Military Subjects: Organization, Strategy & Tactics

British Regiments and the Men Who Led Them 1793-1815: 12th Regiment of Foot

By Steve Brown

Secondary Titles: East Suffolk

Regimental History

1685:

20 June – formed as Earl of Lichfield’s Regiment in East Anglia

1812:

15 July – 2nd Battalion raised in Ireland

Colonels

1779:

21 April

William Picton

1811:

15 October

Sir Charles Hastings, Bart.

Stations and Combats – 1st Battalion

1793:

Ireland - Dublin; Drogheda; November – flank companies to West Indies

1794:

Flank companies in Barbados, Martinico, St Lucia, San Domingo, Guadeloupe; March – rest of battalion in Drogheda; Parkgate; May – Greenwich; to Ostend; Holland - Werwyck; Ypres; Breda; Boxtel; Nijmegen

1795:

Retreat to Bremen; Bremenlee; Gosport; Portchester; flank companies return from West Indies – all of 3 men; battalion re-united and recruiting; October – Southampton; Spithead; expedition to Isle de Dieu; Southampton; Ironhill

1796:

Southampton; Isle of Wight; June – to East Indies; September - Cape of Good Hope; November – to India

1797:

January – Madras; Fort St George; August – 6 companies to Manila; 4 companies to Mysore; September – 6 companies in Penang; December – back in India

1798:

Madras; Tanjore

1799:

Madras; March – Neldroog; Vellore; Seringapatam; Mallavelly; September – Wallahjabad

1800:

Seringapatam; Vellore; July – Mysore

1801:

Manantoddy; Peria Colgum; Lackerry Cottah; Seringapatam; Trichinopoly

1802:

January – 2 companies return from Batavia; February – Musulipatam; October - Trichinopoly

1803:

Trichinopoly

1804:

Trichinopoly

1805:

Trichinopoly; August – Seringapatam; high fever deaths

1806:

Seringapatam

1807:

Trichinopoly; April – Malabar; Cannanore

1808:

Cannanore; December – Coulan

1809:

Coulan; Cochin

1810:

March – flank companies to Madras, then June – expedition to Rodriguez; July – Bourbon; meanwhile rest of battalion in Wallahjabad; August – St Thomas’ Mount; September – Madras; November – Mauritius (battalion re-united); Port Louis

1811:

Isle de France ( Mauritius )

1812:

Isle de France ( Mauritius )

1813:

Isle de France; April – Bourbon

1814:

Bourbon

1815:

Bourbon; April – Mauritius (until 1817).

Stations and Combats – 2nd Battalion

1812:

15 July – raised from Irish militia

1813:

Ireland

1814:

Dartmoor – guarding American POWs

1815:

June – to Belgium; December – England

1818:

16 January – disbanded at Athlone.

Careers of Senior Officers (shown as highest rank attained in regiment in the period)

Lt. Col. Thomas Trigge

Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 20 June 1778; brevet Colonel 4 January 1782; Lieutenant-Governor of Portsmouth September 1790; Major-General 18 October 1793; Colonel of 99th Foot 25 April 1795.

Lt. Col. Frederick Bowes

Major in 12th Foot 30 August 1791 (on transfer from 64th Foot); Lieutenant-Colonel 9 September 1794; exchanged to 82nd Foot 22 October 1794.

Lt. Col. John Perryn

Major in 12th Foot 9 September 1794; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 9 September 1794; Lieutenant-Colonel 25 April 1795; retired January 1796.

Major Thomas, Earl of Elgin

Major in 12th Foot 25 April 1795; transferred to Fencible Regiment 16 June 1795.

Lt. Col. Henry Hervey Aston

Born Cheshire 1759; Major in 82nd Foot 11 February 1794; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 22 October 1794 (on transfer from 82nd Foot); brevet Colonel 3 May 1796; commanded 12th Foot in East Indies 1796 to 1798; wounded in a duel with Major Allen and died in Madras 23 December 1798.

Lt. Col. Thomas Grey

Major in 85th Foot 23 January 1796; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 30 January 1796 (on transfer from 85th Foot); gone by July 1798.

Lt. Col. James Archibald Stuart-Wortley

Born Yorkshire 1776; Lieutenant-Colonel in 72nd Foot April 1797; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 1 December 1796; transferred to 1st Foot Guards 30 December 1797; Lieutenant-Colonel 1st West Yorkshire Militia in 1798; 1st Baron Wharncliffe in 1826; died 1845.

Lt. Col. William Dowdeswell

Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 30 December 1797 (on transfer from 1st Foot Guards); transferred to 60th Foot 18 January 1798.

Major James Bellairs

Major in 12th Foot 12 April 1796; retired 19 February 1799.

