RAMC

Regiments of the Malta Garrison
101st (Royal Bengal Fusiliers)

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The 1st Battalion 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

Royal Munster Fusiliers
The badge is the grenade which is common to all fusilier regiments, on the ball of which is the royal tiger resting on a scroll inscribed Royal Munster and from which emerges a mass of flames.

The 101st Foot was raised in 1756 by the Honourable East India Company as The Bengal European Regiment.

It became a Fusilier Regiment in 1846, during the First Sikh War (1845–1846), as The Honourable East India Company's 1st (Bengal European) Fusiliers.

In 1858 its title changed to The 1st Bengal Fusiliers.

In 1861, The 1st Bengal Fusiliers became part of the British Army as The 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers.

On 1 July 1881, the 101st amalgamated with The 104th Bengal Fusiliers to form the 1st Battalion of The Royal Munster Fusiliers. The 104th Bengal Fusiliers became the Second Battalion of the Royal Munster Fusiliers.

The 1st Battalion 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

101st
TNA:WO 379/11 Movements of 101st Regt. (Courtesy R Sellstrom BEM)
Laura Black
Laura Black wife of school master M. A. Black died 11 Aug 1876 aged 29 yrs. (Ta' Braxia Cemetery Pieta)
Joseph Whitworth
Sgt Joseph Whitworth died 3 July 1876 aged 25 yrs 2 mths. (Ta' Braxia Cemetery Pieta)
Thomas Hole
Sgt Thomas Hole D Coy died 23 Aug 1877 aged 26 yrs (Ta' Braxia Cemetery Pieta)

1874 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

19 Oct 1874 The 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers left Parkhurst on the Isle of Wight on 6 October 1874. It embarked at Portsmouth on 6 October and disembarked at Malta on 19 October 1874.

The 101st relieved the 1st/18th Regiment which embarked for India on 20 October 1874.

The men occupied Verdala Barracks Cottonera.

The 101st Regiment had an average strength of 108 men. It had 119 admissions (1101.8/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 2 deaths among the invalids (18.52 deaths/1000 mean strength). It had 17 invalids returned to England.

1875 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

The 101st Foot had an average strength of 618 men. It had 530 admissions (857.6/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 6 deaths including 4 among the invalids (9.71 deaths/1000 mean strength). It had 11 invalids returned to England. Its average daily sick was 22.40 (36.25/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 13.23 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 15.43 days.

The 101st had a relatively large number of enteric fever. The men had been quartered at Fort Verdala, Lower St Elmo Barracks with a company at Zabbar Gate.

1876 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

The 101st Regiment had an average strength of 654 men. It had 505 admissions (772.2/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 7 deaths (10.7 deaths/1000 mean strength).

It had 9 invalids returned to England. Its average daily sick was 28.43 (43.47/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 15.87 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 20.55 days.

The 101st Regiment was at Lower St Elmo Barracks. It lined the route during the visit to Malta of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales.

1877 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

The 101st Foot had an average strength of 739 men. It had 473 admissions (641.1/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 4 deaths (5.41/1000 mean strength). It had 14 invalids returned to England. Its average daily sick was 28.53 (38.61/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 14.09 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 22.02 days.

1878 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers

Fountain St Elmo
Ornamental fountain in front of the military prison at Lower St Elmo. Designed by De Tigne during the Grandmastership of Emanuel Pinto (1741-73). The fountain drew its water by gravity from the nearby Vendome Reservoir.

The 101st Foot had an average strength of 465 men. It had 261 admissions (261.2/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 4 deaths (8.58 deaths/1000 mean strength). 19 invalids were returned to England. Its average constantly sick was 17.12 (36.82/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 13.44 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 23.94 days.

Malta 18 July 1878 The 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers embarked for Cyprus where it arrived on 23 July 1878.

