Battle of Waterloo Veteran and Pioneer of Beechworth
Born at Crieff, Scotland in 1791, a watchmaker by trade, John Drummond joined the 71st Regiment (Highland Light Infantry) at Glasgow in 1807, aged 15, giving his aged as 18.
He served in 11 battles of the Peninsular War against Napoleon, including Waterloo in 1815 and was wounded severely at Fuentes D’Onoro, 1811 (leg) and Victoria, 1813 (back).
Mr Drummond married Jan Currie at Falkirk, Scotland in 1821 and there were nine children of the marriage.
He was discharged as a Sergeant at Chester in 1828 by reason of being "worn out by length of service".
John Drummond arrived in Australia about 1831 and worked on the farm of David Reid at Invermay Park near Goulburn. He probably came to the Beechworth area in the early 1850's and worked for David Reid at Woorajay (Wooragee). A number of his sons had land in Wooragee, Woolshed and Beechworth in the 1850's and 1860's.
John died in the Ovens Benevolent Asylum in 1865. Aged 73 of heart disease.
In 1858, he had given his Army pension for the widows and children of the Crimean War dead. The "Advertiser" in his obituary stated of him "A man cannot give more than all he possesses".
There are only some ten authenticated veterans of the Battle of Waterloo, buried in Victoria as of 1994.
Due to the loss of early Beechworth Cemetery records in the great fire of 1867, Mr Drummond’s exact place of burial cannot be ascertained. His death certificate merely states "Presbyterian section".
His memorial marker was donated by members of the North-East Historical Group.