On Board the Resolution was a former army staff surgeon by the name of George Hume Reade. He lived at Perth and had earlier been granted acreage there for loyal service in the British army, and from there, retiring in 1917. Shortly after the influx of Irish, he would be again called up for service with the British as their Surgeon Superintendent at the Perth settlement.
During the Lower Canada Rebellion, Reade was recalled back into the militia and posted at Quebec's Citadel. It would be here that two sons Herbert Taylor and John By Cole would spend their youth and no doubt gain some knowledge of their father's practice in medicine. (John's middle name came from his godfather... Colonel John By, who was the very fellow who was tasked by the British to create a town to house the workers who would be building the Rideau Canal. He was to supervise its construction as well. The town would later change its name to Ottawa.
Being a military man George Hume Reade returned to Britain and took his sons with him where they took training in medicine. George and both boys would end up serving in the Crimean War, George was killed in the war. The boys would serve in different units in the Indian Mutiny.
In 1850 Herbert Taylor Reade would become the Assistant Surgeon in the 61st Regiment of Foot, later called the Gloucestershire regiment. By 1857 he would hold the rank of Staff Surgeon 2nd class, and in that capacity would be in the thick of battle during the Siege of Delhi that year.
He was also active in the Ferozapore skirmish, and present during the assault against the Cashmire Gate. For his actions at Delhi and a few days later Herbert was awarded the Victoria Cross. Here is his London Gazette announcement of the award.
Herbert's brother John By Cole also joined the army and was promoted to Assistant Surgeon and provided services at the Battle of Alama, Inkerman and Sevastopol in the Crimean war and later also served in the Indian Mutiny at Cawnpore and Lucknow. He would also serve a long term with the army and by 1873 held the rank of Surgeon Major. And like his brother John would also serve as surgeon to Royalty. First to King Edward V11, and later to King George V
In about 1902 the John Players and Sons, Imperial Tobacco Company produced a series of history keepsake playing cards and circulated them in cigarette packages. Back in January I showed you the card on the right depicting VC recipient Philip Smith's heroism. The one of the left depicts Canadian Herbert Reade's heroism during the Indian Mutiny.
The people of Perth Ontario can be very proud of the Reade family, as can the rest of Canada. How many families can boast that 2 in the family were surgeons to the reigning Monarch... not once or twice... but three times?