Promotion of Officers (1861)
Quebec, 17th May, 1861
Militia General Orders
It will help to understand that the "Canadian Militia" at the time consisted of the "Active Militia" (part-time Militia units that were authorized pay for training) and a second class of units that were not funded for training. The Sedentary Militia also remained in existence, although the creation of units based on the Militia Act of 1855 also began the demise of the Sedentary Militia. The "Permanent Force" (now the Regular Force) was not yet in existence.
His Excellency the Commander-in-Chief, being of opinion that the Officers Commanding Corps of the Volunteer Force should have some progressive promotion in the Militia of the Province for long service and for the efficiency of their Corps, has been pleased to establish the following regulations for this purpose, viz:
1st. That all Captains Commanding Corps of the Active Force, who have served as such continuously since the year 1856, inclusive, and whose Corps are at present efficient in every respect to the satisfaction of the Inspecting Officer, shall be promoted to the rank of Major in the, Militia.
2nd. That henceforth, (except in special cases,) the rank of Major shall be granted after five years actual service as Captain of a Corps which is fully uniformed and efficient in every respect to the satisfaction of the Inspecting Officer.
3rd. That henceforth, (except in special cases,) promotion to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Militia will be granted only to Officers who have served five years consecutively as Majors at the head of one or more Corps who are fully uniformed and efficient in every respect to the satisfaction of the Inspecting Officer,—thus requiring ten years to attain the rank of Lieutenant Colonel from the period of the first appointment as Captain
4th. His Excellency has also been pleased to direct that the rank of Major shall be granted to Captains after five years service consecutively as Major of Brigade,"to the satisfaction of the Officer on whose Staff they have served; and,
5th. That the rank of Lieutenant Colonel shall be granted to Majors holding the following Staff appointments for five years consecutively to the satisfaction of the Officers on whose Staff they have served, viz: Assistant Adjutant General — Assistant Quarter-Master General, and Major of Brigade, thus requiring ten years for Captains to attain the rank of Lieutenant Colonel from the period of their first appointment to the Staff of the Active Force.