabricated buildings. Although the crews could take leave in Brisbane due to the distance and difficulty of shuttling so many back and forth is was deemed to be not worth the effort. The officers however had no restrictions on their travel arrangements and time ashore.
The Golden Eagle sailed from Moreton Bay on July 13th, followed by the Salamander on the 15th. Their destination, Port Albany. The Salamander called at Rockingham Bay on July 21st, landing a Mr Leef, the Police Magistrate for the Rockingham District. After leaving Rockingham the navigating was chiefly done from the masthead during daylight hours, anchoring each evening at around 1800.
H.M.S.S Salamander dropped anchor in Albany Pass on July 29th, 1864 at 1120.
The Royal Marines did not land until the following day, when they commenced clearing the land which was heavily overgrown with vines and weeds. The Golden Eagle arrived at Albany Pass on August 1st, escorted by two vessels, well known in the bèche-de-mer trade, (bèche-de-mer and trepang are one of the same, being sea cucumbers. Used mainly by the Chinese to thicken and flavour soups) the brig Woodlark and the schooner Blue Bell. These two boats had been passed by the Salamander when they were seen laying under the South Island of the Howick Group, collecting trepang.
With the Golden Eagle came all the civilian authorities including the new settlements doctor, Dr Timotheus, J. Haran R.N; Port Master, J. McClintock, Mr W.C.B Wilson, Surveyor; Mr J.J Halpin, Foreman of Works; some of the marine’s wives which included a Mary Kate Smith an Irish lass who was married to John Smith R.M.L.I.
These are the only two for which photographs have survived as attached here. John is seen on the left and Kate on the right.
There was also a number of aboriginal labourers bought in, along with Reverend L. Rumsey, late of Ipswich, who had been appointed as Clerk of Petty Sessions and to act in his clerical capacity. The Reverend was not enamoured of Somerset and decided not to stay returning to civilisation on the Salamander when she next sailed.
By far the most important man on board the Golden Eagle, as far as Somerset was concerned was the Chief Civil Officer, Mr John Jardine who was to be Police Magistrate and Commissioner of Crown Lands. Jardine’s youngest son, John, was also with him. Prior to his arrival at Somerset, Jardine had been the Police Magistrate at Rockhampton. He had been a prominent N.S.W pastoralist. He was also a former officer of the Dragoon Guards. Captain John Jardine had arrived in Australia on January 3rd, 1840. He was the youngest son of Sir Alexander Jardine of Applegirth, Scotland. The Jardine clan arrived in Scotland with William the Conqueror and fought at the Battle of Hastings in 1066.
On her arrival the Golden Eagle was carrying 252 sheep, four having died enroute, from stress. These sheep were landed on Albany Island and turned loose under the care of the marine shepherd Edward Baxter R.M.L.I. Within twenty-four hours of setting up his camp, Baxter was startled to find a curious seven-foot brown snake inspecting the inside of his tent.
Albany Isles consists of six islands, of which, only one is of a large size. Apart from the natives who came and went on the island the only habitation in the neighbourhood was the bèche-de-mer station belonging to Captain Edwards of the Blue Bell. Situated at Frederick Point, the north-western cape of Albany Island, it’s buildings comprised a stone curing house and the store.
Seven horses were landed on the mainland from the Golden Eagle two of these being shire horses for the heavy work. All the unloading had to take place into smaller boats, this was made particularly hazardous by the number of sharks and crocodiles that were in the habit of cruising past the boats.
August 7th was the first night that the marines remained ashore having cleared sufficient ground to bivouac. By the following day a large number of aboriginals had gathered around the camp. Jardine thought it advisable that they be ‘warned off’. To this end the marines fired their rifles into the air.
Unfortunately, the ship had not been informed of this action and presumed, on hearing the gunfire, the marines ashore were under attack. A boat was launched from the Salamander to assist the marines in fighting off the natives who had already taken flight.
For the first few weeks all hands and the cook were engaged, either on shore or in the boats transporting building materials and supplies to the settlement. This was, at times, made difficult due to the four-knot tide. Leave was granted to the crew, but only on Albany Island and then only on the eastern side away from the aborigines. There was a good beach, which was much enjoyed by everyone.
Meanwhile back on the mainland, at Somerset, the rainforest and scrub were cleared, and the Marines barracks erected on a hill, on the northern side of the bay, known as Somerset Hill. Several hundred yards to the south, in a commanding position, overlooking Albany Pass, the Police Magistrate’s house was commenced. Having been informed, by Bowen, that Lieutenant Pascoe could be called on to supply his men for assistance in the construction of Somerset he issued instructions, to Pascoe, on August 6th, which would enable the workforce to be controlled. By August 10th the first problem had arisen with the aborigines who, up until then, had been most helpful in clearing brush and carrying stores, for the price of some tobacco and other oddments. Mr W. Wilson, who was in a hurry to complete the surveying of the settlement had, had his surveying flags stolen. In retaliation Commander Carnegie confiscated a canoe until the flags were returned, which they duly were. With this exception the natives continued to be helpful, even to helping erect the buildings, for which they continued to be rewarded.
