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Is this a Marine unform?

Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1351770415000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1351773339000
Please can you help.

Does anyone recognise the following uniforms.

1) I believe the first is a Marine.

2) I'm not sure what type of uniform this is... maybe Militia.


Re: Is this a Marine unform? RAWKINs

Posted: 1351771040000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1351773695000
Surnames: RAWKINs
I think I should give more information re my message.

I believe they are father and son.
Both named Samuel RAWKINs.
Father was born c. 1805 in Wiltshire and his son was born in Devon. They both died in Devonshire.

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1351955965000
Classification: Query
They're both definitely british uniforms. The first I can't even hazard a guess. The second with the cross belt looks like some type of rifles regiment. Hopefully one of the experts on all things British military, like JeffH01, will weigh in with an opinion.

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352027689000
Classification: Query
Thank you for your reply.

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352061266000
Classification: Query
The more I look at the first photo, the more I think it's a Marine uniform from somewhere around the 1860's. The badge on the shako on the table, what looks lie globes embroidered on the epaulettes, and the cuff embroidery.
I still can't see the insignia on the belt and patrol jacket in the secong figure clearly enought to make an accurate guess. Here's aanother website that does a very good job with photos like these,

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352156947000
Classification: Query
Thank you. I believe this picture might be a photo of James HAMBLY (on L/S of photo)and his 'best man'.

He has been difficult to track down, but I found him in the following census:

1871 Census
Vessel: Bristol, Of Anchor in Funchal Bay,Island of Madeira
Hambly, James, Private, M, age 26, occupation, RMLI, Pinhoe Devon.

1881 British Census
Institution: "Cavalry Barracks" Walmer Kent Census Place: Walmer, Kent, England

James Hambly, age 35 years, born Exeter, Devon, England.
Occupation: Private RMLI (he is with his family).

In the Description Book(ADM 158):
He was 'discharged dead' 1st Sep 1884 bound for Egypt. He was on board HMS HUMBER suffering from Enteric fever. On his death certificate 'Last place of Abode is given as Suakin'.

Entry in ship's log (ADM 53 / 12111- Public Record Office, Kew):

2.30pm Departed this life James Hambly, Acting Armourer Sergeant RMLI.

5.30pm Committed to the deep the body of James Hambly.

In the records for Marine Deaths - HAMBLY is spelt HAMBLEY.

Under the 'Old Establishment' he was a Recruit.

Under the 'New Establishment' he is given a number /39 (was this the Marine Company he was assigned?)

Date of Attestation was: 28 /29 January 1864

Age: 18 1/2
Height: 5 feet 6 3/4 inches
Born: Pinhoe, Exeter, Devon.

Colour of Hair: Dark Brown
Colour of Eyes: Dark Grey
Complexion: Fresh

By Whom Enlisted: Sgt Major Jones
Where Enlisted: Headquarters
Trade: Labourer
Religion: Weslyan

As he signed up in 1864.. the uniform would be in keeping with your date of the 1860's.

Am I correct in thinking that a 'Sea going Marine' wore a different colour uniform to an 'Army Marine'.

Thanks for your help.

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352377183000
Classification: Military
Edited: 1352379929000
To add to ycaso's information.

My own PC is in for repair and data recovery so don't have all my data to hand.

The two sitting are members of the Royal Marines Light Infantry (RMLI), the badge is clearly showing the Globe & Laural surmounted with the Bugle of the Light Infantry.

The cross belt of the soldier in photo 2 is The Inkerman silver whistle and chain worn by all Warrant Officers Class II, Colour Sergeants and Sergeants of all Light Infantry Regiments that include the RMLI & Rifles regiments. As the name suggests, the honour of NCOs wearing an officer's whstle & chain dates back to battle of Inkerman when the 68th Foot (Durham Light Infantry) drove the russians from the field at baynet point and significant losses to officer ranks meant the regiment's NCOs took over the control of the battle.
The badge of the light infantry regiment is always shown on the cross belt and although some look similar and I haven't been able to enhance the picture it looks like it could be a RMLI insignia. Making him a colour sergeant in the RMLI.


Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352378472000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1352378635000
You asked, "Am I correct in thinking that a 'Sea going Marine' wore a different colour uniform to an 'Army Marine".

Simple answer No.

Firstly although in the days before the initial 50 companies of HM Marine Forces were formed in 1755, detachments of army regiments served aboard ships as "marines" the army soldiers and Royal Navy's marines are different branches of the armed services.

In 1855 the Corps of Royal Marines was designated a 'Light Corps' with the title Corps of Royal Marines' Light Infantry (RMLI) and continued to wear the distinctive Red tunic of British Infantry regiments, that had led to the Royal Navy's "blue jackets" (seamen) referring to them as Lobsters. The RMLI was still organised in the RM's original Grand Divisions of Chatham, Plymouth & Portsmouth.

In 1859 a new division was formed at Woolwich, the Royal Marine Artillery. Like the army's Royal Artillery they wore Blue tunics. Not to be confused with the RN's seamen, the RMA became known as the Blue Marines and the RMLI the Red Marines; detachments of both the RMLI & RMA served at sea and on land, hence their motto Per Mare Per Terram (By Sea By Land).

in 1923 the two branches of the RMLI & RMA were merged to become the Corps of Royal Marines.


Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352408535000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1352471685000
Surnames: Rawkins
Hello Jeff,

Thank you. I've re-scanned the picture and hope it is a little clearer.

Would you know what the latest date might be for wearing that uniform. I have a Samuel Rawkins, Royal Marine Pensioner... his wife died in Sep 1850 and it is believe he left the Royal Marines then to look after young children. Would that make sense re the uniform.

I have his son in 1861 (age 27) signing up with the Devonport Dock Yard. I would think he would be two young to be wearing the uniform, even though photos I have of him as an old man seem to indicate it might be him. The likeness is remarkable!

I tried to attach another photo...

Re: Is this a Marine unform?

Posted: 1352414351000
Classification: Query
Hello Jeff,

Here is a picture of the Samuel James Rawkins with wife Sarah and their youngest dau. Minnie born c.1878.

See if you think there is any likeness to the photo of the man with the Inkerman whistle and chain.

I had presumed they were the same individual, but I suppose they could be father and son. The father (Samuel Rawkins) died in 1869 age 63 (as per FreeBMD).

The son (Samuel James Rawkins) died age 79 in 1913.

Many thanks for your help.

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