Lieutenant Joshua John
Back To . . . 28th
Foot The North Gloucestershire Regiment
20th November 1811
Where Born : Portsea
Occupation : Soldier
Date Arrived :
24th May 1836 in Hobart, Tasmania
Ship Arrived on :
" Elphinstone "
Rank on Discharge : Lieutenant
Date of Enlistment :
15th March 1833 95th Regt
Where Enlisted : England
5th February 1836, transferred to the 28th Regiment of
Date of Discharge
:17th August 1838
Where Discharged : Sydney
Died : 8th September
1858 at Brighton on his honeymoon.
Where Died /
Buried : Brighton
Parents Names William
Whiting (b.1775 .....d.1813) m 14th October1802 Emily
Name : Harriet Catherine Dalton
Where Born : Woodford,
Ship Arrived on :
Where Died /
Date Married : 18th May 1858
Where Married :
Spouse's Parents :
James Josiah Millard (b.......d.) &
Harriet went on to have 7 further children with Edward Henry GIRLING before
he died in 1876. McClaine Kerr Dalton WHITTING her son with JJW died in 1910
- Area Settled :
- Children :
& Achievements :
- Appointed an Ensign in the 95th Regt. by Baron
Hill of Almaraz, following his mother's intercession for
- patronage, citing the death of her husband in the
Peninsular War. Lord Hill, had succeeded the Duke of
Wellington as army C. in C. on his appointment as Prime
Minister and had, as General Sir Rowland "Farmer"
Hill, played a leading active role in the Peninsular
1830 16th March, Commissioned at 18yrs. as a Lieutenant
into the 95th Regiment of Foot (The Derbyshire Regt.)
1836 5th February, transferred to the 28th Regiment of
Foot - The North Gloucestershire Regt, (when his surname
was entered as Whitting) - a pencil note suggests he may
have joined the Regiment on 15th March 1833. In 1833 the
Regiment was in Ireland, moving to Liverpool in 1834 from
where they marched to Chatham in February 1835, staying
until embarked for Australia guarding convicts sentenced
to transportation on a convoy of twenty-three ships.
1836 30th January, left the Downs, off Dover aboard the
Elphinstone, registered in Sheerness, Kent, with master
Thomas Fremlin together with the 28th's transport barque,
guarding 258 male prisoners, with Capt. (later Lt. Col.)
Adams and a detachment of troops, arriving 24th May in
Hobart, Tasmania after a voyage of 115 days. On landing
in Australia the regiment set up headquarters Parramatta,
Sydney, sending detachments all over the colony with a
strong presence at Moreton Bay (now Queensland).
1838 17th August he retired from the Regiment aged 26yrs
whilst still posted in Australia before the 28th were
sent in 1842 to India.
1841 Census in New South Wales records him resident at
Cuyal, Mudgee, Philip County.
1851 Inherited, amongst other bequests, his mother's
1858 August, Administration of estate granted to his
widow, she then living at 2 Cleveland Square, Hyde Park,
describing him as late of Pilton and Haldon, Darling
Downs and East Haldon, Moreton Bay, New South Wales and
King Street, St James's, Middlesex. Joshua remained in
Australia after retiring from his Regiment, possibly
farming, returning to the U.K probably shortly before his
marriage and death. It also appears likely that he
intended to return to Australia since he left a Will
which was proved in Queensland. (State Archives No. 55).
1859 son born posthumously in Mayfair.
1862 20th August, widow Harriet married Edward Henry
Girling of Knoddishall, Suffolk at Ashmanhaugh, Norfolk.
William Whiting L.6
b. 1775 baptised 16th April at Portsea.
d. 1813 30th July, killed in action near Pamplona, Spain
m. 1802 14th October Emily Cross at Portsea (1776-1851)
1775 Baptised 16th April, the same day but six years
after, the baptism of his brother Joseph.
1802 described on his marriage licence as a gentleman;
his father Joseph Whiting was the bondsman for the
ceremony. His wife Emily was almost certainly the
daughter of William Cross and his wife Arabella (nee
Dorman), who was baptised in the spa town at Bath Abbey 1st
Sept. 1776; her parents being married at St. Paul's,
Covent Garden, Westminster on 26th May 1763; these
locations being evidence of a leisured lifestyle.
William was commissioned into the 74th Regiment of Foot (Highlanders).
The regiment had been formed in 1787 at the cost of the
East India Company, wearing full highland dress - the
tartan similar to that of the Black Watch - but ceased to
wear the kilt on service in India soon after formation.