By August 11th the last of the stores were being unloaded and the 300 tons of coal had been off-loaded onto Albany Island, from the Golden Eagle. The schooner Melanie called into Port Albany on this day, arriving from Rockingham Bay. She stayed three days then left for Colombo.
At 0630 on August 12th Commander Carnegie led an expedition to explore the Kennedy River; travelling up the river for eight miles without making any discovery of importance. The party had returned to the ship, on the same day without incident, by 1600. After discharging both her contract and her cargo, Golden Eagle proceeded to Java.
On the official ‘Foundation’ of the settlement of Somerset on August 21st, 1864, a Guard of Honour was formed by the Royal Marines, in full uniform, with Commander the Hon. J. Carnegie representing the Imperial Government. Mr John Jardine, Police Magistrate represented the Queensland Government. The 17-year-old Royal Marine Bugler C. Clayton, from the Salamander, sounded the appropriate bugle calls and the settlement was founded. Somerset was unique at the time being the only port on the Queensland coast created for reasons other than as an export location of primary produce.
Further exploration was made on August 27th when Commander Carnegie, Mr Whiting, the boatswain, with six marines, Messrs Jardine, the surveyor Wilson and his two chainmen, left the Salamander in an attempt to cross the Cape York
Peninsula. The idea was to inspect the area in the hope of finding good pastoral
land. Travelling by boat as far as possible along the Kennedy River and then by
foot. They returned unsuccessful in either crossing the Peninsula or finding good
The H.M.S.S Salamander left the embryonic settlement on September 7th, 1864.
This left the settlers and marines on their own with no support. Dr Haran who was in charge who was in charge of the settlement medically had to return south to bring his wife back. The assistant surgeon from the Salamander, Dr Richard Cannon was left at Somerset until the Salamander and Dr Haran returned.
Within the settlement the first serious problem arose with the aborigines the day after the ship departed. Corporal Daniel Dent and Marine John Smith were attacked by a group of aborigines. Dent was found by John Jardine’s son who then had raised the alarm by running back to the settlement. When found Dent had a spear protruding from his shoulder. On arrival back at the settlement it was discovered that Smith was quite seriously wounded, with two spear wounds, one spear had entered the right breast, passed through the ribs, and had punctured a lung. Dr Richard Cannon treated both men and decided that Smith should be returned south the Sydney military hospital at the first opportunity.
Smith would later return when fit. Jardine had seen the perpetrators of the attack and had recognised six of them. The next day Jardine, with a party of Marines, set out in the 30-foot whale boat to look for the attackers of the two marines. A canoe was seen, and the occupants identified as the six they were after. These aborigines were shot and killed by the marines on the orders of Jardine. The canoe was confiscated and upon their return to the settlement it was given to the Gudang tribe who had been helping out at the camp. The tribesmen were surprised when given the canoe as they had none of their own missing.
The early days of Somerset were far from peaceful. It is recorded that five marines were speared at different times. One of these was Marine John Saich who, whilst on sentry duty, was speared and killed. Saich was the youngest of the marines at the settlement at only 22. He was to be the only marine who would lose his life at Somerset. The first few months were, found to be, when the marines were at their most vulnerable. Having travelled from England to a new and very different environment a time of adjustment was required. It has been said that the marines, having been trained to fight from the deck of a warship, they were no match for the aborigines in their native bush. Royal Marines throughout their history have proved their worth be in on land or sea. With no further deaths or wounding’s after the first few months it would be hard for the historians to sustain the argument re the marines being no match.
Acclimatisation was necessary and the marines were no exception. Subjected to a minimum of supervision and parade ground routine the undress uniform would have been ‘rig-of-the-day’ for much of the time. Since 1856 the marines full dress uniform had undergone a number of changes, but the working dress showed less obvious change. Undress uniform for shore duties at Somerset consisted of a short red jacket, similar to the ‘shell’ jacket that had been authorised for officers in warm climates some years before. White linen trousers and the pillbox forage cap was worn on guard duty. The jacket was made of red wool cloth and was waist length, fastened by eight or nine small brass buttons. It is possible that, at Somerset, the old double-breasted tunics were still being worn. No piping or loops were worn but the sergeant wore his chevrons on both sleeves.
In the Cape York and Somerset district there were reputedly, 3,500 aboriginal warriors. This undoubtedly presented a daunting threat to the 20 Marines and Lieutenant Pasco. Of the six tribes in the area it was the Yardaigans who were the most warlike and consequently gave the most trouble. The Yardaigans lived in an area around the Escape River. They were able to muster about 400 young fighting men. The natives made a repeated practice of raiding the settlement and stealing various items of value to them, such as tools made of steel. A raid by the marines on the native camp at Evans Bay uncovered the metal fashioned into spear heads and knives. (Commander Nares Commanding H.M.S.S Salamander)

