11th Dragoons

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> British Army >> 11th Dragoons

Origin and History

The regiment was raised on July 22 1715 by General Phillip Honeywood in Essex to quench the Jacobite rebellion. The regiment, based in Colchester, was known as the “Philip Honeywood's Regiment of Dragoons” and ranked 11th. The regiment marched north to Preston where it fought against a mostly English force of Jacobite insurgents.

In 1732, Major-general Lord Mark Kerr became colonel of the regiment.

On December 18 1745, during the second Jacobite Uprising, a troop of the regiment took part in the engagement of Clifton Moor. On April 16 1746, the regiment was present at Culloden and pursued the fleeing Scotsmen showing 'no quarter' as ordered by Cumberland.

On July 1 1751, when a Royal warrant reorganised the British cavalry, the regiment was designated as the “11th Regiment of Dragoons”.

The regiment counted 2 squadrons and was mounted mostly on dark brown horses (horses of other colours were also used due to the scarcity of dark brown horses).

At the end of 1755, a company of light dragoons was added to the Regiments.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:

  • since 1752 till 1775: Earl of Ancram

In 1775, Major-general James Johnstone became colonel of the regiment. In 1783, the regiment was converted into a Light Dragoon Regiment known as the “11th Light Dragoon”.

Service during the War

As of May 30 1759, the regiment was stationed in England and counted 2 squadrons for a total of 390 men.

In May 1760, the regiment was among the second British contingent sent to reinforce the Allied army of Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick in Germany. The troops were shipped to Bremen on the Weser instead of, as heretofore, to Emden, and seem to have been despatched with commendable promptitude since some regiments were reviewed by Ferdinand in his camp at Fritzlar on June 17. On July 31, the regiment took part in the battle of Warburg where it was in the second line of Granby's cavalry. Granby charged and broke the French cavalry right wing then wheeled and hit the French infantry in the flank, winning the day for the Allies. Warburg became the first battle honour for the regiment.

On July 16 1761, the regiment took part in the battle of battle of Vellinghausen with Granby's Corps.

In 1762, the regiment returned to England.

To do: more details on the campaigns from 1760 to 1762

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1758 - Source: Ibrahim90 from a template made by Frédéric Aubert
Uniform in 1758
Headgear black tricorne laced silver with a black cockade
Neck stock white
Coat double breasted red lined buff with white buttons and very narrow white buttonholes grouped 3 by 3
Collar none
Shoulder strap left shoulder: red fastened with a white button
right shoulder: white aiguillette
Lapels none
Pockets long vertical pockets with white buttons and very narrow white buttonholes in a chevron pattern
Cuffs buff (slashed in the British pattern) with white buttons and very narrow white buttonholes in a chevron pattern on the sleeve
Turnbacks buff
Waistcoat buff with very narrow white buttonholes
Breeches buff with white knee covers
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt buff leather slung over the left shoulder
Waistbelt n/a
Cartridge Box buff leather pouch
Scabbard n/a
Bayonet scabbard n/a
Footgear black boots
Horse Furniture
Housings buff with pointed corners decorated with the rank of the regiment (XI D.) on a red ground within a small wreath of roses and thistles; bordered with a white braid with a green stripe
Holster caps buff with pointed corners decorated with crowned royal cypher; bordered with a white braid with a green stripe
Blanket roll buff and red


Troopers were armed with a sword, a pair of pistols and a musket.

Officers

As per the regulation of 1751, the officers wore the same uniform with the following exceptions:

  • a narrow silver lace at the lapels, cuffs and pockets
  • a crimson silk sash worn over the left shoulder
  • crimson and silver striped sword knot
  • buff housings and holster caps laced silver

NCOs

Sergeants were distinguished by a narrow silver lace on the lapels, cuffs and pockets; a silver aiguillette; a buff worsted sash about their waist.

Corporals were distinguished by a narrow silver lace on the cuffs and shoulder strap; white silk aiguillette.

Musicians

Drummers rode grey horses. They wore buff coats lined and turned up with red and laced with a white braid with a green stripe. Red waistcoats and breeches.

Drummers wore a mitre cap similar to the grenadier mitre cap but with a lower crown and the tassel hanging behind. Buff front decorated with a trophy of guidons and drums; little frontal red flap with the White Horse and the the motto “Nec aspera terrent”; red backing, buff headband with a drum and the rank of the regiment (XI. D.) in the middle part behind.

The drums were of brass with a buff forepart carrying the rank of the regiment (XI. D.) in silver characters on a crimson ground within a wreath of roses and thistles on the same stalk. .

Colours

The guidons were made of silk, fringed in silver and green and embroidered with silver. The tassels and cords were of crimson silk and gold mixed.

King's Guidon: crimson field decorated with the rose and thistle conjoined surmounted by a crown. Underneath the central decoration: the king's motto “Dieu et mon Droit”. In the first and fourth corners the White Horse in a compartment. In the second and third corners: the rank of the regiment (XI D.) in silver characters on a buff ground.

Regimental Guidon: buff field with its centre decorated with the rank of the regiment (XI. D.) in silver characters on a crimson ground within a wreath of roses and thistles on the same stalk. In the first and fourth corners the White Horse in a red compartment. In the second and third corners: the Rose and Thistle conjoined upon a red ground.

King's Guidon - Source: Richard Couture from a template by PMPdeL
Regimental Guidon - Source: Richard Couture from a template by PMPdeL

References

Fortescue, J. W., A History of the British Army, Vol. II, MacMillan, London, 1899

Funcken, Liliane and Fred, Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

George II, The Royal Clothing Warrant, 1751

Lawson, Cecil C. P., A History of the Uniforms of the British Army - from the Beginnings to 1760, vol. II

Luscombe, Stephen; British Empire - 11th Dragoons

Mills, T. F., Land Forces of Britain the Empire and Commonwealth (an excellent website which unfortunately does not seem to be online any more)

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.

Acknowledgements

Digby Smith for additional info on the regiment.