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Tuesday, 4 August 2009
The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Fremantle Rifle Volunteers
Topic: Militia - LHW - WA

Western Australian Militia

Fremantle Rifle Volunteers

 

The following is an extract from the book written in 1962 by George F. Wieck called The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia 1861-1903, pp. 37 – 39:

 
Fremantle Rifle Volunteers

Sponsored by Mr. G. B. Humble of Fremantle, a memorial bearing the names of 40 persons desirous of forming an Infantry Volunteer corps at Fremantle was presented to the Military Commandant on 30.8.1872. Approval to form a corps, to be designated the "Fremantle Rifle Volunteers" appeared in the Government Gazette of 5.10.1872. Approval was given also for the new corps to wear uniform of the same type and pattern as that of the defunct Fremantle Volunteer Rifles. Captain R. Sutherland was appointed to Command as from 7.10.1872.

On 7.10.1872 corps strength stood at 71: it increased to 69 plus bandsmen in 1873; and by 1877 had increased to 124 all ranks. The maximum of 137 was reached in 1893 but a drop to 78 occurred in the following year when, presumably, the roll was purged of inefficients and dead-heads.

Approval to form a second Company was given in 1884. For a period of nine years corps strength was never less than 100, overshadowing the Perth Corps in this regard.

The Inspector of Volunteers reviewed the corps on 13.3.1873 (attendance 55) and again on 23.10.1873, both reports being favourable - even to the extent of recommending that new Martini-Henri rifles then on their way from England should be issued to replace the very obsolete weapons the corps then possessed. The new rifles were issued in due course but could not be fired for some months because someone in authority had forgotten to order suitable ammunition.

Corps training was co-ordinated with that of the Perth and Guildford bodies, the three frequently combining to carry out tactical and ceremonial exercises. It formed part of the 1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers and also attended the 1884 camp.

When on 1.7.1899 the Perth, Guildford and Fremantle corps were amalgamated to form the 1st Infantry Regiment, the latter provided "C" and "D" Companies of the new arrangement.



Officers of the Fremantle Rifle Volunteers

Major R Sutherland – 7 October 1872

Captain GB Humble - 7 October 1872

Sub Lieutenant M Samson – 25 March 1873

Captain CL Clifton - 25 March 1873

Captain H Smith - 12 March 1884

Lieutenant HJ Saw – 7 May 1884

Captain AA Scott – 27 September 1892

Captain GH Stone - 20 May 1885

Captain WA Payne - 23 May 1885

Captain CA Saw - 23 May 1885

Captain JAE Humble – 6 January 1888

Captain FWT Robinson - 17 October 1893

Lieutenant FJ Townsend – 13 December 1894

Lieutenant HC Horne - 19 October 1894

Lieutenant FG Thorne - 29 April 1895

Captain DG Gawler - 25 March 1896

Second Lieutenant R Strelitz - 25 March 1896

Second Lieutenant S Ingliss – 17 August 1898

Captain WW Abbott – 1 April 1900

Second Lieutenant AM Cook - 21 May 1900

 

 

Previous:  W.A. Troop Volunteer Horse Artillery

Next: Guildford Rifle Volunteers 

 

Further Reading:

Western Australian Militia, Light Horse

Western Australian Militia, Infantry

 


Citation: The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Fremantle Rifle Volunteers

Posted by Project Leader at 12:01 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 4 September 2009 6:47 PM EADT
Sunday, 2 August 2009
The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Guildford Rifle Volunteers
Topic: Militia - LHW - WA

Western Australian Militia

Guildford Rifle Volunteers

 

The following is an extract from the book written in 1962 by George F. Wieck called The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia 1861-1903, pp. 39 – 41:

 
Guildford Rifle Volunteers

The proposal to form a corps to be designated the Swan Mounted Volunteer Corps, which originated at the meeting of citizens held at Guildford in 1861, was presented to the Governor by a deputation consisting of Messrs Barker and Brockman, and Dr. Weylen. The proposal received encouragement, so carbines were borrowed and training commenced.