1867. Tuesday 4th June 1867. HMS Salamander sailed from Sydney for England, via Brisbane, Somerset and Batavia.

Due to the high cost of maintaining the Royal Marines at Somerset, they were returned to Britain on board HMS Salamander and were replaced by Queensland Police Officers accompanied by three Native Police Troopers.

1867. Thursday 8th August. The following Royal Marines finally left the Somerset settlement in North Queensland Australia.

Lieutenant Robert J. Pascoe RMLI age 25.

Sargent Daniel Dent RMLI age 34.

Private Thomas Colwell RMLI age 31.

Private William O’ReganAge 35 (time expired).

Private Joseph Blake age 40 (time expired).

The National Archives records that many of the Royal Marine detachment took their discharge around 1867 - 1868. They may have found life better in Australia and made their homes there, or perhaps tried their luck in the goldfields or perhaps had just seen enough of military life. Five had bought themselves out, Four were Invalided and Two had died out of a group of Seventeen Privates.

1867. Wednesday 18th December. Lieutenant Robert J. Pascoe RMLI and four Marines who had been seconded to a settlement in Somerset on Cape York Northern Queensland Australia returned to Sheerness in England. However, seven Marines of the original detachment had chosen to stay in Australia.

1867. December - May. The British Expedition to Abyssinia was a punitive rescue expedition and carried out by the armed forces of the British Empire against the Ethiopian Empire. Emperor Tewodros II imprisoned several missionaries and two representatives of the British government in an attempt to blackmail the British government into giving him military assistance to protect his country. In response the British sent a large military expedition that struggled badly with the terrain and long distance it had to travel. However, the formidable obstacles were overcome by the Commander of the expedition, General Robert Napier, who was victorious in every contact against the Emperors troops, and eventually captured the Ethiopian capital and rescued all the hostages.

1867. With the arrival of the Royal Marine Light Infantry in 1867, the security and police functions of the Water Police were taken over at the various Royal Navy Establishments. The Royal Marines continued in this role until relieved by the Naval Dockyard Police when Garden Island, Darling Island, Spectacle Island and Cockatoo Island were handed over to the Royal Australian Navy on the 1st July 1913. (Author Unkown)

1867. The Royal Marines and the Eastney Barracks, was designed by William Scamp (assistant director, Admiralty Works Department), was built as headquarters for the Royal Marine Artillery, who moved in from Fort Cumberland in 1867.
After the amalgamation of the Royal Marine Light Infantry and Royal Marine Artillery in 1923, Forton Barracks was closed, and Eastney Barracks served as headquarters for the Portsmouth Division of the Corps. The series of seven linked blocks facing the sea forms the second longest barracks frontage in the country (after the Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich). The ensemble has been called "the best and most complete barracks of the post-Crimean War period". Eastney Barracks remained the Corps Headquarters until 1995, when it was sold and converted to private housing. The Royal Marines Museum, established there in 1958, was accommodated in the former officers' mess at Eastney Barracks from 1972 to 2017.1867. ‘Son of a Gun’ This is one of those terms that conveys affection, admiration or contempt depending on the speaker, the tone of voice and the context. When it was coined towards the end of the seventeenth century, however, the sense was deprecatory. At that time, it was not unknown for some navy wives, usually those of officers, to accompany their husbands on board their warships. These women were generally useful. When battle raged, they would often busy themselves with chores or with tending the wounded. Testimony of life aboard a warship also suggests that sometimes the captain, in contravention of all regulations, permitted prostitutes to sail. A reason for this is that press-gangs operated up to 1814 and sailors were confined to their ships at all times. So, to avoid desertions, captains allowed prostitutes aboard when in port. Some did not go back ashore.
Inevitably, then, childbirth occurred on board, though normally only recorded if the child's mother was entitled to ship's rations. One woman bore a son in the heat of the action; she belonged to Edinburgh, wrote John Nichols, a seaman aboard the HMS Goliath during the Battle of the Nile on 1st August 1798. Apparently, a favourite place for a woman to give birth was between the broadside guns, where she might be shielded by a tarpaulin and present no inconvenience to the busy crew A sailor's boy child thus birthed (and particularly if the father was unknown) was called a son of a gun and the event gave rise to the salty doggerel:
That, at least, is the favourite etymology, and one faithfully reported by Admiral William Smyth in his Sailor's Word-Book (1867). (Tony Cude RMAQ Brisbane.)

1868. Monday 27th January. The seven Marines who chose to stay in 1867, at the Somerset settlement on Cape York in Northern Queensland Australia, were picked up by HMS Virgo and returned to Sherness in England.

1868. Friday 3rd January. Royal Marine Battalion in Ireland. Lieutenant Colonel John H. Steward in command.

1868. Friday 10th April. Enemy defeated at Arogie, Naval brigade ashore.

1868. Monday 13th April. The capture of Magdala. Detachments from HMS Dryad and HMS Satelite.

1868. Friday 31st July. The oath of allegiance has its origins in Magna Carta, signed on 15th June 1215.
Once the terms had been finalised on 19th June, the rebels again swore allegiance to King John. The later Bill of Rights (1689) included the Oath of Allegiance to the crown, which was required by Magna Carta to be taken by all crown servants and members of the judiciary.
The Victorian promissory oaths of allegiances, are set out in the Promissory Oaths Act 1868 in the following form:
The original oath of allegiance as set out in the 1868 Oaths Act:
I, (Insert full name), do swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Victoria, her heirs and successors, according to law. So help me God.
The original oath of office as set out in the 1868 Oaths Act:
I, (Insert full name), do swear that I will well and truly serve Her Majesty Queen Victoria in the office of (Insert office of). So help me God.
The original judicial oath as set out in the 1868 Oaths Act:
I, (Insert full name), do swear that I will well and truly serve our Sovereign Lady Queen Victoria in the office of (Insert judicial office of), and I will do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of this realm, without fear or favour, affection or l will. So help me God.

1868. November. Occupation of Yangchow.

1868. The punishments up to 1868 were flogging, drumming out and discharge with ignominy. flogging took place in rear of the barracks early in the day, but none since 1866.

