Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Help - Captain John Humble c1800

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    2

    Help - Captain John Humble c1800

    My thanks to Pat Anderson for helping me get this far and suggesting I put this question to the forum.

    Hi All,
    I'm trying to find the military record of my g4 grandfather, John Humble, but am having difficulty finding him in the BW lists I have - can anyone help shed light on this?
    John Humble was born at Bamburgh Friars Farm, Bamburgh, in 1772, christened at Ancroft near the family homestead at Windmillhill (just south of Berwick-On-Tweed). He married a widow, Sarah Martin (nee Bawtree), from St. Osyths near Colchester in 1796 and took her to live in Beadnell near Bamburgh. They had nine children of which only five survived infancy.
    The registers of Beadnell in 1798 describe John as a "gent." which suggests money and no work but by 1799 the registers have him as a "Captain".

    His first wife died around 1815 and John then married again, another Sarah, in Gloucestershire in 1819. They lived in a number of towns there: Newton, Huntley, Walford and Ross-on-Wye before the 1861 census shows Sarah retiring, as a widow, to Gloucester. John died in Gloucester in 1856.
    On all baptismal records I have for their children (seven in all), John styles himself as "Captn., 2nd Batt., 42nd. Regiment". On the 1851 Census, John describes himself as a "Captn./Army Half Pay". So there's no mistake in the documentation itself. It's possible that John was telling porkies but maintaining that fiction for 50+ years seems unlikely especially since the family had land and money.

    Assuming the records are correct, we get to the name itself. John is often referred to as John Smith Humble but I have no idea where the "Smith" comes from - but one of John's sons was named Smith Humble - (he died in Calcutta at the age of 20 in 1822 and is buried in the cemetery at Dum Dum). It's possible John used a nom-de-guerre to join up - maybe John Smith?
    His mother's maiden name was Dodds (a fine family of Rievers) and his grannies names were Williamson and Muschamps. The Muschamps were a noted family with wealth and titles and related to the Manners who became the Dukes of Rutland.

    So, we're looking for a John Humble or John Smith or John Dodds, Williamson or Muschamps who became a Captain in 1799. John was also a Licensed Apothecary so may have been referred to as a Doctor or Surgeon.
    Can anyone help?
    Cheers,
    Peter

  2. #2
    Peter, greetings. You may well be aware of this already but it's worth pointing out that the only period in your man's life time when a 2nd Battalion of the 42nd was in existence was in 1804-1812. That indicates that in whatever corps he held a Captaincy in 1799, it was not the 42nd. Captaincies were no mean rank to hold, there were financial commitments as well as the right to take half-pay- essentially to receive a pension. Officers on half-pay were entered in the annual Army Lists. I can tell you that in Hart's Army List for 1851. there is no officer named Humble, Dodds, Muschamps or John Williamson, nor a Captain John Smith associated with the 42nd. Nor is there an officer named Humble in either the Army Lists for 1812 or 1799. These are all available to be downloaded online at the National Archives website.

    He may have been in the Militia or in a Fencible regiment which would have made it easier for him to perform his conjugal duties, about which he was evidently conscientious. However I don't believe that would have made him eligible for half-pay.

    I hope that information is of some use, if only to narrow down the field.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    2
    Hi Jf42, many thanks for your reply and for the information. Not what I had been hoping for but it gives me new avenues to explore. It had occurred to me that John can't have been away from home much given that he actually fathered 16 children between 1797 and 1832. That said, the family had money - his father, William, is mentioned in independent documents as making substantial contributions to charities in Bamburgh and John's children were farmers, chemists and surgeons or married into the clergy and even the peerage.
    However, nil desperandum, this is what makes genealogy interesting (if not a little frustrating at times).
    Again, many thanks for your help - I appreciate it very much.
    Best regards,
    Peter

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •