Richard Ingoldsby's Foot
Origin and History
A regiment of infantry of 13 companies was raised in Wales and in the adjacent counties on 17 March 1689 by Henry Lord Herbert to assist King William III in his campaign against the Stuart in Ireland. On 10 April 1689, the colonelcy of the new regiment was conferred on Charles Herbert. Each company consisted of:
- 3 sergeants
- 2 drummers
- 3 corporals
- 60 privates
The headquarters of the regiment were fixed at Ludlow in Shropshire. In August 1689, the completed, equipped and disciplined new regiment embarked for Ireland where it disembarked at Belfast on 30 August. In 1690, it took part in the Battle of the Boyne. It later took part in the unsuccessful siege of Limerick. In 1691, it took part in the capture of the Fortress of Ballymore, in the siege and capture of Athlone, in the Battle of Aughrim, in the capture of Galway and Limerick. On 23 November, the regiment marched from Limerick to Kinsale and embarked for England where it arrived in December.
In 1692, the regiment was stationed in England.
In 1694, during the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment was sent to the Spanish Netherlands. In 1695, it was at the siege and capture of Namur and then covered the siege of the Castle of Namur.. In 1696, it campaigned in Flanders. In 1697, it embarked for Ireland.
In 1698, the regiment counted 1 battalion of 10 companies for a total of 34 officers and 411 men.
During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive proprietors of the regiment were:
- from 28 February 1693: Colonel Richard Ingoldsby (promoted to Brigadier on 31 May 1696)
- from 1 April 1705 to 1739: Joseph Sabine
Service during the War
On 7 June 1701, the regiment embarked at Carrickfergus. On 15 June it sailed for Flanders, arriving on 30 June in Holland and proceeding to Workum and Heusden. On 16 September, it marched to Breda Heath. On 21 September, it was reviewed by King William III near Breda.
On 10 March 1702, the regiment (44 officers, 104 NCOs, 736 privates) quitted its cantonments and proceeded to Roosendaal where the British infantry was assembling. It was then sent to the Duchy of Kleve to cover the siege of Kaiserwerth. On June 10, the French tried to cut the line of communication of this corps with Nijmegen but arrived too late to prevent its retreat. In September, the regiment formed part of the covering army during the siege of Venlo which surrendered on 25 September. In November, the regiment took up its winter-quarters in Holland.
In the spring of 1703, the regiment proceeded to Maastricht. From 16 to 25 August, it was at the siege and capture of Huy. It took up its winter-quarters in Dutch Brabant.
In the early part of 1704, a detachment of the regiment proceeded to Maastricht to take part in the duties of that garrison, while the Dutch troops were throwing up a strong entrenchment on the heights of Petersburg. In the early part of May, the regiment marched towards the Rhine to take part in Marlborough's famous march to the Danube. It was joined at Bedburg by the detachment from Maastricht. On 19 May, the Allied army marched from Bedburg along the course of the Rhine towards the Moselle. On 25 and 26 May, it traversed both rivers at Koblenz and proceeded the Main and the Neckar, crossing the latter river on 15 June. On July 2, the regiment took part in the Battle of the Schellenberg where it lost Captains Harman, Ogilvy, Lieutenants Frazier, Agan, and Price, killed; Colonel Sabine, Lieutenant-Colonel Jones, Major Ingoldsby, Captain Eyme, Lieutenants Jeverau, Katrick, Richards, Cadroy, Piggot, Aldy, and Jones, wounded; 6 sergeants killed and 6 wounded; 60 rank and file killed, and 156 wounded. On 13 August, it fought in the decisive Battle of Blenheim where it lost Major George Morgan, Captain Henry Cookman, Lieutenants Hugh Smith, Griffith Jones, Baily, Fleetwood, Dormer, Rowland, John Paterson, and Adjutant Powell, wounded. The number of NCOs and private killed or wounded has not been ascertained. The regiment then marched through Swabia, crossed the Rhine at Philipsburg on 7 September and encamped at Cron Weissemberg to cover the siege of Landau which was invested on 12 September. On 13 October, the regiment along with three other corps marched from the covering army to Germersheim, and sailed down the Rhine to Holland, where they were placed in garrison for the winter.
At the beginning of 1705, the regiment was in garrison at Roermond. In May, it marched to Juliers and then proceeded to Trier. On 3 June, the army passed the Moselle and encamped near Sierck. The army then vainly waited for the Imperialists and finally retreated to the Netherlands, to arrest the progress of the French in that country. A detachment of the regiment was employed in recapturing Huy on 11 July. In the night of 17 July, the regiment took part in the passage of the French lines at Helixem and Neerhespen. In November, it marched back to Holland and was placed in garrison for the winter.
On 19 May 1706, the regiment joined the camp near Tongres. On 23 May, it fought in the Battle of Ramillies. The regiment being on the right of the line, proceeded in the direction of the village of Autreglise, and made a demonstration of attacking the enemy's left. It was not engaged during the early part of the battle but took part in the final attack. From June 28, it formed part of the army covering the siege of Ostend which surrendered in the beginning of July. It continued to form part of the covering army during the sieges and capture of Menin, Dendermond and Ath. In November it took up its winter-quarters at Ghent.
In May 1707, the regiment took the field. By 26 June, it was stationed in the first line of the order of battle at the camp at Meldart, near Louvain. The opposing armies passed the campaign in manoeuvring and observing the movements of each other. In October, the regiment returned to Ghent.
