Surgeon Edward Beck
? – 11 Jan 1844 [London]
19 Dec 1804 Regimental Mate Ordnance Medical Department (OMD).
1 Aug 1806 Assistant Surgeon OMD.
11 Nov 1811 Surgeon OMD.
Woolwich 20 May 1812 Ordered by the Master General of the Ordnance to proceed to Malta as the successor of Mr Nathaniel Hornsby. On arrival in the island, he was to report to the officer Commanding the Royal Artillery in Malta.
The posting order was very detailed and pointed out to him
particulars relative to the duty you will have to perform as will require your immediate attention.
As the detachment of Royal Artillery of which you will have the medical charge is stationed in the Garrison of Valletta, and well accommodated in every respect, and as the British troops in that island very generally enjoy high degree of health, it is unnecessary on the present occasion to say any thing relative to the adoption of those means for the prevention of disease, which are so requisite in less salubrious situations in similar stations.
Every part of the hospital management at Malta, being regulated under the provisions of the General Order dated 24 July 1806, I must refer you to Mr N Hornsby for detailed information relative to the mode of obtaining supplies and of accounting for expenditures, and for the forms of the different returns, which are required by the authorities in that command.
1st. A case of capital instruments with pocket instruments and lancets will be delivered to you by Mr N Hornsby. Previous to receiving them you will be pleased to examine their condition and to note their state, specifying any deficiencies that may exist, a copy of which I request you will transmit to me with the usual report on your arrival. After that time you will be responsible for their preservation.
2nd. A quarterly abstract of men in health and of sick, deaths and recoveries is the only periodical report which has hitherto been sent from Malta to this office. In addition to this I have to request you will transmit a quarterly return of the stoppages at two shillings and two pence a day that may become due by the Royal Artillery to the General Medical Department for sick received into General Hospitals, Regular Hospitals belonging to Battalions of the Line and Artillery Hospitals. This return to be accompanied by a correct statement of all the apothecary's and purveyor's stores that may be received during each period.
3rd. Although from the goodness of the climate of Malta, the excellent accommodation given the troops, and the strict precautions which are taken to prevent the introduction of disease, there are good grounds to hope that the garrison will continue to enjoy its usual state of health, yet in the vigilance of the medical officers must always consist the safety of their charge. This watchfulness at all times necessary is particularly so during the summer months (July, August and September), when violent attacks of Bilious Fever are very frequent and sometimes baffle the best efforts of the most judicious practitioners.
As your quarterly returns with proper remarks will generally convey a sufficient correct statement of all occurrences I shall only expect official communications from you at those periods, except when any thing extraordinary or interesting may occur affecting the health of the troops. In such cases, I shall hope to receive detailed and satisfactory intelligence respecting them as soon as possible after the same may take place.
Malta 1813 Arrived in Malta.
In Feb 1813, the OMD had a total of 20 surgeons, with Beck being 18th in seniority.
Malta 1814 On regimental duty.
Malta 1815 On regimental duty.
Malta May 1816 Left Malta.
1 Apr 1820 Retired to half-pay.
- Entry No: 2634. Johnston W. Roll of Commissioned Offices in the Medical Service of the British Army. Vol 1 (20 June 1727-23 June 1898), Aberdeen (1917).