10 March 2009

Cavalry numbering 1906

In my post the other day concerning Queen's and King's Regulations and changes in regimental numbering, I drew attention to the Army Order 289 of December 1906 which changed the numbering as far as cavalry of the line was concerned.

Prior to this Army Order, all cavalry regiments had numbered individually by regiments. Now, line cavalry and household cavalry were differentiated, and each corps of line cavalry was to use a separate number series extending to 49,999.

The image above (click on it to see a readable version) illustrates this point nicely. Albert Beech joined the 8th Hussars on 30th October 1901 and was given the army service number 5494. He was posted to the 15th Hussars on 15th January 1903 and given a new number, 4372 (same Corps of Hussars, but different regiment, hence the new number). He then remained with the 15th Hussars until 1st November 1909 (picking up two good conduct stripes along the way - the first issued after two year's good conduct, the second issued after three years' good conduct). He was then transferred back to the 8th Hussars. By now, the numbering had changed to numbering by corps rather than regiment and so Albert was issued with the next number in use, 4840. (4822 had gone to a 20th Hussars man, 4837 to a 13th Hussars man).

4840 Corporal Albert Beech was discharged as medically unfit from the now demolished Netley Military Hospital on 21st April 1911. His service record survives in the WO 363 series at the National Archives. Click on the link below to view Albert's service record and thousands of other records like his.

British Army WW1 Records

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