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McNeill/Tulloch Commission of Enquiry

This presentation 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:-


Evidence, page 99

TWENTY-NINTH DAY. - Monday, 23rd April.

Evidence, page 100

HENRY BARTLETT, Commissariat Officer in charge of the 4th Division, examined.

Has been in charge of that division ever since it landed in the Crimea. When the division landed at Old Fort they had no bat animals whatever. Is not aware of the fact, that the hospital panniers of any regiment of the division were not carried by commissariat transport.

Since the 14th November, the rations of the division have been short on several occasions. This arose in consequence of the impossibility, in the then state of the roads, of conveying a sufficient quantity of provisions from Balaklava to the camp. Believes that the first short issue was on the 15th November, and the last on the 22nd January. To the best of his knowledge and recollection the division sent fatigue parties to Balaklava to bring up rations only on two occasions. Is of opinion, that if a sufficient depôt had been formed at head quarters it would have been possible to have supplied the men at all times with full rations; that is to say, that with the same transport double the weight could have been brought from head quarters that could be brought from Balaklava. The deficiency in the rations issued to the men was principally in meat. Produces statements of rations issued to the 4th Division between the 1st and 31st December, 1854, and between the 1st and 26th January, 1855. Had the regiments of the division been supplied with the number of pack animals laid down in the Queen's Regulations no deficiency in the rations issued to the men could have occurred notwithstanding that the provisions had to be brought from Balaklava. One of the difficulties he encountered in supplying the division was the composition of the corps of drivers, consisting of various nations, Turks, Greeks, Maltese, Spaniards, and others, who were not under sufficient control. There was, in consequence, great difficulty and delay in getting them to move in the morning, which could only be effected by great personal exertion. There were frequent desertions; as many as 36 Turks went off at one time. The animals were not properly attended to, and frequently ill used on the road. Is of opinion, that it is essential to the efficiency of the Commissariat Department, that the men employed in the various duties requiring manual labour, or as issuers, should be enlisted men, amenable to military discipline. Believes that if the drivers had been composed of persons of this class even the limited transport at the command of the commissariat would have sufficed to supply full rations to the men at all times; by rations, he means the food rations

Evidence, page 101

of the men. Compressed vegetables were issued to the division on the 2nd April, 1855. One ration of bread, presented by the French, was issued to the troops on the 16th October, 1854; and during this month there have been issues of soft bread on the 10th, 15th, 22nd, 25th, and 29th. Yesterday commenced to issue fuel in the division. Will furnish a copy of the general order, directing the issue of fuel as a ration,[1] and will furnish the date from which fuel has been issued in camp to the hospital.[2] From the date of the general order until yesterday, with the exception of the hospitals, fuel has been issued at Balaklava on checks given by the brigade officers, but transport was not provided. Will also furnish the dates of the general orders for the stoppage and re-issue of rice.[3]


JOHN BARLEE, Commissariat Officer attached to the 4th Division, examined.

Having heard the evidence given by Mr. Bartlett, concurs in it entirely. Desires to state, that the forage and fuel for the staff officers has been issued in the division since the 20th March, 1855, and that for the artillery since the 19th of April, 1855.


Footnotes

 
[1] GENERAL ORDER.

Head Quarters before Sebastopol, December 16, 1854.

At the recommendation of a Board of Officers assembled to consider the subject, the Commander of the Forces directs that fuel shall be issued to the troops in the Crimea on the following scale:-

 Rations. Rations.
General Officers40Inspector-General of Hospitals28
Colonel on the Staff28Deputy ditto16
Adjutant or Quartermaster-General40Staff Surgeon, 1st class16
Deputy ditto16", 2nd class8
Assistant ditto12Apothecary8
Deputy Assistant ditto8Staff Assistant Surgeon8
Military Secretary16Purveyor8
Provost Marshal8Medical Clerk6
Commissary-General40Dispenser of Medicines6
Deputy ditto16Other Clerks4
Assistant ditto10Commissariat Storekeepers, &c.4
Deputy Assistant ditto8Muleteers and labourers1
Treasury Clerk8Servants not soldiers1

Cavalry, Royal Artillery, and Infantry.

 Rations.
Field Officers16
Other Officers8
Staff Serjeant
Non-commissioned officers and rank and file

Ration of fuel, 3 lbs. of wood, or ¾lb. of charcoal.

 
[2] Fuel issued to hospitals from the 14th [?] January, 1855, inclusive.

 
[3] General Order stopping the issue of [?] rice, 15th November, 1854; ditto, resuming the issues 27th December, 1854.



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