Assheton Gore Curzon-Howe

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Admiral The Honourable Sir Assheton G. Curzon-Howe.

Admiral THE HONOURABLE SIR Assheton Gore Curzon-Howe, G.C.V.O., K.C.B., C.M.G., F.R.G.S., Royal Navy (10 August, 1850 – 1 March, 1911) was an officer of the Royal Navy.

Early Life & Career

Curzon-Howe was born the youngest of thirteen children of Richard Curzon-Howe, First Earl Howe.

He was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant from the Royal Yacht Victoria and Albert on 18 September, 1872.[1]

Captain

Curzon-Howe was promoted to the rank of Captain on 6 January, 1888 when he was thirty-seven years of age.[2] On 24 April he was appointed in command of Boadicea as Flag Captain to Rear-Admiral The Hon. Edmund R. Fremantle. He was appointed a Companion in the Military Division of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath (C.B.) on 1 January, 1891, for his services during the operations against Witu.[3] He was superseded in Boadicea on 7 May, discharged from ship's books on 31 May, and returned to Britain on 8 June. He was appointed in command of the Latona on 8 July for the annual manœuvres. Curzon-Howe was appointed an Assistant Director of Naval Intelligence and head of the Foreign Intelligence Division on 29 August.

On 21 September, 1892, he was appointed in command of the Cleopatra on the North America Station. He held this command until she paid off on 5 December, 1895. During his tenure he hoisted his broad pendant three times as Commodore, Second Class, as Senior Officer on the Newfoundland Fisheries Division. For "special services rendered while engaged in the protection of the Newfoundland Fisheries" Curzon-Howe was appointed an Ordinary member of the Third Class, or Companion, in the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (C.M.G.) on 1 January, 1896.[4]

Curzon-Howe was appointed in command of the battleship Revenge on 14 January, 1896, in the Particular Service Squadron. On 21 April, 1897, he was appointed in command of the training ship H.M.S. Britannia. One of the cadets who went through Britannia under him recalled that he was known as "the politest man in the Navy."[5]

He was appointed a Naval Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria on 6 July, 1899, vice Mann.[6] On 20 February, 1900, he was appointed in command of new battleship Ocean in the Mediterranean. On the death of Queen Victoria he was reappointed a Naval Aide-de-Camp to King Edward VII on 25 February, 1901.[7]

Flag Rank

Curzon-Howe was promoted to the rank of Rear-Admiral with seniority of 23 July, 1901, vice Mann.[8]

He was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (C.V.O.) on 2 November, 1902.[9]

On the occasion of the King's birthday, Curzon-Howe was appointed an Ordinary Member of the Second Class, or Knight Commander, in the Military Division of the Order of the Bath (K.C.B.) on 30 June, 1905.[10] He was promoted to the rank of Vice-Admiral on 12 September, vice Metaxa.[11]

Curzon-Howe was promoted to the rank of Admiral on 2 January, 1909, vice Bruce.[12]

During 1909, Curzon-Howe underwent surgery for a cancerous tumor on his tongue. The circumstances were recounted by George King-Hall in his diary:

Viscount Curzon called on me. He told me that my friend Assheton C-H (his great Uncle), knew that something was the matter with his tongue, six months ago and that he had said nothing to his wife about it and intended to have it operated on at Malta, but on his attending the Court, to receive the GCVO, Sir J Laking [actually Sir Francis Laking] the King's physician, noticed his arm in a sling and asked him about it. Assheton said it was only gout, but touching his cheek, said "This is worse." Laking knew that it must be something serious and spoke to the King about it, who told [Sir Frederick] Treves to look into the question, the result being that the operation of removing a large part of his tongue was performed by one of his assistants under Treves' direction.[13]

Following the operation, Curzon-Howe could write to the First Lord of the Admiralty, Reginald McKenna, that, "My wounds are all healed up and my speech, though thick, is only like that of an old man with a badly fitted set of teeth." He informed McKenna that he had been advised to undergo a "course of radium in Paris" to make "doubly sure" that his ailment was gone. However, he wrote that "I do not think it is necessary in the circumstances."[14]

Death

Curzon-Howe died at Portsmouth of a cerebral hæmorrhage at Portsmouth on 1 March, 1911.[15]

George Fowler King-Hall wrote in his diary "after dinner to my great sorrow and distress a W/T message was handed into me, saying my dear old friend Assheton Curzon-Howe ... had a paralytic stroke yesterday and died last night."[16]

See Also

Bibliography

Papers

Service Records

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Sir William A. D. Acland, Bart.
Second-in-Command,
Channel Squadron

