From 1761 to 1818, five regiments of foot with the numeral 99 had been raised and disbanded. A sixth was raised in 1824 in Glasgow which in 1832, while serving in Mauritius and Seychelles, was formally granted its name 99th (Lanarkshire) Regiment. In 1874, it became 99th (Duke of Edinburgh’s) Regiment.
The 99th was stationed in Ireland for five years, before being detailed to escort convicts to Australia in 1842. It remained in Australia until 1856, but also sent two companies to New Zealand during the Flagstaff War (or First Māori War) in 1845-46.
In 1850 a monument was erected in Hobart to commemorate twenty four men of the Regiment who were killed on active service in the New Zealand Māori Wars of 1845-46. The monument is unique as it was the first war memorial to be erected in Australia and also the only memorial to be erected by a British Regiment serving in Australia.
In 1849 a Company of the 99th arrived in Western Australia, and in 1856 joined with the regiment from Hobart to return to England. When it sailed for home, over 400 of its men stayed behind in Australia to transfer to other units. The man profiled (right) is one of them.
|NAME: Richard DONOVAN||Name variations: Donovon|
|Birth Date and Place||c. 1819 Ireland – not verified.|
|Baptism Date and Place|
|Marriage Date and Place||2 Jan 1846 Parish of St Philip, Sydney NSW [NSWBDM Reg. #1846616 31C].|
|Spouse||Mary ROACH/ROCHE (widow of James Westwood).|
|Children||Maria b. 1839 d. 1854 daughter of James Westwood died aged 15 [VICBDM Reg. #4120]. See Additional Details.|
Margaret b.1847, Sydney, New South Wales [NSWBDM Reg. #V184787 32A].
Catherine b.1849, Albany, Western Australia [WABDM Reg. #19151].
Richard b.1851, Albany, Western Australia [WABDM Reg. #1706].
Thomas b.1853 Prahran, Victoria [VICBDM Reg. #849].
William b.1856, Victoria [VICBDM Reg. #11472].
|Occupations||Shoemaker [VICBDM Reg. #1322].|
Soldier and Convict Guard.
Assistant Warder, Convict Establishment WA [BARK p.55].
Policeman, Richmond etc., Victoria (1853-1862) – not verified.
|Land Acquisition in WA||Town Lot (1850) – not verified [ERICK p.867].|
|Death Date and Place||15 Dec 1862 Melbourne Hospital, Victoria [VICBDM Reg. #1322].|
Cause of Death: Laryngitis. Delirium Tremens.
|Burial Date and Place||17 Dec 1862 Melbourne General Cemetery, Carlton, Victoria [VICBDM Reg. #1322].|
Section: Church of England [findagrave].
|Death, Funeral, Obituary Notices||None.|
|Will and Probate||None.|
|Regiment||99th (Lanarkshire) Regiment.|
|Soldier No. and Rank||#1296. Sergeant.|
|Enlistment Date and Place||Before 1841.|
|Arrival Australia: Ship and Date||Richard Webb. Embarked 13 Oct 1841 Deptford; dep. 15 Oct 1841.|
Arr. 1 Nov 1841 Kingston, Dublin; dep. 15 Nov 1841.
Arr. 4 Mar 1842 Hobart VDL; dep. 15 Mar 1842.
Arr. 22 Mar 1842 Port Philip, NSW [ADM101-64-1 & TROVE]
|Arrival Western Australia: Ship and Date||Ratcliffe 7 Apr 1847 from Hobart, VDL via Adelaide, SA [TROVE].|
|Military Postings within Western Australia||Albany 7 Apr 1847 to 31 Oct 1851 [WO12-9813-4 to 9817-36]|
Perth HQ 1 Nov 1851 to 30 Apr 1852 inc. 2 days in hospital [WO12-9817-66 to 124].
Fremantle 1 May to 31 May 1852 [WO12-9817-124].
Perth HQ 1 Jun to 31 Jul 1852 inc. discharge [WO12-9817-124 to 153].
|Courts Martial in Western Australia||None.|
|Discharge Date and Place||31 Jul 1852 Perth, Western Australia [WO12-9817-153].|
Discharged at his own request receiving a gratuity of six months pay – £16 14s. 7d. [WO28-266-168].
|Age at Discharge||c. 33 years,|
|Length of Service||Unknown|
Richard Donovan arrived in Australia with the rank of Private, but at some point during his service in the eastern states, he would have been promoted to Corporal and then Sergeant.
In May 1845, two Flank Companies of the 99th, left Sydney and arrived at the Bay of Islands via Auckland, early in June 1845. The 99th Regiment took part in the attack on the Ohaeawai Pa 1 July 1846 and in 1847 in the Wellington area [Ellott:9]. There is no indication that Donovan served in the New Zealand wars. However, exhaustive research into the War Office Musters and Pay Lists would be required to establish his postings between March 1842 and his arrival in Western Australia seven years later at the age of 30.
It is likely that Maria Westwood, daughter of James and Mary, came to Western Australia. When Richard Donovan received his appointment with the Convict Establishment in WA as an Assistant Warder in 1852, he and his wife Mary apparently had a family of six per this entry [Barker:55].
80th – 96th – 99th Regiments in New Zealand by Gerald J Ellott, 2017.
Warders and Gaolers: A Dictionary of Western Australian Prison Officers 1829-1879, David J. Barker 2000.