This section is for anyone who has a query about an individual soldier or sailor who saw all or part of their service within the Victorian era as covered by the forum (1837-1902).
When asking a question, it would be helpful if you could include as much information as you already have (in brief, no essays please) so that time is not wasted uncovering details you already know. Start with just two or three specific questions to begin with, if you can. Names and dates are always important starting points!
With a diverse range of interests within the Victorian Wars Forum, and a variety of resources available to our different members, hopefully someone can help you with your query - or you may have an answer for someone yourself.
Please remember that sometimes quite a lot of time can be spent searching for even a simple detail - so be patient. If you think your query may have been overlooked, you're welcome to bump your thread every now and then - new members may have joined with different expertise and/or resources. And do please remember to say a little 'thank you', even if helpers have looked and found nothing - they may still have spent the best part of an afternoon straining their eyes looking through a hand-written medal roll!
As a final tip - once you've posted your query it might be a good idea to subscribe to the topic (tick box at the bottom of the page). It often happens that someone comes along many months later with an answer, or is a distant relative with new information, and you may have forgotten you posted the query by then. Subscribing to the topic will make sure you get an email notification whenever someone replies.Research: useful links:Link: How to obtain a soldier's service record
The easiest starting point for records of a soldier's career is the incomplete collection of Soldiers' Documents (attestation and discharge papers) in WO 97. They cover discharges from the army for the period 1760 to 1913, and are often an excellent source, providing place of birth, age on enlistment, details of appearance and, from 1883 next of kin. For officers have a look here
: As of March 2010 these have started to go up online at the Find My Past website
. You can search the index for free but there is a charge to view the actual scanned documents.Link: Muster Rolls
Muster rolls and pay lists give the enlistment date, movements and discharge date of all soldiers in the British Army. They can be used to trace the service of soldiers who were not discharged to pension. However, to trace a man's movements by way of the musters, you do have to know his regiment.Links updated 19 May 2011.