Drummers used to do the flogging, for which they received three farthings a day. This was discontinued when flogging was abolished. Each drummer gave twelve strokes; if more were to be inflicted, the next drummer came in. The flogging was under control of the drum major, who gave the time each stroke should be given - generally every thirty seconds - in order that the drummer could disentangle his 'nine tails'. A doctor had charge of the man physically, and could stop the punishment at his discretion, as many did. Drummers used to practice flogging in their barrack room; the three farthings a day they got was called 'flogging money.' Drumming Out was a sad affair, in which the whole Division took part. After the victim had been stripped of his facings, ornaments, buttons, etc, by the drum-major in the centre of the parade, he was marched round the large square, formed by the men on parade, under the charge of the Provost Sergeant. The drums and fifes followed playing the 'Rogue's March', to the front gate when he would be handed over to the drum-major, who would take him into a small room to the side of the gate and there tattoo a B.C. on his left breast. The prisoner was then kicked out of the gate by the smallest drummer boy into the arms of a civil policeman, who took him away to gaol to do any imprisonment in addition awarded to him.

Discharge with Ignominy was similar to drumming out, but without the drumming. The man was simply stripped of ornaments, buttons, etc, tattooed, marched to the gate and kicked out. All these punishments were discontinued in 1868.

Pay was given out on parade, if fine, and under the colonnade if wet, three times a •week. There were no fires in the barrack-rooms, but hot pipes, and no meals were taken in the barrack-rooms, which were simply bedrooms.

The barracks being of nearly white brick, was played on by the boat's crew every Saturday. There were two fine colonnades, upper and lower. All meals were taken down in the basement, where the only fires were.

Passes, called the '11 o'clock passes' were the only ones given; no night passes, unless special. Belts, when going out after sunset, were not allowed to be worn, as they used to come into use in street fights, which did occur at times, if an unpopular regiment happened to be stationed at Woolwich, or a quarrelsome draft paid off from sea. It was quite a common sight to see Marines 'pay off' after being away on a four or five years commission, march into barracks looking half sailor and half marine, because in those days their clothing was not sent out to them as it is now, when a marine looks as smart coming home as he does going away.

The barracks were always full of men, as no large ships ever fitted out there. The last big ship commissioned at Woolwich Dockyard was the Bristol frigate, 42 guns, and the old line-of-battle ship Meemee three-decker, for China in 1868. She took a large draft, and the last Woolwich detachment to return to barracks from a large ship was that from the old Victoria, 104 guns, and now a coal hulk in Portsmouth. The detachment at Deptford was relieved every three months and was quite numerous. The annual sports were held on Woolwich Common.

The last wife of a Marine who embarked with her husband paid off early in 1865. Her name was Perry, whose son eventually became a drummer boy and her husband a nurse in the naval hospital. Her duties on board being more that of a laundress for officers' washing. 'Closing Memories of Woolwich Division'. by Sergeant Major T W Holdstock (Written in 1869).

1869. The earliest patent was granted for a process of rendering salt water fresh by distillation.

1869. Wednesday 17th March. The Woolwich Division is disbanded.

1870. Tuesday  29th November. Pensioner Reserve. The Seamen Pensioner Reserve was established, but the Royal Marine Pensioner Reserve not until Tuesday 25th June 1872, when special rates of pay whilst at drill were laid down.

1870. A Royal Marine Battalion in Japan.

1871. Actions with Malay pirates.

1872. Destruction of Carang.

1873. Friday 13th June. The defence of Elmina on the Gold Coast. Lieutenant Colonel Festing RMA, and 110 RMA and RMLL.

1873. August. Boat expedition up river Prah.

1873. Tuesday 14th October. Enemy routed at Essaman.

1873. Tuesday 14th October. Akimfoo and Ampenee destroyed.

1873. Monday 27th October - 3rd November. Ashantees defeated at Dunquah.

1873. Monday 27th - 28th October. March to Assayboo, Naval brigade ashore.

1873. Tuesday 28th October. Bootry shelled and fired by Argus and Decoy.

1873. Actions with Chusan pirates.

1873. Wednesday 5th November. The battle of Abrakampra repulsed.

1873 - 1874. The Third Anglo Ashanti War, sometimes referred to as the First Ashanti Expedition. Kofi Karikari the King of Ashanti attempted to preserve his empire's last trade outlet to the sea at the old coastal fort of Elmina, which had come into British possession sometime between 1869 and 1872. In early 1873, the Ashanti army, a force of somewhere between 20,000 and 40,000 warriors, crossed the Prah River. After attacking the Fante, a tribe under British protection, they headed for the coast. The Royal Navy was called in and sent some Marines and sailors to man the old slave forts. Elmina was held against a furious Ashanti assault. A river reconnaissance up the Prah was ambushed at Chamah and forced to retreat. A number of landings and naval bombardments were able to slow the Ashanti but not stop them. London realised that an army would have to be sent out to deal with the situation. In 1874, a small mixed contingent of Royal Marines Artillery with two mountain guns and two hundred war rockets, plus 110 Marines of the RMLI were sent to restore order in West Africa and in doing so defeated two thousand Ashanti warriors.

