GEORGE III & the Earl of Shelburne, 1782 19842



Original Military Commission, signed ‘George R’ at head, appointing Richard Whyte to be Colonel of Our Ninety Sixth Regiment of Foot. Countersigned by the Earl of Shelburne as Secretary of State for the Home Department. Large size vellum commission 12 x 16 inches, in superb clean condition, folds, wafer seal affixed. Our Court at St. James’s, 16 May 1782. King George III (reigned 1760-1820). This fine commission bears the rare Prime Ministerial signature of William Petty-FitzMaurice, 1st Marquess of Lansdowne (1737 –1805), known as the Earl of Shelburne between 1761 and 1784. He was Home Secretary in 1782 and then Prime Minister 1782–1783 during the final months of the American War of Independence. The 96th Regiment of Foot (British Musketeers) was an infantry regiment in the British Army from 8 April 1780 to 1784. It was one of several regiments raised in consequence of the American Revolutionary War. The Colonel-Commandant of the regiment was General Richard Whyte. After serving for some time in Ireland the regiment was posted to the Channel Isles, where it was disbanded in 1784. Richard Whyte came to command the 24th Regiment of Foot from 1793 to 1807. He also served in Ireland during the rebellion in 1793., and in 1794, British forces in San Domingo [Haiti] under the command of Brigadier General Richard Whyte occupied Port-au-Prince and began making plans for fortifying the defences.