Medical Officers
Of the Malta Garrison – 1820

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Malta Garrison – 1820

First Army Sanitary Report

In 1816, Sir James McGrigor, Director General of the Army Medical Department, instituted a system of returns on the sanitary state, morbidity and mortality of troops serving on foreign stations. In 1822, Inspector of Hospitals John Hennen compiled the first annual report on the sanitary state of the Malta Garrison and of the convalescent depôt in Malta for the whole army in the Mediterranean, covering the period 21 December 1821 to 22 December 1822.

In Oct 1835, Secretary at War Lord Howick appointed Major Alexander Tulloch and Deputy Inspector General of Hospitals Henry Marshall, to inquiry into the extent and causes of the sickness and mortality among the troops in the West Indies, so as to establish such measures as might appear likely to diminish the great loss of life annually experienced in these colonies. Tulloch and Marshall utilised the McGrigor series of returns to prepare their account on the sickness and prevailing diseases among the troops in the West Indies from 1817 to 1834.

Subsequently, in May 1836, Lord Howick directed for a series of returns to be produced for each foreign station. On Major Tulloch's retirement in 1836, it fell on Assistant Surgeon Thomas Graham Balfour and Henry Marshall to produce the statistical reports on the health of the troops serving in the United Kingdom and the colonies.

From 1860 onwards, reports on the health of the army were printed annually in Blue Books, and submitted to Parliament.

Baptisms 1820

2 Jan Frances Abbott born on 4 Dec 1819, daughter of John Abbott, servant in the family of Lt Col Raitt DAG, and his wife Susan.

30 Jan John Griffitt born on 10 Jan 1820, son of John Griffit, and his wife Anne.

1 Feb William Charles Gunning born on 6 Jan 1820, son of Samuel Gunning DAG, and his wife Mary Ann.

6 Feb Susannah Gould born on 14 Jan 1820, daughter of Able Seaman John Gould HMS Rochfort, and his wife Jane.

13 Feb Emma Fancourt born on 28 Dec 1819, daughter of Joseph Fancourt, and Mary Smith, wife of Sgt John Smith 31st Regiment.

14 Feb George Bourchier Ward born on 23 Dec 1819, son of George Ward DPM General, and his wife Elizabeth.

3 Mar Susan Lewis born on 5 Feb 1820, daughter of Gentleman William Lewis, employed in the Store Keeper General Department, and his wife Susannah.

6 Mar Randolph Routh born on 16 April 1819, son of Randolph Isham Routh, Deputy Commissary General, and his wife Adelaide Marie Josephine Laminière.

Marriages 1820

6 Jan Widower Robert Barnard of East Greenwich, Kent, Sail Maker in the Naval Arsenal to Spinster Sarah Young, of Poole Dorset.

21 July Bachelor John Seaman Assistant Store Keeper General to Spinster Lucretia Bizzi, a native of Corfu.

Staff Medical Officers

Staff Medical Officers from Malta also served in the Ionian Islands and were regularly moved between the two islands.



  • A list of all the Officers of the Army and Royal Marines. War Office 28 February 1820.
  • TNA:WO 156/594, Register of Baptisms 1820–1839.
  • TNA:WO 334/1, Half-yearly report on the Health of the Army 1819–1820.
  • TNA:WO 17/2231, Returns of the General and Staff officers of the hospitals attached to the forces in Malta (25 January–25 December 1820).
  • Ward S G P., The Peninsular Commissary. Journal of the Society for Army Historical Research 75 (1997), 230-239.