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Old militia My great Grandfather Edmund Edward Richardson

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Old militia My great Grandfather Edmund Edward Richardson

Postby philarys » Thu Mar 12, 2015 3:03 pm

When reading a newspaper story of my G Grandfathers funeral,it said he once was part of the old militia,and that his coffin was draped with the union flag. I have no records of him been in the army. Could anyone help in what this could be. He was born 1853 in Ringmer Sussex. And in the censors he always worked on the farm.


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Re: Old militia My great Grandfather Edmund Edward Richardso

Postby AdrianB38 » Thu Mar 12, 2015 7:48 pm

philarys wrote:... I have no records of him been in the army. ...


That's because the militia and the army are not the same thing - though it's a common misconception.

The militia were one of several types of auxiliary forces, generally using volunteers - though the militia had once been conscription by ballot. The soldiers in the militia (and the Rifle Volunteers and Yeomanry) were all part-time (much like today's Territorials) with civilian lives to lead. Not sure how many evenings a week they gave up. All these auxiliary forces were only called upon in the event of an emergency such as a threatened French invasion - though particularly in the case of the Yeomanry, emergencies could also include dealing with civil unrest.

See http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/records/research-guides/armed-forces-1522-1914.htm for The National Archives' guide on looking for militia records. How much documentation for militiamen survives depends on exactly when they served. For much of the 19th century nothing survives for many regular soldiers, never mind auxiliaries like militiamen.

As for what unit, he served with ... well, again, this depends on date but I note that there was a "Royal Sussex Regiment of Militia" at one time. There may have been others in the area. Can't find much more in Google. It may be worth following up the Royal Sussex Regiment (the regulars) instead, to see if you can find any articles about the militia units that were associated with the RSR.
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Re: Old militia My great Grandfather Edmund Edward Richardso

Postby philarys » Fri Mar 13, 2015 6:10 am

Thank you for that info, I belong to the sussex history group, and I go to the keep in brighton where they have a room ,so I will see what they may have. Also I will try the national archives. Thanks again


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