1873 - 1874. 'Ashantee' Huggett. John, Gunner RMA. John Huggett was born about the year 1845 in the parish of East Grinstead, near the town of Tunbridge Wells, Kent. He was enlisted at Woolwich on the 30th July 1863 by Sergeant Major John Woon, RMLI. He stated his Trade was as a Labourer and that he was 18 years old. The option –“For what did you enlist” lists the reply of “For one pound and a free Kit”On the 31st July – He took his Oath of Attestation at Woolwich signing his own name and agreeing to serve for a period of 12 years. 1st August - His Medical Certificate Approval was signed and the Certificate of the Divisional Commander was also signed by J? Mitchell, the Colonel Commandant of the Woolwich Division. 1st April 1865 he transferred to the Royal Marine Artillery as a gunner. On 12th May 1873, he re-engaged (signing the Schedule (B) form) to serve an extra 9 years and complete his pensionable requirement, noting that he was a gunner in the 16th Company. Throughout his service in the RMA, his name appears at least 19 times in the Company Defaulters Book. He seems to have ended his service with 3 good conduct badges. His service is recorded on the national Archives under ADM 157/ 583. The final entry on his papers states D.D. (Discharged Dead) 9th June 1880. His Service Progression was:-Private 116 Company – His papers say 31st July 1864 (in error for 1863) to 1st April 1865 – 245 days (This should read 1 Year 245 days). RMA Gunner 16th Company – 2nd April 1865 to 9th May 1880 – Discharged Dead at Eastney. His service Afloat, consisted of time spent on the following ships:- HMS Zebra – 21st February 1867 to 9th May 1870.
HMS Donegal – 10th May 1870 to 30th September 1870. HMS Simoom – 16th July 1873 to 26th April 1874. His only medal is that for the Ashantee. I do not know if service with the R.M. Artillery was more stricter, or if he had an outside interest (drink or women?) but the Company’s defaulter book records:- 21st April 1865 – Absent one night – Admonished 15th July 1865 – Absent 1 hour 45 mins from Tattoo – 3 days GSD 3rd August 1865 – Absent 25 mins from Tattoo – 2 days CB 2nd October 1865 – Absent 2 hours – 5 days GSD 17th October 1865 – Absent 20 mins from Tattoo – 3 days CB 31st October 1865 – Absent 1 night – 6 days GSD 10th November 1865 – Marching --? In the ranks – 3 days CB? 24th December 1865 – Absent 1 night – 7 days GSD 7th April 1866 – Dirty on parade – 3 days GSD 22nd July 1866 – 10 mins late on church Parade – 1 day GSD 5th September 1867 – Returning late off leave drunk – 5 days No. 11 A.P. 25th September 1868 – Breaking leave 24 hours - Admonished 26th December 1868 – Breaking leave 10 hours – Forfeit 1 days pay and 6 days leave stopped. 9th June 1869 – Breaking leave 23 hours - Forfeit 1 days pay and 23 days leave stopped, lose 1 G.C.B. 31st October 1869 – Drunk on shore at Shanghai – 7 days No. 10 section. 27th December 1869 – Breaking leave 15 hours – Forfeit 1 days pay and 10 days No. 11 section. 11th February 1870 – Breaking leave 12 hours – Forfeit 1 days pay, 2 days leave stopped and 10 days No. 11 section, deprived of 1 G.C. badge. 27th July 1870 – Absent 57 Hours? – 6 days cells, forfeit 3 days pay and 5 days leave. 14th August 1877 – Irregular Conduct in Highlands Road Eastney at 11.35 PM – Admonished. HMS Zebra – 21st February 1867 to 9th May 1870. 21st February – Joined HMS Zebra, a 17 gun (the newspapers of the time all seem to list the Zebra as a 7-gun ship) wooden screw Sloop/Corvette of 1860. The ship had been commissioned at Woolwich by Commander Edwin J Pollard on the 9th. 16th February – The Press reported, “The Zebra 17 gun steam sloop commissioned on the 9th by Commander Edwin John Pollard, has been allotted her complement of 170 warrant, petty officers and seamen, together with one colour-sergeant, one drummer and ten privates RMLI and one bombardier and three gunners RMA. The majority of the officers joined at Woolwich. 25th February – The ship having completed her crew of 170 and her detachment of Woolwich marines is expected to sail within the next few days. 5th March – The ship was ordered to proceed down the river for a trial trip and then to adjust her compasses at Greenhithe before leaving for China. 14th March – Having received the whole of her ammunition and stores the Zebra left Woolwich for Portsmouth and China. 16th March – Arrived at Spithead. 24th March - Sailed from Spithead. 25th March – Arrived at Devonport and was taken into the harbour on the 27th to have some defects made good, after encountering some bad weather on her way down the Channel. 31st March – Moved into Plymouth Sound and later in the night, sailed for China. 12th April - The ship was reported to be at Madeira by the Royal Mail Steamer ‘Athenian’. August – Reported to be at Singapore 8th August – The screw steamer Armenian, left Singapore for Hong Kong. As she was proceeding through the straits, smoke was observed coming from below. Unable to see the problem due to the smoke, the hatches were battened down and the decks flooded. Finding that this did not help, the ship went about and come into collision with the Dutch Barque Johanna?. When she managed to regain the harbour where she receive assistance from the Zebra, Rifleman and the Petho?.December – The ship was based at Singapore 1868 January – At Singapore 21st January – Midshipman Haig rescued a man who had fallen into the water whilst returning onboard; awarded the Royal Humane Society’s Bronze Medal 11th April – The British press reported that Commander Henry A. Trollope was to replace Commander Pollard in command of the Zebra. The Yangzhou riot of August 22–23, 1868 was a brief crisis in Anglo-Chinese relations during the late Qing Dynasty. The crisis was fomented by the gentry of Yangzhou who opposed the presence of foreign Christian missionaries in the city, who claimed that they were legally residing under the provisions of the Convention of Peking. Threats against the missionaries were circulated by large character posters placed around the city. Rumors followed that the foreigners were stealing babies and killing them to make medicine. The riot that resulted was a angry crowd of Chinese, estimated at eight to ten thousand who assaulted the premises of the British China Inland Mission in Yangzhou by looting, burning and attacking the missionaries led by Hudson Taylor. No one was killed, however several of the missionaries were injured as they were forced to flee for their lives.
