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28th Foot 1802 - 1807


EXPEDITIONS TO THE NORTH OF GERMANY, COPENHAGEN, AND GOTTENBURG

1802. On Christmas-day the 28th regiment arrived at Portsmouth harbour, on their return from Egypt, and disembarked from the frigates Druid, Winchelsea, and Blonde. They marched to Winchester and then onto Hilsea. In the Spring of 1803 they marched to Plymouth where the 2nd Battalion was formed. Late in 1803 both Battalions moved to Ireland and brigaded with the 28th Tipperary Militia at Kilady, near Corke. (The Militia styled themselves the 'Third Battalion' and some men joined the 28th Foot.) They then moved to Fermoy. In 1805 the 1st Battalion moved to Mallow, the 2nd to Dublin.

The 1/28th were chosen to join the expedition to Germany. Landing at Broomila, they marched to Bremen where they stayed for 6 weeks with no action. In Spring 1806 they sailed to England and moved to Colchester with the 1/4th, 1/23rd, and 1/95th regiments.

24th July 1807 the 1/28th Foot left Colchester and sailed from Harwich. On the 8th August the ships were off Elsinore, Denmark. On the 15th they sailed for Copenhagen and landed at the village of Wibeck on the 16th. The next morning they marched towards Friedericksburg with the brigade of Guards. When a Danish Royal carriage was seen coming along the road the Guards wheeled into line, opened ranks and presented arms, the band playing 'God Save The King'.

The British force camped around Copenhagen and set up mortar positions to shell the town. This began on 1st September. On the 7th the city surrendered. The British army had been sent to capture the Danish fleet and the warships were made ready to sail.

"The sight was truly awful; 305 houses were burnt to the ground, and one church. The devestation and melancholy that reigned in that unfortunate city, it would require a abler pen than that of a soldier to describe ..... many were the brave hearts in the British army that deeply sympathized with the sufferers, and would have come forward to their assistance with that liberality for which they are so proverbial: but the Danes are a proud - a fine people, and bore their misfortune without a murmur."

15th October the 1/28th left Zealand and embarked on the Hercules, Waldamaar, and Odin. They arrived at Portsmouth on the 21st November and marched to Colchester.

24th April 1808 the 1/28th embarked at Harwich and sailed to Yarmouth. On 10th May they sailed to Gottenburg, Sweden, arriving on the 17th. With the British fleet anchored off-shore, many Swedes came down to watch and listen to the regimental bands. On the 26th June Sir John Moore arrived from Stockholm and the whole fleet returned to England!

On 24th July the Order arrived to cut off the queues (the white 'pony-tails' that men had to wear). They were all cut off and 'by a signal, the whole were thrown overboard, with three cheers.'



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