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Company Numbers and Formations

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  • Richard Feltoe
    Dear list, The following is an extract for the topic from ...Rules and Regulations for the Formation, Exercise & Movements of the Militia of Lower Canada...
    Message 1 of 17 , Mar 7, 2007
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      Dear list,
      The following is an extract for the topic from "...Rules and Regulations for the Formation, Exercise & Movements of the Militia of Lower Canada..."
      Published by the order of Sir. G. Prevost in 1812 it was designed to train the local militias to fall in alongside of the regular forces and march, drill, and fight without interfering with the Regulars by using some old incompatable drill system. As such, not only does it contain the full drill system (in both English and French) but also additional explanations on why the order is the way it is. Interestingly, it also includes some drill that was obviously being used but that did not get into the official Rules and Regulations manuals until 1816 or later.

      "... The companies will be formed as follow from right to left, grenadiers on the right; light company on the left. the four eldest captains are on the right of the grand divisions; officers commanding companies or platoons, are all on the right of the front rank of their respective commands.

      The eight battalion companies will compose four grand divisions; eight companies or platoons; sixteen sub divisions; thirty-twosections,when sufficiently strong to be so divided; otherwise twenty-four for the purposes of March. the battalion is also divided into right and left wings. When the battalion is on a high establishment, each company will be divided into two platoons; when the ten companies are with the battalion, they may then, for the purposes of firing or deploying, be divided into five grand divisions from right to left.

      The battalion companies will be numbered from the right to the left, 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8; the sub-division will be numbered 1,2 of each; the sections will be numbered 1,2,3,4 of each; the files of companies will also be numbered 1,2,3,4&c.; the grenadier and light companies will be numbered separately in the same manner; and with the addition of those distinctions. These several appelations will be preserved, whether faced to front or rear.

      The companies should be equalized in point of numbers at all times when the battalion is formed for field movement; and could the battalion of a line also be equalized, the greatest advantages would arise..."


      This manual is just one of a number that I'm compiling into a single comparative compendium that I'm calling "The Old Sodger's Companion" My hope is that by looking at the various drill and instructional books used between 1790 and 1830 I can determine where the drill remained consistent and where it contained legitimate variations. This will then allow us to see and better understand what "the book" actually said for every movement and manouvre. For those interested, the list of texts I'm currently using is listed below. However, if anyone has any other manuals not listed, I would be very interested in getting a copy to include in the comparison.

      Hope this helps,
      Richard Feltoe


      REFERENCE SOURCES



      "...Rules and Regulations for the Manual and Platoon Exercises and Movements of His Majesty's Forces..."

      1798, (Full Version)

      1811 (Parts I and II, Abstract of Part III)

      1816 (Parts I and II, Abstract of Part III)



      1792 "...Regulations for the Mounting of Guards..."



      1794 "...The Eighteen Manoeuvres for His Majesty's Infantry..."

      Sergeant T. Langley, 1st Royal Regiment, Tower Hamlets Militia



      1795 "...The Standing Orders for the Norwich or Hundred and Sixth Regiment..."

      General William Earle Boliver



      1798 "...The Complete Drill Sergeant...for the Drill, Manual, and Platoon Exercise..." (2nd Edition)



      1798 "...Military Instructions...of the Manual and Platoon Exercises..."

      Lt. D. Roberts. Adjutant 1st Foot Guards

      Drawings by R.K. Porter



      1798 "...Rules and Regulations... Manual and Platoon Exercise...for the use of the Liverpool Volunteers..."



      1798 "...Instructions relative to the Baggage and Marches of the Army..."

      Issued by order of William Fawcett, Adjutant General



      1798 "...Instructions for the Armed Association of the Percy Tenantry Infantry..."

      Henry Percy, Duke of Northumberland



      1799 "...The Illustrated School of Mars or...Loyal Volunteers of London & Environs...Manual, Platoon, & Funeral Exercise..."

      R Ackermann

      Drawings by R. Rowlandson



      1800 "...The Military Guide for Young Officers..."

      T. Simes

      (Copy owned by Lewis Dunbar, Captain, 2nd Rgt. N.B. [New Brunswick/North British] Militia 1800)



      1803 "...Regulations for the Exercise of Riflemen and Light Infantry..."

      Major General F. Baron De Rottenburg



      1803 "...A Manual for Volunteer Corps of Infantry..."



      1803 "...Treatise on the Science of Defence for the Sword, Bayonet, and Pike in Close Action..."

      Captain A. Gordon (Captain of Invalids)



      1803 "...Soldiers Companion containing instructions for the Drill, Manual and Platoon Exercise...for the use of Volunteers of this Country..." (55th Edition)

      (Used by the West Riding Loyal Militia, Lancastershire)



      1805 (Rules and Regulations, extract of Parts I and II, Manual and Platoon Exercise)

      [Copy owned and inscribed by Lt Fitzgibbon, 49th Regiment, Quebec, 1805. Captain Fitzgibbon, Glengarry Light Infantry, York 1815



      1806 "A Practical Guide for the Light Infantry Officer"

      T.H. Cooper



      1806 "...Review of a Battalion of Infantry including the Eighteen Manoeuveres..."

      (4th Edition)

      R. Smirke

      (Derived from Dundas)



      1808 "...General Orders applicable to the troops destined for Continental Service..."

      By order of H. Calvert, Adjutant General



      1812 "...Rules and Regulations for the Formation, Exercise & Movements of the Militia of Lower Canada..."

      By order of G. Prevost, issued by Lt. Colonel F. Vassal de Monviel, Adjutant General of the Militia of Lower Canada



      1813 "...Instructions for Light Infantry and Riflemen..."

      Colonel N. Campbell, 54th Regiment, Commanding 16th Portuguese Infantry



      1815 Illustrations for the Manual and Platoon Exercise and Firings found on the body of an Officer at Waterloo.

      [Derived from "...The Complete Drill Sergeant..." 1798]

      B. Clayton



      1827 "...The Military Catechism for the Use of Young Officers and Sergeants of Infantry..."



