Field Marshal Garnet Wolseley, 1st Viscount Wolseley, KP, GCB, OM, GCMG, VD, PC

Garnet Joseph Wolseley was born in Dublin in 1833, the eldest son of Major Garnet Wolseley. After joining the 90th Perthshire Light Infantry in 1854, he rose quickly through the ranks until he became a Field Marshall and then the Commander in Chief of the Army in 1895. He was responsible for major reforms which helped turn the British Army into a modern fighting force

Wolseley joined the 90th shortly before they departed for the Crimea and accompanied them there. He quickly distinguished himself and obtained a promotion to the rank of Captain after only 3 years service. He suffered some serious injuries, including losing his right eye.

Wolseley went on to serve in a number of other campaigns where he further distinguished himself. In the Ashanti War he commanded an expedition which he managed to complete in only two months. For this he received the thanks of both Houses of Parliament and a grant of £25,000. He later commanded the British army in the Zulu War and the expedition to the Nile to relieve the besieged General Gordon.

During his time as Commander in Chief he helped introduce a number of reforms, such as the end of the sale of officers’ ranks and the introduction of a territorial force.

Garnet Wolseley died at Menton in France in 1913. He is buried at St Paul’s Cathedral in London.

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Field Marshal Viscount Garnet Wolseley in 1896.

Field Marshal Viscount Garnet Wolseley in 1896.

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Wolseley 1873

Major General Sir Garnet Wolseley in 1873 just before leaving for the Ashanti campaign.

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Woseley 1853

Ensign Wolseley at the start of his military career in 1853.

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Wolseley and men of 90th

Wolseley (far right) with other officers of the 90th during the Crimea campaign, 1854.