Lt. Col. James Taylor

Served in North America 1775 to 1781; Major in 117th Foot 6 May 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 61st Foot 6 September 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 18 January 1798; brevet Colonel 25 July 1803; subsequently Brigadier-General in Ireland 1803 to 1807; Major-General 25 July 1810; Lieutenant-General 4 June 1814; died 1825.

Lt. Col. George William Richard Harcourt

Born Buckinghamshire 1775; Major in Lt. Col. Lewis’ Regiment 28 April 1795; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 1 September 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 13 June 1799 (on transfer from 40th Foot); brevet Colonel 1 October 1810; Major-General 25 July 1810; Governor of St. Croix 1810 to 1812; died there December 1812.

Lt. Col. John Picton

Major in 12th Foot 16 June 1795; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 1 January 1801; Lieutenant-Colonel 30 November 1809; commanded 12th Foot in East Indies 1809 to 1813; brevet Colonel 25 July 1810; subsequently Major-General 4 June 1813; died January 1815.

Major Thomas Craigie

Major in 12th Foot 30 December 1797; retired May 1800.

Major Thomas Woodhall

Major in 12th Foot 31 May 1800; retired May 1803.

Major John Wilson

Major in 12th Foot 4 June 1803; died June 1810 on Rodriguez.

Major Jeremiah O’Keefe

Major in 12th Foot 8 February 1810; killed in action on Mauritius 29 November 1810.

Lt. Col. Julius Stirke

Born Ireland 1768; Lieutenant-Colonel in 6th West India Regiment June 1805; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 27 December 1810; commanded 2/12th Foot 1812 to 1817; brevet Colonel 4 June 1813; retired April 1817.

Lt. Col. Nicholas Eustace

Born Cornwall 1757; POW at Boxtel 1794; Major in 12th Foot 14 June 1810; Lieutenant-Colonel 16 December 1813; commanded 1/12th Foot 1813 to 1815; died September 1815.

Lt. Col. William Henry Hawkins Forssteen

Born London 1784; Commanded flank companies in Rodriguez and Bourbon 1810; Major in 12th Foot 18 July 1811; Lieutenant-Colonel 5 May 1815.

Major Richard Bayley

Served in India 1796 to 1799; and again 1806 to 1810; wounded at Coulan 1809; brigade-major 1809 to 1812; Major in 12th Foot 15 October 1812; commanded 1/12th Foot in Mauritius 1815; retired 1830.

Lt. Col. Henry Frederick Cooke, C.B.

Born Middlesex 1783, younger brother of George Cooke; Served in Peninsula August 1808 to September 1811; Captain & Lieutenant-Colonel in Coldstream Foot Guards 7 November 1811; Inspecting Field Officer in Nova Scotia 1812; Lieutenant-Colonel in 12th Foot 4 June 1813; ADC to Duke of York 1814 to 1815; Lieutenant-Colonel in 6th West India Regiment 12 October 1815; on half-pay 1820; died 1837.

Major Richard Goddard Hare, C.B.

Served in Peninsula October 1808 to January 1809; Deputy Assistant Quartermaster-General in Peninsula December 1810 to April 1814; Major in 12th Foot 1 July 1813 (on transfer from 23rd Foot); brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 1 September 1813; later changed name to Hare-Clarges.

Sources:

War Office. Army Lists 1796 to 1815. London: various years.

Cannon, Richard. Historical Record of the Twelfth or East Suffolk Regiment of Foot: Containing an Account of the Formation of the Regiment, and of its Subsequent Services to 1847. London: Parker, Furnivall & Parker, 1847.

Chichester, Henry Manners, and Burges-Short, Henry. The Records and Badges of Every Regiment and Corps in the British Army. London: William Clowes & Sons, 1895.

Westlake, Ray. English & Welsh Infantry Regiments - An Illustrated Record of Service 1662-1994. Staplehurst: Spellmount, 2002.

McKenna, Michael G. The British Army – And Its Regiments and Battalions. West Chester, Ohio: The Nafziger Collection. 2004.

Fletcher, Ian. Wellington’s Regiments. Staplehurst: Spellmount, 1994.

Park, S.J. and Nafziger, G.F. The British Miltary – Its System and Organization 1803-1815. Cambridge, Ontario: Rafm Co. Inc. 1983.

Philippart, John. The Royal Military Calendar, or Army Service and Commission Book. London: A.J. Valpy, 1820.

Hall, John A. A History of the Peninsular War: Volume VIII – The Biographical Dictionary of British Officers Killed and Wounded 1808-1814.  London: Greenhill Books, 1998.

London Gazette Website. May 2009.

The Napoleon Series – Peninsula Roll Call. May 2009.

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: June 2009

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