The Elias and Andrew Durnford Royal Engineers orderly book contains 104 pages of copied incoming and outgoing military orders and correspondence pertaining to the British Army's Corps of Royal Engineers. Orders and letters from Major General James Bramham, Chief Engineer William Green, and others concern equipment, officers' pay, courts martial, and other military subjects. The correspondence is dated June 28, 1782-December 8, 1795.
The Durnfords' main correspondents, Major General James Bramham and Chief Engineer William Green, occasionally transmitted correspondence from King George III and Charles Lennox, 3rd Duke of Richmond. The orders and letters often pertain to personnel-related issues, such as monetary compensation for lost baggage, officers' pay, command hierarchies, the creation of a Corps of Invalid Engineers, promotions, and hiring laborers in Canada and the West Indies. Others concern the maintenance of works and equipment and the relationship between the re-named Corps of Royal Engineers and other army units (pages 61-62). Lists relate to the reorganized hierarchical and pay structure of the Corps of Engineers (pages 22-24), items that officers should carry while stationed overseas (pages 2-3), and the distribution of engineers by seniority (pages 34-37) and by post (pages 37-40). At least two entries pertain to the court martial of Colonel Hugh Debbieg (November 2, 1784, pages 29-31; June 29, 1789, pages 73-79). Other entries address the court martial of Thomas Wheldale (May 25, 1791, pages 80-86) and the court martial of "Lieutenant Colonel Frazer" (September 10, 1792, page 91). Copied outgoing letters of Andrew Durnford include his acknowledgments of incoming correspondence (not present) and brief reports from St. George's, Bermuda.