In 1878, the 42nd along with half a battalion of the 101st regiment embarked on HMS Himalaya on Lieutenant-General Sir Garnet Wolseley Expeditionary Force to Cyprus. 2,643 British and 5,015 Indian troops, including in the latter one company of European Artillery, arrived at Larnaca on the 22nd July 1878. The Indian contingent remained in Cyprus for only a short time before re-embarking for India.

The 101st Royal Bengal Fusiliers left Cyprus for Nova Scotia on 8 October 1878, after 79 days on the island. The men lived under canvas. Out of a strength of 813 men, the 101st had 841 admissions for malaria. There were 5 deaths.

The 2nd Battalion The Royal Munster Fusiliers

1882 2nd/Royal Munster

Royal Munster Fusiliers
The inscription on the scrolls on the lower cannon ball reads 2nd R. M Fusiliers, Landed at Malta, 1 August 1882. That on the top cannon ball reads Restored by The King's Own 1897 (Royal Lancaster).
104th
TNA:WO 379/11 Movements of 104th Regt. (Courtesy R Sellstrom BEM)

1 Aug 1882 The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers left Aldershot for Portsmouth on 21 July 1882. It embarked for Malta, where it arrived on 1 August.

The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers had an average strength of 375 men.

It had 527 admissions (1412.8/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 8 deaths (21.44 deaths/1000 mean strength). 7 invalids returned to England.

Its average constantly sick was 23.29 (62.43/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 22.79 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 16.13 days.

The high rate of admission in the regiment was stated by the PMO, Surgeon-General J.E. Clutterbuck, to have been due to the arrival of the regiment in the hot weather and to their being mainly composed of young soldiers who expose themselves more than older men.

A soldier died from concussion of the brain, another from a ruptured spleen. He was accidentally ridden over whilst on picket duty at the race course.

1883 2nd/Royal Munster

The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers had an average strength of 857 men. It had 850 admissions (991.8/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 4 deaths (4.66 deaths/1000 mean strength). 19 invalids returned to England. The Royal Munster Fusiliers had the highest admission rate in the command. The PMO, Surgeon General W Sinclair remarked that the regiment had such a high percentage of sick during August to September, when quartered at Lower St Elmo Barracks, due to fevers, that I recommended them be moved to Pembroke Camp, when they soon recovered their health.

Its average constantly sick was 53.59 (62.53/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 22.82 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 23.01 days.

The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers was at Fort Lower St Elmo. A soldier was found dead on the top of Lower St Elmo Barracks.

Malta Dec 1883 The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers received orders to embark for India.

1884 2nd/Royal Munster

The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers had an average strength of 151 men. It had 115 admissions (591.7/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 2 deaths (9.46 deaths/1000 mean strength). 8 invalids returned to England.

A soldier died of multiple injuries following a fall from the ramparts at Polverista Gate during the night.

The 2nd/Royal Munster Fusiliers embarked for Bombay on 4 March 1884. It disembarked in India on 25 March.

The 5th Battalion The Royal Munster Fusiliers

A E S Lawrie
Annie Edith Sabine child of Drum Major Joseph Lawrie and Anna Bella died Pembroke Camp on 16 Oct 1883 aged 11 mths 26 days. (Pembroke Military Cemetery)

1901 5th/Royal Munster

Feb 1901 The 5th/Royal Munster Fusiliers arrived from England.

Malta 1 June Strength 531 men.

Malta Sept 1901 The 5th/Royal Munster Fusiliers embarked for England.

References

  1. Famous Units. The National Army Museum. Available from http://www.nam.ac.uk/research/famous-units.
  2. Farmer, J. S., 1984. The regimental records of the British Army Reprint Edition, Trowbridge, Wiltshire: Crecy Books.
  3. Edwards, T. J., 1980. Regimental Badges First Edition, Tonbridge, Kent: Ernest Benn Ltd.
  4. The Cyprus Report 1 May 1879 Br Med J (1879), 2; 966: 11 (Published 5 July 1879).