Frederick William Lumsden VC
DSO & Three Bars
December 1872 – 4 June 1918) was a British officer in Royal Marine Artillery
and later the
General Staff, during the First World
. During his service he was decorated four times for
valourous service and saw action in several major campaigns before
he was killed just months before the war's end in June 1918 with
the rank of Brigadier-General. Amongst his decorations was the
, the most prestigious
award available to British or Commonwealth
William Lumsden was born into a military family in Frizabad,
India on 14 December, 1872. At a young age he
returned to Britain and attended Bristol Grammar School until the age of eighteen when he joined the
Royal Marine Artillery as a
Serving in the Marine Service until 1907,
Lumsden then entered the Staff College, qualifying in 1910.
became the second staff officer at Singapore, not returning home until called home for war
service in the months leading up to the outbreak of hostilities in
April and 4 April 1917 at Francilly, France, Major
Lumsden undertook to bring in six captured enemy field-guns which
had been left in dug-in positions 300 yards in front of the British
The enemy were keeping these guns under very heavy
fire. Major Lumsden led four artillery teams and a party of
infantry through the hostile barrage, and despite casualties they
eventually got all the guns away. He himself made three journeys to
the guns and then stayed there directing operations until the last
gun had been taken back.
killed in action at Blairvill, near Arras, France, on 4 June
In 1920, the Mess of the Royal Marines commissioned H. Donald
to paint two portraits of Lumsden. The work is now housed
in the Royal Marines
Museum in the Royal Marine Artillery Barracks, Southsea, Portsmouth, England.
Victoria Cross is also displayed at the museum.
Notes and references
- "Highlights of Hampshire's Collections", Lianne
Jarrett Associates. Retrieved 23 March 2008.