First female joining Royal Marines commando training

#62
Hannah Snell was quite a remarkable woman.



"At age seventeen, in 1740, Hannah’s parents died and she moved to Wapping, where she fell in love with a Dutch seaman, James Summs. After seven months of marriage, Summs went back to sea again. Nothing was heard from him but Hannah knew he would return. She convinced herself that he had been forced to join the Army or Navy against his will - a common enough occurrence in the eighteenth century. Not one to sit at home, Hannah decided to look for her husband. She bound her breasts and borrowed some of her brother-in-law’s clothing and set off dressed as a man.

Hearing that troops were gathering to counter the Jacobite Rising in Scotland, she made her way to Coventry. Here were the Sixth Foot, newly returned from the West Indies after losing many soldiers to tropical illness and now recruiting to get back up to strength. The Regiment was then known as ‘Guise’s’ after the Colonel’s name and Hannah enlisted as ‘James Grey’ in Captain Miller’s Company.

The Corporal who enlisted her was a rogue, as were so many recruiters, but it is probable that Hannah joined of her own free will, reasoning that at least she would be fed, paid and protected in her search for her husband. The army was moving north and the Sixth Foot marched to Carlisle, taking twenty-two days. Her disguise went unremarked and she set about learning how to handle her arms and perform drills properly. She was quick to learn and the company officers noticed her progress.

One of her Sergeants, named Davis, set his sights on seducing or raping a girl in Carlisle and tried to enlist Hannah’s aid, practically ordering her to do so. Instead she warned the girl and, hearing of this, Sergeant Davis alleged ‘neglect of duty’ against Hannah. This was a serious offence and the punishment reflected it; she was sentenced to 600 lashes of the whip.

This was a vicious but not uncommon punishment and the lash was vigorously laid on. Hannah was tied to the barrack gate, hiding her breasts and thus her disguise remained unsuspected. Although her flesh was torn and bleeding, she bore 500 lashes without a whimper. The officers admired her courage and the Commanding Officer cancelled the final 100 lashes. Having had no luck in the search for her husband, and recognising a recruit as a former neighbour from Wapping, she deserted and made for Portsmouth. Here again she enlisted, this time into Frazer's Regiment of Marines which was about to leave for the East Indies. Here she saw action at Pondicherry, killing several Frenchmen before being wounded herself.

She escaped the discovery of her sex by operating on herself and removing a musket ball from her groin. Declared unfit for marine's duty she now served as a deck hand. Still searching for her husband, she finally met a man who told her that James Sums had been executed for murder in Genoa.

When her ship eventually returned to London, she returned to her sister in Wapping. However, her story became known and she was referred to as ‘the heroic marine of Pondicherry’. The Duke of Cumberland ordered her to wear men's clothes. To earn a living she went on the stage and then leased a tavern, naming it ‘The Widow in Masquerade, or the Female Warrior’.

With a Sovereign’s grant of £30 a year for life she lived more comfortably than when on the march to Carlisle. In 1792 this brave and unusual woman died, her portrait being hung in Chelsea Hospital."
 
#63
qv Hannah Snell - well known in the RN and probably the Corps.

Hannah Snell - Wikipedia

Snell borrowed a male suit from her brother-in-law James Gray, assumed his name, and began to search for Summes, who had abandoned her while she was pregnant with his child.[2] She later learned that her husband had been executed for murder. According to her account, following the death of her daughter, on 23 November 1745[3], she joined John Guise's regiment, the 6th Regiment of Foot, in the army of the Duke of Cumberland against Bonnie Prince Charlie

She deserted when her sergeant gave her 500 lashes and moved to Portsmouth and joined the Marines. She boarded the ship Swallow at Portsmouth. The ship sailed to Lisbon. Her unit was about to invade Mauritius, but the attack was called off. Her unit then sailed to India.

In August 1748, her unit was sent to an expedition to capture the French colony of Pondicherry in India. Later, she also fought in the battle in Devicottail in June 1749. She was wounded eleven times to the legs.

She was also shot in her groin and to avoid revealing her gender, she instructed a local woman to take out the bullet instead of being tended by the regimental surgeon.[4][5]



500 lashes was in effect a death sentence; she was out of options at that point.


If this lass passes the All Arms Cdo Course - she STILL won't be the first female Royal Marine .

Hannah got there thirty years before the demmed upstart Colonials declared Independence :)
Surprised feminists haven't exploited her story. Waiting now for the film.
 
#67
Hannah Snell was quite a remarkable woman.



"At age seventeen, in 1740, Hannah’s parents died and she moved to Wapping, where she fell in love with a Dutch seaman, James Summs. After seven months of marriage, Summs went back to sea again. Nothing was heard from him but Hannah knew he would return. She convinced herself that he had been forced to join the Army or Navy against his will - a common enough occurrence in the eighteenth century. Not one to sit at home, Hannah decided to look for her husband. She bound her breasts and borrowed some of her brother-in-law’s clothing and set off dressed as a man.

Hearing that troops were gathering to counter the Jacobite Rising in Scotland, she made her way to Coventry. Here were the Sixth Foot, newly returned from the West Indies after losing many soldiers to tropical illness and now recruiting to get back up to strength. The Regiment was then known as ‘Guise’s’ after the Colonel’s name and Hannah enlisted as ‘James Grey’ in Captain Miller’s Company.

The Corporal who enlisted her was a rogue, as were so many recruiters, but it is probable that Hannah joined of her own free will, reasoning that at least she would be fed, paid and protected in her search for her husband. The army was moving north and the Sixth Foot marched to Carlisle, taking twenty-two days. Her disguise went unremarked and she set about learning how to handle her arms and perform drills properly. She was quick to learn and the company officers noticed her progress.