The army recruiting policy was based on the belief that
the sturdy Highlanders made durable soldiers in the
Indian climate. In 1803-4 the Regiment under Wellington
took a heroic part in the battle of Assaye, one of the
most decisive in Indian history, and was afterwards
presented with special honorary colours. In this action
eleven officers were killed and every other officer
present with the regiment, except Quartermaster James
Grant, was wounded and 384 of the 500 men who formed for
battle were either killed or wounded. At this period of
military history senior officers led their men into
battle. In 1805 the regiment returned home after at least
eight years in India. Indian service, though profitable,
was not highly thought of in professional terms but
proved valuable campaign experience in the subsequent
1804 22nd December, William recorded as holding the rank
of army Captain (without note of Regiment).
1805 29th August, William recorded as Captain in the 74th
Regiment. Probably a temporary appointment. The pay at
this period of a Captain commanding a Company was £191.
12s. 6d. p.a. and was regarded as an honorarium for a
gentleman rather than a salary. These payments had
remained substantially unaltered in value from the reign
of William III until 1870 when the purchase of
commissions and promotions was effectively abolished,
although the pay of soldiers had been regularly increased.
1805 11th October recorded at a Lieutenant in the 74th
Regt. in parish register on son's baptism.
In 1809 the Regiment was part of the ill fated amphibious
assault on the Belgium coast intended to open up a new
front against the Napoleonic armies in Germany. The
British became stuck on Walcherin Island, Netherlands,
where thousands of men fell victim to fever. This
inglorious episode ended in September when the
expeditionary force was pulled out, although William must
have been at home by March 1809, perhaps as a result of
On 18th January 1810 the 74th. sailed from Cork harbour
to Portugal, arriving at the mouth of the river Tagus on
5th February. Disembarked on the 10th February they were
quartered in the convent of San Benito near Lisbon to
begin their prominent part in various battles of the
second campaign in the Iberian Peninsula under Wellington's
direction from 1810 to 1814. This war of attrition is
well documented in contemporary published accounts and
consisted chiefly of a series of advances and reverses
made over considerable distances when each army
experienced in consequence insufferable hardships
exacerbated by extremes of climate. At Busaco, Portugal
on 27th September 1810 one French division, advancing
over the occupied ridge collided with the 74th and were
driven back at bayonet point, the French sustaining 4-5000
casualties overall in this battle against 1250 Anglo-Portuguese
losses. William presumably was at home on leave in
At the village of Fuentes d'Onor on 3rd May 1811 a fierce
battle was fought culminating in some savage hand to hand
street fighting three days later between the Highlanders
and the French, after which the French slipped away
having sustained 2,200 battle casualties against a
British loss of 1,700 men. The action moved on to the
border fortresses of Ciudad Rodrigo and Badajos. The
siege lines to the former being established on 8th
January 1812 with a desperate gamble of an infantry
attack on the well defended fortress being successfully
made over ditches through partially demolished sections
of the walls on 19th January. Badajos fort was defended
by a Spanish garrison of 5,000 men and eventually fell to
a night attack on 6th April at the cost of 4,000 British
casualties. One of the regimental pipers of the 74th,
Piper McLaughlin, played his pipes at the head of the
advance at the storming of Badajos until the music was
stopped by a shot through the bag. At Salamanca the
advance commenced with the taking of three fortalices on
27th June 1812 followed by a sudden, unplanned attack on
the French forces on 22nd July producing an impressive
victory with 14,000 French dead, wounded or taken
William was probably at Portsmouth in March 1813 and
attended the joint family baptism of another son and
The battle of Vittoria on 21st June 1813 following a dawn
attack on the French achieved a significant victory but
was not fully pursued when the British troops discovered
the French army pay chest and the accumulated treasure
that was the campaign plunder amongst the French baggage.
Poor Piper McLaughlin had both legs shot off whilst
playing behind the Colours during this attack and
continued playing the pipes until he died.
The Peninsula campaign entered its final phase with the
regiment taking part in battles in the Pyrenees, during
which a French counter-attack at Huarte was beaten off
thus blocking Marshall Soult's intended advance to
Pamplona. Following a further battle at Sorauren, Soult
decided to retire to Lizasso and then on to San Sebastian.
The French rearguard under General Foy moved along the
heights north of the Arga valley whilst General Picton
with two covering troops of cavalry marched the 3rd
Division up the valley exhibiting great caution, parallel
to and below the French. The officers under Picton in
Brisborne's Brigade became impatient and Col. le Poer
Trench prevailed upon the General to allow the 74th to
undertake a particularly dangerous manoeuvre on the
morning of 30th July 1813 and ascend the heights and cut
out the French rear. A brief but violent encounter ensued
in full view of the remainder of the Division on the
valley floor as the 74th scaled the heights and set upon
the French killing, wounding or taking prisoner 1500 men.
William was the only officer killed in this unnecessary
action - the last major skirmish of the Spanish campaign
- in which the regiment also lost six other ranks. Capt.
(Bvt. Major) William Moore, Lts. Alex Hope Pattison and
Francis Duncombe suffered severe wounds, with Capt.