      1828 "...The Manual and Platoon Exercises and the different Firings...

      (1824 drill used for His Majesty's Regulations... 1828 reprint in 1965)

      Drawings by Major T.L. Mitchell




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Chris McKay
      Richard et al, This certainly seems to be a place where the theory crashes with reality in some manner. The light company of the Royals was clearly number
      Message 2 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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        Richard et al,
        This certainly seems to be a place where the theory crashes with
        reality in some manner. The light company of the Royals was clearly
        number seven. I'd passed this off as a anomoly until your talk of
        Lundy's Lane last Saturday. You said the Grenadier Company of the
        IMUC, I believe, was numbered six by your research. You had another
        explanation for this, but I have to think that in practice, the
        companies were numbered by a different system.
        Incidentally, it does not appear that they are numbered by the
        seniority of their Captain either. The Captain of the Light Company of
        the Royals was third in line of seniority - at least, from the date of
        his first commission.

        The mystery continues...

        Chris

        --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Richard Feltoe" <feltoe@...> wrote:
        > The battalion companies will be numbered from the right to the left,
        1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8; the sub-division will be numbered 1,2 of each; the
        sections will be numbered 1,2,3,4 of each; the files of companies will
        also be numbered 1,2,3,4&c.; the grenadier and light companies will be
        numbered separately in the same manner; and with the addition of those
        distinctions. These several appelations will be preserved, whether
        faced to front or rear.
      • James Yaworsky
        ... [snip] I have to think that in practice, the ... I wonder how much research is behind the Sharpe novels on the issue of captains and their assignments.
        Message 3 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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          --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Chris McKay" <PrivateCannon@...> wrote:
          [snip] I have to think that in practice, the
          > companies were numbered by a different system.
          > Incidentally, it does not appear that they are numbered by the
          > seniority of their Captain either. [snip]

          I wonder how much research is behind the Sharpe novels on the issue of
          captains and their assignments. Sharpe spends quite a bit of time in
          a few of the books angling to get a Company, keep a company, get the
          Light Company, etc.

          Some questions/observations:

          1) A regiment has 10 companies, numbered 1 to 10. A few years go by.
          The captain of #5 company is promoted, killed, or leaves the army.
          Does #6 company now become #5 company, etc., and the junior
          newly-promoted captain's company become #9 company (because #10 is the
          "lights"?).

          2) Or, if the replacement's commission is dated earlier than the
          captains of #3 down, does the former #5 company, by virtue of its new
          captain's seniority in the Army, become #3 company and everybody
          lower shift down a number? Surely, seniority is based on year of
          commission, not year of joining a Regiment...

          3)instead of changing the numbers of a company, do all the captains
          shift around when a new man arrives, in a sort of musical chairs, so
          that whoever the most senior captain is, he always has command of the
          unit that is always called #2 company, and the most junior, #9?

          4) how does the grenadier and light companies fit in to such a scheme?
          Does one buy a commission as the "light company" captain? (from the
          Sharpe books, it appears so... but we know how reliable *they* can
          be...). It seems we have known examples where the Light or Grenadier
          companies were definitely not "#1" or "#10", at least on the permanent
          books.

          5) when an officer of #3 company is killed or incapacitated in action,
          does its senior Lieutenant take over until a replacement is formally
          appointed, or, does the captain of #4 company "step up" to #3, etc.,
          and the lucky lieutenant of #9 get to be its temporary captain? Or,
          does #3 company immediately become #9 company, and the others all
          "step up" a digit?

          I think to pose the questions this way suggests their probable answers.

          In the first example I gave, because the books on all the companies
          affected would have to be changed, because markings on equipment might
          have to be changed, etc., it seems more logical that the new man,
          whether junior or senior to other captains in the company, would
          simply take over #5 company, which would remain, for the permanent
          records, "#5". Perhaps when going out on parade, however, #5
          company, by virtue of its captain's seniority, would be temporarily
          numbered #3 and march in that position...

          It seems clear, when you look at the practicalities of a continually
          shifting cast of characters, that a neat "1 to 10, by seniority"
          scheme would be very difficult to maintain - especially when a
          regiment is on active campaign, and the personnel changes are
          potentially coming with the speed of... well... a speeding bullet...
          (OUCH!)

          Jim Yaworsky
          41st
        • Iain Burns
          Hello all While this thread is an extremely interesting line of thought, I ve been trying to stay out of the fray as I am not nearly as well read in the 19th
          Message 4 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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            Hello all
            While this thread is an extremely interesting line of thought, I've
            been trying to stay out of the fray as I am not nearly as well read in the
            19th century military as many of the others on this board.
            But that won't stop this quick question/comment on basic intent:
            What is the idea of numbering Companies? It does make sense to number
            the Colonel's Company as No 1, Lt Col as No 2, Major's as No 3, etc, in
            order to set out the Battalion formation with No1 Coy on the right, No 2
            Coy, on the left, No 3 Coy just to the left of No 1 Coy, again etc... but
            what sense is made of numbering the Grenadiers and Lights, as I would assume
            that the Grenadiers would be on the right of No 1 and the Lights would be on
            the left of No 2.... why confuse matters by giving them seniority numbers?
            Most of my research is on the Rev War era, and they further confused
            things by (many times) having a Captain-Lt in charge of the Colonel's
            Company, since the Colonel might be a General or MP or have some other
            reason not to be with his Corps. This Capt-Lt most times was less senior to
            the Lt Col or Major or even some of the other Captains. He was still in
            command of the Colonel's Coy, and was therefore in command of the most
            senior company...
            It seems to me that if we knew the reason for numbering Companies (it
            doesn't seem to be for ordering the Battalion, but maybe it IS to set the
            pecking order of Officer Seniority?), we might just be able to figure out
            the rationale.
            This question is not asked with the purpose of directing or forwarding
            some agenda, it is only the product of a very confused mind!
            Any ideas out there? Has the British Army progressed to the point
            where the Rev War conventions were no longer in vogue?
            I am, etc,
            Iain



