QUINN Michael

In 1678, Charles Erskine, Earl of Mar, raised the regiment to help put down unrest within the Presbyterian (Covenanter) Scots churchmen. In 1688, as a fusilier regiment, it moved from the Scottish to the English establishment and was named for its various Colonel’s names. In 1707 the regiment was named the North British Fuzileers, not popular within the Regiment since it was bestowed in honour of the Union of England and Scotland.

The regiment maintained its ‘North British’ name in various forms throughout the 18th and early 19th century, fighting against the Jacobite rebellion including Culloden; engaging in the Seven Years War, the American War of Independence and the Napoleonic Wars.

The 21st (Royal North British Fuzileers) Regiment first arrived in Australia in 1832 to 1833 as guards on board convict ships to New South Wales and Van Diemen’s Land. The regiment’s HQ was established in Hobart but soon a detachment was sent to the Swan River Colony to relieve the 63rd Regiment’s detachment which had arrived with Captain James Stirling some four years earlier. Most of the troops arrived on Jane in September 1833, but others arrived on Caroline (February 1835) and Sir John Rae Reid (July 1835). Most left the Colony on Runnymede in July 1840 to serve in India.

The troops of the 21st Regiment detachment bore the brunt of the clash of cultures between the settlers and the aborigines. Two corporals and eight privates were thought to have been present at the Battle of Pinjarra; three troops were killed by natives in other incidents in Beverley, Murray River and Upper Swan.

A total of 152 officers and men served in Western Australia between 1833 and 1840 and 21 of them took their discharge and settled there. One of them was this man featured on the right. Nineteen troops died while serving in the Colony.

It was not until 1877 that the regiment received a title befitting its origins when it became the 21st (Royal Scots Fusliers) Regiment of Foot.

The Colours of the 21st Regiment


NAME: Michael QUINNName variations: Quin, Quinne, Queen
Birth Date and Place4 May 1807 Parish of St John’s, City of Limerick, Ireland [WO131-0030-10 Royal Hospital Chelsea Deferred Pensions].
Baptism Date and Place4 May 1807 St John Parish Church, Limerick, Ireland [H V Fathers via Rob Garton Smith].
Marriage Date and Place20 Aug 1829 Wexford, Ireland [ditto above].
SpouseMargaret BRYAN/O’BRIEN [ditto above].
ChildrenSarah b.1831 Ireland – twin d. 1831 [ditto above].
Ellen b.1831 Ireland – twin d. 1832 [ditto above].
Peter b.1832 Ireland [ditto above].
Michael John b.1833 Chatham Barracks, Kent, England [ditto above].
Bridget Margaret bp.1834 Hobart, Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania) [RC Church, Hobart Reg.#5625].
William b.1835 Perth, Western Australia – not verified [BLKB p.133].
Ellen b.1836 Perth, Western Australia [Colonial Chaplain’s Reg.#81].
James b.1837 Perth, Western Australia – not verified [BLKB p.133].
OccupationsNailor [WO131 ditto].
Carter [Inquirer Jan 1841].
Blacksmith at Beverley [BLKB p.132].
Farmer [Beverley Historical Society].
Sandalwood Cutter [Perth Gazette 5 Jan 1866].
Land Acquisition in WA1855 10 acres of land in Avon District – not verified [BLKB p.132].
‘Yinedine’ Dale River 30 kms West of Beverley in Dec 1856- Jan1857 [Beverley Historical Society and newspaper advertisements].
Death Date and Place7 Sep 1876 Perth, Western Australia – discrepancy of age at death [WABDM Reg. #9040].
Burial Date and PlaceSeptember 1876 East Perth Cemetery, Western Australia – not verified, grave unknown [EPCEM].
Death, Funeral, Obituary NoticesNone.
Will and ProbateNone.


Regiment21st (Royal North British Fuzileers) Regiment.
Soldier No. and Rank#365 Private.
Enlistment Date and Place
Attestation Date and Place
1 May 1825 Town of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland [WO131-0030-10 Royal Hospital Chelsea Deferred Pensions].
4 May 1825 Limerick, Ireland. Aged 18. Received the sum of half-a-Crown British [ditto].
Physical DescriptionHeight: 5 ft. 5½ ins. Complexion: sallow/fair. Eyes: blue. Hair: brown. [WO131 ditto].
PromotionsPrivate to Drummer 25 Jul 1826 [WO131 ditto].
Medals, Clasps and BadgesTwo Good Conduct Badges with pay 2d. per diem [WO131 ditto].
Casualty/MedicalOpinion of the Principal Medical Officer at Fremantle is that he is free from any complaint likely to affect his life. Approved by Horse Guards 25 Jan 1841 [WO131 ditto].
Arrival Australia: Ship and DateStakesby.  Embarked 5 My 1833 Deptford, London [WO25-3503].
Dep. 22 May 1833 Spithead, Portsmouth. Arr. 14 Sep 1833 Hobart, Van Diemen’s Land [DPS & TROVE].
Arrival Western Australia: Ship and DateCaroline 25 Feb 1835 from Hobart Town and King George’s Sound [TROVE]. See Additional Details.
Military Postings within Western AustraliaPerth HQ from 25 Feb to 12 Aug 1835.
Perth in Custody & Fremantle Goal (Round House) from 13 Aug to 31 Oct 1835.
Perth HQ 1 Nov 1835 to 31 Jul 1840.
[All sourced WO12-3803 TO 3809].
Civil Court in Western Australia13 Aug 1835 tried and sentenced one calendar month,
31 Oct 1835 re-joined as Drummer [WO131 ditto].
See Additional Details below.
Discharge Date and Place31 Jul 1840 Perth, Western Australia [WO12-3809-63, 69]. Free Discharge [WO28-266-1A].
Age at Discharge34 years [WO131 ditto].
Length of Service15 years 14 days [WO131 ditto].
Pension DetailsWill receive Parchment Certificate and Certificate of Registry at the Commandant’s Office.
Gratuity of 12 month’s pay [WO28-266-1A General Order No. 6, April 1842].


On board Caroline were eight soldiers from the 21st Regiment in Hobart; two of them were drummers.  The other drummer, #84 John McLoughlan, drowned at Upper Swan on 31st December 1836.

Perth Gazette 22 Aug 1835

QUARTER SESSIONS – 1st October 1835 [Perth Gazette 3 Oct 1835]
Michael Quin, of H.M. 21st Regt., was charged with stealing some mahogany planks, the property of W. Ward, at Perth, brickmaker. Ward stated that he had missed plank nearly to the extent of 200 feet from his brick kiln yard. On the 13th or 14th of August, he missed one in particular, of 28 feet in length. He had used it in his own yard the day before. He was passing by the prisoner’s house, when he saw a quantity of boards, which appeared to be of the same kind as those he missed. The prisoner was working at them with a hammer. He (the witness) knew them to be his boards, by the marks of the barrow-wheels upon them. 
David Ward, the son of the previous witness, also deposed that he knew the board to be his father’s. Other witnesses identified the plank, and Henry Moore swore that he saw the prisoner walking away from Ward’s brick kiln with a board on his shoulder. The prisoner, in his defence, stated that the boards used for claying the barrack-ground and which Ward claimed, had been lying near his premises for some time, he had taken up in broad daylight, and was at first going to use them as fire-wood.

A certificate was handed in to the bench, from Capt. Armstrong, H. M. 21st Regt., setting forth that the prisoner had been ten years in the regiment, and had always borne the character of a honest and upright man during that time.

Verdict—Guilty—Recommended to mercy. Sentence—One month’s imprisonment and hard labor.