|Colonel Francis Roger Palmer
Francis Roger Palmer was born circa 1819 and was the second son of
Sir William Henry Palmer, the third Baronet, of Castle Lackin, Co.
Mayo. He was commissioned an Ensign by purchase in the 16th Foot on
the 15th of March, 1833. On the 22nd of that month he exchanged
into the 89th Regiment. On the 24th of April, 1835, Francis was
promoted to Lieutenant by purchase in the 89th Regiment.
In February of 1836, Francis exchanged in the 60th Rifles. In March
of 1842 he purchased his captaincy. On the 22nd of June, 1854, he
received a brevet promotion to Major and on the 27th of that month
received a promotion to Major without purchase effective the same
day as his previous brevet promotion to that rank.
In May of 1857 the Indian Mutiny erupted in the Bengal Presidency.
Francis Palmer’s entry in Hart’s Army List gives his service during the
Mutiny as follows:
“Colonel Palmer served with the 6oth Rifles in the campaign of 1857-
5S against the mutineers in India, including" the siege operations
before Delhi from 22nd August, assault and capture of the city, with
the final attack on and occupation of the palace. Commanded the 1st
Battalion 60th Rifles throughout the campaign in Rohilcund. including
the actions of Bugawalla and Nugena, relief of Moradabad, action on
the Dojura, assault and capture of Bareilly, attack and bombardment
of Shahjehanpore, defeat of the rebels and relief of the garrison,
capture of the Fort of Bunnai, pursuit of the enemy to the left bank of
the Goomtee, and destruction of the Fort of Mahomdee.”
For his services during the Indian Mutiny, Major Palmer was several
times mentioned in despatches, received the Indian Mutiny medal with
clasp for Delhi and was made a Companion of the Order of the Bath. In
January of 1858 Major Palmer was selected to a member of the five
Judge panel officiating over the trial of the King of Delhi, the last of
the Mogul emperors who was installed by the mutineers as the titular
head of the rebellion. On the 22nd of June, 1858, Francis Palmer was
promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel.
Following the conclusion of the Indian Mutiny Lieutenant-Colonel Palmer
commanded the 2nd Battalion of the 60th Rifles in the Second China
War, receiving the China medal with clasps for Taku Forts and Pekin
for his services. In June of 1863, he received a brevet promotion to
The Times reported that in February of 1870 Colonel Palmer and the
officers of the 60th Rifles entertained Prince Alfred, the Duke of
Edinburgh, at Seetapore, India. Prince Alfred was the first member
of the British Royal Family to visit India and it was considered a
significant honor for Colonel Palmer to be selected to act as the Duke’s
host during his visit to Seetapore.
In April of 1872, Colonel Francis Roger Palmer, C.B., retired on half-
pay, possibly due to ill health. Colonel Palmer had been retired for less
than six months when he died in October of 1872.