The result of this outrage was one of the Douglas-Morris’s no Medal Actions. Sir R. Alcock to Lord Stanley, Peking, October 12, 1868. – “I must now place the matter in the hands of the naval Commander-in-Chief, Sir Henry Keppel, and call upon him to repair the mischief by sending such a force to the mouth of the Grand Canal as shall enable him, if necessary, to apply effective pressure, both on the local authorities and populace at Yang-chow and on the Viceroy at Nanking”, Admiral Keppel’s response was to send Captain Algernon Heneage, to accompany Her Majesty's Consul to Nanking with the "Rodney” (Flag-ship), "Rinaldo," and "Slaney." With the Instructions, “You will make yourself acquainted with the force you are likely to encounter, and should it appear that a larger landing-party is required than can be afforded by Her Majesty's ships under your orders, reinforced by, the " Zebra " and " Icarus," you will apply to Captain Stanhope for such proportion of the Marines and small-arm men serving in the division under his orders as can be spared, informing him that it is my direction he immediately dispatches such force to banking in Her Majesty's ship "Adventurer;" 12th November - Captain Heneage of the Flag-ship HMS Rodney’s report to Admiral Keppel included, “HMS Zebra arrived at Shanghai on the 7th and I directed Commander Trollope to join me at Nanking with his ship Admiral Keppel in his “A sailor’s Life” Vol. 3 relates: “The Rinaldo, Commander Robinson, proceeded to Chinkiang and Nankin on September 3, conveying Mr. Consul Medhurst from Shanghai, whose representations resulted in a proclamation acknowledging the right of foreigners to reside in the country, and enjoining the people to respect them. A promise was also made of reparation to those who were injured. At this stage, Commander Bush of the Rinaldo, having an attack of illness, started off to Shanghai, leaving Mr. Medhurst in a house-boat to settle the affair. No sooner was the protection or prestige of the man-of-war removed than the Chinese authorities became insolent, refusing to grant the Consul the interview he had a right to demand, and withdrew all their previous concessions. I had left the Rodney at Shanghai, with instructions to Captain Heneage to carry out the views of the Consul, Mr. (afterwards Sir Walter) Medhurst, and render him every support. Directions were also given to prepare such a force as would overawe the troublesome Tontais in Formosa. Captain Heneage proceeded in Rodney, Rinaldo, and Slaney in company, to Nankin, where he was reinforced by Lord Charles Scott in the Icarus and the Zebra, Commander Trollope. Mr. Medhurst was on board the Rodney. It became apparent that the Viceroy, Tseng Kuofau, rested his faith on diplomatic fencing. The first step of our diplomacy was to seize the Chinese screw gunboat Tien Chi as a material guarantee for fulfilment of the claims of our Consul. One of these was that proclamations engraved on stone should be 1868, erected in the principal places, acknowledging the full right of Europeans to reside and exercise their calling. Compensation was demanded for the injuries inflicted on the persons and property of the missionaries; these and some minor demands were at once conceded, and the gun-boat was released. Subsequently the Consul, accompanied by a strong landing party from the ships, under the immediate command of Captain Heneage, proceeded to Yeng Cheow, where they remained until the Viceroy's concessions were enforced”. November and December – Based at Shanghai 1869 10th April – The Zebra left Shanghai to tow down the Salamis which was reported to be on shore having lost her rudder. The Admiral and Lady Keppel were on the Salamis. 17th May – THE Ocean and Zebra were at Hiogo with the Rodney (Admiral Keppel) on her way up the Kii channel to join them. They were assembled off Ozaka (Osaka) to give a show of strength to the presentation of letters of credence to the Mikado from the British envoy Sir Harry Parkes, which took place on the 22nd, the British party being accompanied by 200 marines (100 each from HMS Rodney (flagship) and HMS Ocean). June – The ship was at Shanghai, a letter from one of her officers read, “It is a great pity there are not more commanding officers in the service like our Captain (Commander Trollope), who is beloved by all on board, officers and men and does all in his power to promote their happiness and comfort as far as the rules of the service will permit. Everyone on board is only too happy to do everything in their power to make the ship smart. He is a strict disciplinarian; nevertheless, we get on like a cutter going down the stream.” 