Standing Rules for Officers' Mess of
The Royal Canadian Regiment

Regimental Headquarters
Toronto, 1st May, 1902

The Major-General Commanding having approved of the issue of a set of Standing Rules for the officers' messes of the Regiment, the same are hereby promulgates, and will be strictly adhered to by all concerned.

Lawrence Buchan
Lt.-Col. and Bvt.-Col.
Commanding The Royal Canadian Regiment


Officers' Mess Rules
The Royal Canadian Regiment

1.     The members of each Mess shall consist of all the Officers of the Royal Canadian Regiment at the Depot.

2.     The Mess at Regimental Headquarters, Toronto, shall include the Officers of The Royal Canadian Dragoons and No. 2 Company, The Royal Canadian Regiment, and shall be known as "The Royal Canadians' Mess."

3.     Officers attached for instruction are temporary members of the mess.

4.     All officers of the permanent corps shall be ipso facto Honorary Members of the mess.

5.     Officers of the Active Militia, Retired Officers of the Imperial Forces and Civilians may be made Honorary Members of the Mess, subject to the approval of the Commanding Officer. Such Honorary members, however, shall not be permitted to ask friends to the Mess.

6.     The Committee are empowered to invite as Honorary Members any individuals, Naval or Military, not resident at the station, and who shall have called at the Mess.

7.     The entrance subscription of the Permanent Officers will be thirty days' pay; of the Officers Attached, three day pay; and an additional subscription of three dollars per month for dining members, and two dollars per months for non-dining members, such subscriptions to be used in defraying the household expenses of the Mess.

8.     A Committee consisting of two combatant officers shall be selected to have the general management of each Depot Mess, the senior of whom shall be President. At Regimental Headquarters this Committee shall be composed of one Officer from each of the Permanent Units at the station.

9.     The Mess Committee shall see the Standing Regulations enforced, permitting no deviation therefrom; they shall keep up the stock of glass, linen, cutlery, etc , for the mess, and a sufficient supply of wine in the cellar, and all orders to tradesmen shall be given, and all payments made by them only

10.     The Committee are hereby authorized and enjoined to notice everything which may be prejudicial to the comfort and interests of the body of officers, having due regard to the provisions of the previous paragraph.

11.     It shall be the special duty of the President of the Mess Committee to examine closely the general charges, for the correctness of which he shall be responsible, and which shall not be divided until the several items have been submitted and approved by him.

12.     All complaints against the Messing, of neglect or misconduct of the Mess servants, will invariably be made to the President of the Mess in writing, and no Officer not on the Committee shall call them personally to account for any real or alleged misconduct, such being the special duty of the Committee.

13.     The Committee will arrange for the attendance of Officers' servants, properly dressed, to wait at Mess.

14.     The contents of the cellar will be placed under the charge of a member of the Committee, and he will be held responsible that a correct account of the wine is kept, taking stock as often as the President may deem necessary, and not less than once a month.

15.     On the appointment of a new Committee an exact inventory of the Mess property and contents of the cellar will he handed to them by the Committee going out of office, and a record made in the Minute Book that this has been done.

16.     At the General Mess Meeting of all Officers present, held at least once in every three months, any number may make any proposition, that, in his opinion, may be of advantage to the Mess.

17.     All proposals having the approval of the Commanding Officer shall be put to vote, and the decision of the majority shall bind the whole. But no addition, alteration or amendment to these Rules can be made without the concurrence of the Officer Commanding, and a majority of two-thirds the total number of Officers of the Regiment.

18.     At each Quarterly Mess Meeting an exact state of the funds of the Mess shall be produced by the Mess President.

19.     A Minute Book will be kept wherein to enter all the ordinary proceedings of Mess Meetings, and such resolutions as may have a temporary bearing only.

20.     A President and Vice-President will he appointed weekly. The President and Vice President will not leave their places at the Mess table until everyone has risen, except they find substitutes.

21.     The President, assisted by the Vice-President, shall see to the general regularity and order of the Mess table, the dress and behaviour of the servants. The President and Vice-President shall not be absent from Dinner, except they provide substitutes, and the Vice-President shall remain in his chair until permission is given him to leave by the President.

22.     One day in each week (to be nominated according to circumstances) will be fixed for the entertainment of private guests; and on such occasions the band will attend, and all members of the Mess, unless with special permission, must be present.

23.     As far as possible, Mess guests and private guests will be invited to dine on the weekly guest night so as to ensure the presence of the members to receive them.

24.     All dining members absenting themselves from dinner will give due notice to the Mess Sergeant in order that only the proper number of places may be set.

25.     Individuals invited in the names of the Commanding Officer and Officers of a Mess shall be considered "Mess guests," and only their share or proportion of Wine and Mess expenses will be equally divided among all the Officers.

