28 December 2012

7th (Princess Royal's) Dragoon Guards

This post will look at numbering in the 7th (Princess Royal's) Dragoon Guards. I've compiled the information on this post by studying 7th Dragoon Guards (and from 1907, corps of Dragoons’) service records in WO 97 (on-line with Findmypast) and WO 363 and WO 364 (on-line with Ancestry). Use the numbers below (all issued chronologically) and enlistment dates to estimate joining dates for other men who served with the 7th Dragoon Guards.

2319 joined on 8th February 1881
2458 joined on 3rd January 1882
2719 joined on 14th April 1883
2754 joined on 3rd February 1884
2836 joined on 12th March 1885
3039 joined on 10th February 1886
3517 joined on 28th February 1887
3651 joined on 23rd November 1888
3663 joined on 3rd January 1889
3752 joined on 10th February 1890
3829 joined on 6th April 1891
3984 joined on 22nd April 1892
4013 joined on 1st February 1893
4097 joined on 12th March 1894
4117 joined on 13th July 1895
4152 joined on 24th April 1896
4199 joined on 20th January 1897
4385 joined on 25th April 1898
4555 joined on 5th January 1899
4765 joined on 4th January 1900
5497 joined on 14th January 1901
5808 joined on 3rd January 1902
6423 joined on 4th February 1903
6518 joined on 1st July 1904
6579 joined on 16th January 1905
6876 joined on 16th January 1906

In December 1906, Army Order 289 changed the numbering for cavalry of the line. Prior to this, all cavalry regiments had numbered individually by regiments. Now, line cavalry and household cavalry were separated; each of the three line cavalry corps – dragoons, hussars, and lancers – beginning a new number series which started at 1 and was to extend to 49,999.

What this meant for the 7th Dragoon Guards was that from late December 1906 they began a new number sequence which they shared with the 1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards, 2nd Dragoon Guards (The Queen’s Bays), 3rd (Prince of Wales's) Dragoon Guards, 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards, 5th Dragoon Guards, 6th Dragoon Guards (Carabiniers), 1st (Royal) Dragoons, 2nd Dragoons (Royal Scots Greys) and 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons. See my post on the 1st (Royal) Dragoons to see how the numbering sequence worked for the Corps of Dragoons post 1906.

Noting the distinction between the regimental sequence used by the 6th Dragoon Guards up until the end of 1906 and the corps sequence used by the 6th Dragoon Guards and all other regiments of Dragoon Guards and Dragoons from late 1906 is an important distinction to note. Researching a 6th Dragoon Guards man, for instance, whose number is 4073 could point to a March 1899 joining date if the number falls within the regimental sequence, or December 1909 if the man enlisted with the corps of Dragoons. Here, knowing the soldier's age might well help to rule one number series or the other.

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