|Birth: ||May, 1839|
|Death: ||Mar. 27, 1936|
William K. Bryant was born William Keen Bryant, and was reported by Queensland newspapers of that time as being born in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia in 1839; which turns out to be wrong. William Keen BRYANT was born in Somerset, Gloucester, England in May 1839, the son of Samuel BRYANT, a carpenter and publican and Sarah KEEN.
At age eleven, after a dispute with his father, William left home and signed aboard the famous ship "Victory", later to be renamed HMS "Impregnable", which was a receiving ship under Admiral Wellesley. With the outbreak of the Crimean War in 1854.
The Indian Mutiny began; in December 1857. He was again sent out, aboard the 52-gun frigate, HMS "Shannon", and upon arriving in India took part in the march to relieve the British forces at Cawnpore.
William again found himself aboard the HMS "Shannon" bound as a seaman gunner on his way to participate in the Chinese war. It was there, after his ship had taken part in a number of engagements, that it was assigned to by itself take the ‘Tacoo Forts'.A special commemoration medal was struck to commemorate the event by the HMS Shannon and for their successful scaling of the wall and gaining valuable information for the allies, William and the other two men were each rewarded with one of the medals by Captain Wainwright.
After the taking of the ‘Tacoo Forts' the HMS Shannon was ordered home as their commission had nearly expired. Enroute home, however, they were ordered to divert to New Zealand; where they participated in the Maori Wars. There they played an important role in the British victory against the Maoris by shelling the natives from the ship.
After the ‘Shannon's' time expired, William found himself back on the "Victory", but soon afterwards an insurrection broke out in Jamaica and he was sent there on a 92 gun liner battleship.
In 1862 the British nation was at peace and news arrived of the American Civil War in America. He got his discharge from the British Navy and joined a blockade runner in the interests of the Confederates. The blockade runner was eventually out maneuvered and a Federal warship took them captive. William, along with other members of the crew, were transported as prisoners to Fort Sumter on the James River.He gained an interview with the Governor and having valuable experience as a British seaman, volunteered to serve on Federal warships; if they would release him from prison. William was released and assigned to serve on the USS "Monitor". June 27, 1883 William left England for Australia.
William K. Bryant lived in Ipswich, Queensland, Australia until he died at 97 years of age on March 27, 1936. Subsequently, he was buried on March 28th in the Church of England section A, Row 17, grave 20, burial number A07030 of the Ipswich General Cemetery
For more information go to www.acwv.info.
Ipswich General Cemetery
Created by: James Gray
Record added: Nov 18, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 61841048