26.     A notice will be put up in the ante-room when Mess guests are expected to dine at the Mess.

27.     Any officer intending to invite one or more friends to dine on guests' night will give notice to the Mess Sergeant the day before the dinner or at least by nine a.m. of that day, unless when a friend may arrive unexpectedly at the station. Should an Officer fail in this he shall be charged double for each guest not duly warned for; the penalty to be placed to the credit of the Mess Fund.

28.     At Inspection Dinners or Luncheons all Officers, married or single, must be present. The "additional" expenses incurred by such Inspection Dinner or Luncheon, including the whole cost of the wines, etc. consumed by the guests, will be equally defrayed by all members of the Mess present and absent. Every non-dining member and member dining at the Mess will pay for his own dinner, and each Officer will pay only for such wines as he may have personally partaken of.

29.     The Mess will be closed at midnight, the last Mess member leaving it will order it to be closed.

30.     After the Mess is closed and the Mess Sergeant and waiters have left the Mess, they are under no circumstances to be roused up by any Officer, and no Wine, etc., will be issued by the Mess Sergeant.

31.     A division of labour will he arranged between the Mess Waiters so as to enable one of them to be in livery by 3 p.m. daily.

32.     All Mess and Wine bills will be paid before the seventh of the month, and all fines will be credited to the Mess Fund.

33.     All errors or overcharges in the daily wine book will be communicated to the Mess Sergeant within forty-eight hours, otherwise they cannot be rectified, except absence, duty, sickness or other sufficient cause prevents the discovery of the error, and, as the Wine book shall be daily laid in the Mess Room for inspection, it will be an Officer's own fault if he do not examine its correctness, and he will, therefore, have no right to complain.

34.     An Officer proceeding on leave for three days or longer may be exempted from payment for Messing provided he gives notice to the Mess Sergeant.

35.     A member shall not be permitted to bring Wines or Liquors of his own to the Mess table.

36.     When Champagne, Claret or Sauterne is partaken of, it will he charged equally to all Officers drinking it. In the case of the other Wines each Officer shall pay for what he consumes.

37.     Officers drinking any particular Wine at dinner and wishing to finish it afterwards, can only do so by permission of the President.

38.     When Champagne is drunk it will not be handed round till the entrees are served.

39.     On the Guests and Officers leaving the table, it will be the duty of the Vice President to see that the Wine remaining on the Mess table is secured by the Mess Sergeant.

40.     No article of Mess property will be allowed to be taken, unless with special permission, out of the Mess by married Officers or others; the Mess, however, will provide the necessary articles for Officers on guard or sick list.

41.     The dinner hour shall be settled by a majority of two-thirds of the dining members, subject to the sanction of the Commanding officer.

42.     All orders to the band, whether as to extra music, or for its dismissal, when it is playing at the Mess, shall be given by the Senior Officer present.

43.     No Officer shall be allowed to open letters or read them at the dinner table without permission of the President.

44.     On Inspection Dinners or Luncheons no Officer shall be allowed to invite private guests.

45.     Whenever it is proposed to five an entertainment to another corps, or to any guest or guests, the rule prescribed by H.M. Regulations must be complied with.

46.     It is imperative on the Senior Officer present to preserve order and gentlemanly behaviour at the table, and to stop any offensive discussions of a personal, religious or political nature, that may tend to create discord.

47.     Any member of the Mess who shall willfully or wantonly lose, break or injure any article of Mess property shall be charged double the price of the same, but if such articles are destroyed by accident on that part of the members, by their guests, or by their servants, they shall only pay the costs of replacing the same.

48.     In order to secure care on the part of the Mess servants, a part of the cost price of any article broken by them, but not exceeding the half of its value, shall, at the discretion of the Mess President, be stopped from their wages.

49.     The practice of Officers treating each other to wine, liquor, cigars, cigarettes, etc., within the premises of their own Mess is strictly prohibited. This rule is equally applicable to gentlemen who are Honorary Members, but does not extend to the case of offering hospitality to strangers calling upon the Mess, or Officers of other Corps invited into the Mess while on duty in the vicinity.

50.     No dogs will be admitted in to the Mess or ante-room, and Mess servants will be directed to drive out all dogs that may at any time enter; and if the dog's master be present, a fine of twenty-five cents will be levied on him.

51.     No official books or documents are to be brought into the Mess premises, viz, the Mess room, ante-room and billiard room. Caps, sticks, swords, etc., will not be left therein, and the use of slippers is prohibited.

52.     No smoking will be allowed in the ante-room within the quarter hour preceeding the second Mess bugle, and on Guest Night no pipes will be permitted in the ante-room unless by special permission.

53.     The Officers dress for Mess will be according to regulations, and no member will be allowed in the Mess premises in plain clothes after the first dinner bugle has sounded.

54.     No Officer shall appear in the Mess premises after dinner unless in Mess or evening dress.

55.     It will be the duty of the Mess Committee to see that every Member, Temporary Member and Honorary Member is provided with a copy of the Officer's Mess Rules, the same to be paid for.

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