Major-General William Howe was
in command of the British forces in America from 1775 to 1778. He
was permitted in February, 1778 to resign his command but it was not until
May, 1778 that Sir Henry Clinton came to Philadelphia from New York to
take over active command. Howe was at Bunker Hill, commanded the
British and their allies at Long Island and in the campaign that forced
the Americans to retreat across New Jersey. He also commanded the
forces that landed at the Head of Elk and then marched to take Philadelphia.
He is pictured in the full dress of his rank.
The fourth Foot was raised in
1680 by Charles Fritz-Charles, Earl of Plymouth under the name of the Second
Tangier Regiment. In 1715, King George I, conferred upon it the title
of "The King's Own" and it was by this name that it was known during the
The regiment was a Royal Regiment
and therefore had blue facings as shown. In addition the musicians
of the Royal Regiments were dressed in the same colors as the men, that
is red coat faced with blue, except that their coats were decorated by
the addition of lace on their sleeves.
The 4th were sent to Boston in
1774, and their flank companies took place in the engagements at Lexington
and Concord under Lieutenant-Colonel Smith of the 10th Foot. The
two flank companies of the King's Own also saw action during the attack
on Bunker Hill. The regiment also saw action at the following battles:
Long Island, Pell's Point, White Plains, Fort Washington, Danbury, Brandywine,
In 1778 the 4th was sent to the
Barbados from which they sailed to take part in the capture of the French
Island of St. Lucia.
[REFERENCES: Historical Record
of the Fourth, or King's Own Regiment of Foot. Richard Cannon.
The War of the Revolution. Christopher L. Ward. A
History of the Uniforms of the British Army. Vol. III.
C. C. P. Lawson.]