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BEF Commanders


Capt_Starlight
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Hi

I wonder if anyone could provide or point to the relevant place for the formation commanders in the BEF ("The old contemptibles") on its mobilisation in August 1914 and their fate by say the time of March 1918 offensives ?

French, Grierson, Haig, Smith-Dorrien are well known but I am looking to down to Brigade commanders, CRA and equivalents (around Brigadier General rank).

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Blimey!

I am not aware of a site or list that shows the BEF commanders (brig-Gen level) from 1914 to 1918. Is there any real division or commanders you are interested in?

As a taster 4th division

GOC Major-Gen. Snow went to 27th div then VII Corps, returning home early 1918 ill.

All four Brigadiers went on to bigger things: Haldane, Hunter Weston, Wilson went on to Corps command. Milne of the artillery went to be theatre commander in Salonika.

The picture is I guess mixed for others, some were returned home early as not fit for job, some after the Somme and others later on.

Hope this gives a feel. If you are after other specifics then let me know.

Regards

Arm

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No website that I know of.

The complete listing of who these men were can be found in A. F. Becke's Order of Battle of Divisions. Most formation comanders (but not things like CRAs) are also named in the 1914 Volume 1 of the British Official History.

Your thread title is "what became of them". If you are interested in those that lost their lives, Bloody Red Tabs by Graham Maddocks and Frank Davies gives all the biogs.

Many of these men are also covered in detail in the Donkey Archives at the website of the Univerity of Birmingham's Centre for First World War Studies.

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OK this should start you off

Samuel Lomax GOC 1st Division was seriously wounded by the imfamous shelling at Hooge in October 1914. He never recovered from his wounds & died in April 1915

Hubert Hamilton GOC 3rd Division killed in action 14th October 1914

These stick in my mind as they were casualties.

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The Retreat from Mons has an ORBAT which lists all the General Officers, Div commanders and brigade commanders -

C-inC - French

CIGS - Murray

Adjutant-general - Macready

QM General - Robertson

1st Army corps -

Haig

1st Div - Lomax. 1st Bde - Maxse, 2nd Bde - Bulfin, 3rd Bde - Landon

2nd Div - Monro. 4th bde - Scott-Kerr, 5th Bde - Haking, 6th Bde - Davies.

Cavalry - Allenby

1st Bde - Briggs, 2nd bde - de B, de Lisle, 3rd Bde - de la Poer Gough, 4th bde - Bingham, 5th Bde - Chetwode

2nd Army Corps -

Smith-Dorrien

3rd Div - Hamilton. 7th Bde - McCrachen, 8th Bde - Doran, 9th bde - Shaw.

5th Div - Ferguson. 13th bde - Cuthbert, 14th Bde - Rolt, 15th Bde - Gleichen

4th Div - Snow . 10th bde - Haldane. 11th Bde - Hunter-Weston, 12th bde Wilson.

steve m

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Thank you for your replies.

It has given me much food for research.

Query arose from another board and the fates of similar level commanders in 2nd BEF by the end of the the "second innings".

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I have been able to track the subsequent careers for most of the Brigade and higher commanders except for the following:

4th Cavalry Brigade - BrigGen CE Bingham - he went onto command the Cavalry Corps in 1915 but disappears form the scene when it is disbanded in 1916. Any information on his subsequent career ?

7th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen FWN McCracken - he went to 15th Infantry Division (when?) and what happened post 15th Infantry Division?

8th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen BJC Doran - seems to have disappeared. Related to BrigGen WRB Doran (17th Infantry Brigade (see below) ?

12th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen HFM Wilson - seems to have disappeared.

17th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen WRB Doran - seems to have disappeared. Related to BrigGen BJC Doran (8th Infantry Brigade (see above) ?

Thank you for any assistance.

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I have been able to track the subsequent careers for most of the Brigade and higher commanders except for the following:

7th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen FWN McCracken - he went to 15th Infantry Division (when?) and what happened post 15th Infantry Division?

8th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen BJC Doran - seems to have disappeared. Related to BrigGen WRB Doran (17th Infantry Brigade (see below) ?

12th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen HFM Wilson - seems to have disappeared.

17th Infantry Brigade - BrigGen WRB Doran - seems to have disappeared. Related to BrigGen BJC Doran (8th Infantry Brigade (see above) ?

Thank you for any assistance.

After commanding 15th Division, McCraken was promoted to Lieutenant General & was GOC 13th Army Corps until March 1918. He then was GOC Scottish Command until June 1919 - source - Salisbury Wardrobe Military Museum

B.J.C.Doran was sent home in October 1914

Wilson replaced Snow as GOC 4th Division after Snow was injured falling from his horse

W.R.B Doran seems to have returned to England early 1915. He was Inspector of Infantry April-May 1915 & then served at the Aldershot Command from September 1915. He retired in March 1919 - source Salisbury Wardrobe Military Museum

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An add-on to above: Wilson went out to Salonika and commanded XII Corps.

Regards

Arm

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