William Brazenor (1824 – 1848)

William was born at Oswestry, Shropshire and was baptised on 27 June 1824, the son of Thomas and Ann Brazenor, nee Wilding. Not a great deal is known about his short life except that in 1841 he was still living with his parents and siblings at Oswestry. Thomas, William’s father, had a saddlery business in Cross Street, Oswestry, and was one of the five sons of Richard Brazenor, saddler, of Pontesbury, Shropshire.

It is believed that William is next heard of when listed in the death roll for the action at Ramnugguh (also spelled Ramnaggar), which occurred during the 2nd Sikh War in the Punjab, India. He was serving as a Private, service No. 1351, in the 14th Light Dragoons (“the Kings”), when killed in action in a skirmish on 22 November 1848. There is a description of this action on a website devoted to a study of British battles, just enter a few key words into any global search engine.

The personal papers for those who served in the Sikh Wars are in the records of the British East India Company, not in British Army records. They are kept in London and are not available on-line, as far as I know. They have not been researched by me, as yet.
It may be of more than coincidence that the officer commanding the 14th Light Dragoons, in this action was a General Cureton, who also came from Oswestry. He had risen through the ranks during the Peninsular Wars, from being a Sergeant to becoming a commissioned officer. Though an experienced officer and excellent leader he was killed in the same action as William Brazenor, trying to extract his men from a very difficult situation, into which they had been led by another officer. There is a memorial to Brigadier General Charles R Cureton in St Mary’s Church, Shrewsbury, Shropshire. Other officers and men of the 14th Light Dragoons, now the King’s Royal Hussars, have a memorial in All Saints Church, Maidstone, Kent.

It is not known whether William married or left any offspring while serving in the Indian sub-continent, though the fact that some visitors to these pages are based in India and Pakistan suggests that this might possibly be the case.

Note. William Brazenor, of the 14th Light Dragoons, was awarded the Honourable East India Company Medal. Whether this was for his part in the Ramnaggar action, or other service, is uncertain. His inscribed  medal was sold at auction at Dowell’s Rooms, Edinburgh, in November 1909. It fetched 6 Pounds and 5 Shillings.