Frederick Shaw (British Army officer)

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Sir Frederick Shaw
Lieutenant General Sir Frederick Charles Shaw KCB, PC (1861–1942) in 1915.jpg
Born (1861-07-31)31 July 1861
Died 6 January 1942(1942-01-06) (aged 80)
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  British Army
Years of service 1882–1920
Rank Lieutenant General
Commands held 2nd Battalion the Sherwood Foresters
9th Infantry Brigade
13th (Western) Division
Battles/wars Anglo-Egyptian War
Second Boer War
First World War
Anglo-Irish War
Awards Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath

Lieutenant General Sir Frederick Charles Shaw, KCB, PC (1861–1942) was a British Army general who served in the Boer War and the First World War. He became Commander-in-Chief, Ireland and retired in 1920.


Shaw was born on 31 July 1861, the son of John Shaw of Normanton, Derbyshire. He was educated at Repton School. He married Florence Edith Denton, daughter of Reverend Canon Denton of Ashby-de-la-Zouch. She died in 1918; they had one daughter.[1]

Military career[edit]

Shaw was commissioned into the Sherwood Foresters as a lieutenant on 28 January 1882.[2] He saw service in the Anglo-Egyptian War later the same year,[2] and was promoted to captain on 14 October 1889.[3]

Promoted to major on 11 October 1899, he served during the Second Boer War as a Brigade Major, then as Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General and then as Assistant Adjutant-General.[2] He received the brevet rank of lieutenant colonel on 29 November 1900. Following the end of the war, he return to the United Kingdom in August 1902.[4] In 1907 he was made Commanding Officer of 2nd Battalion the Sherwood Foresters.[2]

He served in World War I initially as Commander of 9th Infantry Brigade in which role he deployed to France.[2] He was wounded by a shell that hit his Headquarters on 12 November 1914.[2] After his recovery, in 1915, he was initially appointed as the Commander of the 29th Division on its mobilisation in January. Just two months later he was replaced by Hunter-Weston and was later appointed Commander of the 13th (Western) Division.[5] He then became Director of Home Defence and subsequently Chief of the General Staff for Home Forces.[2]

On 19 September 1919, during the Irish War of Independence, he suggested that the police force in Ireland be expanded via the recruitment of a special force of volunteer British ex-servicemen.[6] Following direct intervention from London, the "Black and Tans" and Auxiliary Division of the Constabulary were introduced in order to achieve a decisive result. Ironically this intervention preceded a purge of the Irish administration at Dublin Castle during which Shaw himself was replaced.[7]

Shaw retired in 1920, and died on 6 January 1942.[1]


  1. ^ a b Who Was Who 1941–50.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g University of Birmingham
  3. ^ Hart´s Army list, 1903
  4. ^ "The War - Return of Troops". The Times (36842). London. 9 August 1902. p. 11. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Townshend, Charles (1975). The British Campaign in Ireland, 1919-1921: The Development of Political and Military Policies. Oxford. p. 30. ISBN 019821863X. 
  7. ^ Ainsworth, John S. (2000). British Security Policy in Ireland, 1920-1921: A Desperate Attempt by the Crown to Maintain Anglo-Irish Unity by Force. Proceedings 11th Irish-Australian Conference, Murdoch University, Perth. p. 1. 
Military offices
Preceded by
Sir Bryan Mahon
Commander-in-Chief, Ireland
Succeeded by
Sir Nevil Macready