Gerald Graham

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For the imperial and naval historian, see Gerald S. Graham.
Gerald Graham
Gerald Graham 1806.png
Born 27 June 1831
Acton, London
Died 17 December 1899 (aged 68)
Bideford, Devon
Buried at East-the-Water Cemetery, Bideford
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg British Army
Rank Lieutenant-General
Unit Royal Engineers
Battles/wars Crimean War
Second Anglo-Chinese War
Mahdist War
1882 Anglo-Egyptian War
Awards Victoria Cross
Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George

Lieutenant General Sir Gerald Graham, VC GCB GCMG (27 June 1831 – 17 December 1899) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

Early life[edit]

He was born in Acton, Middlesex, and after studying at Wimbledon and Dresden he was admitted (1847) to the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich and completed his military training in the School of Military Engineering at Chatham.

Victoria Cross[edit]

He was 23 years old, and a lieutenant in the Corps of Royal Engineers, British Army during the Crimean War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

On 18 June 1855 in the Crimea, Lieutenant Graham, accompanied by a sapper (John Perie) showed determined gallantry at the head of a ladder party at the assault on the Redan at Sebastopol. He also went out on numerous occasions to bring in wounded officers and men.

Later service[edit]

Photo from the Royal Engineers Library with permission

During the Second Anglo-Chinese War he again displayed great courage and skill and, although seriously wounded in the storming of the Taku forts (21 August 1860), subsequently entered Peking with the victors. Following his return to England in 1861, he was for 16 years commanding engineer successively at Brighton, Aldershot, Montreal, Chatham, Manchester, and York. In 1877 he was appointed assistant director of works for barracks at the War Office.

In 1882 he accompanied Sir Garnet Wolseley to Egypt as brigadier general, and his forces had a great share in the victorious campaign against Urabi Pasha. In 1884 he took the field against Osman Digna, whose army he defeated at El-Teb and Tamai. In the meantime he had urged a plan for the assistance of Gordon, which, however, was not accepted.

Graham was made a G.C.B. in 1896, and a colonel commandant of the Corps of Royal Engineers in 1899.

The medal[edit]

His Victoria Cross is currently owned by Graham's Great Great Great Grandson Oliver Brooks and is displayed at the Royal Engineers Museum (Gillingham, England).[1]


He published a number of scientific papers and a contribution to the Fortnightly Review, entitled "Last Words with Gordon" (1887), and prepared a translation of Goetze's Operations of the German Engineers and Technical Troops during the Franco-German War of 1870–71 (1875).


  • Vetch, Colonel R. H. Life, Letters, and Diaries of Lieut.-General Sir Gerald Graham (Edinburgh: William Blackwood and Sons, 1901).


  1. ^

External links[edit]