|The late Sergeant Major George Thornley of the Royal Artillery. This image when closely examined is shown to be a copy
of an earlier photograph with a small portion of the original photographer's name just visible at the very lower right edge of
the image. This image was found in association with a morning card (see below) for Sergeant Major Thornley and gives his
death date as 15 May, 1901 at Sunderland.
George Thronley was born at Ashton-Under-Lyne about 1852 and attested as a Gunner with the Royal Artillery at Preston
on 1 June, 1875. He was described as being 5 feet, 7 inches tall with hazel eyes and light brown hair. His distinguishing
feature being a chipped front tooth.
Appointed Acting Bombardier with 12 Battery, 9 Brigade on 1 April 1879 and was promoted to Bombardier on 21 August,
1880. Thornley was brought before a court martial and reduced to Gunner for unspecified reasons on 12 December, 1881.
He continued as Gunner with 6 Battery, 1 Brigade, Western Division being appointed Acting Bombardier on 20 April 1885
he reverted to Gunner on 2 February, 1886. Reappointed Acting Bombardier on 3 May, 1887. Promoted again to
Bombardier on 1 December, 1888, Corporal on 1 August, 1890, Sergeant on 22 September, 1892. Thornley transferred to
the Permanent Staff, Durham Artillery (Militia) on 1st October, 1893 and promoted to Company Sergeant Major on 29
April, 1897. He was discharged after 25 years, 274 days of service on 1 March, 1901.
Thornley's posting included:
Home: 2 June, 1875 - 10 December, 1879
India: 11 December, 1879 - 30 October, 1884
Aden: 31 October, 1884 - 16 December, 1885
Home: 17 December, 1885 - 16 February, 1892
St Lucia: 17 February, 1892 - 11 April, 1893
Home: 12 April, 1893 - 1 March, 1901
Thornley served with 12 Battery, 9 Brigade during the 2nd Anglo-Afghan War of 1877-80 and received the Afghan War
Campaign Medal (no clasps) for his service. He was also presented with the Long Service& Good Conduct Medal.
At the time of his death barely 2 1/2 months after retirement Thornley seems to have been retired boarder and "living on
own means" on Henry Street in Sunderland. He never seems to have married - no other family was listed in the 1901
J. H. Pratt - Photographer/Copiest
Market Street, Ashton-U-Lyne, England