George Edwin Matthews
Life & Career
Born in western London, Matthews entered the navy in the September 1902 intake term at H.M.S. Britannia, placing seventy-fifth of seventy-seven applicants in order of merit in the competitive entrance examination. He passed out of the school in mid January, 1904 and was sent to the battleship H.M.S. Revenge in the Home Fleet. After four months in her, he joined the destroyer Exmouth, where he served for almost three years.
Matthews was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 31 December, 1909.
Matthews was appointed in command of the first-class torpedo boat T.B. 109 on 17 March, 1912. On 2 July, he was lent to the Tribal Class destroyer H.M.S. Crusader for the Annual Manoeuvres of 1912.
In March 1913, a seaman from T.B. 109 was injured in an accident and Matthews was told this was due to "clumsy seamanship", and that he should be more careful in future.
In early 1914, Matthews was hospitalised at Haslar for two weeks on account of a hip injury. He was then appointed to the battleship Orion from February 1914 until shortly after she participated in the Battle of Jutland. On 19 June 1916 he was superseded in her and appointed soon thereafter in command of the destroyer Cockatrice.
He was congratulated for convoying Portuguese transports in a satisfactory manner in 1917. On 10 November, he rescued the survivors of the commissioned escort ship H.M.S. Bostonian under difficult conditions after she had been torpedoed in the English Channel by U 53.
Matthews was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander on 31 December, 1917.
On 26 January 1918, he was admitted to Granton hospital with catarrh. He was found fit in mid-February.
Matthews died of influenza and bronchial pneumonia. Matthews was posthumously awarded the Portuguese Miltary Order of Avis (Officer), gazetted 4 February, 1921.
Alfred G. Peace
|Captain of H.M. T.B. 109
17 Mar, 1912 – 22 Jan, 1914
Philip H. Irwin
William J. Whitworth
|Captain of H.M.S. Cockatrice
5 Jul, 1916 – 31 Oct, 1917
Hugh J. Woodward
|Captain of H.M.S. Sable
31 Oct, 1917 – 18 Oct, 1918
Edward B. Hoyle
- "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Thursday, Aug 14, 1902; pg. 5; Issue 36846.
- The Navy List. (March, 1913). p. 401.
- The Navy List. (February, 1914). p. 401a.
- The Navy List. (November, 1917). p. 392l.