Twenty-Five Years In The Rifle Brigade Part 19

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Quartermaster Surtees, Rifle Brigade.


_Albany, 18th October 1826._


I have heard with great regret that your state of health has obliged you to avail yourself of the regulation which enables you to retire from the Rifle Brigade, in which corps I had such frequent cause to praise the gallantry and a.s.siduity which you showed in the discharge of your duties in the field, and your regularity and a.s.siduity in quarters.

The officers of the corps, I am confident, will all regret the loss of a person whose mild and gentlemanlike manners and disposition had so much endeared him to them.

With every wish for your future welfare,

I remain, dear Sir, Very sincerely yours, A. F. BARNARD.

Quartermaster Surtees, Rifle-Brigade.


_London, 18th October, 1826._


I have just learnt with much regret that you are about to retire from the Rifle Brigade, from an impaired const.i.tution, owing to your unwearied and zealous exertions in the service.

From the period of my entering the Corps, _twenty-two years_ ago, I have had the pleasure of being intimately acquainted with you, and I must do you the justice to state, that a more gallant, zealous, and indefatigable officer, I have seldom fallen in with. As a gentleman, your conduct always won and gained the esteem of your brother officers.

Believe me I shall ever feel warmly interested in your welfare.

Yours, my dear Surtees, Most faithfully, J. LOGAN, Major 1st Bat. Rifle Brigade.

To Quartermaster Surtees, 1st Bat. Rifle Brigade.


_London, 20th October, 1826._


I cannot suffer you to return to your home, without adding my mite of applause to that of our brother officers, who have, together with myself, known you so well and so long.

From the day that we were employed together at Ipswich, in obtaining volunteers from the Militia, when you were so instrumental in obtaining so large a number of men for the service, and during the whole of our services in the Peninsula, and elsewhere, when my situation as a.s.sistant Quartermaster-General of the Light Division threw us so constantly together, until the last period of our regimental service, I have always known and respected your courage, your active discharge of your duties in times of difficulty and hardship, and your zeal and affection for the Rifle Brigade.

Your present poverty is the surest testimony of your integrity, which you have always kept in times of strong temptation, when very many others similarly placed have not resisted so well.

All my feeble services are constantly at your disposal, and wishing you content, and as much happiness as we can reasonably expect here,

I remain, my dear Surtees, Yours, most sincerely, CHARLES BECKWITH, Lieut.-Colonel.

Quartermaster Surtees, Rifle Brigade.


_c.u.mloden, Newtonstewart, Nov. 19, 1826._

If the three or four-and-twenty years, my dear sir, that I have had the satisfaction of having had you under my command in the Rifle Regiment or Brigade, suffice not to authorize my full approval of your conduct, both towards that corps and towards the public service, I know not what experience would do so. To this extent and to still farther extent, if it be required in detail, I am gratified by your having given me this opportunity of certifying the above. The loss that my battalion will sustain by the deprivation of your services will be great, and the only consolation that I shall have will be in learning that your present object of retiring on full pay be obtained, and that your health, injured, as my own has been, by perhaps too great a zeal in the fulfilment of our respective duties, may be somewhat amended by your retirement in private life. I have much to thank you for the most justly merited encomiums from your several commanders and from your elder brother officers, enclosed in your letter of the 13th instant, and to these honourable doc.u.ments favour me by adding this one. I wish it was in my power to be of any service to your views towards a civil appointment under government, but as your age much exceeds that to which all official nominations are now limited, application for such will be fruitless.

I have the honour to be, my dear Sir,

With repeated a.s.surance of regard, Your faithful friend and obedient servant, WM. STEWART, Lieutenant-General.

Quartermaster Surtees, 1st Bat. Rifle Brigade.


_Dublin, Nov. 28, 1826._


I enclose herewith copies of two letters which I have received from the office of his Royal Highness the Commander-in-Chief.

In congratulating you on their contents, I cannot refrain from expressing, strange as it may seem, not only my gratification but also my regret; gratification that you have succeeded in obtaining the object of your wishes, and regret the most lively, that your state of health should have obliged you to quit the corps; the more particularly, as the regiment will not only by your retirement be deprived of the benefit of your zealous and meritorious services, but I shall lose the society of one of my oldest and most valued friends.

The senior part of the regiment will ever remember with pride the glorious occasions in which you so often signalized yourself in the field, while the younger members of the corps will not fail, equally with the former, to admire the gentlemanlike conduct and urbanity of manners which have secured to you the friendship and good wishes of us all.

Believe me, my Dear Surtees, Very sincerely yours, WILLIAM EELES, Major, Rifle Brigade.

To Quartermaster Surtees, Rifle Brigade.


_Gilsland, June 26, 1827._


In returning to you the packet you have favoured me with the perusal of, I cannot refrain from expressing, in common with all your old friends and brother officers of the Rifle Brigade, my regret that your health made it necessary for you to retire from a corps, where your faithful and unremitting services for nearly thirty years had been so eminently useful, and where you possessed the friendship and confidence of every individual of any standing in it.

That your concern is as sincere as theirs in parting with them, I am perfectly convinced; yet it will be matter of real consolation to you to be able to reflect that you never gave just cause of offence to any member of the corps, and never neglected an opportunity of rendering them a service when in your power.

That you have not retired a richer man, is a subject of regret to us all; and we shall learn with great satisfaction of any event, that may tend to increase your means of doing good to those who look to you for protection.

Should any such opening present itself, I do not hesitate to express my conviction, that whoever may employ you, will never have reason to repent doing so; as I am well a.s.sured you will undertake no situation, without due reflection, and the nature of which you do not understand; and that, once taken in hand, you will discharge the duties of it with the same diligence and fidelity that you have performed those of your public life for so many years past.

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Twenty-Five Years In The Rifle Brigade Part 19 summary

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