58th Foot

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page)) >> Armies >> British Army >> 58th Foot

Origin and History

The regiment was raised raised in 1740. For the next seventeen years, the regiment underwent a few name changes.

In December 1755, the regiment was renumbered the “60th Regiment of Foot” under Lieutenant-General Robert Anstruther, and was then known as "Anstruther's Regiment." Sometime in 1756, it was re-designated the “47th Regiment of Foot”. Finally in October 1756, the regiment was again renumbered the “58th Regiment of Foot”, a name that it would retain throughout the Seven Years' War.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:

  • since December 1755: Lieutenant-General Robert Anstruther

Service during the War

In 1758, the regiment was selected for the planned amphibious expedition against the Fortress of Louisbourg. Sailing from Ireland, it arrived at Halifax on May 17. On May 28, the British Fleet departed Halifax. The expedition was under the command of General Amherst. On June 8, when Amherst's Army landed near Louisbourg, the regiment was part of the left brigade under Lawrence. In June and July, the regiment took part in the Siege of Louisbourg which surrendered on July 27.

In 1759, the regiment took part in the amphibious expedition against Québec, being attached to Brigadier-General Monckton's Brigade. On June 27, the army landed on Isle-d'Orléans and were drawn up on the beach near the village of Saint-Laurent. On July 31, the grenadiers of the regiment took part in the failed attack on the shores of Beauport, suffering heavy losses in the fight. Late in the evening of September 12, the regiment formed part of the first 1,700 men who were ordered from the British vessels above Québec into bateaux in preparation for a landing at Anse-au-Foulon. On September 13, most of the regiment took part in the victorious Battle of the Plains of Abraham near Québec. These 8 coys were deployed in the centre, while 2 coys were left to guard the landing place. On September 18, Québec finally surrendered. At the end of October, when Vice-Admiral Saunders left with his fleet for Great Britain, the regiment, whose ranks had been replenished to about 400 men by drafts from the 62nd Foot and 69th Foot, remained as garrison in Québec along with 9 other battalions.

On April 28 1760, at the defeat of Sainte-Foy, the regiment was in Burton's Brigade on the right wing. The same year, it was also involved in the expedition against Montréal, where the surrender of Pierre de Rigaud, Marquis de Vaudreuil's troops on September 12 brought an end to the conquest of Canada.

In 1762, the regiment was part of Burton's Corps sent from North America to assist the British force who had laid Siege to Havana. It arrived in Cuba on June 27 and took part in the siege and capture of Havana, suffering heavy losses from sickness during the following months.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1758 - Source: rf-figuren from a template by Frédéric Aubert
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with a black cockade (left side)
Grenadier British mitre with: a black front embroidered with the King's cypher and a crown over it; a small red front flap with the white horse of Hanover surmounted by the motto "Nec aspera terrent"; red back; a black headband wearing the number 58 in the middle part behind
Neckstock white
Coat brick red lined buff and laced white (unknown pattern for this period, but in 1768 it was white with a central red stripe, our plate illustrates this lace) with 3 white buttonholes under the lapels (same lace as above)
Collar none
Shoulder Straps red fastened with a white button (left shoulder)
Lapels black laced white (same lace as above) with 7 pewter buttons and 6 white buttonholes (same lace as above)
Pockets horizontal pockets with white laces (same lace as above), each with pewter buttons
Cuffs black (slashed in the British pattern) laced white (same lace as above)
Turnbacks buff
Waistcoat brick red laced white (same lace as above)
Breeches brick red
Gaiters white with black buttons
brown, grey or black during campaigns (black after 1759)
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather
Waistbelt natural leather
Cartridge Box black
Bayonet Scabbard black
Scabbard black
Footgear black shoes


Troopers were armed with with a "Brown Bess" muskets, a bayonet and a sword. They also carried a dark brown haversack with a metal canteen on the left hip.

Officers

Officers of the regiment wore the same uniforms as the private soldiers but with the following differences

  • silver gorget around the neck
  • an aiguilette on the right shoulder
  • silver lace instead of normal lace
  • a crimson sash

Officers wore the same headgear as the private soldiers under their command; however, officers of the grenadier company wore a more decorated mitre cap.

Officers generally carried a spontoon, however, in battle some carried muskets instead.

Musicians

According to the Royal Clothing Warrant of 1751:

The drummers of the regiment were clothed in black, lined, faced, and lapelled on the breast with red, and laced in such manner as the colonel shall think fit for distinction sake, the lace, however, was of the colours of that on the soldiers' coats.
The front or fore part of the drums was painted black, with the king's cypher and crown, and the number “LVIII” under it. The rims were red.

Colours

King's Colour: Union with its centre decorated with a rose and thistle wreath around the regiment number "LVIII" in gold Roman numerals.

Regimental Colour: black field with a red cross; centre device consisting of a rose and thistle wreath around the regiment number "LVIII" in gold Roman numerals. The Union in the upper left corner.

King's Colour - Source: PMPdeL
Regimental Colour - Source: PMPdeL

References

Aylor, Ron: British Regimental Drums and Colours

Boscawen, Hugh: The Capture of Louisbourg, 1758, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 2011

Fortescue, J. W.: A History of the British Army Vol. II, MacMillan, London, 1899

Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

George II, The Royal Clothing Warrant, 1751

Lawson, Cecil C. P.: A History of the Uniforms of the British Army - from the Beginnings to 1760, vol. II, p. 90-103

Mills, T. F.: Land Forces of Britain the Empire and Commonwealth (an excellent website which unfortunately seems to have disappeared from the web)

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.