Activities - Scouts & Patrols


Scouts & Patrols


I ordered out the Light Infantry… to make a general search round

the Camp to try if there were any lurking Indians…”

-General Jeffery Amherst, June 14, 1759.



            At events if time and terrain permit, the light infantry company of the 55th regiment provides scouts and patroles for the army’s commanders.  Sometimes these are shorter patroles around the encampment.  Others are scouts of the surrounding area, gathering intelligence.  Often times, we are accompanied by volunteers from other units on these scouts. 

           Starting with our annual Light Infantry Skills Encampment this past May, 2012 is our "Year of the Scout", we will be putting an extra emphasis upon going out on Scouts at events and practising the procedures and skills used by the Light Infantryman on a Scout.



Thoughts on Scouting:

from Period Sources.


Pvt. Robert Still takes a knee during a halt on a Scout.

"Every man is to the distance of One Yard from another on the March & on the word halt face outwards...."
"The Soldiers with their Right Knees and the Butts of their Firelocks on the Ground And not to Fire without Orders."
- Bouquet's Orderly Book, 1764



Pvts. Still and Billings with Corpl. Still return from a scout.                                  

 Major Robert Rogers had this to say about returning from a scout:                      

"When you return from a scout, and come near our forts, avoid the usual road,

 and avenues thereto, lest the enemyshould have headed you, and lay in           

 ambush to receive you, when almost exhausted with fatigues."                            

-  Robert Rogers' Rules for the Ranging Service, Rule No. 22.                                 



Pvt. Wick and Pvt. Still take to a tree as we practiced reacting to an ambush during

 the 2010 Light Infantry Skills Weekend. General Forbes of the 17th Regt in the

Spring of 1757, proposed when ambushed having the men get “behind some tree

 stumps or stone, where he becomes his own Commanding officer, acting to the

best of his judgement for his own defence and the General Good of the whole.”

Author Stephen Brumwell in REDCOATS, wrote that during a patrol led by a

Serjeant William Isaac when attacked he gave the command "tree all" at which

the men of the patrol were to take cover behind a tree for their defense.



                                           "Whenever you are ordered out to the enemies forts or frontiers for discoveries,

if your number be small, march in a single file, keeping such a distance from     

each other as to prevent one shot from killing two men, sending one man,           

 or more, forward, and the like on each side, at the distance of twenty yards from 

 the main body, if the ground you march over will admit of it, to give the signal  

 to the officer of the approach of an enemy, and of their number, &c."                     

- Robert Rogers' Rules for the Ranging Service No. 2.                                                 



"The greatest attention in the officer commanding a patrole will be requisite to watch

the conduct of his men: they must attentive, obedient, and vigilant, from the moment

of their departure till their return...."

- 1798 Regulations for Riflemen and Light Infantry.


"When you stop for refreshment, chuse some spring or rivulet if you can,

 and dispose your party so as not to be surprised, posting proper guards

 and centuries at a due distance, and let a small party waylay the path you

 came in, lest the enemy should be pursuing."                                                  

- Robert Rogers' Rules for the Ranging Service, No. 18.                                   



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