Original British Loyal Surrey Regiment Militia Brown Bess Musket Named to Pollen’s Fencibles- Circa 1794-1802
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a truly interesting private purchase Brown Bess Musket.
"Fencible" Militia regiments were first introduced in the Seven Years war in 1759 when England feared the possibility of a French Invasion. These were basically volunteer regiments raised by a wealthy "colonel" who, more often than not, outfitted the regiment that typically carried his name at his personal expense. The 1759 Fencible regiments were disbanded in 1783 after the Treaty of Paris. However, in 1792 Britain again found itself at war with France, now revolutionary France, and again Fencible militia regiments were raised.
In the county of Surrey, just south of London, Colonel George Augustus Pollen answered the call and formed The Loyal Surrey Regiment that became known as "Pollen's Fencibles". It existed until 1802 and was disbanded after the Treaty of Amiens brought peace once again.
This Brown Bess Musket has a third model 39" barrel but is fitted with a second model brass mounts. The lock is maker marked with the name: BROOKS and has TOWER inscribed across the lock plate tail. The barrel has remains of London proof marks and has been marked along the top: POLLEN'S FENCIBLES
Presumably, Colonel Pollen commissioned the musket around 1794 just as the Third Model Brown Bess with 39" barrel was being introduced but the maker wisely used up remaining stocks of 2nd model Brown Bess mounts for this contract.
Research tells us that after 1802 the British Government "made other defense arrangements" and these "private" Militia regiments were disbanded or absorbed into the British Army. The French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars which followed ended with The Battle of Waterloo in 1815.
A very interesting British Musket from the 1790s, named to a known Militia in the county of Surrey, England.
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