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Rifle Brigade (The Prince Consort's Own)

The Rifle Brigade was an infantry rifle regiment of the British Army formed in January 1800 as the "Experimental Corps of Riflemen" to provide sharpshooters and skirmishers. They were soon renamed the "Rifle Corps". In January 1803, they became an established regular regiment and were titled the 95th Regiment of Foot. In 1816, at the end of the Napoleonic Wars, they were again renamed, this time as the "Rifle Brigade"; the unit was distinguished by its use of green uniforms in place of the traditional redcoat as well as by being armed with the Baker rifle, the first British-made rifle accepted by the British Army in place of smooth-bore muskets. The 95th was the first regular infantry corps in the British Army to be so armed, they performed distinguished service in both the Second World Wars. Post war, in 1958 the regiment formed part of the Green Jackets Brigade as 3rd Green Jackets and was amalgamated with the 1st Green Jackets and the 2nd Green Jackets to form the Royal Green Jackets on 1 January 1966.

In 1800, an "Experimental Corps of Riflemen", was raised by Colonel Coote Manningham and Lieutenant-Colonel the Hon. William Stewart, drawn from officers and other ranks from drafts of a variety of British regiments; the Corps differed in several regards from the line infantry of the British Army and most were armed with the formidable Baker rifle. The rifle was remarkably accurate in an era when it was considered impractical for individual soldiers to aim at specific targets. Riflemen wore dark green jackets rather than the bright red coats of the British line infantry regiments of that time, close-fitting pantaloons rather than breeches, black facings and black belts rather than white and a green plume on their "stovepipe shakoes". Four months after its formation, the Rifle Corps was judged ready for its first operation. On 25 August 1800, three companies, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel William Stewart, spearheaded a British amphibious landing at Ferrol, where the Rifles helped to dislodge the Spanish defenders on the heights.

Despite this, the expedition was defeated and withdrew on 26 August 1800. In April 1801, one company of the Experimental Corps of Riflemen, under the command of Captain Sidney Beckwith, took part in the British victory at the Battle of Copenhagen, as marksmen aboard Royal Navy ships that were under the overall command of Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson. During the battle, the Rifle Corps suffered one lieutenant killed, its first officer to fall, two other ranks killed and six wounded, some of whom died later. In 1802, the Rifle Corps was brought into the line of the British Army as the 95th Regiment of Foot. In 1803, the 95th moved to Shorncliffe Army Camp, where it underwent light infantry training, along with the 43rd and 52nd Regiments of Foot, under the tutelage of Colonel Coote-Manningham and Sir John Moore. In 1805, a 2nd Battalion was raised at Canterbury, in the year the 1st/95th deployed to Germany as part of a British expedition, under the command of Lord Cathcart, designed to liberate Hanover from occupation by France.

The 95th subsequently formed the advance guard on the way to Bremen. In February 1806, the 95th formed the rearguard for the withdrawal to Cuxhaven and subsequently returned home to the UK. In October 1806, five companies of the 1st/95th and three companies of the 2nd/95th departed for Spanish-controlled South America, Spain being allied with France, it was part of a second invasion force, designed as reinforcements for the first invasion against Buenos Aires, launched earlier in 1806 by Sir Home Popham without the Government's knowledge. The 2nd/95th, as part of Brigadier-General Sir Samuel Auchmuty's force, took part in the siege and subsequent storming of Montevideo, in what is now Uruguay, which saw Montevideo captured on the 3 February 1807, after clearing the surrounding area of Spanish troops in January; the 95th subsequently saw action at Colonia against a Spanish force that had crossed from Buenos Aires. The 95th subsequently saw action in June at San Pedro where they, the 40th and light companies, fought against the Spanish force that had crossed from Buenos Aires and defeated them.

Lieutenant-General John Whitelocke, the newly arrived overall commander, subsequently launched an ill-advised and mismanaged assault on Buenos Aires in which the companies of both battalions of the 95th were involved as part of the Light Brigade, commanded by Robert Craufurd. During the assault on Buenos Aires on 5 July, the 95th and the rest of the British force suffered heavy casualties in bitter fighting to capture the city; the Light Brigade had suffered so that they had to take refuge in a church and were surrendered soon after. Whitelocke surrendered his force. After Whitelocke negotiated the withdrawal of British forces, the men were released and they returned home that year; the 95th would go on to fight for near the entirety of the Peninsular War in Spain. In the aftermath of the disastrous expedition and Whitelocke were court-martialed, with Popham reprimanded and Whitelocke dismissed from the Army; the remaining companies of the 95th were involved in the expedition to Denmark that year.

