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 The Militia
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28 Posts

Posted - 24 November 2012 :  11:35:25  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Back on to the tricky subject of the Militia, if a soldier was in the Berwickshire Militia in 1807, does this mean he was a resident or born in Berwickshire when he joined it or were you just told you must join a particular regiment to fill in gaps etc.


56 Posts

Posted - 04 December 2012 :  14:12:44  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

he was probably resident in a Berwickshire parish. I've been doing a bit of research on the militia lists at the National Archives Scotland and have found that there were several companies (2nd, 3rd, 4th etc) within the militia. They might also have been assigned to the "Fusiliers" or to the Light Co. Still need to do a bit more reading to find out more. If you have his name and parish, I could have a look to see whether I have any info on him already.

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28 Posts

Posted - 05 December 2012 :  10:56:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you Elma - I have read an awful lot on the Militia in sheer desperation to go back further for the parents of my GtXGrandfather John Mcalpine! I have:

John Mcalpine, soldier in the Berwickshire Militia, 18th Sept 1809 Haddington and Margaret Donaldson in this parish gave up their names to marriage. Cautioners Gavin Jack and George Mcalpine. (I haven't found a relative with the George Mcalpine connection as yet).

John Mcalpine and Margaret Donaldson in Linlithgow with children George and Elizabeth claiming allowance from Militia between 1811 and 1813. (These two children, George being my next GtxGrandfather, are stated as being born in England in the Censuses).

Many thanks again,

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Harry D. Watson

93 Posts

Posted - 09 December 2012 :  18:26:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I don't doubt that most county militia regiments were made up of men from that county, but once they were posted elsewhere they must have picked up more recruits locally.

My 3 x great-grandfather William Myles seems to have spent his whole life in the East Neuk of Fife, mainly in and around Carnbee parish, but he was also a soldier in the Dumfriesshire Militia. I made enquiries once, and discovered that the regiment were stationed in Cupar, Fife, in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Either William's wife Janet Black was living with him in the army camp there or he made a few conjugal visits back home, but children were born to them in 1795, 1797, 1799, 1801, 1805 and 1808, mainly in Carnbee and registered there.

I don't know when he joined the regiment, but in 1805 when his wife bore him twins, registered in the Carnbee OPR, he is described as a soldier in the "Dumfries Shire Militia", and after the war was over, and some of their children died in the hard post-war times of unemployment and near famine, their father is described as "late Soldier in the Dumfries Militia".

I suppose there was a lot to be said for joining up, to get a uniform, food and regular pay, rather than the hand to mouth existence of a farm labourer.

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28 Posts

Posted - 09 December 2012 :  21:04:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you for that Harry, and I must say the childrens' births is a very useful way to establish the whereabouts of the soldier in question! I can complicate that by saying that their assumed first child George, who is my direct Gt etc Grandfather, was born in England. Apparently these Militias were sent off to distant barracks and apparently marched there all the way. One of the barracks where Scottish militias went was Woodbridge in Suffolk, England, whom I have phoned but there are no records surviving.

Many thanks again - Jill
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1 Posts

Posted - 11 July 2013 :  11:04:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
One of the barracks where Scottish militias went was Woodbridge in Suffolk, England, whom I have phoned but there are no records surviving.

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john Michael

Edited by - Michaeljohn on 11 July 2013 11:04:48
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28 Posts

Posted - 11 July 2013 :  17:08:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you very much, I seem to remember phoning them myself some while back and got the same reply. Keep calm and carry on!

Thanks again - Jill
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