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Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Wed May 03, 2017 5:20 pm
by Forum Manager
I had the pleasure of meeting James Hattigan and family at our West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village event last weekend.

We discussed his ancestor William Rhodes who served in 95th from June 1805 to 1816 (10yrs 282days) and James gave me copies of William's discharge and other documents.
William was invalided out of the regiment on 24 January 1816, aged 35 years, due to an injury to his right arm that he received at the Battle of Waterloo some 7 months earlier.

James asked to be registered as a user on this Forum so that we could continue the discussion and shed some more light on William's superb history. He sent me the following message and, accordingly, I have completed the registration and I have started this topic so that he can comment.
Hello,
I just wanted to thank you for the time you gave myself and my parents yesterday at West Stow. It was fascinating talking to you about our ancestors exploits.

As discussed, I have attached copies of the documents that I had brought with me. Hopefully these will be a little easier to read. On checking at home I did find that we have a transcript from the medal roll which we believe was Williams.

WATERLOO MEDAL ROLL TRANSCRIPT 1815

First name(s) Wm
Last name Rhodes
Year 15
Rank Private
Regiment 1st Battn. 95th REGIMENT OF FOOT
Sub unit Captain Wm. Johnston's Company
Fate Invalided

I hope these are of interest to you and if you are able to help fill any blanks with regards his military career that really would be appreciated. I think you did mention access to your website which again would be appreciated if we could do that.

Many thanks
James Hattigan
The papers record that William received 9 clasps to his Military General Service medal. This medal was created in 1848 and issued to soldiers involved in the battles during 1793 to 1814, each clasp represents a battle that the recipient fought in. The documents show William's clasps as C B FO CR B S V O T.

I have checked my books, I found that William was in No 2 Company 2/95th in Portugal at the start of the Peninsular War in August 1808. He may have been entitled but did not receive the clasps for the battles at Roleia (Roliça)(18 August 1808) or Vimiera (21 August 1808). However, he did receive the one for Corunna (La Coruña) (16 January 1809) so participated in the retreat, battle and evacuation back to England.

On his return to Portugal he was then in No 5 Company 1/95th, and for the rest of his army life, receiving his next clasp for the Battle of Busaco on 27 September 1810.

His other clasps are:
Fuentes D'Onoro 5 May 1811
Ciudad Rodrigo 8-19 January 1812
Badajoz 17 March - 6 April 1812
Salamanca 22 July 1812
Vittoria 21 June 1813
Orthez 27 February 1814 _ This is interesting because 1/95th missed this battle awaiting new equipment!
Toulouse 10 April 1814

William participated and survived the whole war!

William would have taken part in the battle at Quatre Bras on 16 June 1815 commanded by Captain W Johnston. They were positioned on the left on the Namur Road and managed to take the ground in front of them before the army retired to the crossroads at Mont St Jean.

William's company was positioned on the knoll behind the sandpit opposite La Haie Sainte farm for most of the Battle of Waterloo on 18 June 1815, falling back to the Ohain Road, about 150yds rearward, when the farm was taken by the French, remaining there fighting until around 7pm. He must have received his wound in one of those 2 locations.

At the re-enactment of the battle in 2015, we were privileged to be positioned at the sandpit as our battalion had been 200 years previously.

Hope this helps?

Re: Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Wed May 03, 2017 7:21 pm
by Dennis Larbalestier
wow, he got around a bit :shock:

Re: Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Thu May 04, 2017 11:35 am
by Alan Baxter
Wonderful to hear about a real Rifleman like that.

Re: Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Thu May 04, 2017 6:59 pm
by James Sturch
Great piece of information,

Re: Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Thu May 04, 2017 10:56 pm
by Al Cole
Wow, he must have clocked up some mileage on his wooden pegs, i wonder how many pairs of boots he got through? He must have been like a stick of rock with "rifleman" written all the way through!
Good that his modern relatives are proud to bring him to our attention.

Re: Rfm Wiiliam Rhodes 1/95

Posted: Mon May 08, 2017 8:19 pm
by James Hattigan
Just wanted to say another thanks for the information you have supplied with regards to Williams career, it really is fantastic and has given us so much more detail than we could have imagined. I look forward to finding out more detail of his career and the various battles he was involved in!
I have to admit I am very proud that I have an ancestor who fought at Waterloo and the Peninsular with the 95th