On 22 May 1708, the regiment commenced its march from Ghent for the rendezvous of the army near Brussels. Shortly afterwards the French occupied Ghent and Bruges, and invested Oudenarde. On 11 July, regiment fought in the Battle of Oudenarde as part of Cadogan's Corps. From 13 August, it took part in the siege of Lille. On 7 September, it contributed to the storming of the counterscarp. The regiment had 12 rank and file killed and 62 wounded in this attack. On 23 October, the town of Lille surrendered. During the siege of the town, the regiment lost a total of 1 captain, 3 subalterns, 3 sergeants and 115 rank and file killed; 3 captains, 8 subalterns, 15 sergeants and 230 rank and file wounded. On 9 December, the Citadel of Lille finally surrendered.
Early in 1709, the regiment received a body of recruits from England. In June, it formed part of the covering army during the siege of Tournai whose citadel surrendered on 3 September. On 11 September, the regiment fought in the sanguinary Battle of Malplaquet where it lost Lieutenants Bartley, Fullerton, and Parker killed; and Captains Jeffro, Brett, and Vincent, Lieutenants Skane, Price, Powell, Aspee, and Gordon, wounded. The regiment then formed part of the covering army during the siege and capture of Mons. It then took up winter-quarters in Ghent.
In mid-April 1710, the regiment marched to the vicinity of Tournai where the allied army was assembling. On 21 April, the Allied army passed the French lines at Pont-à-Vendin. The regiment then took part in the siege of Douai which surrendered on 27 June. During the siege, it lost 1 captain, 1 lieutenant, 5 sergeants, and 49 rank and file killed; and 2 captains, 7 lieutenants, 10 sergeants and 137 rank and file wounded. By then, the regiment had only 2 captains fit for duty. The regiment formed part of the covering army during the siege of Béthune, Aire and Saint-Venant. It then took up its winter-quarters at Courtrai.
Towards the end of April 1711, the regiment joined the army near Douai. On 5 August, the army passed the Ne plus ultra Lines at Arleux. The regiment then took part in the siege of Bouchain which surrendered on 12 September.
On 19 April 1712, the regiment encamped near Tournai. In June, it formed part of the covering army during the siege of Le Quesnoy which surrendered on 4 July. Soon afterwards a suspension of arms was proclaimed between the British and French, preparatory to a treaty of peace, and British troops withdrew to Ghent, from whence several corps were detached to take possession of the fortress of Dunkerque, which city the French King delivered into the hands of the British, as a pledge of his sincerity in the negotiations for a treaty of peace.
In 1714, the regiment returned to England and was subsequently stationed in Ireland.
There were still no regulation concerning uniforms and colonels were responsible for the clothing of their soldiers. Therefore, there were wide variations from one regiment to another.
The fusiliers all wore mitre caps; originally, these mitre caps were ordered to be lower than those of the grenadiers but this distinction was soon lost.
Hairs were worn long in a “long bob”. They were sometimes tied at the back of the neck. The hair bag was also already in use.
Men as well as officers were clean-shaven. Officers sometimes wore small moustaches.
Fusiliers were armed with a fusil without sling, a bayonet and a sword. Grenadiers were armed with a firelock with a sling, a hatchet, a bayonet and grenades.
In 1689, the uniform consisted of a blue coat faced white; white breeches; and white stockings.
On the eve of the War of the Spanish Succession, the uniform was scarlet (the colour of facings being unknown, but probably blue).
NCOs wore uniforms almost identical to those of privates with the following differences:
- tricorne laced silver
- silver braids on the seams of the coat
Sergeants initially carried a halberd and corporals a musket. Gradually, all NCOs were equipped with musket.
Officers wore beaver tricornes laced gold (probably reserved to superior officers) or silver (probably reserved to subaltern officers). They also wore the fashionable full flowing curled wigs. On service they usually plaited their wig.
A large gorget was worn around the neck tied with ribbons. The gorget was gilt for captains, black studded with gold for lieutenants and silver for ensigns.
Officers usually wore uniforms somewhat similar to those of privates (even though there were not yet any regulation compelling them to do so), made of finer material. Their coats were decorated with gold or silver braids down the seams and on the sleeves; and with gold or silver embroidered buttonholes. Cuffs were usually of the same colour as the coat instead of the distinctive colour of the regiment.
The waistcoats of officers were often decorated with gold or silver fringes.
A crimson sash (often interwoven with gold or silver and fringed similarly) was worn around the waist.
Breeches were tied with rosettes below the knee.
Officers wore gloves, often decorated with gold or silver fringes.
Officers carried a sword and a half pike or a spontoon.
The cartouche box of officers were often covered in velvet and decorated with gold or silver embroideries.
Drummers and hautboys usually wore coat of the facing colour of the regiment, decorated with lace on the seams of sleeves and back and on the buttonholes. Their coat was decorated with the crowned King's cypher or the Colonel's crest embroidered on the breast and back. Sometimes their coat had hanging sleeves.
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This article incorporates texts from the following books which are now in the public domain:
- Broughton-Mainwaring, Rowland: Historical Record of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers late The Twenty-Thrid Regiment or Royal Welsh Fusiliers, London: Hatchards, 1889
Farmer, John S.: The Regimental Records of the British Army, London: Grant Richards, 1901
Lawson, Cecil C. P.: A History of the Uniforms of the British Army, Vol. 1 From the beginning to 1760, London: Kaye & Ward, pp. 12-54, 79
Walton, Clifford: History of the British Standing Army A.D. 1660 to 1700, London, 1894, , pp.78, 79, 275, 854