HORNBY Michael

In 1755 the 51st Regiment of Foot was renumbered (from the 53rd). It received a county designation in 1782, as the 51st (2nd Yorkshire, West Riding) Regiment of Foot. In 1821 the regiment received royal status, becoming the 51st (2nd Yorkshire, West Riding, The King’s Own Light Infantry) Regiment.

During the early 19th century the regiment served in the Napoleonic and Peninsular campaigns and served at Waterloo in 1815.

Between August and December 1837, six convict ships left Britain with 51st Regiment guards on board bound for New South Wales and Van Diemen’s Land. The regiment continued to arrive in Australia as convict guards, and in larger numbers on troopships, during the decade that followed. Some of these ships are profiled on the Ships page. Arguably the most famous of the journeys made by 30 officers and men was on the ship Buffalo. That story can be read on the Anecdotes page.

In June 1840, a detachment of 145 officers and men arrived in Western Australia on Runnymede from Hobart; a further 46 men arrived on Eudora and Champion between 1841 and 1844. Thirty three 51st men took their discharge and settled in Western Australia; one of them was this man featured on the right.

The 51st in Australia left Hobart for India on Java in 1847. Its last port of call was on 15th March 1847 when the balance of the detachment in WA boarded Java on her way to Calcutta.

51st Regiment at Waterloo
Name: Michael HORNBYName variations: Hornsby
Birth Date and Placec. 1805 Leytham, Preston, Lancashire, England [WO97-1040-74]. See Additional Details (below) No. 1.
Baptism Date and Place
Marriage Date and Place12 May 1849 Perth, Western Australia [WABDM Reg. 268].
SpouseRachel BURROWS (Rachael Barrows). See Additional Details (below) No. 2.
ChildrenMary Ellen b.1851 Henley Park, Guildford, Western Australia [WABDM Reg. 1742].
OccupationsLabourer prior to 1827.
Farmer, Henley Park, Guildford, Western Australia [ERIC p.1532]
Land Acquisition in WA
Death Date and Place5 Oct 1881 Perth, Western Australia.
Cause of Death: Senile Decay [EPCem].
Burial Date and PlaceOctober 1881 East Perth Cemetery, Western Australia [EPCem].
Death, Funeral, Obituary NoticesInquirer & Commercial News 12 Oct 1881.
Victorian Express Geraldton 19 Oct 1881.
Will and ProbateNone.
Regiment51st (2nd Yorkshire West Riding) The Kings Own Light Infantry Regiment. 1 Apr 1847 transferred to
96th Regiment of Foot. 1st May 1849 attached to
99th Regiment (Lanarkshire) Regiment.
Soldier No. and Rank#664 Private (51st).
#2018 Private (96th).
Attestation Date and Place30 May 1827 Liverpool, Lancashire [WO97-1040-74].
Physical DescriptionHeight: 5 ft. 6 ins. Complexion: fresh.  Eyes: blue. Hair: dark brown.
Service/CampaignsAustralasia 9½ years.
PromotionsPrivate to Corporal 23 Aug 1834.
Corporal to Private 10 Apr 1835.
Medals, Clasps and BadgesGood Conduct Badge and pay 1d. per diem prior to arrival in Australia – 51st Regiment.
Good Conduct Badge and pay 2d. per diem from 1 Apr 1841 – 51st Regiment [WO12-6203-184].
Good Conduct Badge and pay 3d. per diem from 1 Jan 1846 – 51st Regiment  [WO12-6208-102].
Good Conduct Badge and pay 4d. per diem from 31 May 1847 – 96th Regiment [WO12-9622-11].
Arrival Australia State: Ship and DateMarquis of Hastings.  Embarked 28 Feb 1839. Paid in advance to 7 Jul 1839 [WO12-6200-555].
Arr. 23 Jul 1839 Hobart, VDL; dep. 6 March Woolwich, then 17 Mar 1839 Portsmouth [TROVE & BNA].
It was noted that he joined from England on prison ship ‘Marquis of Hastings’ on 24 July 1839. [WO12-6201-83].
Arrival Western Australia: Ship and DateRunnymede 25 Jun 1840 from Hobart [TROVE].
Military Postings within Western AustraliaPinjarrah June 1840 to October 1841.
Ellens Brook November 1841 to March 1842.
Perth HQ (Apr); On Command (May); King Georges Sound (Jun); Hospital (Jul) 1842.
Ellens Brook August to December 1842.
Dale (Jan); Ellens Brook (Feb & Mar) 1843.
Major’s Orderly (Frederick C Irwin) April to August; Perth HQ (Sep) 1843.
Commandant’s Orderly (Frederick C Irwin) October 1843 to December 1844.
Perth HQ January to March 1845.
Commandant’s Orderly April to October 1845.
Perth HQ (Nov); On Command (Dec) 1845; On Command (Jan) ; Garrison Duty (Feb); Perth HQ (Mar) 1846.
Garrison Duty & Perth HQ April 1846 to March 1847.
Transfer from 51st to 96th Regiment 1 Apr 1847.
Perth HQ April 1847 to January 1848.  Commandant’s Orderly February 1848.
Perth HQ March to December 1848 including Sick in Quarters (May).
Commandant’s Orderly January to March 1849.
[All sourcing from WO12-6202 TO 6208 for 51st Regiment and WO12-9622 for 96th Regiment].
Courts Martial in Western AustraliaNone.
Discharge Date and Place27 Apr 1849 Perth, Western Australia – Conditional [WO28-266-97].
01 May 1849 Perth, Western Australia – while attached to 99th Regiment [WO12-9813-9].
Age at Discharge44 years.
Length of Service23 years 11 months [WO23-150].
Admission to Pension11 Mar 1851 Perth, Western Australia – after examination [WO23-150].
Chelsea Pension ReferenceWO97-1040-74.
Pension DistrictPerth, Western Australia.
Pension Amount10d. per diem. See Additional Details (below) No. 3.


No. 1  I cannot locate the parish of Leytham in Lancashire.  It may be a variation of Lytham (St Anne’s).
No. 2  Rachel Burrows was companion to Elizabeth Stirling, Governor Stirling’s wife.  It is possible that Michael Hornby and Rachel Burrows met whilst he was serving as the Commandant’s Orderly, as they may have mixed in the same social circles.
No. 3  See image below [WO12-9813-63a]