Non-Fiction Books:

Life of a Regiment

The History of the Gordon Highlanders from 1816-1898 - Including an Account of the 75th Regiment from 1787 to 1881



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Life of a Regiment by Greenhill Gardyne
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The first part of this book takes the history of the 92nd from the year following Waterloo to 1882, when the results of the Cardwell Reforms had just come into effect, and the 92nd had linked with the 75th to form Gordon Highlanders, the 75th becoming the 1st Battalion of the new regiment, the 92nd the 2nd Battalion. The story then switches to the 75th Foot from its beginnings in 1787 and takes it through to 1881when it became 1st Battalion Gordon Highlanders. The last few chapters deal with the history of the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the new regiment from 1881 to the eve of the S African War in 1898. In 1818 the 92nd embarked for Jamaica. The West Indies was a most unhealthy station because of yellow fever which carried off thousands of British troops in the nineteenthy century; the Gordons themselves lost ten officers, 275 other ranks, 34 wives and 31 children in six months in 1819. They went on to see action in India during the Mutiny and on the NW Frontier in the 2nd Afghan War, 1878-80, where they were awarded the Battle Honours Kabul and Kandahar, emblazoned on the Colours.The regiment that in 1881 was to become the 1st Battalion The Gordon Highlanders began life as the 75th (Stirlingshire) Regiment of Foot in 1787, known also as Abercromby's Highlanders after the man who raised them. With hardly any time to fall in they were off to India where they arrived in Bombay in August 1788 (700 strong) to take part in the campaign against Tippoo Sahib and gaining the Battle Honours Seringapatam and Mysore. In 1809, because the Highland population had become insufficient to supply recruits for the considerable number of Highland regiments then existing, the decision was taken to 'de-highlandise' several regiments including the 75th, and they handed in their kilts and sporrans and dropped the Highland designation. It wasn't until 1882 that the regiment, now 1st Gordon Highlanders, paraded in kilts once more. As 1st Gordons the battalion took part in the fighting in Egypt (Tel-el-Kebir), in the Sudan, in Chitral and the Tirah, When this history ends the 1st Battalion has arrived back in the UK and the 2nd Battalion is on its way to India. But again, the heart of this volume is the life of the Regiment, the social and economic changes over a hundred years, domestic details, in battle the numbers of casualties and identities, the arrival of drafts, promotions, discipline, physical descriptions, nationalities - in January 1890 out of a total 622 rank and file 470 were Scots, 137 English and 365 were 5ft 6 or under! What a marvellous military and sociological record.
Release date Australia
January 31st, 2003
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
New ed of 1929 ed
Ill.(some col.).ch.M.
Naval & Military Press Ltd
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