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Warrant Officers

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  • John E. Hesselberg
    Howdy All! Just want to put my tupence in for the subject. First I d like to clear up something. I am no expert on the subject of Warrant Officers in the 1812
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 26, 2007
      Howdy All!
      Just want to put my tupence in for the subject.
      First I'd like to clear up something. "I am no expert on the subject
      of Warrant Officers in the 1812 British Army" That being said I would
      like to state what I know of Warrant Officers.
      To my knowledge, and again I may be wrong, the frst country in
      contemporary times to openly use warrant officers I beleive was
      Germany /Prussia in the late 18th century and more so in the early
      19th century. Later other European countries were adopting / doing so
      as well.
      It is true that the crown or governments of these countries did not
      promote warrant offiecers but it was the branch of service that did.
      In this case the Army.
      Warrant officers are described as "Experts" in their field(s)and as
      the need arrises Divisions, Brigades, Regiments and
      Battalions "Warrant" these individuals to take up the mantle of
      responsibility for the job or occupation they do so well. I would
      immagine that this was done more for expediency rather than writing
      the home office or headquarters a country or a continent away for a
      replacement "Commissioned Officer". These Warrant Officers would have
      the same respect responsibilities and duties of a commisioned
      offiecer though I would guess not the same privileges.
      A Point of American Militiary History. In 1909 The US Army seeing
      the need to augment their Officer Corps (Due to the lack there of) in
      specialized areas saught out individuals who could take the place of
      Commissioned Officers. Thus Created the Warrant Officer rank. Nine
      individuals all senior NCO's with more than five years of Service as
      an NCO who had the intelligence, experience and knowledge to assume
      those positions were selected and promoted. They were not
      commissioned by a Special Act of Congress but were Granted "Warrants"
      by the US Army.
      This had a pressident started by other Armies manly from Europe and
      most certainly Britain had a hand in it too. This origine probably
      dated back to the Roman Legions. So if we are to accept such a theory
      we can accept that there were Warrant Officers in the British Army
      for certain tasks during the War of 1812. There was probably no rank
      distinction as there are none in the modern Bristish Army betweent
      Command Sergeant Majors or Regimentals Sergeant Majors.
      Another note on Warrant Officers, Often when the task or occupation
      was complete the individual would return to their unit at their
      former rank or with a one jump promation as a reward for doing their
      job. I have personally seen this happen twice in my time in the

      Sorry thats more than two cents worth.
      John H.
      43rd Light Infantry
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