They took part in the Battle of Copenhagen in 1807 as part of Arthur Wellesley's brigade. The expedition, commanded by Lord Cathcart, was intended to capture the Danish Fleet to prevent it falling into the hands of France; the expedition proved to be a thorough success with the Danish Fleet being captured at which po

Bona of Pisa

Bona of Pisa was a member of the Third order of the Augustinian nuns who helped lead travellers on pilgrimages. In 1962, she was canonized a saint in the Catholic Church by Pope John XXIII, she is considered the patron saint of travellers, couriers, pilgrims, flight attendants, the city of Pisa. A native of Pisa, she is reported as having experienced visions from an early age. On one occasion, the figure on the crucifix at the Holy Sepulchre church held out his hand to her. At another church, she saw a vision of Jesus, the Virgin Mary, three saints, including James the Greater, she was frightened by the light around these figures, ran away. James pursued her, led her back to the image of Jesus. Bona observed a pronounced devotion to James for the rest of her life. By the age of ten, she had dedicated herself as an Augustinian tertiary, she fasted from an early age, taking only bread and water three days a week. Four years she made the first of her many journeys, going to see her father, fighting in the Crusades near Jerusalem.

On her trip home, she was captured by Muslim pirates on the Mediterranean Sea and subsequently imprisoned. She was rescued by some of her countrymen, completed her trip home. Shortly thereafter, she set out on another pilgrimage, this time leading a large number of pilgrims on the long and dangerous thousand-mile journey to Santiago de Compostela, where James the Greater is honored. After this, she was made one of the official guides along this pilgrimage route by the Knights of Saint James, she completed the trip nine times. Despite being ill at the time, she took and completed a tenth trip, returned home to Pisa, dying shortly thereafter in the room she kept near the Church of San Martino in Pisa, where her body has been preserved to the present day, her feast day is celebrated on 29 May. She is regarded as a patron saint of travellers, couriers, pilgrims, flight attendants, the city of Pisa. Attwater and Catherine Rachel John; the Penguin Dictionary of Saints. 3rd edition. New York: Penguin Books, 1993.

ISBN 0-14-051312-4. Saint Bona of Pisa at Patron Saints Index Bona of Pisa at Saints - May Santa Bona da Pisa Bona of Pisa

John T. Milner

Colonel John T. Milner was an engineer and a businessman, he accumulated wealth in coal mine interests in Bolling, Alabama. He started the Milner Railroad Mines, he was a native of Georgia. He spent his early youth in Georgia gold fields, he received a classical training at Georgia. In 1848 he went to California to follow the San Francisco gold rush and became the City Surveyor of San Jose, California, he built a number of railroads. He laid out some of the first railroad lines; the primary one was the "South" which traversed from Birmingham to Montgomery. As a railroad engineer, he was the principal player in choosing site of the City of Birmingham, based on his assessment of the strategic resources and transportation advantages of Jones Valley in Alabama, it is due to his rail line. In many respects, he was the father of Southern industrialization in the deep, deep South. Milner's vision triggered decades of rapid industrial growth, he represented Jefferson County in the Alabama Senate for eight years.

He was the most conspicuous figure in the creation of Birmingham and one of the most distinguished citizens of Alabama. He died in New Castle, Alabama of paralysis and was interred at Oak Hills Cemetery in Birmingham, Alabama. According to a 2011 PBS documentary: " was a supreme racist and a despotic person." He stated, for example, "Negro labor can be made exceedingly profitable in manufacturing iron and in rolling mills, provided there is an overseer: a Southern man who knows how to manage Negroes." After emancipation, Milner was instrumental in the movement of industrialists to replace slavery with "convict" Black laborers. His influence was a primary cause of peonage, he found that it was impossible to drive "free" labor the same way that they could force prisoners to mine and build railroad infrastructure. This is, he saw them as a great source of profit and did not have to worry about labor disputes