Edward Francis Benedict Charlton

From The Dreadnought Project
Jump to: navigation, search
Admiral Sir Edward F. B. Charlton, 1918.
© National Portrait Gallery, London.

Admiral SIR Edward Francis Benedict Charlton, K.C.B.K.C.M.G.C.B., R.N. (21 March, 1865 – 23 October, 1937) was an officer of the Royal Navy. He entered the Navy in 1878 and qualified in Torpedo Duties. Having served in China during the Boxer Rebellion he served in command of destroyers, before becoming Assistant Director of Torpedoes at the Admiralty. During the First World War Charlton served as Commander-in-Chief on the Cape of Good Hope Station and Rear-Admiral Commanding, East Coast of England. After the war he served for three years on the Naval Inter-Allied Commission of Control in Berlin, before retiring with the rank of Admiral in 1924. He was knighted in 1918.

Life & Career

Edward Francis Benedict Charlton was born at Newcastle-on-Tyne on 21 March, 1865, the eldest son of Edward Charlton, M.D., D.C.L. Educated at Ushaw College, Durham, and the Royal Academy, Gosport, Charlton entered the Royal Navy in January, 1878. he passed out of his term ninth overall. He was a Midshipman in the Alexandra at the bombardment of Alexandria in 1882 and landed with the Naval Brigade. He took all firsts in his examinations for the rank of Lieutenant, and on 28 November, 1885, he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant with seniority of 18 December, 1884.[1] He served in the Rapid on the Australia Station, and in September, 1888 was appointed to qualify in Torpedo Duties. He trained in the Vernon under Captain Arthur K. Wilson, and then served on the instructional staff. Charlton afterwards served as Torpedo Lieutenant in ships at sea.

Charlton was promoted to the rank of Commander on 31 December, 1897. On 20 January, 1898, he was appointed to H.M.S. President as an Assistant to the Director of Naval Ordnance. He was appointed Commander of the cruiser Orlando on the China Station on 16 February, 1899.

In July 1899, Charlton was awarded the Royal Humane Society's Medal for his attempt to save the life of a seaman in danger "from current & crocodiles in Muda River, Penang."[2]

On 21 July, 1901, he was appointed Commander of H.M.S. Vernon. However, he did not receive news of the appointment until the 28th after, in his own words, "a delightful week in the Inland Sea visiting odd nooks and corners of this smiling country. Here I found a wire from the Commander-in-Chief ordering me home by Canadian Pacific Railway, appointed to HMS Vernon. I can only conclude that Madden has been promoted and I am to take his place. I should have likes to have finished this commission and feel rather like I am defrauding my own men after being with them for 2½ years."[3]

Captain

On 1 January, 1903, he was promoted to the rank of Captain.[4] On 30 September he was appointed to President for a War Course at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich.

On 1 January, 1904, Charlton was appointed Captain (D) in the Home Fleet.[5] On 8 February, 1905, he was appointed to the Sapphire to superintend the transfer of duties from Erebus to Sapphire II,[6] ahead of Rear-Admiral Alfred L. Winsloe taking up his duties as Rear-Admiral Commanding, Destroyers and Submarines.[Inference]

He was appointed in command of Hecla on 21 February, 1905, for service in command of the destroyer flotilla on the China Station. He paid off Hecla on 9 July, 1906. On 10 September he attended a Signal Course, and on 2 October he was appointed to President for a War Course at Portsmouth, where he obtained a First Class pass. On 19 November he was lent to Ariadne for the remainder of the War Course.[7] He remained in command until 21 May, 1907, when he was given command of the battleship Magnificent in the Home Fleet.[7]

Of his time as Captain of the Magnificent, Rear-Admiral The Honourable Stanley C. J. Colville wrote that Charlton was a "very able offr. of high judgt & great zeal. A most excellent Capt. of a battleship & knows how to handle his ship." C.-in-C. Home Fleet Sir Francis Bridgeman was equally complimentary: "Capt. [Charlton] shd. do well in the highest ranks. I have every confidence in him."[8] In 1908, the Admiralty expressed their appreciation to Charlton at the results achieved by Magnificent during Battle Practice.[8]

Charlton was appointed to Topaze as Commodore, Second Class on 27 November, 1908, in charge of destroyers in commission in the Home Fleet,[9] but a secondary source indicates he went to corvette Boadicea in this same month.

As a Commodore, he was in command of the First Destroyer Flotilla from his flagship Boadicea on 27 June, 1910.[10]

On 1 February, 1911, Charlton was appointed to the Admiralty, and on 11 February became Assistant Director of Torpedoes.[11] He was appointed a Naval Aide-de-Camp to the King dated 22 September, vice Browning.[12]

Charlton was promoted to the rank of Rear-Admiral on 10 May, 1913, vice Moore.[13]

Charlton was appointed an Ordinary Member of the Third Class, or Companion, in the Civil Division of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath (C.B.) on 1 January, 1914.[14] In July it was announced that Charlton would succeed Rear-Admiral Bernard Currey as Rear-Admiral in the Home Fleets at Portsmouth on 18 November.[15]

Great War

On 4 September, 1914, Charlton was appointed Admiral Commanding East Coast Minesweepers.[16]

He was appointed Commander-in-Chief on the Cape of Good Hope Station on 6 December, 1915, and assumed command on 12 February, 1916.[17]

He was appointed an Additional Member of the Second Class, or Knight Commander, of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (K.C.M.G.) on 1 January, 1918.[18] On 30 January he was promoted to the rank of Vice-Admiral vice Limpus.[19] On 15 July he was appointed Vice-Admiral Commanding East Coast of England.[20]

