Muster Books and Pay Lists (WO 12/9967): 105th (Volunteers of Ireland) Regiment of Foot: 1782-1784, 1794-1795

Call Number: HIL-MICL FC LMR .G7W3M8V6
Category: Military
Creator: Great Britain. War Office.
Description: 1 microfilm textual records () ; 35 mm
            War Office 12, generated by the Commissary General of Musters Office, comprises the Household troops, the cavalry, Guards and regular infantry regiments of the line; as well as, special regiments or corps, colonial troops and various foreign legions and troops.

During the American Revolution, the muster rolls record the name, rank, military station and pay period of each soldier while they were with the regiment. They were prepared by the commanding officer of each company of a regiment for the purpose of paying the officers and soldiers. During a muster, each man was physically checked against his name on the roll and a note was made if their circumstances had changed since the last muster, for example, on duty, recruiting, sick, furlough, deserted, transferred or died. In addition, notes related to officers include promoted, absent, and resigned. Pay lists record rate of pay.

Four regiments have been numbered the 105th. The second was the Volunteers of Ireland which was created by Sir Henry Clinton by order May 25, 1778, recruited in New York and Philadelphia, and headed by a well-known Irishman, Colonel Francis Lord Rawdon, formerly, a Captain in the 63rd Regiment of Foot. Major John Doyle, late of the 40th Regiment of Foot and his brother, Lieutenant Colonel Welbore Ellis Doyle, late of the 55th Regiment of Foot also joined them at their initial station at New York. It received additional recruits from the Roman Catholic Volunteers.

Some of its participation in the American War for Independence involved the following: Battle of Monmouth Courthouse, New Jersey (June 1778); Mathew-Collier Raid at Portsmouth, Virginia (May 1779); Occupation of Stony Point, up the Hudson River; Siege on Charleston, South Carolina (April 1780); with General Cornwallis at the Battle of Camden (Aug 16, 1780); under Lord Rawdon, helped win at Hobkirk's Hill, South Carolina (April 25, 1781); fought under Lt. Col. Stewart at Eutaw Springs (September 1781); and was posted in Charleston until they sailed for Ireland in August 1782.

May 1779, the Volunteers were placed on the American Establishment as the Second American Regiment. This meant its officers were automatically entitled to half pay and permanent rank in America upon reduction of the corps. August 1782 they were placed on the British Establishment as the 105th (Volunteers of Ireland) Regiment of Foot. April 1783, officers began returning to Ireland and the men were transferred to other provincial units serving in Charleston. The 105th was disbanded in Britain on January 1784.

Gordon Forbes, late Lieutenant Colonel of the 74th Regiment of Foot, was appointed Colonel of the 105th (Leeds Volunteers) Regiment of Foot when it was raised on the 18th of April, 1794. It was broken up the next year, the men being drafted into other regiments, and the officers placed on temporary half pay.

            The seven musters of the 105th (King's Irish) have not been filmed in strict chronological order. Items appear in the same order as they do in the electronic finding aid linked below. The pay periods range from the fall of 1782 until January 31, 1784. The earliest muster roll includes the date it was signed, 1 Oct.1782, but not the range of the pay period. This muster and the next muster signed Jan. 26, 1783 have the notation "coming from America" next to most of the officers' names and Killough as the location signed.  Thereafter the companies are in northern Ireland, either at Killough or Belfast; the last muster, covering 31 days of January 1784, is signed at Down Patrick.  The Captains on the earliest muster in 1782 include: John Wilson, Henry Munro, William Blacker, James King, John McMahon, Charles Vallancy, and Charles McDonnell.

The four musters available for the 105th (Leeds Volunteers) are full musters, (instead of one muster for each company), and include the following pay periods:

  • 25 June to 16 October 1794
  • 17 October to 31 March 1795
  • 1 April to 1 August 1795
  • 18 April to 24 June 1794

The officers listed on the earliest muster, aside from Forbes, include: Lieutenant Colonel Coote Manningham, Major William Cockill, Captains J G Gray, George Evans, Richard Gordon Forbes, Joseph Dover, John Whitwell and George Bruce.

Originals: The original records are held by The National Archives, Public Record Office, Kew.
Archival Ref. No.: TNA: PRO WO 12/9967
Finding Aids:
            An electronic finding aid (linked below) provides the commander, payroll start, payroll end, company captain, former captain (if applicable), place, date, and notes, for each muster. This finding aid lists the musters in the order in which they appear on the film. Musters have not been filmed chronologically.             
Electronic Finding Aid Record: Volunteers of Ireland Muster Books and Pay Lists.pdf
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