            >From: "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@...>
            >Reply-To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
            >To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
            >Subject: [War Of 1812] Re: Company Numbers and Formations - Captains
            >Date: Thu, 08 Mar 2007 13:57:59 -0000
            >
            >--- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Chris McKay" <PrivateCannon@...> wrote:
            >[snip] I have to think that in practice, the
            > > companies were numbered by a different system.
            > > Incidentally, it does not appear that they are numbered by the
            > > seniority of their Captain either. [snip]
            >
            >I wonder how much research is behind the Sharpe novels on the issue of
            >captains and their assignments. Sharpe spends quite a bit of time in
            >a few of the books angling to get a Company, keep a company, get the
            >Light Company, etc.
            >
            >Some questions/observations:
            >
            >1) A regiment has 10 companies, numbered 1 to 10. A few years go by.
            > The captain of #5 company is promoted, killed, or leaves the army.
            >Does #6 company now become #5 company, etc., and the junior
            >newly-promoted captain's company become #9 company (because #10 is the
            >"lights"?).
            >
            >2) Or, if the replacement's commission is dated earlier than the
            >captains of #3 down, does the former #5 company, by virtue of its new
            >captain's seniority in the Army, become #3 company and everybody
            >lower shift down a number? Surely, seniority is based on year of
            >commission, not year of joining a Regiment...
            >
            >3)instead of changing the numbers of a company, do all the captains
            >shift around when a new man arrives, in a sort of musical chairs, so
            >that whoever the most senior captain is, he always has command of the
            >unit that is always called #2 company, and the most junior, #9?
            >
            >4) how does the grenadier and light companies fit in to such a scheme?
            > Does one buy a commission as the "light company" captain? (from the
            >Sharpe books, it appears so... but we know how reliable *they* can
            >be...). It seems we have known examples where the Light or Grenadier
            >companies were definitely not "#1" or "#10", at least on the permanent
            >books.
            >
            >5) when an officer of #3 company is killed or incapacitated in action,
            >does its senior Lieutenant take over until a replacement is formally
            >appointed, or, does the captain of #4 company "step up" to #3, etc.,
            >and the lucky lieutenant of #9 get to be its temporary captain? Or,
            >does #3 company immediately become #9 company, and the others all
            >"step up" a digit?
            >
            >I think to pose the questions this way suggests their probable answers.
            >
            >In the first example I gave, because the books on all the companies
            >affected would have to be changed, because markings on equipment might
            >have to be changed, etc., it seems more logical that the new man,
            >whether junior or senior to other captains in the company, would
            >simply take over #5 company, which would remain, for the permanent
            >records, "#5". Perhaps when going out on parade, however, #5
            >company, by virtue of its captain's seniority, would be temporarily
            >numbered #3 and march in that position...
            >
            >It seems clear, when you look at the practicalities of a continually
            >shifting cast of characters, that a neat "1 to 10, by seniority"
            >scheme would be very difficult to maintain - especially when a
            >regiment is on active campaign, and the personnel changes are
            >potentially coming with the speed of... well... a speeding bullet...
            >(OUCH!)
            >
            >Jim Yaworsky
            >41st
            >
            >
          • Ray Hobbs
            Jim: There is also another wrinkle to this. In late 1813 the 41st s two battalions combined into one. Capt. J.B. Glew transferred from the 85th to the 41st on
            Message 5 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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              Jim:
              There is also another wrinkle to this. In late 1813 the 41st's two
              battalions combined into one. Capt. J.B. Glew transferred from the 85th
              to the 41st on April 1st, 1813, and was a Captain in the 2nd Battalion.
              Here is a transcription of Whitehearne's handwritten notes on Glew:

              "As a Captain he went to Canada with the 2/41. He was appointed to
              command the outposts at Kingston: his conduct there through a trying
              winter was commended by Sir Geo Prevost. He was then constantly in
              command of the Flank Coys 41. on detachment. At Niagara on 25.7.1814 he
              was particularly mentioned and recommended for promotion by Sir G.
              Drummond & Sir G. Prevost, but owing to some informality this was
              refused. He commanded the Flank Coys until 15.8.1814 when he was
              severely wounded in the right shoulder at Fort Erie. On recovering he
              was appointed local Lieut. Col. to command a Bn of Incorporated Militia
              of Upper Canada until the peace when the Bn was disbanded. He went with
              the 41. to France"

              My point being - How do you keep track of such a man who came from
              outside the Regiment, and yet commanded both Flank Companies? The
              distinction between grens and lights seems to have disappeared - due no
              doubt to the chronic shortage of men in the 41st. Whatever official
              rules and regulations there were for numbering, command, seniority
              might have gotten a bit fuzzy in the cold light of reality on the
              ground.

              There is also Captain Fuller's notorious whiny Memorial complaining of
              being passed over so many times for company command and promotion, even
              though he was, technically, the senior Captain of the 41st. Of course,
              his mental state might have had something to do with this :)

              Fascinating thread
              Ray
              XLI



              On 8-Mar-07, at 8:57 AM, James Yaworsky wrote:

              > --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Chris McKay" <PrivateCannon@...>
              > wrote:
              > [snip] I have to think that in practice, the
              > > companies were numbered by a different system.
              > > Incidentally, it does not appear that they are numbered by the
              > > seniority of their Captain either. [snip]
              >
              > I wonder how much research is behind the Sharpe novels on the issue of
              > captains and their assignments. Sharpe spends quite a bit of time in
              > a few of the books angling to get a Company, keep a company, get the
              > Light Company, etc.
              >
              > Some questions/observations:
              >
              > 1) A regiment has 10 companies, numbered 1 to 10. A few years go by.
              > The captain of #5 company is promoted, killed, or leaves the army.
              > Does #6 company now become #5 company, etc., and the junior
              > newly-promoted captain's company become #9 company (because #10 is the
              > "lights"?).
              >
              > 2) Or, if the replacement's commission is dated earlier than the
              > captains of #3 down, does the former #5 company, by virtue of its new
              > captain's seniority in the Army, become #3 company and everybody
              > lower shift down a number? Surely, seniority is based on year of
              > commission, not year of joining a Regiment...
              >
              > 3)instead of changing the numbers of a company, do all the captains
              > shift around when a new man arrives, in a sort of musical chairs, so
              > that whoever the most senior captain is, he always has command of the
              > unit that is always called #2 company, and the most junior, #9?
              >
              > 4) how does the grenadier and light companies fit in to such a scheme?
              > Does one buy a commission as the "light company" captain? (from the
              > Sharpe books, it appears so... but we know how reliable *they* can
              > be...). It seems we have known examples where the Light or Grenadier
              > companies were definitely not "#1" or "#10", at least on the permanent
              > books.
              >
              > 5) when an officer of #3 company is killed or incapacitated in action,
              > does its senior Lieutenant take over until a replacement is formally
              > appointed, or, does the captain of #4 company "step up" to #3, etc.,
              > and the lucky lieutenant of #9 get to be its temporary captain? Or,
              > does #3 company immediately become #9 company, and the others all
              > "step up" a digit?
              >
              > I think to pose the questions this way suggests their probable
              > answers.
              >
              > In the first example I gave, because the books on all the companies
              > affected would have to be changed, because markings on equipment might
              > have to be changed, etc., it seems more logical that the new man,
              > whether junior or senior to other captains in the company, would
              > simply take over #5 company, which would remain, for the permanent
              > records, "#5". Perhaps when going out on parade, however, #5
              > company, by virtue of its captain's seniority, would be temporarily
              > numbered #3 and march in that position...
              >
              > It seems clear, when you look at the practicalities of a continually
              > shifting cast of characters, that a neat "1 to 10, by seniority"
              > scheme would be very difficult to maintain - especially when a
              > regiment is on active campaign, and the personnel changes are
              > potentially coming with the speed of... well... a speeding bullet...
              > (OUCH!)
              >
              > Jim Yaworsky
              > 41st
              >
              >
              >
              >

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Will Tatum
              All, From my research into the British Army of the pre-1795 era, the numbering, or lettering, of companies was essentially done to allow the assigning of rack
              Message 6 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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                All,
                From my research into the British Army of the pre-1795 era, the numbering,
                or lettering, of companies was essentially done to allow the assigning of
                rack numbers to individual weapons and accoutrements. I've yet to find
                evidence that the letters or numbers assigned to any certain company had any
                other uses, and from the small amount of preliminary research I've done into
                the Napoleonic-period British Army, I don't see much evidence of any
                differences.


                From what I understand of the practice, when a regiment received a new
                shipment of armaments, they would have the wristplate, top of the barrel,
                and bayonet socket engraved. Only the wristplate and socket received rack
                numbers, whilst the top of the musket barrel had the regiment's name or
                title engraved upon it. The battalion companies received numbers or letters
                in accordance with their rank at the time, thus:

                Colonel's- A or 1
                Lt. Col's- B or 2
                Major's- C or 3
                1st Capt's- D or 4
                2nd Capt's- E or 5
                3rd Capt's- F or 6
                4th Capt's- G or 7

                With the Lights and Grenadiers receiving different designations- the Lights
                generally had "LI" as the company designation, and the Grenadiers varied
                widely.

                Now, this lettering/numbering scheme was only "accurate" for the moment it
                was done. When there were promotions within the regiment, the promoted
                captain seems to have retained the same men with the same weapons. Thus, if
                there was a sufficient about of overturn, the commander of the 1st Capt's
                company one or two years later might have had his men carrying arms marked
                for "G" or "no 7" company. The only important thing was that the weapons had
                an identifying mark and that the quartermaster serjeants knew what it meant.


                As for Capt-Lt's, I don't see much of anything confusing about that. The
                Colonel of the regiment was often very old- usually of General grade and
                with many years of experience, plus political connections. Thus, they rarely
                ventured out into the field. In order to provide for this, an officer had to
                be created with enough seniority to command the Colonel's company on a
                permanent basis, but who at the same time would not challenge the Colonel's
                position as captain of the company. Thus, the creation of the
                Captain-Lieutenant, essentially stuck between being a full LT and a full
                Capt. Captain-Lieutenants in the pre-1795 Army were generally ranked as the
                junior-most captain for duties and in the mess, although they were, on some
                occasions (as with the 84th RHE during the AWI) ranked as senior-most
                lieutenants. If the Capt-Lt was promoted within the regiment, he would
                succeed to the 4th Captain's Company (or the junior-most captain's company
                if it occurred during a period when additional companies were part of the
                establishment).

                Thus, I wouldn't worry too much about the numbers or letters of a company
                reflecting its Captain's place in the hierarchy. We must bear in mind that
                all of these men knew each other, and where they stood in relation to each
                other, so sticking to numbers and letters, especially when it was not
                convenient to do so, simply was not done. If anyone can provide evidence to
                the contrary, I would very much enjoy seeing it. And, of course, things get
                extremely complicated for units like the 41st, which endured so many
                casualties and upheavals in their organization during the course of the war.

