65th Regiment of Foot Aug 1852-Sep 1858

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65th Regiment of Foot Aug 1852-Sep 1858

Postby researchingreg » 12 Jan 2016 13:16

My wife's 4th great Uncle Octavius Marsh was a Captain in the 65th Regiment serving in New Zealand between the above dates. I think most of the fighting in the Maori Wars was in the 1840's and 1860's with relative peace in the 1850's. Would he have seen any action in the period he was serving. I know about his later sticky end in 1865 after he had left the Army.
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Re: 65th Regiment of Foot Aug 1852-Sep 1858

Postby colsjt65 » 12 Jan 2016 20:09

I have compiled the following about Octavius Marsh, some of it, including the portrait, supplied by a descendent several years ago (I will have to look through my emails to find her name).
He served with the 65th in New Zealand during the peaceful 1850s, so saw no action.

Octavius John Blake Marsh
Highest rank in New Zealand – Captain
Promotion record - Ensign 14 June 1850, Lieutenant 28 May 1852, Captain 7 September 1855. Retired by sale of commission 24 September 1858.
Born Walcot, Bath, 21 January 1829. Died 13 January 1865, suicide – gunshot - revolver to temple.
"Octavius was a wild and reckless lad and I am still trying to piece together his life in New Zealand. He came to a sticky end on the 13 January 1865 when he committed suicide in Napier. His portrait is interesting as it was painted in Dieppe France."
Marsh_OctaviusJohnBlake_Cpt_small.jpg
Marsh_OctaviusJohnBlake_Cpt_small.jpg (56.8 KiB) Viewed 435 times

Attended ball at New Wellington Hotel, Wellington 31 August 1852. Arrived New Plymouth from Wellington in the Duke of Portland 6 September 1855. Played for C company in a cricket match against the Light company 29 January 1857. Steward at Taranaki Anniversary Races 30 and 31st March 1857. Visited New Plymouth from Wanganui 2 April 1858 - 17 June 1858 in the Jane Peata.
Married Bedelia MacGillicuddy on 29 July 1858. She had been a passenger, aged 13 or 14, with her parents in the ship that Marsh came in New Zealand on in 1852. She gave birth to a daughter 6 June 1865, after he died.
Cork Examiner - 1 May, 1865 “On the 13th Jan., at Napier, New Zealand, Captain Octavius John Blake Marsh, late H. M. 65th Regt. of Haverlock [sic], N.Z., youngest son of the late Major Marsh, Bath.”
As reported in the Hawke's Bay Herald, 17 January 1865, in the report of the post-mortem:
"[evidence of Sergeant -Major Scully, Napier Police] 'His manner was always eccentric. I believe his demeanour lately has been such as to be dangerous to those about him. I believe differences had existed between himself and his wife which preyed on his mind.
This having concluded the evidence, the jury returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased shot himself when under the influence of temporary insanity."

The same newspaper had reported three days earlier -
"The deceased, (formerly of the 65th regiment) was a man of high attainments, and of good family. Unfortunately, like many others whom nature would seem to have destined for a high position, he was a slave to the vice of intoxication; and to this cause, it is to be feared, is mainly to be ascribed his melancholy end."
Arrived in New Zealand in the Persia (13 Aug. 1852). Died in New Zealand.
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