Carte de Visite
Hastings Brothers - Photographer
10 Pembroke Quay (near the Royal Barracks)
James Hames was born around 1849 at Uxbridge, Denham, Buckinghamshire to James Hames a Gardener and Bailiff at Denham and his wife Emma.
The younger James had followed his father’s vocation and was listed as a gardener when he attested with the 1st Battalion/11th Regiment of Foot (the 11th Foot would be redesignated the Devonshire Regiment in 1881) at Westminster Police Court on 23 September 1870 as No. 1903.
A good soldier from the start Hames was granted his first good conduct pay two years after enlistment and was promoted corporal on 24 October 1873 and then sergeant on 1 February 1875. He skipped the common appointment to lance ranks between his promotions. Granted his second good conduct pay on 20 September 1875, Hames was appointed Colour Sergeant on 10 March 1880. He would hold that appointment until his discharge on 4 March 1889.
Hames was granted good conduct on two more occasions in 1882 and 1886. In recognition, of his years of exemplary service with the colours, Hames was presented with the medal for Long Service & Good Conduct in 1889.
As seen in the photograph Hames was a qualified marksman (crossed rifles on his left cuff) as well as an instructor of musketry (crossed rifles and crown on his right cuff). His records indicate he attended the School of Musketry at Hythe.
Hames' 18 years, 174 days of service were performed at home and in India:
Home: 23 September 1870 – 21 November 1870
India: 22 November 1870 – 12 April 1877
Home” 13 April 1877 – 15 March 1889
Around the time he deployed to India he transferred to the 2nd Battalion of the 11th Foot.
James Hames married Miss Teresa Gertrude Turner at Salford on 7 October 1879 and he was brought onto the married establishment on 10 March 1880. The couple had four children at the time of his discharge and his eldest child Mildred Edith is probably shown as an infant in this photograph dating the image to sometime after 30 August 1882. The other siblings were: Percival James (b. 1884), Lewis Christopher (b. 1886), and Arthur Allen (b. 1887). His wife Teresa died young and was listed as deceased at the time of his discharge in 1889.
After leaving the service Hames provided for his family with his service pension and found additional employment as an insurance agent. In 1911 he was retired and living at his residence at St John-at-Hackney with his sister Minnie and son Arthur.
Former Colour Sergeant James Hames disappears from civil records after 1911.
In this photograph, Hames is wearing the newly issued 1881 pattern seven-button tunic with the so-called "jam pot" cuffs.