<
Home About Sources Topics Background

Crimean texts


Report of the Board of General Officers

This presentation of the report (sometimes referred to as the Chelsea Board, or the "Whitewash" Board)is based on transcripts by Megan Stevens, and includes the page numbers of the original publication in order to maintain the validity of page references. It is arranged in the following sections:-

Title page
and
table of
contents
First
Report
(pp i-xxix)
Second
Report
(pp xxix-xxx)
Preliminary
Meeting
(p xxxi-xxxii)
Minutes
(parts
only)
Appendices
(parts
only)
>
p. xxxi p. xxxii

[Page xxxi of the Report]

AT A

PRELIMINARY MEETING OF THE GENERAL OFFICERS

APPOINTED TO FORM THE

Board of Inquiry, under the Provisions of the Royal Warrant, dated 25th February 1856,

Held at the Judge Advocate General's Office on the 28th March 1856,

FOR THE PURPOSE OF CONSIDERING THE

METHOD OF THEIR PROCEDURE.


WIDTH=25% ALIGN=Center>

The Royal Warrant, and the Letter of the 28th day of February 1856, addressed by Lord Panmure to Viscount Hardinge, were read out.

The General Officers deemed it their duty, in the first instance, to ascertain the precise nature and extent of the duties imposed on them thereby.

For as those documents appeared on the one hand to be the only authority to which they could refer for the discharge of their duties, and on the other to be the only authority to which the parties interested in the inquiry could refer for a knowledge as to their right to appear before the Board, or their position when before it, they considered it to be in the highest degree important, as well for the purposes of justice as of order, that they should have a clear and correct understanding as to the limits of their jurisdiction, with a view to rightly carrying into effect Her Majesty's gracious intentions as signified in the Royal Warrant.

After carefully considering the terms of the Warrant, and in connexion with it the terms of the letter of the 28th day of February 1856, addressed by Lord Panmure to Viscount Hardinge, they were unanimously of opinion that it would be desirable, before they formally commenced their proceedings, to receive authoritative instructions with reference to the following matters, viz.:-

  1. "What parties are to be considered as having a right of locus standi in the Court?"
    1. Whether those officers only whose conduct has been animadverted upon in the reports of the Commissioners, and the evidence taken before them, and who, prior to the first meeting of the Board, shall have demanded a full inquiry into their conduct.
    2. Or whether in addition to the foregoing, any officers whose conduct has been animadverted upon in the said reports and evidence, and who shall, either at any time during the sitting of the Board, or within some definite time to be fixed by the Board at their first meeting, demand such inquiry.
  2. Also, whether any parties, civil as well as military, whose conduct may be animadverted upon in the course of the inquiry, and who may wish to make answer thereto before the Board, are to be deemed to have a right to be heard.
  3. Also, whether with reference to Statute 14th and 15th Victoria, cap. 99, section 16, -
    "Every Court, Judge, Justice, Officer, Commissioner, Arbitrator, or other person, now or hereafter having, by law or by consent of parties, authority to hear, receive, and examine evidence, is hereby empowered to administer an oath to all such witnesses as are legally called before them respectively," the evidence taken before the Board was to be upon oath.

The Judge Advocate General was requested by the General Officers to take the requisite steps to procure authoritative instructions for the guidance of the Board, with reference to the several matters above set forth.

[Page xxxii of the Report]

On the 29th March 1856, the foregoing minute was transmitted by the Judge Advocate General to Lord Panmure:-

On the 31st March 1856, it was notified to the Judge Advocate General by Lord Panmure with reference to the several matters as to which the General Officers requested to be advised, that -

  1. "The Cabinet are of opinion that the Board of General Officers are bound to hear, in the first instance, all the officers to whose conduct reference is made in the Report of the Commissioners, and who apply to be heard in defence or explanation:" that -
  2. "Any parties whose conduct may be impugned in the course of the inquiry must be heard in justification:" that -
  3. "The Lord Chancellor is clearly of opinion that the 16th section of Statute 14th & 15th Victoria, cap. 99, is inapplicable to this Board, and that it has no power to take evidence on oath, and that no such power can be conferred upon it except by a special Act of Parliament."

p. xxxi p. xxxii
Title page
and
table of
contents
First
Report
(pp i-xxix)
Second
Report
(pp xxix-xxx)
Preliminary
Meeting
(p xxxi-xxxii)
Minutes
(parts
only)
Appendices
(parts
only)
Analysis
of Index
(not
available)

Home About Sources Topics Background
/n