View Full Version : James Williams Crimean War

15-03-2010, 4:01 AM
I need help to validate a family story.

An extract from the booklet "The Horton family of Marrawah" by Irma Boughton reads;
"James had joined the Army and in fact became one of the immortal "Light Brigade" which charged the Russian guns at Balaclava on 25th October 1854. Seven hundred had ridden into the Valley, not 200 came out again and young James WILLIAMS did not answer the roll-call when they got back to the lines. ........ I have on my wall a water-colour of James, painted just before he left England - he looks so splendid in his magnificent scarlet and black uniform, and that was the picture Rachel carried to far off Australia."

I donít know how much of the above belongs to the original family story and how much was added over time.
James appeared with his family during the 1841 Gloucestershire Census.
Rachel left for Australia in August 1852. So the water-colour logically would have been done prior to August 1852

l've ruled out the James Williams who were in the 11th Hussars and there is no sign in the 17th Lancers. l was going by the possible uniforn design in the watercolor.

l'm now looking at James not serving with any of the regiments of the Light Brigade. But may have transferred into one just before they left for the Crimea.
This has brought me to looking at perhaps the 28th North Gloucestershire Regiment, 23rd Foot, or 2/73rd Foot.
(James Williams having been born 1826 in Little Rissington, Gloucestershire.)

If anyone can help in finding my James Williams, which regiment he was in and /or his fate would be apprerciated.

15-03-2010, 11:27 PM
It would certainly help if you were able to post a copy of the painting. From the cut and details of the uniform it might be possible to narrow the Regiment down, depending on how accurate the portrait is.


16-03-2010, 2:57 AM
Hi Martin,
l was going to post the picture, but was unsure how to do it.


16-03-2010, 4:11 AM
This (http://www.british-genealogy.com/forums/showthread.php?30819-How-to-use-Photobucket) thread may help you OldChook.

18-03-2010, 10:19 AM
Thanks Wendy for the link, but for some reason l cannot use photobucket. l'll keep trying though, it may be their site.

18-03-2010, 1:09 PM
Thanks Wendy for the link, but for some reason l cannot use photobucket. l'll keep trying though, it may be their site.

If that is the case, try one of the other sites, e.g. flickr. If you can get the photo on such a site, just post the link on this thread.

Lawrence W. Crider
18-09-2010, 3:04 PM
James Williams, Light Brigade:
No one by that name in the 4th Light Dragoons
No one by that name in the 8th Hussars
Corporal James W. Williams (663), 11th Hussars--whom you say you have ruled out.
Private James Williams (1785), 13th Light Dragoons:
☼ Williams, Pte James, (1785), 13th LD
Enl 01-25-55 in London [55D-1S-5]. Embkd 06-12-55 [55D-2S-5]. AA Charge. Landed at Balaclava 07-09-55; in Crimea all 3 Mstrs [55-3-5]. At Balaclava 1st 376 Mstr, & at Scut 2nd & 3rd Mstrs [55-4-5] & all 3 Mstrs [56-1-5]. Medal [472] w/ S [485] Clasp.
No one named James Williams in the 17th Lancers.

24-09-2010, 5:30 AM
Thanks Lawrence for looking into this for me. l had rested this for a period, so will now have another look with a fresh head.

Lawrence W. Crider
23-05-2011, 10:02 PM
Dear Old Chook:

I am about 2/3 completed with a book on the Heavy Brigade. I did find one James Williams serving in the Heavy Cavalry Brigade in the 4th Dragoon Guards:

Williams, Pte James (1214), 4th Dragoon Guards
• Apr to Jun 1855: with Service Troops from 26 May to 30 Jun; part of detachment from Depot Newbridge & Dundalk per Lady Russell; paid 31 days ordinary pay with stoppages for 31 days at 4 1/2; 2nd Muster endorsed “Genl”; marginal notes read “M.G. Room and tried by C.M. from 26 to 30 May [55-2-5] first confined 26 May; date of conviction 26 may; date of release 30 May; in guard room 26 May to 30 May, 5 days; charged 5 days subsistence at 2s 6d; received rations from commissariat 5 days; total number of days in confinement in this pay period, 5 [55-2-7].
• Jul to Sep 1855: with Service Troops through 25 Jul; to Scutari 26 Jul; all 3 Musters endorsed “Scutari”; 16 days in Regt or Gen Hospital; paid 24 days ordinary pay with stoppages for 8 days at 4 1/2; [illegible notation] above 6d GC pay column, 8 days [55-3-5].
• Crimean Medal [67/2] with S Clasp [73].

Later musters show he returned from Scutari to the Crimea on 1 December 1855 and was there through the end of March 1856; he spent six more days in the barrack cells and 9 days in the regimental or general hospital during that time. At this point my records run out, but if this is your man, at least you have a regiment and regimental number as a place to focus your researches.

Good Luck