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.
|NAME James FATTUS||Name variations: Fettes. Fattis, Fittes|
|Birth Date and Place||c. 1820 – deduced [WO12-9804-134].|
|Baptism Date and Place|
|Marriage Date and Place|
|Occupations||Warder 1852-1853 (as Fattus) [BARK p.69].|
Policeman 1853-1857 (as Fettes) [BENT pp.40, 46, 56].
Policeman 22 Jun 1854 (as Fettes) [PASH].
Mounted Policeman 1857 (as Fetter) [ERIC p.1042].
|Land Acquisition in WA||None.|
|Death Date and Place||22 Aug 1889 Mount Eliza Invalid Depot, Perth, Western Australia (as Fittes) [WABDM Reg.#398].|
Cause of Death: Chronic dyspepsia (as Fittes) [Daily News].
|Burial Date and Place||24 Aug 1889 East Perth Cemetery, Western Australia.|
|Death, Funeral, Obituary Notices||Daily News 23 Aug 1889.|
|Will and Probate||None.|
|Regiment||99th (Lanarkshire) Regiment.|
|Soldier No. and Rank||#1643 Private.|
|Enlistment Date and Place||8 Oct 1841 Lisburn District [WO12-9804-134].|
Age 21 years. Bounty paid to recruit £3 5s. 0d.
|Physical Description||Height: 5 ft. 7¾ ins.|
|Medals, Clasps and Badges||Good Conduct Badge 1d. per diem from 1Mar 1851 [WO12-9817-9].|
|Arrival Australia State: Ship and Date||John Renwick. Dep. 4 Nov 1842 Deptford, London [London Evening Standard].|
Dep. 6-7 Dec 1842 Portsmouth & Spithead; Arr. 10 Apr 1843 Hobart, VDL [DPS, TROVE].
North Briton. Dep. 15 Apr 1843 Hobart, VDL; Arr. 20 Apr 1843 Sydney [WO12-9806].
|Arrival Western Australia: Ship and Date||Ratcliffe 7 Apr 1849 from Hobart via South Australia [TROVE].|
|Military Postings within Western Australia||Perth HQ 7 Apr to 31 Oct 1849, inc. July, Oct On Guard, and Sep On Command.|
Champion Bay 1 Nov 1849 to 31 Jan 1850.
Perth HQ 1 Feb to 30 Jun 1850.
Fremantle 1 Jul to 31 Oct 1850.
Perth HQ 1 Nov 1850 to 30 1852, inc. On Guard Aug, Nov 1851, and Jan 1852.
[All sourced from WO12-9813 TO 9817].
|Courts Martial in Western Australia||None.|
|Discharge Date and Place||30 Jun 1852 Perth, Western Australia – at his own request [WO12-9817-137].|
|Age at Discharge||c. 32 years [deduced].|
|Length of Service||10 years 8 months 22 days [deduced].|
This soldier is difficult to identify in records because of the variants in the spelling of his surname. This is particularly so in his death and burial records.
He is recorded in the Surgeon Superintendent’s Journal on board John Renwick; in the Sick Book and Case No. 2 (as Fattis) where the treatment of catarrh is described from 16 Nov to 2 Dec 1842 after which he is returned to duty [ADM101-39-4 folio 4].
His involvement (as Fattus) in an accidental shooting while employed as a Warder Overseer in a convict road party is reported in the Inquirer, Wednesday 23 February 1853, page 2.
A fearful accident occurred on Monday at the Canning. It appears that at half-past 6 a.m., the men belonging to the road-party were about to proceed to work, when the overseer, formerly a soldier of the 99th Regiment [James Fattus], but who had obtained his discharge, went to the stand of arms in the hut to procure his musket, and, in pulling it out, the hammer, which was down on the nipple, instead of being half cock, caught in the fold of a great coat placed over the arms to preserve them from the damp, caused it to descend upon the cap and discharged the piece, the contents entering the neck of a soldier of the 99th Regiment [Private George Phillips], who was taking his breakfast outside the tent, and causing instantaneous death. The Assistant Police Magistrate, Mr. Symmonds, proceeded to the spot early in the day to investigate the matter. Colonel Reeves also attended to watch the proceedings.