4th June – A dramatic entertainment was given on board the ship. June – Reported to be at Yokohama 2nd July – The ship was reported to be at Shanghai with the Opossum and Firm. The Zebra left towards the end of July. July – At Shanghai , then moved to Woosung The Zebra went down to Woosung where it was thought that the men would be exercised at target practice under canvas. August – The Zebra went to the aid of wrecked merchant ship Hamilla Mitchell, 100 miles to the north of Shanghai (“The British ship 'Hamilla Mitchell', belonging to Glasgow, outward bound from London to Shanghai, has been wrecked on the Leuconna Rock, within 130 miles of her destination, with a cargo valued at £150,000 and specie to the amount of £50,000. The 'Hamilla Mitchell' was a first-class iron ship, of nearly 1000 tons, owned by Thomas Mitchell, of Glasgow, and was commanded by Captain Branscombe. Lloyd's register describes her as having been built in Dundee in 1864, under special survey. She sailed from Gravesend on April 5th. The date of her loss is not mentioned, only the spot where it occurred, known as Leuconna Hammocks, a cluster of rocks in lat. 30.25 N., long. 122.33 E., in the fairway to the entrance to the river Yang-Tse-Kiang, and about 130 miles from Shanghai. The crew appeared to have saved themselves by the ship's boats and reached the port in safety).” Commander Trollope in the Zebra was sent to recover the treasure, which he refused to do unless the entire recovery work was placed in his hands and not the civil authorities, for which he offered to make himself responsible. However before anything could be agreed, the treasure was lost. On the 10th August a naval court was held at Shanghai to look into the case and after the matter had been investigated, Captain Trollope and the officers of the Zebra were exonerated from all blame.  October? - The Zebra was at Woosung on the arrival of the Galatea with the Duke of Edinburgh on board. 25th November – (England) The Donegal which has been commissioned by Captain William Hewett VC for “temporary service”, to take the new crew for the Ocean to China; the old crew to bring her home. Ocean would serve as flagship for Vice Admiral Sir Henry Kellett. She also embarked new men for the Rinaldo, Sylvia, Zebra “...the ship will have 1,200 souls on board when she sails”. She will then return to England with the old ships crews. 1st December – The ship was at Yokohama. 1870 January – The ship was at Yokohama February – The ship was at Hiogo February – A party of officers went on an excursion to see the Moon Temple, taking their guns with them. On the way back Lieut. Hardinge of the Zebra fell while walking a precipitous path and dropped his gun which was loaded with buckshot, the gun discharged and some 12 to 15 of the shot entered his body. On the way back to Kobe they were met by Dr. Leaby and other officers who had come to help him. After treatment the following day he had started to recover. February – A stoker from the Havock (in March of 1870 the Havock was sold in Yokohama) and a Marine of the Zebra were roughly handled by some Sampau (Sampai or Sampan?) men while those vessels were on the coast of Japan. The stoker it was said is maimed for life and the marine was barbarously treated. March – The Zebra was at Nagasaki 4th April – The Zebra arrived at Nagasaki from Hiogo. 7th April – The ship sailed for Hong Kong, to pay-off and re-commission.
9th May ?– The Zebra paid off at Hong Kong. HMS Donegal – 10th May 1870 to 30th September 1870. 10th May – Joined HMS Donegal, a 101-gun screw-driven first-rate ship of the line of 1858, which had brought out new crews to several ships on the China station 24th May – The Donegal left Hong Kong for England. 2nd August – At the Cape of Good Hope. 15th August – At St Helena.22nd September – Arrived back at Portsmouth late in the day. She brought home from various ships on the China Station, 142 officers, 151 marines, 950 seamen and 21 invalids. 25th September – The ship commenced stripping in the morning, the ship was also inspected by Admiral Sir James Hope who mustered the men. Afterwards the ex-crew of the Ocean landed on the jetty and went through their manual and platoon exercises and sword exercise, under the command of Gunnery-Lieutenant Gye. 30th September – The Donegal paid off. HMS Simoom – 16th July 1873 to 26th April 1874. 16th July – Joined HMS Simoom an Ex-iron screw frigate launched in 1849 and converted to a troopship in 1852. 16th July – The Troopship Simoom (Captain Peile), after taking on board from the Royal Clarence Victualling-yard at Gosport, six months provisions for 1000 men and embarking detachments of Royal Marine Artillery and Light Infantry, all for Cape Coast Castle, went out of Portsmouth for Spithead, where she anchored to receive the troop and other ammunition. 17th July – The ship left Spithead for Africa. The detachment of Marine Artillery on board is under the command of Captain Crease and Lieut. Moore. The Simoom will call in at Plymouth Sound on her way down the Channel, to complete the numbers of Marine Light Infantry under orders to embark in her for conveyance to Cape Coast Castle. 23rd July – The ship passed Madeira.29th July – Sailed from St. Vincent, where she had put into for coal. The Marines she is taking to Cape Coast Castle are to reinforce Colonel Festing there.
3th August – The ship arrived at Freetown, Sierra Leone and leaving on the 5th, after taking on board a considerable number of live bullocks and as much fresh vegetables as could be procured for the troops on the Gold Coast. The ship arrived off Cape Coast Castle but as all was quiet the Marines remained on board the Simoom and would not be landed until they were required for active service. The Simoom is to be used as a hospital ship 9th August – The Simoom arrived at Cape Coast. 2nd October – Sir Garnet Wolseley arrived with his staff. At this time the senior naval officer on station was Captain Edmund Robert Fremantle of HMS Barracuda (Commodore Coommerell having been badly wounded on an attempt to ascend the river). 