                Yr Svt,
                Wm Tatum
                Royal Marines, HMS Albion
                HM 17th Infantry- AWI


                On 3/8/07, Iain Burns <iain51hdbw@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hello all
                > While this thread is an extremely interesting line of thought, I've
                > been trying to stay out of the fray as I am not nearly as well read in the
                >
                > 19th century military as many of the others on this board.
                > But that won't stop this quick question/comment on basic intent:
                > What is the idea of numbering Companies? It does make sense to number
                > the Colonel's Company as No 1, Lt Col as No 2, Major's as No 3, etc, in
                > order to set out the Battalion formation with No1 Coy on the right, No 2
                > Coy, on the left, No 3 Coy just to the left of No 1 Coy, again etc... but
                > what sense is made of numbering the Grenadiers and Lights, as I would
                > assume
                > that the Grenadiers would be on the right of No 1 and the Lights would be
                > on
                > the left of No 2.... why confuse matters by giving them seniority numbers?
                > Most of my research is on the Rev War era, and they further confused
                > things by (many times) having a Captain-Lt in charge of the Colonel's
                > Company, since the Colonel might be a General or MP or have some other
                > reason not to be with his Corps. This Capt-Lt most times was less senior
                > to
                > the Lt Col or Major or even some of the other Captains. He was still in
                > command of the Colonel's Coy, and was therefore in command of the most
                > senior company...
                > It seems to me that if we knew the reason for numbering Companies (it
                > doesn't seem to be for ordering the Battalion, but maybe it IS to set the
                > pecking order of Officer Seniority?), we might just be able to figure out
                > the rationale.
                > This question is not asked with the purpose of directing or forwarding
                > some agenda, it is only the product of a very confused mind!
                > Any ideas out there? Has the British Army progressed to the point
                > where the Rev War conventions were no longer in vogue?
                > I am, etc,
                > Iain
                >
                > >From: "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@... <yawors1%40uwindsor.ca>>
                > >Reply-To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com <WarOf1812%40yahoogroups.com>
                > >To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com <WarOf1812%40yahoogroups.com>
                > >Subject: [War Of 1812] Re: Company Numbers and Formations - Captains
                > >Date: Thu, 08 Mar 2007 13:57:59 -0000
                > >
                > >--- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com <WarOf1812%40yahoogroups.com>, "Chris
                > McKay" <PrivateCannon@...> wrote:
                > >[snip] I have to think that in practice, the
                > > > companies were numbered by a different system.
                > > > Incidentally, it does not appear that they are numbered by the
                > > > seniority of their Captain either. [snip]
                > >
                > >I wonder how much research is behind the Sharpe novels on the issue of
                > >captains and their assignments. Sharpe spends quite a bit of time in
                > >a few of the books angling to get a Company, keep a company, get the
                > >Light Company, etc.
                > >
                > >Some questions/observations:
                > >
                > >1) A regiment has 10 companies, numbered 1 to 10. A few years go by.
                > > The captain of #5 company is promoted, killed, or leaves the army.
                > >Does #6 company now become #5 company, etc., and the junior
                > >newly-promoted captain's company become #9 company (because #10 is the
                > >"lights"?).
                > >
                > >2) Or, if the replacement's commission is dated earlier than the
                > >captains of #3 down, does the former #5 company, by virtue of its new
                > >captain's seniority in the Army, become #3 company and everybody
                > >lower shift down a number? Surely, seniority is based on year of
                > >commission, not year of joining a Regiment...
                > >
                > >3)instead of changing the numbers of a company, do all the captains
                > >shift around when a new man arrives, in a sort of musical chairs, so
                > >that whoever the most senior captain is, he always has command of the
                > >unit that is always called #2 company, and the most junior, #9?
                > >
                > >4) how does the grenadier and light companies fit in to such a scheme?
                > > Does one buy a commission as the "light company" captain? (from the
                > >Sharpe books, it appears so... but we know how reliable *they* can
                > >be...). It seems we have known examples where the Light or Grenadier
                > >companies were definitely not "#1" or "#10", at least on the permanent
                > >books.
                > >
                > >5) when an officer of #3 company is killed or incapacitated in action,
                > >does its senior Lieutenant take over until a replacement is formally
                > >appointed, or, does the captain of #4 company "step up" to #3, etc.,
                > >and the lucky lieutenant of #9 get to be its temporary captain? Or,
                > >does #3 company immediately become #9 company, and the others all
                > >"step up" a digit?
                > >
                > >I think to pose the questions this way suggests their probable answers.
                > >
                > >In the first example I gave, because the books on all the companies
                > >affected would have to be changed, because markings on equipment might
                > >have to be changed, etc., it seems more logical that the new man,
                > >whether junior or senior to other captains in the company, would
                > >simply take over #5 company, which would remain, for the permanent
                > >records, "#5". Perhaps when going out on parade, however, #5
                > >company, by virtue of its captain's seniority, would be temporarily
                > >numbered #3 and march in that position...
                > >
                > >It seems clear, when you look at the practicalities of a continually
                > >shifting cast of characters, that a neat "1 to 10, by seniority"
                > >scheme would be very difficult to maintain - especially when a
                > >regiment is on active campaign, and the personnel changes are
                > >potentially coming with the speed of... well... a speeding bullet...
                > >(OUCH!)
                > >
                > >Jim Yaworsky
                > >41st
                > >
                > >
                >
                >
                >



                --
                "However I believe I shall procure the character of a damn'd shroud [sic]
                fellow in this place, I never speak, have not been observ'd to smile,
                frequently have been seen Muttering to myself, and as I never contradict
                anything that's said, but nod my assent to every absurdity, I believe I
                shall be esteem'd an Oracle."

                - Capt. Robert Dalrymple, 1756


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Mark Dickerson
                The battalion companies will be numbered from the right to left, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8; the sub divisions will be numbered 1, 2, of each; the sections will
                Message 7 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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                  "The battalion companies will be numbered from the right to left, 1, 2, 3,
                  4, 5, 6, 7, 8; the sub divisions will be numbered 1, 2, of each; the
                  sections will be numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, of each" etc etc.

