Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

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Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Mck » 22 Jul 2017 11:24

Hello,
I have found my Great Great Grandfather on a discharge book on FMP.

969 William Walker 6th Dragoons 1868-1879, then 3rd Dragoon Guards number 1950, 1879-1885, Died in India of disease in 1885.

Its with regard to his discharge from the 6th Dragoons in Sept 1879.

I cant attach file as its too big.
http://search.findmypast.co.uk/record?i ... hts=%22%22

On the book there are various titles for reason for discharge. His says 'Purchase' then £10- written in the column next to his name, does this mean he bought himself out, or was he purchased by another Regiment?
I think its odd if he bought himself out, if it is that, because it was the 9th sept 1879 and by Oct 1879 he was in the 3rd Dragoon Guards, I know this as i have his 3rd Dragoon Guards pay book.

Your help and time are greatly appreciated

Thank you
Last edited by Mck on 23 Jul 2017 21:05, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discharge book on FMP

Postby Maureene » 23 Jul 2017 07:50

It does seem a bit odd.

It is hard to know whether he bought himself out, and then changed his mind, or whether it is the "paperwork" for getting a transfer. My guess is that he thought it would be better in the regiment he was transferring to, perhaps he had a friend there, or he may have unofficially been offered some sort go inducement to transfer. However, I have not heard of one regiment officially paying the discharge fee for someone, but perhaps it did happen.

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Maureen
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Re: Discharge book on FMP

Postby Mck » 23 Jul 2017 08:09

Thank you for your reply Maureene, appreciated.
Looks like another one of those mystery's that don't get solved.
Does anyone know what the purchase category is on the discharge books please?

Thank you

McK
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Re: Discharge book on FMP

Postby Mck » 23 Jul 2017 08:13

Do you think I should move this to a different section on the forum?
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Re: Discharge book on FMP

Postby Maureene » 23 Jul 2017 12:09

I would leave it in this section, but edit the title, as not every one has access to findmypast. Perhaps title it along the lines of "Discharge by purchase/transfer query"

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Maureen
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Re: Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Mck » 23 Jul 2017 21:06

Thank you again, advice taken.
I hope someone can help.

Cheers

McK
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Re: Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Frogsmile » 24 Jul 2017 14:12

I have come across this one, or two times before. Although a man could transfer between regiments, the administrative process could take quite a long time in circumstances of peacetime routine, when there was no operational urgency. In such a situation if a man wanted to move between regiments urgently, and did not want to wait for the administrative wheels to grind slowly, he could purchase his discharge and then re-enlist. However, purchasing discharge was not cheap and where the money actually came from is another matter.
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Re: Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Mck » 24 Jul 2017 14:54

Hello Frogsmile, (from the Great War forum as well??)

Thank you for your reply, that does make sense, there are a number of soldiers doing that on the discharge book, so the Regiment was making a lot of money!!
Looking at the Stations of the British Army site, it appears the 6th Dragoons moved to Edinburgh in 1879 and the 3rd Dragoon Guards were in Ireland, maybe he wanted to stay in Ireland?
Do you think the Muster rolls in the National Archives would shed any light?


Thank you again, greatly appreciated

McK
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Re: Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Frogsmile » 26 Jul 2017 10:55

Mck wrote:Hello Frogsmile, (from the Great War forum as well??)

Thank you for your reply, that does make sense, there are a number of soldiers doing that on the discharge book, so the Regiment was making a lot of money!!
Looking at the Stations of the British Army site, it appears the 6th Dragoons moved to Edinburgh in 1879 and the 3rd Dragoon Guards were in Ireland, maybe he wanted to stay in Ireland?
Do you think the Muster rolls in the National Archives would shed any light?


Thank you again, greatly appreciated

McK


I am glad to help, McK, and yes, I do post in the Great War Forum with the same ID.

I don't think that the War Office allowed the regiments to keep the money. A man purchased his discharge from the Army rather than from his regiment, a peculiarity of the British service that is oft misunderstood. In general when it suited the war office a man was a member of the Army and when it didn't he was a member of a specific regiment. This especially applied when it came to matters like commissions, promotions and associated terms of service.

Transferring to stay in a particular station seems to have been by far the most common reason for inter-regimental transfer, so yes, he may have wished to stay in Ireland.

The muster rolls would merely show the dates that he served in each regiment, so I'm not sure if that is what you wish to ascertain?
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6th Dragoons - Gale & P.jpg (167.37 KiB) Viewed 70 times
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Re: Discharge by 'Purchase'/ Transfer query

Postby Mck » 26 Jul 2017 16:41

Thank you again for the information Frogsmile, you're a star.
Very interesting the information, I have learned a lot!
Also thanks for the short histories, really good of you, greatly appreciated.
I'm Dragoon by the way on the GWF, its nice to have your
acquaintance again.

Cheers

McG
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