William Thornton (1779 - 1840)

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Death: Died
Cause of death: suicide
Managed by: Shelley Chrystal Mactyre
Last Updated:

About William Thornton


Lieutenant General Sir William Thornton KCB (1779–1840) was a British Army officer who served as Lieutenant Governor of Jersey.

Military career

Thornton was commissioned into the British Army in 1796 and was Commanding Officer of the 85th Regiment of Foot during the Peninsular War. He led the Light Brigade at the Battle of Bladensburg in August 1814 and was then taken Prisoner of war by the Americans before being released in October 1814.

He was then involved in the Battle of New Orleans in January 1815, at which the only British success was on the west bank of the Mississippi River, where Thornton's brigade, comprising the 85th Regiment and detachments from the Royal Navy and Royal Marines, attacked and overwhelmed the American line.

He became Lieutenant Governor of Jersey in 1830 and committed suicide in 1840.

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