                  It would seem that a company's regimental number would be different from it's order on parade. I would assume that a company's regimental number would remain the same even when a new officer arrived. The senior officer would have his choice as to which company he wanted to command. It is much easier to record that "Capt X now commands #4 company" rather than change the number assignment of each of the 100 men in that company.
                  Assinging a number to a company makes it easier to keep the logs straight.
                  senario one: Pvt Y belongs to Capt X's company
                  Capt X dies or transfers. Now it has to be recorded that Pvt Y and all the other 99 guys are in Capt G's company. ( a lot of paperwork)
                  scenario two: Pvt Y belongs to #4 company. Even if Capt X moves on, he still stays in #4 company. If the private is temporatily transferred to # 8 to keep the companies at even strength, it is much easier to record that this private is on loan from #4 than from the name of the Capt, who may change next month. Does this make sense?

                  __,_._,__"the grenadiers and light companies will be numbered separately in the same manner"

                  I have no idea what this means. Were they just 1 and 2?

                  Still no idea as to how a companies permanent number was established?

                  Mark Dickerson




                  _
                  II

                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Chris McKay
                  I think the key to solving this mystery is in the Light and Grenadier companies. They are likely to be more permanent and the are easier to distinguish in the
                  Message 8 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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                    I think the key to solving this mystery is in the Light and Grenadier
                    companies. They are likely to be more permanent and the are easier
                    to distinguish in the orders. So, what I'm hoping other researchers
                    can do is to check which company is the light company in their
                    battalions. If we find that, through several units, the light
                    company is numbered seven and the grenadiers six, then we can
                    conclude that they were numbered that way (for whatever reason). If,
                    however, we find that in the 41st, the grannies are number 1 and the
                    lights 10, but in the IMUC the grannies are number 6, we'll have to
                    go back to the drawing board.
                    Can anyone help us out with other battalions?

                    Chris

                    --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Dickerson" <mdickerson1@...>
                    wrote:
                    > __,_._,__"the grenadiers and light companies will be numbered
                    separately in the same manner"
                    >
                    > I have no idea what this means. Were they just 1 and 2?
                    >
                    > Still no idea as to how a companies permanent number was
                    established?
                    >
                    > Mark Dickerson
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > _
                    > II
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    >
                  • Dave Westhouse
                    ... wrote: __,_._,__ the grenadiers and light companies will be numbered separately in the same manner I have no idea what this means. Were they just 1 and
                    Message 9 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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                      --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Dickerson" <mdickerson1@...>
                      wrote:
                      __,_._,__"the grenadiers and light companies will be numbered
                      separately in the same manner"

                      I have no idea what this means. Were they just 1 and 2?

                      Still no idea as to how a companies permanent number was established?

                      Mark Dickerson


                      I have seen it written in the drill manual, part of which you have
                      above(page 58-59, right after s.71), as Kevin mentioned earlier and
                      he wrote out the section, and in other books including Osprey (not
                      exactly the greatest source) that the grenadier and light companies
                      didn't have numbers but were simply refered to as such, grenadiers
                      and lights. The companies are numbered from 1-8 of the line
                      companies in between the flank companies.

                      In reference to our unit's tage line on our website, first of the
                      first of the first (meaning first company of the first battalion of
                      the first regiment) is not really true. If going by the methodology
                      of flanks not having numbers our tag line would refer to the line
                      company on the right of the line of the eight middle companies. It
                      sounded cool at the time.

                      The scenario of flank companies not being numbered doesn't match up
                      however as you have pointed out in your notes on returns that the
                      light company was referred to as the #7 company.

                      It's all fine and well when written down, but who does everything
                      the way it's written?

                      Dave Westhouse,
                      1st(Royal Scots) Regiment.
                    • Mark Dickerson
                      ._,__ OOrigianlOrithaalsjf o _ Original message: It s all fine and well when written down, but who does everything the way it s written True, but that s
                      Message 10 of 17 , Mar 8, 2007
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                        ._,__
                        OOrigianlOrithaalsjf o

                        _"""""Original message:

                        "It's all fine and well when written down, but who does everything
                        the way it's written"



                        True, but that's the whole point of continuous research and discussion such as this, to dispel re-enactorisms, myths and at least attempt to do things better and improve accuracy. Granted I know there are varying degrees to which things can be followed.

                        Mark D


                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • James Yaworsky
                        So how does this sound: Men are assigned to a company on the books . An officer runs the company as long as he s in the Regiment(unless he takes over the
                        Message 11 of 17 , Mar 9, 2007
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                          So how does this sound:

                          Men are assigned to a company "on the books". An officer runs the
                          company as long as he's in the Regiment(unless he takes over the Grens
                          or the Lights).
                          The men are not shuffled around the companies on a permanent basis,
                          unless something really major happens (like the merging of the 41st's
                          1st & 2nd battalions in early 1814).
                          The officer keeps tabs on the men in his company, which messes, camps,
                          barracks, gets paid, gets new equipment, etc., as a separate
                          organizational unit.

                          The companies of the regiment grow and shrink as fate decrees, so at
                          any given time, one of the permanent companies might be quite a bit
                          bigger or smaller than others in the battalion.
                          When recruits arrive, they are doled out to the "permanent" companies
                          to try and keep them "equalized".
                          Most of the time, they *are* fairly equal in size.

                          However, when a parade is called, or the battalion prepares for
                          battle, the companies are lined up as per the manuals that have been
                          cited - Grenadiers on the right, Lights on the left, and companies
                          lined up by seniority of their captain from right to left. If any of
                          the constituent companies are understrength, then they are "topped up"
                          with men taken from the stronger companies.
                          When all is nicely evened up, everybody knows that for purposes of the
                          operation in hand, the companies will be numbered, *for the operation
                          only*, from 1 to 10 (or perhaps "grens - 1 to 8 - lights", although
                          the grens could easily be considered company #1 *temporarily*).

                          The operation is conducted.

                          It's back to camp. The men break off in to their "permanent"
                          companies and life goes on...