The Military Commandant considered the number of men enrolled insufficient to form a corps of the strength desired by the deputation and suggested as an alternative that Guildford should raise a small Infantry detachment of the proposed Perth corps. The suggestion was not accepted. A further move was made in 1872-3 when it was proposed to raise an independent Infantry corps 30 strong; the Military Commandant repeated his former suggestion and this time it was accepted. The detachment prospered to such an extent that on 22 January 1874, when its strength stood at two Officers and 40 other ranks, it officially became the "Guildford Rifle Volunteers", with Sub-Lieutenant S. R. Hamersley in Command. Although administratively independent the new corps remained for some months under the supervision of the Perth corps Commander for purposes of training.

Difficulty was experienced in the supply of arms and uniform and for a few years only very obsolete rifles were available. It was not until 1892 that Snider rifles, themselves obsolete, were received. Records printed in 1874 show corps strength as two Officers, 45 Other Ranks, 10 Bandsmen, three Honorary Members and 20 Cadets. 34 members attended the Queen's Birthday Review held that year.

The residents of Gin Gin became interested and in 1878 offered to raise a detachment. However, as a suitable person was not available to take command the offer could not be accepted. Similar offers from Newcastle (Toodyay) and Northam in 1892 met a better fate, valuable detachments being formed at both places.

Ably commanded, the corps prospered exceedingly. By 1882 strength had increased to 78; there was a recession in 1885 when the total dropped to 54, it then increased by stages until 1890 when the maximum of six Officers and 114 Other Ranks was reached. By 1895 the total had fallen to eight Officers and 104 Other Ranks. At that time the strength of the Perth and Fremantle corps was 84 and 70 respectively.
When grouped with the Perth and Fremantle corps in 1874 Guildford furnished one Company but retained its administrative independence. In 1899 the Guildford corps became "E" Company of the newly constituted First Infantry Regiment.

The corps held a Voluntary Camp at Albany in 1889, members sharing the cost.

The Guildford Rifle Volunteer corps was a fine body: it was efficient, reliable, and commanded by a succession of able leaders. Further references to its career will be found in further chapters.



Officers of the Guildford Rifle Volunteers

Lieutenant SR Hamersley, 22 January 1874

Lieutenant S Gardiner, 2 January 1874

Lieutenant J Allpike, 1 June 1879

Captain FJ Reid, 11 December 1884

Captain JH Munday, 21 August 1888

Second Lieutenant HE Hamersley, 20 November 1888

Lieutenant H Hamersley, 30 May 1890

Captain J Mitchell, 10 July 1890

Lieutenant JMY Stewart, 7 March 1894

Second Lieutenant L Throssel, 13 April 1894

Second Lieutenant A Piesse, 13 April 1894

Lieutenant RT McMaster, 13 August 1895

Lieutenant S Harris, 14 December 1895

Captain EAF Compton, 2 June 1898

Lieutenant CA Barnes, 9 May 1899

Second Lieutenant L Monger

Second Lieutenant JEF Stewart, 15 December 1899

 

Previous:  Fremantle Rifle Volunteers

Next: 1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers

 

Further Reading:

Western Australian Militia, Light Horse

Western Australian Militia, Infantry

 


Citation: The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Guildford Rifle Volunteers

Posted by Project Leader at 12:01 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 4 September 2009 10:50 PM EADT
Saturday, 1 August 2009
The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, 1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers
Topic: Militia - LHW - WA

Western Australian Militia

1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers

 

The following is an extract from the book written in 1962 by George F. Wieck called The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia 1861-1903, pp. 41 – 42:

 
1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers

The Infantry corps at Perth, Fremantle, and Guildford being completely independent of each other, and having a one-company organization, it followed that training would never be advanced beyond Company level. The Military Commandant was aware of the limitations and accordingly, in 1874 created a temporary training body designated the 1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers embracing the abovementioned corps with himself as Commander.

This organization had no administrative entity: it was designed to extend the field training of officers and men to battalion level and to that end special parades were held. It was an excellent idea for, apart from the purpose of the exercises, inter-corps rivalry caused more vim to be imparted to the home training in preparation. When assembled on parade two or more equal Companies would be formed, corps taking turns to be broken up for that purpose.

This organization answered the purpose of the Military Commandant until 1899 when the formation of the 1st Infantry Regiment rendered it unnecessary.

