The 49th (Princess Charlotte of Wales's) (Hertfordshire) Regiment of Foot was a British Army line infantry regiment. During the Childers Reforms it was united with the 66th (Berkshire) Regiment of Foot to form Princess Charlotte of Wales's Berkshire Regiment.
The 49th Regiment was formed in 1744, during the War of the Austrian Succession. Originally named for its colonel, Edward Trelawney, and numbered 63rd, Trelawney's, Regiment of Foot, the regiment was raised in Jamaica from eight independent companies that were there as a garrison, and local defence. Trelawney was the governor of the island, and was appointed the first colonel, despite his lack of military experience. In 1751 the regiment was re-numbered, becoming the 49th Regiment of Foot.
In 1768 they (alongside the 29th) were garrisoned in Boston and would later take part in the American War of Independence. In 1777 they fought in the Battle of Brandywine Creek and the Regiment's Light company took part in the night attack at Paoli's Tavern. These were later commemorated by the red "Brandywine distinction" adopted in 1934 as backing to their cap badge by the Royal Berkshire Regiment, whose 1st Battalion was the lineal descendant of the 49th Regiment. In 1782, on returning home they became associated with the county of Hertfordshire, becoming the 49th Hertfordshire Regiment. During the French Revolutionary Wars they were designated as Marines, serving at the Battle of Copenhagen with Hyde Parker's fleet.
Units of the 49th Regiment served in British North America during the War of 1812, and participated in several significant engagements.
Following the Napoleonic Wars in 1816 the regiment received a royal association, becoming the Princess Charlotte of Wales' Hertfordshire Regiment. In the colonial period they served in the First Opium War (1839–42) and Crimean War (1853–56).
In 1881 the regiment was amalgamated as part of the Childers Reforms and united with the 66th Berkshire Regiment. They took with them the Royal association, to form the Princess Charlotte of Wales's Berkshire Regiment. In 1885, for the conduct of the 1st Battalion at the Battle of Tofrek in Sudan, the regiment was granted the title of Princess Charlotte of Wales's Royal Berkshire Regiment. The unit became a "Royal" Regt and changed facing colors to blue.
- A History of the Royal Berkshire Regt, 2 Vols. Petre, F.L. Salisbury 2004. ISBN 0-9540365-2-2 (v. 1 : pbk.); ISBN 0-9540365-3-0 (v. 2 : pbk.)
- The History of the Royal Berkshire Regiment (Princess Charlotte of Wales’s) 1929-1947 Brigadier Gordon Blight, London, 1953
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