                          Jim Yaworsky
                          41st
                        • Chris McKay
                          That seems fairly good Jim. I went and double checked the pay lists last night and a few things jumped out at me: One, men are transfered from company to
                          Message 12 of 17 , Mar 9, 2007
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                            That seems fairly good Jim. I went and double checked the pay lists
                            last night and a few things jumped out at me: One, men are transfered
                            from company to company fairly often and in fairly large numbers.
                            Two, the actual heading of the column reads, "Number of the Company
                            in which the man is paid or borne." This seems to suggest, as a few
                            people have offered, that the company in which you are listed on the
                            books is not necessarily the company in which you serve. These two
                            conclusions seem to contradict one another in my view, though.
                            Anyone else see it differently?

                            Chris

                            --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@...>
                            wrote:
                            >
                            > So how does this sound:
                            >
                            > Men are assigned to a company "on the books". An officer runs the
                            > company as long as he's in the Regiment(unless he takes over the
                            Grens
                            > or the Lights).
                            > The men are not shuffled around the companies on a permanent basis,
                            > unless something really major happens (like the merging of the
                            41st's
                            > 1st & 2nd battalions in early 1814).
                            > The officer keeps tabs on the men in his company, which messes,
                            camps,
                            > barracks, gets paid, gets new equipment, etc., as a separate
                            > organizational unit.
                            >
                            > The companies of the regiment grow and shrink as fate decrees, so at
                            > any given time, one of the permanent companies might be quite a bit
                            > bigger or smaller than others in the battalion.
                            > When recruits arrive, they are doled out to the "permanent"
                            companies
                            > to try and keep them "equalized".
                            > Most of the time, they *are* fairly equal in size.
                            >
                            > However, when a parade is called, or the battalion prepares for
                            > battle, the companies are lined up as per the manuals that have been
                            > cited - Grenadiers on the right, Lights on the left, and companies
                            > lined up by seniority of their captain from right to left. If any
                            of
                            > the constituent companies are understrength, then they are "topped
                            up"
                            > with men taken from the stronger companies.
                            > When all is nicely evened up, everybody knows that for purposes of
                            the
                            > operation in hand, the companies will be numbered, *for the
                            operation
                            > only*, from 1 to 10 (or perhaps "grens - 1 to 8 - lights", although
                            > the grens could easily be considered company #1 *temporarily*).
                            >
                            > The operation is conducted.
                            >
                            > It's back to camp. The men break off in to their "permanent"
                            > companies and life goes on...
                            >
                            > Jim Yaworsky
                            > 41st
                            >
                          • larrylozon
                            Richard Feltoe wrote: . . .The following is an extract for the topic from . . Rules and Regulations for the Formation, Exercise & Movements of the Militia of
                            Message 13 of 17 , Mar 9, 2007
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                              Richard Feltoe wrote:

                              ". . .The following is an extract for the topic from . . Rules and
                              Regulations for the Formation, Exercise & Movements of the Militia of
                              Lower Canada `




                              Which generates two questions . . .?

                              Since Mr. Dickerson posed the original question,
                              and since Mr. Dickerson is a member of the 1st (Royal Scots) Regiment
                              which is part of the Regular British Army (1812)


                              Question #1:

                              Would Rules and Regulations for the Militia be the same for the
                              Regular Army, given Officers of the Militia were demoted if
                              transferred to the Regular Army?



                              Question #2:

                              Would Rules and Regulations for the Militia of Lower Canada be the
                              same for Militia of Upper Canada due to some irregulars due to the
                              French Population and Militia organization ?


                              yrs,.
                              L2
                            • glenn stott
                              Dear List, Not to complicate the issue any further but... in Auchinlock? s book about the War of 1812, he prints Capt. Richard Bullock s letter to explain what
                              Message 14 of 17 , Mar 9, 2007
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                                Dear List,
                                Not to complicate the issue any further but... in Auchinlock?'s book about the War of 1812, he prints Capt. Richard Bullock's letter to explain what happened at the Battle of Moraviantown. Bullock was captain of the 41st Grenadiers. He states that the men were formed up into line and advanced towards the enemy... then they were turned around and marched back then... they formed line ... then his men grumbled ...then the Grenadiers and the 1st company under Muir were told to reform behind the front line at a distance..... Muir was Captain of the 41st light company... Does that mean that in the 41st the Lights were #1 company?? or does Jim's explanation still hold.

                                Glenn Stott, Royal Scots, Light Company


                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                              • LCpl_rm
                                You guys got it easy. The Royal Marines by 1812 was divided into 4 Divisions or Depots which consisted of 183 companies. Except for Woolwich, which companies
                                Message 15 of 17 , Mar 9, 2007
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                                  You guys got it easy.

                                  The Royal Marines by 1812 was divided into 4 Divisions or Depots which consisted of 183 companies. Except for Woolwich, which companies were numbered 144 to 183, the other 143 were spread across the other three in no real sequence.

                                  These companies were purely administrative and had no relation to ships companies or battalion companies. When a ship was placed in commission, the Captain would apply to the local depot for a contingent of Marines. Depending on the amount needed, these were pulled from the various companies at that depot. For example, a 74's company of approximately 100 Marines might be from 5-10 different depot companies!

                                  The battalion companies operated the same way. When the 1st Battalion was assembled in 1810, the orders went to all the divisions to provide 6 companies of 80 men each from the "steadiest and best disciplined men". Plymouth was to provide a division of RMA.

                                  At least we don't have to worry about Light and Grenadier companies; they were abolished in 1804.

                                  Cheers,

                                  Ed Seufert, Cpl
                                  1812 Royal Marines


                                  ----- Original Message -----
                                  From: Chris McKay
                                  To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
                                  Sent: Friday, March 09, 2007 11:54 AM
                                  Subject: [War Of 1812] Re: Company Numbers and Formations - Captains


                                  That seems fairly good Jim. I went and double checked the pay lists
                                  last night and a few things jumped out at me: One, men are transfered
                                  from company to company fairly often and in fairly large numbers.
                                  Two, the actual heading of the column reads, "Number of the Company
                                  in which the man is paid or borne." This seems to suggest, as a few
                                  people have offered, that the company in which you are listed on the
                                  books is not necessarily the company in which you serve. These two
                                  conclusions seem to contradict one another in my view, though.
                                  Anyone else see it differently?

