24 September 2009

The Leinster Regiment - 1st & 2nd Battalions

The Prince of Wales's Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians) was formed in 1881 from the 100th (Prince of Wales's Royal Canadian) Regiment of Foot and the 109th Regiment of Foot (Bombay Infantry). The old 100th became the 1st Battalion, and the 109th, the 2nd Battalion.

There are over 10,000 Leinster Regiment pension and service records (for this regiment - and its antecedents) in various War Office series held at the National Archives. Clicking on the link will take you to the results on Findmypast but you will need a subscription or Pay-Per-View credits to actually view the records. Some of these records can also be viewed on-line on Ancestry although Findmypast has by far the most comprehensive service record collection.

Use the regimental numbers and dates on which these were issued, below, to determine parameters for when your own Leinster Regiment ancestor would have joined up. Note though that these numbers are only for regular enlistments. Special Reserve and Extra Reserve battalions operated completely separate regimental number sequences.

118 joined on 5th April 1882
703 joined on 22nd December 1884
1027 joined on 8th August 1885
1333 joined on 7th January 1886
1774 joined on 23rd April 1887
2114 joined on 21st March 1888
2366 joined on 26th April 1889
2743 joined on 3rd July 1890
2967 joined on 1st March 1891
3444 joined on 1st June 1892
3773 joined on 3rd February 1893
4214 joined on 27th March 1894
4854 joined on 28th September 1896
5052 joined on 23rd March 1897
5567 joined on 15th July 1898
5874 joined on 29th March 1899
6140 joined on 13th March 1900
6382 joined on 10th July 1901
6576 joined on 20th January 1902
7046 joined on 16th July 1903
7353 joined on 20th June 1904
7736 joined on 11th June 1905
8138 joined on 18th December 1906
8359 joined on 12th July 1907
8681 joined on 1st January 1908
9015 joined on 8th February 1909
9219 joined on 5th January 1910
9578 joined on 4th July 1911
9718 joined on 12th January 1912
10110 joined on 27th January 1914

When Britain went to war with Germany a few months later, the Leinster Regiment responded to the call by forming two new service battalions in August and October 1914. Neither of these battalions drew their numbers from the series above which was still maintained but reserved for men signing up for regular terms of enlistment (seven years with the Colours, five on the Reserve) rather than for war-time service only.

The regiment was disbanded in 1922 following the creation of the Independent State of Ireland, but there is still an active Regimental Association, and an informative website here: Regimental Association of the Prince of Wales's Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians).

Post 1918 Leinster Regiment cap badge from Peter Taylor Militaria.

I also offer a comprehensive, fast and cost-effective military history research service. Follow the link for more information.

From the Naval & Military Press:

The History of the Prince of Wales's Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians)

Two volume history, fully indexed and containing eight maps and twelve illustrations. CLICK HERE TO READ MORE.

“STAND TO” A Diary of the Trenches 1915-1918

This is one of the classic memoirs of the Great War, written by an officer of the 2nd Battalion the Leinster Regiment who joined his battalion in the trenches in May 1915 and served with them to the end of the war. It is, says the N&M Press, "a memorable account and a great tribute to the soldiers from the South of Ireland... a vivid account, supported by some wonderful sketches and examples of the spirit and humour of the Irish soldier." CLICK HERE TO ORDER.


wayne said...

I'm researching Alfred George Freegard 2 Leinsters number 5382. He died 5th Feb 1917. He enlisted in May 1916. I'm puzzled why he should have what would appear to be a 'regular' number. Any ideas? Would be very pleased to hear from you on fossewaz@gmail.com.
Best Wishes
Wayne Young

Paul Nixon said...

Wayne, it must be a number from a different series, in that case, not the regular series that I have posted on this blog.


Tim Farrell said...

Hi, I am trying to get more information on my Great Uncle second Second Lieutenant Archibald Roche Toomey killed at the Apex Gallipoli 10 August 1915, any info would be greatly appreciated regards

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