 

Previous:  Guildford Rifle Volunteers 

Next: Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

 

Further Reading:

Western Australian Militia, Light Horse

Western Australian Militia, Infantry

 


Citation: The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, 1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers

Posted by Project Leader at 12:01 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 4 September 2009 10:47 PM EADT
Friday, 31 July 2009
The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Geraldton Rifle Volunteers
Topic: Militia - LHW - WA

Western Australian Militia

Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

 

The following is an extract from the book written in 1962 by George F. Wieck called The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia 1861-1903, pp. 42 – 43:

 
Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

Approval to form a Volunteer Infantry corps in the Champion Bay district appeared in the Government Gazette of 10 October 1876. The new corps was designated the "Geraldton Rifle Volunteers", with Headquarters at Geraldton. Capt. J.N. Hillman was appointed to Command.

The corps was administratively independent and in all matters dealt direct with the Military Commandant. Names on the roll totalled 60 in 1876, 48 in 1883, 67 in 1892, and 51 in 1895.

Apart from its deeds of prowess on the rifle range (which were outstanding) there is little on record concerning the activities of this corps: it was located so far from the others that particularly in the earlier years it could not participate with them in the higher forms of training. A small camp of training was held in the vicinity of Geraldton in 1884 - this was the first held by the corps. As in the case of Guildford very obsolete rifles were issued and these were not replaced until years later.

A detachment, with Lieutenant S. Mitchell in Command, was raised at Northampton in 1885. In 10 the corps was included with those of Guildford, Bunbury, and York to form the 3rd Battalion Western Australian Infantry Brigade.

Further details appear in Western Australian Infantry Brigade and 3rd Battalion Western Australian Infantry Brigade.


Officers of Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

Captain JD Hillman, 26 February 1877

Captain E Shenton, 21 May 1877

Lieutenant V Birch, 2 August 1877

Lieutenant W Gale, 16 December 1879

Sub-Lieutenant H Smith, 11 April 1881

Lieutenant WD Cowan, 5 February 1884

Lieutenant W Jose, 11 August 1886

Major RH Cowan, 24 May 1888

Second Lieutenant F Wittenoom, 15 April 1889

Captain WM Buchanan, 27 July 1894

Lieutenant W Barges, 29 April 1895

Lieutenant HF Darling, 6 September 1897


 

Previous:  1st Battalion W.A. Volunteers

Next: Wellington Mounted Volunteers

 

Further Reading:

Western Australian Militia, Light Horse

Western Australian Militia, Infantry

 


Citation: The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

Posted by Project Leader at 12:01 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 4 September 2009 10:44 PM EADT
Thursday, 30 July 2009
The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Wellington Mounted Volunteers
Topic: Militia - LHW - WA

Western Australian Militia

Wellington Mounted Volunteers

 

The following is an extract from the book written in 1962 by George F. Wieck called The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia 1861-1903, pp. 43 – 44:

 
Wellington Mounted Volunteers

After the failure in 1862 to raise a Volunteer corps in the Vasse-Sussex district nothing further was done until in 1876 the Military Commandant recommended a proposal to raise a mounted corps at Bunbury. A Government Gazette, dated 25 June 1877, contained authority to raise the "Wellington Mounted Volunteers" with headquarters at Bunbury. Captain J. H. Rose was appointed to Command.

There are no recorded details of the life and experiences of the corps. There are indications that difficulties in the supply of arms and uniform, similar to those suffered by the sister corps at Pinjarrah, caused disappointment among the rank and file.

The colour and design of uniform adopted were similar to that worn by the Pinjarrah corps and the arms issued were also revolver carbines and Light Cavalry swords. An officer's sword with the title of the corps "chased" on the blade is in the custody of the Perth Museum.

The roll bore 55 names in 1877, 38 in 1889, and only 18 in 1882. There can have been no surprise when the Government Gazette of 30 November 1883 announced the disbandment of the corps.


Officers of the Wellington Mounted Volunteers

Captain RH Rose, 25 June 1877

Captain TR Lovegrove, 25 June 1877

Lieutenant MW Clifton, 7 August 1878



 

Previous:  Geraldton Rifle Volunteers

Next: Albany Rifle Volunteers

 

Further Reading:

Western Australian Militia, Light Horse

Western Australian Militia, Infantry

 


Citation: The Volunteer Movement in Western Australia, Wellington Mounted Volunteers

Posted by Project Leader at 12:01 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 4 September 2009 10:41 PM EADT

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