13th October – The Daily News Reported that, Sir Garnet Wolseley with a small force of 163 marines from the Simoom and 65 West Indian privates embarked in the Barracouta and Decoy for Elmina where they landed the next day reinforced with 46 officers and men from the Barracouta. Here they were joined by a party of 126 Houssas and a start was made for the village of Essaman. The force also included 29 members of the RMA. In his “Britain’s Sea Soldiers” Colonel Field states these were under the command of Captain Crease, so it is possible that Huggett may well have been one of these men. After a brief fight, the British troops defeated the enemy and part of the detachment marched a 21 mile trek the villages of Ankwanda, Brenu Ankinim and Ampeni which were also destroyed and the force returned to Elmine in the evening of the same day. Captain Fremantle’s despatch to the Admiralty dated 12th November –“On the 8th (October) I returned to Cape Coast with the General and his staff, a portion of the naval brigade returning in the evening. At the General’s request, I left all the available men of the Simoom’s detachment on shore, besides 40 seaman and 20 marines from the squadron, which were distributed as follows:-50 Marines at Abrakrampa, under Captain Allautt RMLI; 25 seamen and 25 marines at Assayboo under Lieutenant Evans of HMS Encounter; The remainder, amounting to 100 in equal proportions of seamen and marines at Dunquah, under Commander Stephens; Our men are apparently no longer urgently required ashore and it is probable that Commodore Hewett will withdraw all the blue-jackets and Marines belonging to the squadron leaving the effectives of the Simoom’s detachment as a moral support for the natives”. On the 18th of October in his full report he also stated, “The success of the days operations was much assisted by the admirable conduct of Captain John F. Crease RMA, and Captain Allnutt RMLI, in command of the men of the Simoom’s detachment”. The return of the Simoom’s Marine casualties – Thomas Welsh private, gunshot wound to upper right arm (severe); Thomas Brodrick, private, gunshot wound to left testicle (Severe as slug lodged);  Number of officers and men landed from Simoom; 127?  5th December – News from the Gold Coast included, “The sanitary reports from Cape Coast castle are still very unsatisfactory. Most of the marines and blue-jackets put ashore from the Simoom had been down with Coast fever. 27th December – A correspondent reported that; ”Out of the 300? Marines who went out in the Simoom, who bore all the heat and burden and all the exposure of the first collision with the enemy in the bush, it is said that only two officers and four men remain uninvalided”. A second press report noted that Captain Crease RMA had been invalided to Ascension.
1874 It would seem that the marines taken out by the Simoom were most likely used as guards for various locations, or to strengthen the defences at Cape Coast Castle. I have been unable to be sure of how they rejoined the ship for their return to England. Were they picked up by the Simoom or were they taken to her at St Vincent or Ascension? 9th April – The Simoom left St Vincent for Portsmouth. 25th April - The Simoom arrived back at Spithead and come into Portsmouth harbour the next day, to discharge her supernumerary passengers Marines) and invalids. The marine detachment sent out in the Simoom for service on the Gold Coast numbered 200 and the difference between this later number and that of the men who now arrived home in the ship is represented by the men invalided. The Marines on being landed proceeded to their divisions at Eastney Barracks, Plymouth and Chatham. 9th May 1880 – Discharged Dead at Eastney The press reported “Fatal Poisoning Case at Eastney” – ”A shocking case of accidental poisoning took place at Eastney Barracks, on Saturday (8th May) night, which resulted in the death of a gunner in the Royal Marine Artillery, named John Huggett and the serious injury of three other persons. It appears that the deceased and his wife, in company with a comrade and his wife named Bonner, had been out drinking Saturday evening and were eventually requested to leave the “Eastney Cellars” by the landlord, it being closing time. On the road home they procured a quart of whiskey and on reaching the barracks they proceeded to the dispensary, where Bonner is employed as an assistant and commenced drinking the whiskey. Upon drinking a portion of the spirit, Huggett? (Bonner) and the two women became very sick and commenced vomiting but the deceased, who was the last to drink from the glass, at once became insensible and although medical aid was at once obtained he never regained his senses but expired soon after 11 o’clock on the Sunday morning”.
An inquest found that Bonner on Saturday, had prepared a solution of hydro-chlorate of morphia and after decanting it, someone came in for medicine and he placed the glass in which he mixed the solution, on one side and it was this glass that was used as a drinking glass for the Whiskey and Huggett being the last to drink, imbibed the greater portion of the sediment of the Morphia.
It was stated that at the time of his death, John Huggett was thirty-four years old and that he left a wife and four children.

1874. Thursday 29th January. The capture of Borubassie by Lieutenant Orosie RMLI, and 70 Royal Marines.

1874. Saturday 31st January. The battle of Amoaful.

1874. Sunday 1st February. Lieutenant Orosie RMLI and 70 Royal Marines were present at the fight of Bequah. In moving that the thanks for the House of Lords should be given to various officers employed in the Ashantee campaign, the Duke of Richmond said, “of Colonel Festing I would speak with the highest praise. His dispatches describing the operation which he himself conducted speak with natural modesty of his own achievements, but no one can read those despatches without realising the fact that the greatest possible thanks and praise are due to him and those who served under him (cheers). The Marines maintained their ancient prestige (cheers) and from the moment they landed showed that it was not without reason they bore the motto ‘Per Mare Per Terram’ (cheers).

1874. Wednesday 4th February. Ordashu carried and Coomassie taken.

1874. The Marines uniform of the day. (taken from 'Britain's Sea Soldiers: Vol 1 by Cyril Field RMLI).