Link to the related website that has useful info: the Age of Nelson.

This forum is devoted to the Royal Navy during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (1793 - 1815).
And why not the other navies of the period?
To avoid spam, you must register to be able to post - it's free.

FAQ         Register         Profile         Search         Log in to check your private messages         Log in
Charles Almond Trusson - Trafalgar Roll - Polyphemus
Post new topic   Reply to topic Forum Index -> Age of Nelson
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message

Joined: 22 Jul 2009
Posts: 3

Post Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:01 am    Post subject: Charles Almond Trusson - Trafalgar Roll - Polyphemus Reply with quote

Hello Very Happy

I am researching an ancestor listed in the MacKenzie Trafalgar Roll on Polyphemus.

His name was Charles Almond Trusson, 2nd Lt RM.
Commissioned 1804.
1st Lt 1807.

Then the curious bit

He appeared to change his name in 1809/1810 to Charles Almond Whiting.

I have much evidence to confirm this, which is too long-winded to explain in an intial post, suffice to say we have some of the original commision certificates from him and his sons, passed down in the family, and I have also researched some of the Navy Lists and commission lists at Kew.

If you look in the Navy List records you will see Charles Almond Whiting listed after 1810 and Charles Almond Trusson before 1810 - but not vice versa. In the Navy List (after 1810) Charles Almond Whiting is shown as receiving his RM 1st Lt commission in 1807, but if you look at the RM 1st Lt commision lists for that year only Charles Almond Trusson is shown.

That, plus other evidence, leads me to conclude with certainty these are one and the same person.

Charles Almond Whiting was on Solebay 1811 as 1st Lt. "Discharged 20 Aug 1812. What reason: Horatio" - What does that mean?

Commission cert 31st Dec 1830 RM Captain - "Rank from 3 nov 1827" - why backdated?

Death 20th June 1837 (Obituary Navy List, for which I've lost the original).

If anyone can help explain the mystery of why he should have changed his surname I would be profoundly grateful. One theory is that it was connected with his second marriage, or for an inheritance (first m. 1805 wife died, 2nd m. 1809).

Additionally I am also looking for any other information anyone may have on Charles Almond Trusson / Charles Almond Whiting.

Many thanks!

Last edited by gw on Thu Jul 23, 2009 6:46 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Site Admin

Joined: 26 Mar 2007
Posts: 883

Post Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


I have moved this post from the "hints and tips" as it belongs more here.

I have not a lot of info on RM officers but for the RN commissioned officers, I can say that "name changing" seems to have been a national sport (probably before the invention of the football) probably just to confuse the researcher (like Monthy Python confused cats).

As you said, I have found all those who changed their name was for reason of inheritance (to avoid that a name or title became extinct) or marriage (also linked to some estates).

What I have seen the most often is "assuming an additional surname" like Admiral Sir Edward Chetham who assumed the additional surname of Strode on inheriting the estates of his brother-in-law, Colonel John Strode, in 1845, and was then kown as Admiral Sir Edward Chetham Strode.

I believe that they had to obtain a King's patent to be able to change their name.

This is valid for "upper class" people like officers. For common people, they apparently changed their name on a whim.
It's a real curse to try to track crew people in muster books.

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website

Joined: 22 Jul 2009
Posts: 3

Post Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that reply PMarione. Good to hear I am not alone in being frustrated by this crazy name-changery. One of his sons did indeed keep the Trusson name as a second name - he was Charles Trusson Whiting - and was also in the Royal Marines, though only outlived his father by one year. Life was brutish and short in those days.

Since my original post I have discovered a little more of the naval career of Charles Almond Trusson/Whiting. He was made "Captain - Orion" though elsewhere I read that he wasn't commander - that was another Captain - so I guess there were two Captains on board?

And on 1st March 1807, I think (I've lost the year), he was dispatched in the boats of the Glatton, to capture a formerly French 18-gun corvette in Sigri, Turkey. They succeeded but the commanding officer Lt Watson died with 4 others of the boarding party killed and nine wounded.

I think I also tried looking though some records of petitions to the King for 1809/1810, without success, although I may well be misremembering as last time I was in Kew was many years ago. I even looked through a bunch of wills, thinking that maybe there would be a clue there somewhere but couldn't find anything.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic Forum Index -> Age of Nelson All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
FAQ   Search    Register   Profile   Log in to check your private messages   Log in 

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group