                                  Chris

                                  --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@...>
                                  wrote:
                                  >
                                  > So how does this sound:
                                  >
                                  > Men are assigned to a company "on the books". An officer runs the
                                  > company as long as he's in the Regiment(unless he takes over the
                                  Grens
                                  > or the Lights).
                                  > The men are not shuffled around the companies on a permanent basis,
                                  > unless something really major happens (like the merging of the
                                  41st's
                                  > 1st & 2nd battalions in early 1814).
                                  > The officer keeps tabs on the men in his company, which messes,
                                  camps,
                                  > barracks, gets paid, gets new equipment, etc., as a separate
                                  > organizational unit.
                                  >
                                  > The companies of the regiment grow and shrink as fate decrees, so at
                                  > any given time, one of the permanent companies might be quite a bit
                                  > bigger or smaller than others in the battalion.
                                  > When recruits arrive, they are doled out to the "permanent"
                                  companies
                                  > to try and keep them "equalized".
                                  > Most of the time, they *are* fairly equal in size.
                                  >
                                  > However, when a parade is called, or the battalion prepares for
                                  > battle, the companies are lined up as per the manuals that have been
                                  > cited - Grenadiers on the right, Lights on the left, and companies
                                  > lined up by seniority of their captain from right to left. If any
                                  of
                                  > the constituent companies are understrength, then they are "topped
                                  up"
                                  > with men taken from the stronger companies.
                                  > When all is nicely evened up, everybody knows that for purposes of
                                  the
                                  > operation in hand, the companies will be numbered, *for the
                                  operation
                                  > only*, from 1 to 10 (or perhaps "grens - 1 to 8 - lights", although
                                  > the grens could easily be considered company #1 *temporarily*).
                                  >
                                  > The operation is conducted.
                                  >
                                  > It's back to camp. The men break off in to their "permanent"
                                  > companies and life goes on...
                                  >
                                  > Jim Yaworsky
                                  > 41st
                                  >





                                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                • James Yaworsky
                                  ... [snip] ... the 41st the Lights were #1 company?? or does Jim s explanation still hold. ... The grenadier company and the light company were the two
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Mar 12, 2007
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "glenn stott" <gstott@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    [snip]
                                    > Muir was Captain of the 41st light company... Does that mean that in
                                    the 41st the Lights were #1 company?? or does Jim's explanation still
                                    hold.
                                    >

                                    The grenadier company and the light company were the two companies
                                    pulled back to form the second "line" at Moraviantown. If Bullock
                                    says this company was called #1, then I guess the Lights of the 41st
                                    were #1 company.

                                    Or were they?

                                    Two possibilities:

                                    1) they were: and were numbered #1 because Muir was the senior
                                    Captain in the battalion

                                    2) they were, but only temporarily: they were numbered #1 on the day
                                    of the battle because originally they were placed on the right flank
                                    of the sole line that Proctor initially created. Why were the Lights
                                    on the right flank? Because the River Thames anchored the left
                                    flank, along with the single artillery gun Proctor brought back from
                                    the Moraviantown position to the east; and, the Lights were the
                                    "contact" with the Indians, who continued the "line" to the north.
                                    So, they were #1 company for purposes of combat that day.
                                    Permanent number, perhaps something different...

                                    Nothing, it seems, is ever simple... Both explanations above would
                                    accord with some of the discussion we've been having on this issue...

                                    Jim Yaworsky
                                    41st
                                  • Tom Fournier
                                    To further muddy the waters, there were two Richard Bullocks amongst the officers of the 41st, a father and son. I believe it was junior a lieutenant, who
                                    Message 17 of 17 , Mar 12, 2007
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      To further muddy the waters, there were two Richard Bullocks amongst
                                      the officers of the 41st, a father and son.

                                      I believe it was "junior" a lieutenant, who was at Moraviantown
                                      as "senior" was in command at Fort Mackinac just prior to being
                                      relieved by McDouall that winter.

                                      Tom


                                      --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@...>
                                      wrote:
                                      >
                                      > --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "glenn stott" <gstott@> wrote:
                                      > >
                                      > [snip]
                                      > > Muir was Captain of the 41st light company... Does that mean
                                      that in
                                      > the 41st the Lights were #1 company?? or does Jim's explanation
                                      still
                                      > hold.
                                      > >
                                      >
                                      > The grenadier company and the light company were the two companies
                                      > pulled back to form the second "line" at Moraviantown. If Bullock
                                      > says this company was called #1, then I guess the Lights of the
                                      41st
                                      > were #1 company.
                                      >
                                      > Or were they?
                                      >
                                      > Two possibilities:
                                      >
                                      > 1) they were: and were numbered #1 because Muir was the senior
                                      > Captain in the battalion
                                      >
                                      > 2) they were, but only temporarily: they were numbered #1 on the
                                      day
                                      > of the battle because originally they were placed on the right
                                      flank
                                      > of the sole line that Proctor initially created. Why were the
                                      Lights
                                      > on the right flank? Because the River Thames anchored the left
                                      > flank, along with the single artillery gun Proctor brought back
                                      from
                                      > the Moraviantown position to the east; and, the Lights were the
                                      > "contact" with the Indians, who continued the "line" to the north.
                                      > So, they were #1 company for purposes of combat that day.
                                      > Permanent number, perhaps something different...
                                      >
                                      > Nothing, it seems, is ever simple... Both explanations above would
                                      > accord with some of the discussion we've been having on this
                                      issue...
                                      >
                                      > Jim Yaworsky
                                      > 41st
                                      >
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