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On an 1853 marriage registration in Queens Co the bride's father was shown as a pensioner - what would the source of his money likely be?


Monday 18th Sep 2023, 03:15AM

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  • A military pension. Could be navy but far more likely army. He could also be a police pensioner but they tended to be described as "RIC pensioner", rather than just "pensioner".

    Elwyn, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Monday 18th Sep 2023, 09:54AM
  • Chances are it is a pension from Military Service.   My gg grandfather was a pensioner after the Crimean War. He was shot in 1855, pensioned in 1856... so they get their military wages still.  

    The government also had an offer for a lot of the pensioned soldiers, that they could 'trade' their pension for free voyage to Australia, for themselves, wife and children.... a guaranteed job for 7 years and then they received an allotment of land... the size of the land was determined on where they chose to live.  Land closer to the capital city was smaller, but if they moved further away from the city, they received a bigger land allotment.

    You will find the records in a couple of places.  First check somewhere like Find My Past or Ancestry to find the Military records (or Fold3).  Once you have those, the paperwork should include any pension details.  There are also archives on under the WO reference (War Office) in the UK Archives, because the Irish were still under the UK and fought under the British Army or Navy.

    It is possible that after the marriage in Queens County, they received the option to leave Ireland and move to Australia, which was still operating in the 1860s, but after the convict era stopped, I know they would not be called pensioner guards, they may have received free immigration instead. They were called pensioner guards because they were pensioners from military service, but guards on board a convict ship and then lawmen (usually) in Australia. 

    Hope that helps :) 


    Monday 18th Sep 2023, 11:01AM
  • Hi Lilly

    Thank you for your message. I am delighted to say that I found my man on Ancestry in the Chelsea Hospital pension records. I would like to see the originals but do not have a Fold3 account. I can access National Archives but their search system is confusing. if you could please give me some search tips, as your sound proficient, I would be very grateful.




    Tuesday 19th Sep 2023, 04:32AM

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