Wars Before 1914

Unknown Soldier
Military Archive & Soldier Research

Wars Before 1914

For soldier research inquiries prior to the First World War our service covers well over a century and a half of British military history. It investigates those soldiers who served with the army at any time between 1745 and the outbreak of the war in August 1914; a period that not only saw the formation of many of the regiments we know today, but witnessed those units taking part in many of the famous campaigns and battles of British history and winning honours and renown. It traces the development of the regiments from redcoat to khaki. The period would include the following wars and conflicts:
  • Second Boer War 
  • Zulu War
  • Opium Wars 
  • Indian Mutiny
  • Crimean War
  • Napoleonic Wars
  • French Revolutionary Wars
  • American War of Independence
  • Seven Years War
  • French Indian Wars
  • Third Jacobite Rebellion
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"The completed report made very interesting reading as it clears up a lot of speculation about the Zulu wars.  I would like to thank you for your effort in finding out this information and would recommend your service."
Christopher Mussen from Wiltshire
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Frank Bourne  was a native of Sussex and joined the army in December 1872.  Just four years later he became the youngest Colour Sergeant in the British Army aged 22.
On 22 January 1879 he was with B Company of the 2nd Battalion of the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) Regiment at the Defence of Rourke's Drift in the Zulu War.  For his actions in organising and leading the defence that day he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal.  Eleven Victoria Crosses were earned during that action.  Bourne retired from the army as a Lieutenant-Colonel in 1918 and was made an O.B.E.  He was believed to be the last survivor of Rourke's Drift when he died on V.E Day in May 1945 aged 90.
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