Ernest George William Davidson

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Commander Ernest George William Davidson (8 June, 1874 – 6 October, 1918) was an officer in the Royal Navy.

Life & Career

Davidson was born, perhaps, in Bermuda. He gained five months' time on passing out of Britannia in December, 1889. On 27 February, 1890, he received his first naval appointment, to Undaunted in the Mediterranean.[1]

On 31 August, 1893, Davidson was moved to the Ruby in the Training Squadron. On 14 December, 1893 Davidson was invalided from H.M.S. Ruby with facial fractures sustained during a football match.[2]

Davidson was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 1 April, 1897 and re-appointed in Hussar. On 22 May, he was invalided from Hussar with Mediterranean Fever.[3]

On 1 June, 1902, Davidson was appointed in command of H.M.S. Snipe on the China Station. He issued a report of proceedings on Lake Tung Ting which received Admiralty appreciation. An inspection by Captain Robert Stokes on 23 September, 1902 was satisfactory except for the magazine and two after guns.[4]

Davidson was appointed in command of the destroyer Lightning on 27 April, 1905.[5]

On 15 March, 1906, Davidson was appointed in command of the gunboat Bramble. A 1907 inspection elicited the comment from Commander-in-Chief Moore that "I am of the opinion that he is somewhat lacking intact & judgt in dealing with him."[6]

Davidson inspired a favourable report during a minesweeping exercise in July, 1909.

He was promoted to the rank of Commander on 31 December, 1910.[7]

Davidson was appointed in command of the destroyer Lyra on 7 September, 1912.[8] In January, 1913, Lyra collided with a ship called Burma and Davidson was told to be more careful in future.

Davidson left Lyra when he was appointed to the battleship Zealandia on 16 April, 1915. His appointment ended on 27 August, 1916 when he was considered for command of the light cruiser Newcastle. Instead, he was appointed in command of the armed merchant cruiser Otranto on 3 September, 1916.

Davidson was killed when H.M.S. Otranto was wrecked on 6 October, 1918. Before he died, he coordinated a heroic rescue operation with the intrepid destroyer Mounsey that saved many of the American troops aboard the vessel. American appreciation of his dying efforts were transmitted from the American Major General Biddle.

See Also

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Ernest O. Ballantyne
Captain of H.M.S. Surly
28 Mar, 1905[9] – 27 Apr, 1905[10]
Succeeded by
John Nicholas
Preceded by
Vincent L. Bowring
Captain of H.M.S. Lightning
27 Apr, 1905[11][12] – 29 Dec, 1905[13]
Succeeded by
Claude Seymour
Preceded by
Oscar M. Makins
Captain of H.M.S. Bramble
15 Mar, 1906[14] – 10 Mar, 1908[15]
Succeeded by
Richard O. B. Bridgeman
Preceded by
Henry B. Gellibrand
Captain of H.M.S. Speedwell
22 Sep, 1908[16][17] – 16 Jan, 1911[18]
Succeeded by
William C. O'G. Cochrane
Preceded by
Edward A. D. Masterman
Captain of H.M.S. Lyra
7 Sep, 1912[19][20] – 16 Apr, 1915[21]
Succeeded by
John P. Champion
Preceded by
Herbert MacI. Edwards
Captain of H.M.S. Otranto
3 Sep, 1916[22] – 6 Oct, 1918[23]
Succeeded by
Vessel Lost

Footnotes

  1. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  2. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  3. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  4. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  5. The Monthly Navy List. (December, 1905). p. 341.
  6. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  7. The Navy List. (April, 1914). p. 22.
  8. The Navy List. (January, 1915). p. 352.
  9. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  10. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  11. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  12. The Monthly Navy List. (December, 1905). p. 341.
  13. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  14. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  15. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  16. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  17. The Navy List. (April, 1910). p. 377.
  18. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  19. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  20. The Navy List. (April, 1915). p. 395q.
  21. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.
  22. The Navy List. (August, 1917). p. 401v.
  23. Davidson Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/44/20. f. 21.