Post-War

Charlton helped frame the post-war balance of power by first serving as President of the Allied Naval Armistice Commission from 10 March, 1919 until August of that year when the same body was apparently renamed to something illegible. He may have served there until 1921. On 27 September, 1919, he hoisted his flag in Malaya.[21]

Charlton was promoted to the rank of Admiral on 5 July, 1921, vice Sturdee.[22] He was gazzetted an Ordinary Member of the Second Class, or Knight Commander, of the Military Division of the Order of the Bath (K.C.B.) on 2 January, 1922.[23] He was placed on the Retired List at his own request on 3 March, 1924.[24]

Bibliography

  • "Admiral Sir Edward Charlton" (Obituaries). The Times. Monday, 25 October, 1937. Issue 47824, col C, p. 20.
  • Urban, Frank (1998). Ned's Navy: The Private Letters of Edward Charlton from Cadet to Admiral. Shrewsbury: Airlife. ISBN 1853109045.

Service Records

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
?
Captain of H.M. T.B. 82
22 Jul, 1890[25] – 15 Aug, 1890[26]
Succeeded by
William R. Napier
Preceded by
Somerset A. G. Calthorpe
Captain of H.M.S. Halcyon
18 Jun, 1904[27]
Succeeded by
Cecil E. Rooke
Preceded by
John I. Graham
Captain of H.M.S. Hecla
21 Feb, 1905[28] – 9 Jul, 1906[29]
Succeeded by
John Nicholas
Preceded by
Bentinck J. D. Yelverton
Captain of H.M.S. Ariadne
19 Nov, 1906[30] – 21 May, 1907[31]
Succeeded by
Albert S. Lafone
Preceded by
Sackville H. Carden
Captain of H.M.S. Magnificent
21 May, 1907[32] – 27 Nov, 1908[33]
Succeeded by
Richard M. Harbord
Preceded by
Lewis Bayly
Captain of H.M.S. Topaze
27 Nov, 1908[34][35] – 27 Jul, 1909[36]
Succeeded by
Francis M. Leake
Preceded by
Francis M. Leake
Captain of H.M.S. Boadicea
27 Jul, 1909[37] – 5 Dec, 1910[38]
Succeeded by
Robert K. Arbuthnot
Preceded by
?
Captain (D), First Destroyer Flotilla
27 Jul, 1909[39] – after 27 Jun, 1910[40]
Succeeded by
Sir Robert K. Arbuthnot
Preceded by
Stuart Nicholson
Assistant Director of Torpedoes
11 Feb, 1911[41] – 15 Aug, 1914[42]
Succeeded by
Philip W. Dumas
Preceded by
New Command
Admiral Commanding East Coast Minesweepers
4 Sep, 1914[43] – Dec, 1915[44]
Succeeded by
Edward S. Fitzherbert
as Admiral of Minesweeping
Preceded by
Herbert G. King-Hall
Commander-in-Chief, Cape of Good Hope Station
6 Dec, 1915[45] – May, 1918[46]
Succeeded by
The Hon. Edward S. Fitzherbert
Preceded by
Stuart Nicholson
Vice-Admiral Commanding, East Coast of England
14 Jul, 1918[47] – 30 Aug, 1919[48]
Succeeded by
?

Footnotes

  1. The London Gazette: no. 25535. p. 5818. 1 December, 1885.
  2. ADM 196/88. f. 6.
  3. Letter of 30 July, 1901. Quoted in Urban. pp. 102-103.
  4. The London Gazette: no. 27512. p. 3. 2 January, 1903.
  5. "Naval & Military Intelligence" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Friday, 4 December, 1903. Issue 37255, col B, p. 4.
  6. "Naval and Military Intelligence" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Monday, 6 February, 1905. Issue 37623, col A, p. 8.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  8. 8.0 8.1 The National Archives. ADM 196/88. f. 6.
  9. "Naval and Military Intelligence" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Wednesday, 28 November, 1908. Issue 38813, col C, p. 6.
  10. "The Mobilization of the Fleet" The Times. Monday, 27 June, 1910.
  11. "Naval Appointments" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Tuesday, 11 January, 1911. Issue 39496, col B, p. 8.
  12. The London Gazette: no. 28539. p. 7283. 6 October, 1911.
  13. The London Gazette: no. 28718. p. 3438. 13 May, 1913.
  14. Edinburgh Gazette: no. 12630. p. 7. 2 January, 1914.
  15. "Second Sea Lord" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Thursday, 23 July, 1914. Issue 40586, col G, p. 10.
  16. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (May, 1915). p. 4.
  17. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (May, 1916). p. 8.
  18. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 30451. p. 81. 1 January, 1918.
  19. The London Gazette: no. 30522. p. 1946. 12 February, 1918.
  20. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (November, 1918). p. 2.
  21. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  22. The London Gazette: no. 32394. p. 5733. 19 July, 1921.
  23. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 32563. p. 10712. 31 December, 1921.
  24. The London Gazette: no. 32919. p. 2323. 18 March, 1924.
  25. "Naval Intelligence". The Times. Friday, 19 July, 1890. Issue 33068, col C, p. 12.
  26. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42/239
  27. The Navy List. (October, 1904). p. 322.
  28. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  29. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  30. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  31. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  32. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  33. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  34. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  35. The Navy List. (July, 1909). p. 386.
  36. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  37. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  38. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  39. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  40. "The Mobilization of the Fleet" The Times. Monday, 27 June, 1910.
  41. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  42. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  43. Supplement to the Monthly Navy List. (May, 1915). p. 4.
  44. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  45. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  46. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  47. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.
  48. Charlton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 282.