Starting with the 39th (Dorsetshire) Regiment arriving from Sydney to King George Sound, the British Army had a presence in WA in the first five decades of European settlement. A total of eight British Army regiments of foot* were garrisoned in Western Australia for the protection of its citizens from 1826 through to the departure of the last regiment in 1869. Not all members of each detachment arrived and departed the Colony at the same time. This list of infantry regiments endeavours to identify the arrival and departure dates and names of ships of the main body of troops in each detachment. Most came from regiments based in the Eastern States. More often than not, the troops relieved of duty departed on the ship that had brought the new arrivals.
Building the military barracks commenced on 13 Aug 1829 on the square bound by St George’s Terrace, Barrack Street, Howick (Hay) Street and Pier Street. Successive regiments based in Perth occupied the Barracks.The 20th Company, Royal Sappers & Miners and the officers of the Royal Engineers served an entirely different role from the infantry regiments in the Colony. The RSM had its HQ in Fremantle or in the convict depôts outstations. It served in the Colony concurrently with the 99th and 12th Regiments, but there appears to have been little interaction between them.
WO12 Muster Books and Pay Lists are available on microfilm in the Battye Library, Perth. The references on the list cover the names and dates of men who served in detachments in WA; however, they may not be separate from the Pay Lists of other men of the regiment located in another Colony. Newspaper reports of arrivals and departures are also referenced.
*plus the 20th Company, Royal Sappers and Miners.