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Added 1.5.11. Minor edits 28.2.2014, 1.4.2014.

1449, Corporal John Daniel ROBINSON - 13th Light Dragoons

Birth & early life

Born at Doncaster c.1833

1851 Census

52, King Street, Doncaster.

The 1851 Census shows that John Burley [grandfather], aged 68, living with his wife Mary Burley, 73, his daughter Mary A. Burley [mother], 32, and John Robinson, grandson, 17, a "Labourer".


Enlisted at York on the 10th of July 1851.

Age: 18.

Height: 5' 8".

Trade: None shown.


From Private to Corporal: 16th of October 1854.

Reduced to Private by a Regimental Court-martial on the 1st of January 1855.

He sent money from the Crimea to his uncle, a Mr. J. Burley, living in King Street, Doncaster, Yorkshire.

Discharged, "by purchase," from Cahir on the 13th of June 1860. Payment of £20.

Served 8 years 3 days.

Conduct and character: "good."

In possession of one Good Conduct badge.


Entitled to the Crimean medal with clasps for Alma, Balaclava, Inkerman, and Sebastopol, and the Turkish medal.

A supplementary roll (undated) signed by Major Henry Holden shows him as being issued with the Crimean medal (with clasps for Alma, Balaclava and Inkerman) on the 7th of October 1855.


Attended the first Balaclava Banquet in 1875.

This appeared in a news item entitled "100 Years Ago" and was reprinted in the Centenary year of Balaclava.

He is not shown as having been a member of the Balaclava Commemoration Society in either 1877 or 1879.

Life after service

1871 Census

In 1871, J. Burley [grandfather? age?] was still living at King Street, with his daughter and son-in-law, Elizabeth and Richard Yates.

1881 Census

32, Milton Street, Doncaster, Yorks.

John Robinson appears in the 1881 Census as aged 47, born Doncaster, an Iron Turner. His wife Hannah is shown as 46, born at Norton, Yorkshire. A daughter, Ann, 20, and a lodger, Alfred Jeffs, 25, are also shown in the household. [RM]

Death & burial

Death registered

John Daniel Robinson, aged 56, June Quarter 1890, Doncaster.

Further information

From the Dispatch, 7th of January 1855:

Corporal John Robinson of the 13th Light Dragoons, in a letter addressed to a friend at Doncaster, dated the 2nd of November 1854, thus describes the narrow escape of Lord Cardigan in the cavalry charge at Balaclava and the part he took in his Lordship's rescue:

'I did not ride many yards further before I saw our commander, Lord Cardigan, very nearly thrust off his horse and if it had not been for me the old boy's life would not have been worth a row of pins. I saved him, for I directly saw a Russian had marked him for he drew his lance and made at his Lordship, but I was too expert for the rascal, I parried, whilst the man struck, and then he bolted as if Old Nick were after him.'

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