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Crimean texts

[Transcribed by Megan Stevens]

The Times 11 Dec 1858 p 10


A Royal warrant has recently been issued reorganizing the Commissariat attached to the forces, substituting the following new rules, in pursuance of a report of a committee of officers, recommending alterations in the system existing up to the date of the warrant, the 28th of October last. Those parts of the Treasury regulations of the 1st of March, 1852, which prescribed rules for the admission of officers into the Commissariat Department, and for the employment, promotion, retirement, full-pay, half-pay, retired-pay, designations, relative rank of each officers have been cancelled and in lieu thereof the subjoined rules have been substituted:—

  1. The duties of the Commissariat shall be superintended and directed by an officer of that department with the designation of Commissary-General-in-Chief, acting under orders from our Secretary of State for War.
  2. The ranks of Commissariat officers in our army shall be as follows, viz.:—
    • Commissary-General,
    • Deputy Commissary-General,
    • Assistant Commissary-General,
    • Deputy Assistant Commissary-General, including a probationary class of Acting Deputy Assistant-Commissary-General.
  3. To be eligible for promotion, an officer must have served on full-pay during the following periods, dating from his first entrance into the Probationary Class:
    • A Commissary-General, 13 years, and at least three years thereof as Deputy Commissary-General.
    • A Deputy Commissary-General, 10 years, and at least two years thereof as Assistant Commissary-General.
    • An Assistant Commissary-General, five years.
  4. All first appointments to the Commissariat shall be made from the subalterns of our army, provided a sufficient number of qualified volunteers, duly recommended by their commanding officers, can be procured. Volunteers shall be of not less than two years’ service as commissioned officers, and under 25 years of age; they shall be subjected to an examination; and, if found competent, shall be placed on a list according to their merits, and in their order thereon shall be employed by the Commissary-General-in-Chief, under the authority of our Secretary of State for War, as their services may be required. These volunteers shall be subjected to a probation of six months; with the rank of Acting Deputy Assistant-Commissary-General; at the termination of which period, if found competent, and still willing to serve in the Commissariat, they shall be required to resign their military commissions, and shall be furnished instead with commissions as Deputy Assistant-Commissary-General.
  5. The establishment of the Commissariat shall be fixed from time to time on the same principle as that of our army; and in order to furnish a reasonable preparation for war, it shall be maintained to such an extent as to provide suitable employment in peace for officers, not only in the colonies, but also at the several camps and large military stations at home, according to the ordinary requirements of the service.
  6. In selecting officers for promotion, provision shall be made for the advancement of those who have shown special aptitude for their duties, or have distinguished themselves by zeal and ability in the performance of them; but such selection shall be mainly guided by length of efficient service. The promotions in the Commissariat shall take place, as in other branches of the public service, as vacancies occur.
  7. On reduction of the establishment, the junior officers of the respective ranks shall be the first reduced, and on restoration to full pay the reduced officers who are senior in their rank shall be the first restored, except in cases in which a strict adherence to such rule would be manifestly detrimental to the public service.
  8. In order to obviate the necessity for an undue augmentation of the establishment in time of war, and the consequent inconvenience arising from a large reduction on the termination of hostilities, the Commissariat shall be allowed to avail itself of the temporary assistance that may be afforded by officers drawn from our regular army, or from the half-pay of our army, to be selected under regulations which shall be framed for the purpose by our Secretary of State for War and our Commander-in-Chief, to act in the capacities of Assistant and Deputy-Assistant Commissaries-General. The officers of our army thus placed on the Commissariat staff shall be considered supernumerary in their regiments, retaining their proper places in their respective corps, and participating in regimental promotions as opportunities offer, but they shall be employed exclusively in the duties of the Commissariat and shall not be at liberty to withdraw themselves from those duties, so long as their services may be required, except in cases of promotion to the rank of field officer in their regiments.
  9. The relative rank of the Commissariat officers of our army shall be as follows, viz.:—
    • Commissary-General, as Major-General,
    • Deputy Commissary-General, of five years’ standing, as Colonel,
    • Deputy Commissary-General, under five years’ standing, as Lieutenant-Colonel,
    • Assistant Commissary-General, as Major,
    • Deputy Assistant Commissary-General, as Captain,
    • Acting Deputy-Assistant-Commissary-General, as Lieutenant
    in the army; and their quarters and military allowances, including pensions for wounds, and allowances to their widows and families, shall be regulated accordingly.
  10. The Commissariat shall be allowed to draw subordinates, such as clerks, storekeepers, issuers, butchers, bakers, &c., from the soldiers of our army, to be maintained permanently on the Commissariat establishment, to the necessary extent. These subordinates, when they shall have been detached for a sufficient time on probation, shall be wholly withdrawn from their regiments; but their names shall be retained on the rolls as supernumeraries, in order that they may be sent back to their regiments or depôts in case of misconduct or inefficiency. The individuals thus employed shall be occupied exclusively in the public duties of the department, and shall be appropriately clothed, and placed under the charge and direction of the Commissariat officers wherever they may be employed, who shall be answerable for the discipline and regular payment of the men, whose places in their regiments shall be filled up by recruits.
  11. The rates of pay of the different ranks of the department shall be regulated according to the following scale:—
  Commissary General Deputy Com.-General Assistant-Com.-General *Deputy Assistant-Commissary-General Acting Deputy-Assistant-Com.-General
  £. s. d. £. s. d. £. s. d. £. s. d. £. s. d.
   On attaining the rank
3   0 0 1 10 0 0 15 0 0 10 0 *0 7 6
   After five years’ service in last rank 3   0 0 1 10 0 1   0 0 0 12 6 ——
Charge pay —— 0 10 0 0   5 0 0   2 6 ——
Half-pay 1 10 0 0 15 0 0 10 0 0   6 3 ——
Retired pay 2   0 0 1   5 0 0 15 0 0   9 4 ——
Length of full-pay service to give a claim to retirement 30 years 30 years 30 years 30 years ——
Age at which, in the absence of exceptional circumstances, retirement shall be compulsory 65 years 60 years 55 years 55 years ——

* In case of military officers, to be made up, on confirmation, to 10s. a-day, from the date of entering on their probation. A Commissary-General with an army in the field, to receive a special rate of pay, proportionate to the magnitude of his charge.

  1. It shall be competent to our Secretary of State for War to place Commissariat officers on the retired list at the dates specified in the preceding scale, after a meritorious service of 20 years in the department as commissioned officers, including the period of service on probation, if, by reason of mental or bodily infirmity of a permanent nature, to be certified by a medical board, they shall be unfit for further duty; and all officers shall be at liberty to retire after 30 years of such service.
  2. A roster shall be observed at home and foreign service, not to be departed from except in cases of necessity. With respect, however, to the West Coast of Africa, officers are to be allowed to volunteer, receiving such special pecuniary advantages as may be fixed by our Secretary of State for War.

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