My father, Dr. Henry Edmund Douglas Flack, (Lt. Col. Rtd) told me that my Great, Great Grandfather, Captain William, known as “Billy”, Flack had served in the British Army most of his life and that he had served “on garrison duties in Van Diemen’s Land in the 1830s.” Interested in both military and family history, I searched the local library for information about the British Army in Australia and the nature of the garrison duties that my father had mentioned.
When I began my search in the early 1980s, I could find little on these subjects. Most Australian history it seems had been written from the point of view of the early settlers and the convicts and included very little about the contribution of the British armed forces. As a member of a family with a five-generation tradition of military service, I was keen to pursue a military perspective of this history.
This history is the result of the author’s efforts to collect details of the 63rd Regiment’s service in Van Diemen’s Land (now Tasmania) and Swan River (now Perth, Western Australia). It is arranged in sections as follows. Please click (here) to view the full text:
Title page, Maps and Introduction
- The 63rd Regiment’s Reputation upon arrival in Australia
- The British Army and the situation in Van Diemen’s Land
- The Movement of the 63rd to New South Wales
- Order of Battle and Personnel
- Arms and Equipment
- Garrison Duties
- Hobart Town
- Band of the 63rd
- Wives and families
- The “Black War” of “Black Line” or The Sweep”
- Departure for India
- Comments and conclusions
Annex “A” What were Private William Flack’s duties in Van Diemen’s Land?
Annex “B” Piratical seizure of the “Cyprus”
Annex “C” Brief History of 63rd Regiment of Foot 1758 – 1881
Appendix “D” Records of the Officers of the 63rd Regiment in Van Diemen’s Land
Appendix “E” Regimental Muster Rolls for the Quarter March 1831-1832
Appendix “F” Bibliography