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Major-General Andrew Hay


Major General Andrew Hay (1762 – 14 April 1814) was a British Army officer who served in the American Revolutionary, French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars. He was mortally wounded at the siege of Bayonne on 14 April 1814.

Andrew Hay enlisted as an ensign in the 1st regiment of foot, on 6 December 1779. He served in the American Revolutionary War and was promoted to lieutenant on 21 July 1781. He transferred to the 88th Foot as captain on 24 January 1783 but when the regiment was disbanded after the war, Hay returned to the 1st Foot, maintaining the rank of captain, and inheriting seniority on 17 April 1784.

From 1787 to December 1795, a period which included the beginning of the French Revolutionary War, Hay was on half-pay, listed as a captain. He was promoted to major on 1 September 1794 but remained without a regiment until the 93rd Foot was raised, which he joined on 9 December 1795 and served with in the West Indies, until it was disbanded in 1797.

Hay became a colonel in the Banffshire Fencibles on 29 December 1798, a regiment mainly drawn from Hay's family estate in Banffshire, Scotland. Fencibles were British Army units raised for defence against the threat of invasion during times of war. They were usually temporary units, composed of local volunteers but commanded by regular army officers, and their role was usually, but not always, confined to home defence and patrol duties. While his regiment was serving in the Channel Islands, in 1801, Hay sold his home in Banffshire and moved to Fordingbridge in Hampshire. The Banffshire Fencibles were broken up in 1802 when a short-lived peace was brought about by the Treaty of Amiens.

When war with France broke out again, in May 1803, Hay was given command of the 16th Battalion of the Army of Reserve. Hay's unit transferred to the regular army on 1 December 1804 as 2nd Battalion in the Highland regiment, the 72nd Foot, when he was promoted to lieutenant-colonel. Just over 4 years later, on 19 March 1807, Hay was given command of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Foot regiment serving in Ireland, but once the British Government had made the decision to support the Spanish and Portuguese rebels against the French, Hay and his regiment were shipped out to the Peninsula.

You can learn more about him on Wikipedia


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