1902 – 1903
Succeeded by
The Hon. Hedworth Lambton
Second-in-Command,
Channel Fleet

1904
Preceded by
Francis C. B. Bridgeman
Second-in-Command,
Channel Fleet

1905 – 1907
Succeeded by
Sir Reginald N. Custance

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
?
Captain of H.M.S. Boadicea
24 Apr, 1888[17] – 7 Apr, 1891[18]
Succeeded by
Charles S. Donner
Preceded by
?
Captain of H.M.S. Latona
8 Jul, 1891[19] – 28 Aug, 1891[20]
Succeeded by
Charles H. Cross
Preceded by
The Hon. Maurice A. Bourke
Assistant Director of Naval Intelligence, Foreign Division
29 Aug, 1891[21] – 20 Sep, 1892[22]
Succeeded by
Henry D. Barry
Preceded by
William M. Lang
Captain of H.M.S. Cleopatra
21 Sep, 1892[23] – 5 Dec, 1895[24]
Succeeded by
Archibald J. Pocklington
Preceded by
?
Captain of H.M.S. Revenge
14 Jan, 1896[25] – 5 Nov, 1896[26]
Succeeded by
Harry T. Grenfell
Preceded by
Arthur W. Moore
Captain of Training Ship H.M.S. Britannia
21 Apr, 1897[27] – 19 Feb, 1900[28]
Succeeded by
Michael P. O'Callaghan
Preceded by
New Command
Captain of H.M.S. Ocean
20 Feb, 1900[29] – 27 Oct, 1901[30]
Succeeded by
Richard W. White
Preceded by
Sir William A. D. Acland, Bart.
Second-in-Command, Channel Squadron
5 Jun, 1902[31]
Succeeded by
?
Preceded by
Harry T. Grenfell
Second-in-Command, China Station
13 Jun, 1903[32] – 2 Aug, 1905[33]
Succeeded by
Command Abolished
Preceded by
Sir Arthur W. Moore
Second-in-Command, Channel Fleet
5 Dec, 1905[34] – 22 Feb, 1907[35]
Succeeded by
Sir Reginald N. Custance
Preceded by
Sir William H. May
Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet
23 Feb, 1907[36] – 19 Nov, 1908[37]
Succeeded by
H.S.H. Prince Louis of Battenberg
Preceded by
Sir Charles C. Drury
Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Station
20 Nov, 1908[38] – 30 Apr, 1910[39]
Succeeded by
Sir Edmund S. Poë
Preceded by
Sir Arthur D. Fanshawe
Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth Station
30 Apr, 1910[40] – 1 Mar, 1911[41]
Succeeded by
Sir Arthur W. Moore

Footnotes

  1. The London Gazette: no. 23899. p. 4076. 20 September, 1872.
  2. The London Gazette: no. 25774. p. 242. 6 January, 1888.
  3. The London Gazette: no. 26121. p. 3. 2 January, 1891.
  4. The London Gazette: no. 26695. p. 2. 1 January, 1896.
  5. "H.M.S. Britannia, 1897." p. 475.
  6. The London Gazette: no. 27096. p. 4213. 7 July, 1899.
  7. The London Gazette: no. 27289. p. 1417. 26 February, 1901.
  8. The London Gazette: no. 27344. p. 5258. 9 August, 1901.
  9. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 27493. p. 7161. 9 November, 1902.
  10. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 27811. p. 4548. 30 June, 1905.
  11. The London Gazette: no. 27837. p. 6329. 19 September, 1905.
  12. The London Gazette: no. 28212. p. 131. 5 January, 1909.
  13. King-Hall diary entry for 29 July, 1909.
  14. Curzon-Howe to McKenna. Letter of 16 August, 1909. McKenna Papers. Churchill Archives Centre. MCKN 3/9.
  15. ADM 196/38. f. 275. The Admiral allegedly met his end in a rather undignified manner. Anyone interested in the details may consult an undated March, 1911, letter from Captain Osmond de B. Brock to Rear-Admiral Sir Edmond J. S. Slade. Slade Papers. National Maritime Museum. MRF/39/1.
  16. King-Hall diary entry for 3 March, 1911.
  17. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  18. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  19. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 34.
  20. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 34.
  21. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  22. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 34.
  23. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  24. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  25. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. p. 66.
  26. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 66.
  27. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 276.
  28. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  29. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  30. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  31. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  32. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  33. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  34. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  35. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  36. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  37. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  38. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  39. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.
  40. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 275.
  41. Curzon-Howe Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/18. f. 529.