'Stuart Reid tells a great tale, deeply researched and full of fascinating characters.' Tim Newark, author of Highlander Wellington's Highland Warriors covers the early history of the British Army's highland regiments, from the raising of the Black Watch in 1739 to the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. Stuart Reid provides an entertaining and thoroughly original study of the circumstances in which the regiments were authorised and recruited, not just in the Highlands but all across Scotland, and how they acquitted themselves in every corner of the Empire, earning a reputation that is second to none in the process.Each chapter follows the experiences of one particular regiment and uses extensive use of contemporary correspondence and memoirs to let those involved tell their own tale. The tale is a fascinating one, revealing the different expectations and experiences of Highland soldiers, stories of bitter feuds as rival chieftains and highland proprietors battled each other for recruits.
The recruits were more than capable of giving as good as they got - demanding and receiving legally binding concessions from their landlords-turned-recruiters and then, like George Gordon of Cabrach, striding forth 'in high dress with his sword by his side to announce his new profession' in a calculated display of swank and swagger quite incomprehensible to his English counterparts.Stuart Reid was born in Aberdeen in 1954 and has served with the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. His previous works on military history include Like Hungry Wolves, and The Secret War for Texas; a study of one of his ancestors' surprising role as a British agent in the Texan. He is currently working on a full-length military history of the last Anglo-Scots War 1639-1651.