28 January 2010

The Mavericks - Territorial Force infantry

In August 2008 I published a post here which I titled The Mavericks. For want of a better term I'm going to stick to that and use it to outline below, those Territorial Force infantry battalions which had idiosyncratic numbering sequences. Some, like the 5th Londons, continued with the number series that had been in place for their Volunteer predecessors.  Other battalions operated more than one number series - initially at least - largely because more than one County Association had a hand in administering them.

Bedfordshire Regiment - 5th Battalion
Black Watch - 5th Battalion
Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) - 5th Battalion
Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) - 8th Battalion
Gordon Highlanders - 6th Battalion
Gordon Highlanders - 7th Battalion
Highland Light Infantry - 8th Battalion
King's Own Scottish Borderers - 4th Battalion
King's Own Scottish Borderers - 5th Battalion
Lancashire Fusiliers - 6th Battalion
London Regiment - 5th (City of London) Battalion (London Rifle Brigade)
Royal Scots - 8th Battalion
Royal Scots Fusiliers - 4th Battalion
Royal Scots Fusiliers - 5th Battalion
Royal Welsh Fusiliers - 5th Battalion
Royal Welsh Fusiliers - 6th Battalion
Royal Welsh Fusiliers - 7th Battalion
Seaforth Highlanders - 5th Battalion
South Staffordshire Regiment - 5th Battalion
Welsh Regiment - 4th Battalion

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Graham Stewart said...

One outstanding feature of the first copy of Territorial Regulations dated 1908, is that it gives no regulation covering the numbering of individuals. This in itself may have caused confusion throughtout the TF world, resulting in strange numbering patterns.
It wasn't until the new edition in 1912 where the regulation for numbering TF personnel is clearly laid out, but by then some units may have been too far down the road of continuous numbering to turn back.
It is also recorded by some regimental researchers that certain Scottish TF units seemed to issue their mens numbers by Company, rather than from the Battalion H.Q.. Why this should be is uncertain, but it may be the fact that some were very rural in their organisation and it was easier to issue them by block to a Company!!!

Paul Nixon said...

Hello Graham

I'm currently working my way through the County Associations and noting for each, the different TF units they administered. Already, I'm quite surprised at just how many infantry and yeomanry regiments were administered by more than one CA. The 5th Beds, for instance, was administered by County Associations for Bedfordshire and Huntingdon and with an HQ in neither county.

The picture generally becomes clearer, the more data I have, and that's always an ongoing exercise.

The Scottish numbering by Company would seem to make sense for the reasons that you give although I've not identified any such idiosyncracies - yet.

Graham said...

One valuable source regarding the administration of certain units would be the "Territorial Year Book", which I believe first made it's appearance in 1909 and lists the units administered by each County Association.

Reprints of the original 1909 copy, reprinted by Ray Westlake, may still be available and may be a valuable source for your work.

Paul Nixon said...

Just checked that on Abe Books, Graham. There are a couple up for grabs, the cheaper of these at around 40 quid. Another one for the Wants' List. Thanks for the tip though.