One of her Sergeants, named Davis, set his sights on seducing or raping a girl in Carlisle and tried to enlist Hannah’s aid, practically ordering her to do so. Instead she warned the girl and, hearing of this, Sergeant Davis alleged ‘neglect of duty’ against Hannah. This was a serious offence and the punishment reflected it; she was sentenced to 600 lashes of the whip.

This was a vicious but not uncommon punishment and the lash was vigorously laid on. Hannah was tied to the barrack gate, hiding her breasts and thus her disguise remained unsuspected. Although her flesh was torn and bleeding, she bore 500 lashes without a whimper. The officers admired her courage and the Commanding Officer cancelled the final 100 lashes. Having had no luck in the search for her husband, and recognising a recruit as a former neighbour from Wapping, she deserted and made for Portsmouth. Here again she enlisted, this time into Frazer's Regiment of Marines which was about to leave for the East Indies. Here she saw action at Pondicherry, killing several Frenchmen before being wounded herself.

She escaped the discovery of her sex by operating on herself and removing a musket ball from her groin. Declared unfit for marine's duty she now served as a deck hand. Still searching for her husband, she finally met a man who told her that James Sums had been executed for murder in Genoa.

When her ship eventually returned to London, she returned to her sister in Wapping. However, her story became known and she was referred to as ‘the heroic marine of Pondicherry’. The Duke of Cumberland ordered her to wear men's clothes. To earn a living she went on the stage and then leased a tavern, naming it ‘The Widow in Masquerade, or the Female Warrior’.

With a Sovereign’s grant of £30 a year for life she lived more comfortably than when on the march to Carlisle. In 1792 this brave and unusual woman died, her portrait being hung in Chelsea Hospital."
"She bore 500 lashes without a whimper"?

Yeah, right.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#70
The 18thC Navy used several bosun's mates to lay on punishment.

If a Captain thought the man laying on wasn't trying hard enough , he could take the place of the prisoner.

The Navy also had a punishment called ' flogging round the fleet ' for the most serious offences: SOURCE

A form of punishment in the old days of the British Navy for the more serious crimes committed on board. It could be awarded only by sentence of a court martial. The man undergoing sentence was placed in a boat in which a ship's grating had been lashed upright across the thwarts, and rowed alongside each ship lying in harbour. While bound to the grating he was given twelve strokes with a cat-o'-nine-tails by a boatswain's mate of the ship off which the boat was lying. After each infliction of a dozen strokes a blanket was thrown across his back while he was being rowed to the next ship, and it was usually necessary to ‘comb the cat’. A naval doctor was always in attendance in the boat to make certain that the man undergoing punishment was fit to receive further instalments of his sentence as he came alongside each ship. In each ship visited the crew were mustered on deck and in the rigging to witness the punishment, drums on board beating out the ‘Rogue's March’ as the boat approached.
 
#71
Seems she had quite a rowing career before joining - some examples:

2012:
Alice White, Pippa Birch and Jo Unsworth of Henley Rowing Club celebrate after winning the final of the Junior Women's Quadruple Sculls during the final day of the 2012 Henley Royal Regatta
Henley Rowing Club became the first junior women to win at Henley Royal Regatta in the Junior Women’s Quadruple Sculls and they did it in style on their home stretch of water. They beat Canford School, Great Britain by 2 ½ lengths in the final on Sunday in a time of 8:44.

2013;
Henley Rowing Club and Oxford Brookes University Boat Club composite crew finished 32nd out of 300 crews at the 73rd women’s head of the river race that took place from Chiswick to Putney.
The composite crew, that included Henley Rowing Club’s Pippa Birch, Genevieve Bailhache, Bethan Thomas, Joanna Unsworth, Steph Cooke and Maddy Wynn Jones completed the course in 19 minutes 45.6 seconds.

2014:
In the women’s double sculls Pippa Birch and Rachel Weager finished second overall despite being only recently paired up in the new look women’s squad.

2015:
UPPER THAMES won four medals at the pairs head of the river race in London on Saturday while Henley Rowing Club also picked up three wins.
Top honours for Upper Thames went to Pippa Birch and Alice White, who won the Amy Gentry trophy for the fastest women’s crew of the day. They clocked a time of 15 minutes 26 seconds over the 4,500m course to win elite double sculls by nearly 20 seconds from the nearest challengers.
White was representing Star and Arrow, although she and Birch have rowed together at Upper Thames for the last two seasons.

And it seems she is not unused to exercising in mud:
Firefighters show they are tough
The Henley firefighters’ team comprised crew members Paul Herrington, Jason Evans, Lizzie Ward, Jack Staines and Ian Birch with his daughter Pippa
 
#72
She would certainly be the first female Royal Marine recruit to pass

If I remember correctly the All Arms Command Course was passed by this lady here

I could be mistaken if I'm assuming she will have to meet the same standards as the male recruits in terms of fitness standards including weight and running times?

In which that young officer will have simply passed it with the reduced standards at the time applied...
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#73
I bet she gets nicknamed 'Flogger'

1550269224546.png
 
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#74
She would certainly be the first female Royal Marine recruit to pass

If I remember correctly the All Arms Command Course was passed by this lady here

I could be mistaken if I'm assuming she will have to meet the same standards as the male recruits in terms of fitness standards including weight and running times?

In which that young officer will have simply passed it with the reduced standards at the time applied...
She made her first two attempts to complete the course last year, failing on her first attempt three days from the end of the programme. Three months later, she had stop after the first day following a back injury.

Every time she failed something, she returned from where she left off, not the start

The 5ft 4in, nine stone officer from Tarland, Aberdeenshire, completed the "Tarzan" assault course, which had defeated her before, at the Commando Training Centre at Lympstone, Devon

This was done behind closed doors, PTI and Course commander I think

at least she tried it, I did not
 
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