|The 1864 regulations state that Surgeons
are to wear a black morocco shoulder belt with a small case for
instruments. In the RHA they wear the regular busby, but adorned
with a black plume and black cap lines. The cap lines are indeed
black here, but the plume does not follow regulations.
This officer displays the badges of rank
(crown and star on the collar) and cuff braiding characteristic of
a Captain. Assistant Surgeons first ranked as Lieutenant, but
would rank as Captain after 6 years service.
The detail of his medals isn't the best, but the looser suspender and longer ribbon of the
central medal likely makes it a Turkish Crimean Medal - the left
one would then be the British Crimean Medal. The Medal on the
right is most likely an Indian Mutiny Medal (white ribbon with two
Ernest Edwards operated at 20 Baker St.
W. between 1864 and 1868.
A timeframe, a unit, a rank and some
medals...more than enough to try to identify the gentleman !
And indeed, I could only find one officer sharing all those
charcteristics, and he is likely Assistant-Surgeon Herbert
Chalmers Miles, MD.
was admitted a member of the Royal College of Surgeons at the
meeting of the Court of Examiners on July 10 1854. His adress was
then specified as "The Charterhouse".
He was gazetted Acting Assistant Surgeon on January 12 1855. He
proceeded to the Crimea where he served in the Medical Staff (Medal
and Clasp, and Turkish Medal). He came back to England on board
the Calcutta steam transport, arriving from Constantinople and
Smyrna on November 18 1855.
He joined the 83rd Regiment, with which he served in the Indian
Campaign of 1857-58 ; he was present at the attack on Nimbkeira (severely
wounded) ; during the defence of the fortified square of Neemuch
in November 1857, altthough suffering from a gunshot wound, he
served in medical charge of the detachment of the 83rd
Regiment and the wing of the 12th Native Infantry ; he was present
during the field operations against Awah, and subsequent
destruction of adjacent strongholds ; he served in medical charge
of the 83rd Regiment prior to and was present during the siege
operations against Kotah and its capture by assault (Medal and
Assistant Surgeon Miles transferred to the Royal Artillery on June
24 1859. By 1862 he was attached to the 7th Brigade, and in
October came back with it from Quebec on board the Himalaya,
proceeding to Woolwich. On March 11 1863 he proceeded with the 7th
Brigade from Woolwich to Portsmouth on board the iron steam
troopship Maegera. By 1865 he had exchanged into the A Brigade
Royal Horse Artillery.
On November 8 1867 he was promoted to Staff Surgeon. On June 23
1869, he was again appointed to the Regiment of Royal Artillery.
The 1870 Army List states that he was then attached to the 6th
The Times published on August 26th 1871 state that "Surg.-Major Miles, of the B
Brigade", exchanged with Surgeon Franklyn, of the 1st
An old piece of news - as he had died 2 months before (from "The
British Medical Journal, August 5th, 1871) :
HERBERT CHALMERS MIILES, L.R.C.P.ED.
RECENT intelligence from India brought to his family the painful
intelligence of the death of Dr. Herbert Chalmers Mliles, Surgeon
Royal Artillery, aged 38. He was the only surviving son of John
Mliles, M.D., of Eastbourne, late of the Charterhouse. The
deceased was educated at the Charterhouse School; and, after
receiving his professional education at St. Bartholomew's Hospital,
entered the army in 1854, and has since been in much active
service. He was engaged during the Crimean war and during the
Inidian mutiny, receiving a gun-shot wound at the siege of Neemuch,
whilst under fire. He had the honour of being presented with three
medals. After returning to England for some months, he was ordered
to Nova Scotia, where he passed nearly two years. In December 1867,
he was again ordered to India, where his short career terminated
at Colaba, Bombay, on June 16th, I871, after twelve days of severe
illness. He was buried with military honours at Sewree Cemetery,
on June 17th. His funeral was attended by the Royal Artillery and
many officers of the 49th and 19th Regiments, besides many friends."