Lieutenant General James Wemyss’s Regiment of Foot

Lieutenant General James Wemyss’ Regiment of Foot were firelocks serving as artillery guard to Waller’s Army of the Southern Association. Raised in 1643 they participated at the Siege of Arundel Castle, Cheriton, Cropredy Bridge, and Second Newbury before being disbanded in 1645. The Regiment is believed to have taken considerable losses at Cropredy.

The regiment wore blue coats in 1644. Like all of my firelocks/commanded shot units they do not carry an ensign.

Wemys (rhymes with teams) was a Scot who was a 'master gunner of England' and 'general of the artillery in Scotland': he was captured at Cropredy. He was held captive for many months before being exchanged in a prisoner swap.

His uncle invented a leather gun for field work, which James improved the design. The pair had an inventing workshop in London before the outbreak of war.

Re-instated as 'master gunner of England' by Charles II, a post he held until 1666, after which he returned to his home in Scotland, dying shortly after in 1667.

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  1. Very nice unit of shot. They look a work-man-like unit which I'm sure Wemys would appreciate. I like that all of your your units have appropriate casualty markers.

    1. Thanks. It took lots of coats of thinking about it to arrive at the dedicated casualty marker. Went through several incarnations too.

    2. Hello, is there any pictures or paintings ect of James Wemyss?

    3. For a man of his importance you would expect there to be a portrait of him; unfortunately I can only find one of his son.

      Wemyss was a relative of the Earls of Wemyss, had been Charles I & II's master gunner (and Parliament's), and been a prisoner of the king who the great and good had tried to negotiate his release. So it is very surprising that a portrait isn't available online, nor can I find any reference to one.

      James came from a long line of 'James Wemyss' which further complicates matters when trying to research him.

      'Our' James was at times known as James Wemyss' of Caskieberran. His son, another James Wemyss was better known as Lord Burntisland.

      Using the search 'general James Wemyss' isn't as helpful as you think either: there seems to be a family tradition of calling all boys James, they all join the army, and they all rise to the rank of general.


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