2nd -4th Battalion 60th Regiment

or Royal American Regiment

Celer et Audax

“Swift and Bold”

Members of the British Brigade and the Brigade of the American Revolution

History of the 60th Regiment of Foot, the Royal Americans

 

The 60th or Royal American Regiment of Foot was originally raised as a four battalion British infantry regiment in 1755-56 to meet the needs of forest warfare in North American at the onset of the French and Indian War.  Proposed by Jacques Prevost, a Swiss soldier and adventurer (and friend of the Duke of Cumberland) and after receiving Royal accreditation, officers and soldiers were secured from both the American colonies and Europe, many of Swiss and German descent (including Frederick Haldimand, later Major General and Governor of Canada and Quebec Province during the American Revolution).  The Royal Americans were to distinguish themselves as one of the best fighting units in the British Army throughout their subsequent service to the Crown.  The various battalions were to play a major role in nearly every campaign of the French and Indian War (1755-63) and Pontiac’s Uprising (1763-64).

 

During the American Revolution, the various contingents of the 60th  were involved in military actions both in the Southern campaigns in the American colonies and West Indies corridor, living up to the regiment’s motto “Celer et Audax” (Swift and Bold).  In 1775-76, companies of the 2nd and 4th Battalions were in East Florida at St. Augustine, while others of the 2nd and 1st Battalions were in the Caribbean at Antigua and Jamaica respectively.  By 1778-79, portions of the 2nd Battalion remained at St. Vincent Island in the Caribbean under Lt. Col. George Etherington; the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Battalions served in Florida and Georgia under Colonel Augustine Prevost, his brother Lt. Col. James Mark Prevost, Lt. Col. Lewis Fuser, and Major Beamsley Glazier in actions at Brown’s Creek, Hulson Ford, Fort Morris/Sunbury, and the Siege of Savannah.  In 1780, the 4th Battalion engaged at the Siege of Mobile, AL and Baton Rouge, LA with the 1st Battalion (amazingly) in an expedition at Fort St. Juan in Nicaragua under Lt. Col. (formerly Deputy Adjutant General) Stephen Kemble.  Other portions of the 2nd Battalion at this time were in both Carolina/Georgia and West Florida at the Siege of Pensacola, remaining portions of the 2nd/3rd Battalions continued in garrison at St. Augustine, FL under now Lt. Col. Beamsley Glazier, while remnants of the 1st and 2nd Battalions were sent to New York City at this time (where, interestingly, there is documentation that some 60th officers were on assignment in espionage for the British through the end of the war).

 

Following the war, in 1784, the Light company/2nd Battalion was at Grenada and St. Vincent; eventually the 1st and 2nd Battalions were sent to Jamaica and Halifax in 1787.  The 60th Regiment was much later designated as the King’s Royal Rifle Corps by the War of 1812; and today is known as the Royal Green Jackets.