William Tew and Lt. Col. Trench receiving slight wounds.
Thirty-eight men were also wounded. Wellington's
despatches record: The movement made by Sir Thomas Picton
merited my highest commendation: the latter officer co-operated
in the attack of the mountain by detaching troops to his
left, in which Lt. Col. the Hon. R. Trench was wounded.
Precise details of this engagement are to be found in the
notes made by the Adjutant of the 74th.
Personal effects were customarily auctioned amongst
brother officers in the Regiment. William's battlefield
possessions made £88. 17s. 0d., rather more than other
receipts recorded in the Regt., between 1810-13. This sum
remained uncollected and a letter was sent by the War
Office on 25th October to Emily, reminding her to draw
this sum from the Agents.
1813 Notice of his death was posted in the London Gazette.
General Sir William Napier wrote of the war: (The army)
had won nineteen pitched battles and innumerable combats;
had made or sustained ten sieges, and taken four great
fortresses; had twice expelled the French from Portugal,
and once from Spain; had penetrated France, and killed,
wounded or captured two hundred thousand enemies, leaving
of their own number forty thousand, whose bones whiten
the plains and mountains of the Peninsula. Their efforts
were largely overshadowed in the public mind by the
subsequent battle of Waterloo, despite the fact that more
British soldiers had died in the Peninsula than were even
present on the field at Waterloo.
The 74th afterwards underwent various amalgamations and
is presently subsumed within the Royal Highland Fusiliers.
Quite why William chose to serve in a Scottish regiment
is unclear. No doubt he had purchased his commission with
part of a substantial legacy from his late great-uncle.
William's children had been baptised in Portsmouth when
aged between one and three years of age. Most usually
children were baptised very shortly after their birth and
the explanation for delay must clearly be that William
arranged for family attended baptisms at Portsea as his
military movements or home recuperation leave permitted.
One of William's fellow officers Henry White, the Lt.
Adjutant of the 74th who was severely wounded at Vittoria,
was pensioned and after like service at Hull became Town-Major
at Portsmouth from 1823.
1828 Emily's granddaughter baptised Emily Maria, after
her aunt in Thanet, Kent. In 1859 12th January,
granddaughter Emily Maria was married in London to
Alexander Ludwig Wilhelm eldest son of Wilhelm Baron von
Paleske of Sprengawsken bei Preuss, Stargard, West
Prussia, and of Therese, Countess von der Schulenburg.
The Paleske family were exceptionally wealthy landowners,
merchants and shipowners with bases in a number of Baltic
ports and in London. One family member Ludwig Paleske (1756-1844)
lived in Park Lane, London (becoming Lewes on British
naturalisation by Act of Parliament dated 1781/2) from
where he financed the army of the Prussian General Yorck,
who changed his support for Napoleon to the anti-Napoleon
coalition in 1812, thus forcing the King of Prussia to
follow together with the rest of Prussia, and almost
certainly altering the outcome of the Napoleonic wars in
favour of England. Whether Lewes's support was in
response to the French `Continental System' - the closing
of European ports to British trade from 1806 which
threatened his livelihood and caused a commercial crisis
in England in 1810/11, or to the death of his brother in
the Napoleonic bombardment of Danzig is uncertain, but it
is unlikely that a merchant with even Lewes's massive
resources could have sustained Yorck's auxiliaries for
long and it is more than possible that he was the conduit
for secret British funds to Yorck - a theory given
support by the 1814 Treaty of Chaumont binding the
Russians, Austrians and Prussians together and funded by
the British Government to the extent of £5 million
pounds sterling. Lewes was created a Baron by the King of
Prussia in 1822 (despite being a British citizen) and
being without heirs caused his nephew Wilhelm to be
similarly ennobled from the same date.
1832 Emily wrote a second letter following one sent a
year earlier on a similar theme seeking an appointment in
the Cape for her son-in-law Olof Stockenstr(m from Lord
Goderich, (later Lord Rippon) Secretary for War and the
Colonies, in whose gift such appointments lay. Her
address at that time was 77 Great Portland Street,
Portland Place (London).
1841 Probable visit from her two granddaughters living in
1851 The last Will of Emily dated 24th June, proved 5th
November in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury. After
various bequests she requested burial at St. Johns Wood
and desired Mr L'Etrange to remove one of her fingers
after her decease, no doubt as a precaution against
premature interment. Her last address was then 37 Berners
Street, Oxford Street, London.
Family Members Military records ,Pay rolls, Pay
Musters, Cemetery Records, Church Records & General Muster Records,
Mitchell Library ,Sydney Australia
The information is intended for short
Historical value only,
E- mail address
© Copyright B & M Chapman (QLD) Australia
Last revised: Friday, 17 April 2009 02:14:38