Godfrey Haggard

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Godfrey Haggard
Personal details
Godfrey Digby Napier Haggard

6 February 1884
Wanstead, Redbridge, Essex, England
Died3 April 1969(1969-04-03) (aged 85)
Broomfield, Essex, England
Spouse(s)Georgianna Ruel
ChildrenStephen Hubert Avenel Haggard
Paul Amyand Napier Haggard
Joan Marcia Geraldine Haggard
Virginia Edith Haggard
AwardsOfficer of the Order of the British Empire (1918)
Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (1939)
Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George (1943)

Sir Godfrey Digby Napier Haggard KCMG CVO OBE (6 February 1884 – 3 April 1969) was a British diplomat. His career of service spanned forty-four years, culminating with his posting as Consul General at New York, and followed by his appointment as director of the American Forces Liaison Division of the Ministry of Information.


Godfrey Haggard, the third son of Alfred Hinuber Haggard, a Bengal Civil Service official, and his wife Alice Geraldine Schalch Haggard, was born on 6 February 1884 in Wanstead, Redbridge, Essex, England.[1][2][3] He was the nephew of prolific author Sir Henry Rider Haggard, who attained literary fame with his romances King Solomon's Mines and She: A History of Adventure.[1][4][5] In addition, he was the brother of Admiral Sir Vernon Harry Stuart Haggard, who was Commander-in-Chief of the America and West Indies Station.[1][6][7]


Haggard's career with the Consular Service began when he was still a youth, in 1901.[8] He was appointed to the foreign office of the General Consular Service,[9] and then as the British Vice Consul at Guatemala, Central America in 1908.[10][11] He became Vice Consul at Paris in 1914,[12] and at La Paz in 1915.[13] In 1918, Haggard was appointed as the Chargé d'Affaires in Bolivia.[14] By 1921, he was in Havana, as the Consul General for the Republic of Cuba, Republic of Haiti, and the Dominican Republic, serving in that capacity until 1924.[10][15] Haggard was appointed Consul General in Brazil in 1924, residing at Rio de Janeiro.[10][16] He later served elsewhere as Consul General: in Chicago between 1928 and 1932, in Paris between 1932 and 1938, and in New York City between 1938 and 1944.[5][10] During his tenure in Chicago, he also served as Consul General for North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.[17] His appointment as British Consul General at New York was announced on 9 Jun 1938; he succeeded Sir Gerald Campbell, who became High Commissioner to Canada.[6] Later in 1938, Haggard was also appointed Consul General for the States of New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey (with the exception of the counties of Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Ocean, and Salem), as well as the islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon.[18]

After his retirement as the Consul General at New York in 1944, Haggard directed the American Forces Liaison Division of the Ministry of Information from 1944 to 1945.[5][10][19] The diplomat was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1918,[8] became a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1934,[20] was made Commander of the Royal Victorian Order in 1939,[8][21] and became a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1943.[8][22]


He married a native of Québec, Canada, Georgianna Ruel, the daughter of Hubert Ruel and his wife Marceline Goulet Ruel, on 3 May 1910 in Guatemala, Central America.[6][23][24] They had four children; the eldest was actor and writer Stephen Hubert Avenel Haggard.[24][25][26] Their eldest son's life was the subject of Christopher Hassall's The Timeless Quest.[27] Their second child Paul died as an infant in Somersworth, New Hampshire, United States, where the Ruel family had immigrated in the late nineteenth century.[28][29] Their third child Joan married diplomat Gerard Thomas Corley Smith, later Secretary General of the Charles Darwin Foundation.[28][30][31] Daughter Virginia married twice and was the companion of artist Marc Chagall[31][32][33] and, later, director Henri Storck.[31][34]

Later life[edit]

Haggard retired with his wife to Broomfield, Essex, near Chelmsford.[31] His address in Broomfield at the time of his death on 3 April 1969 was Little Orchards Lane.[5][10][35] Sir Godfrey Haggard was interred in the churchyard of the Parish Church of Broomfield, St Mary with St Leonard.[36]


  1. ^ a b c Sir Bernard Burke; Ashworth Peter Burke (1894). A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry of Great Britain & Ireland, Volume 1 (8 ed.). Harrison. p. 851. ISBN 9780394487267. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  2. ^ Joseph Foster (1885). Men-at-the-bar: A Biographical Hand-list of the Members of the Various Inns of Court, Including Her Majesty's Judges, Etc. p. 195. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  3. ^ Haggard, Godfrey D N. "1901 England Census". Census Returns of England and Wales, 1901. Kew, Surrey, England: The National Archives, 1901 (as reprinted on Ancestry.com). Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. ^ Roger Luckhurst. "H. Rider Haggard". Oxford Bibliographies. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  5. ^ a b c d "Sir Godfrey Haggard". The Montreal Gazette. 7 April 1969. p. 41. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  6. ^ a b c "G. D. N. Haggard Named, Appointed British Consul-General at New York". The Montreal Gazette. 10 June 1938. p. 12. Retrieved 4 April 2013.
  7. ^ Haggard, Sir Vernon (Harry Stuart) (1874-1960), Admiral. "Survey of the Papers of Senior UK Defence Personnel, 1900-1975". Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  8. ^ a b c d Bernard Burke. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry (18 ed.). Burke's Peerage. p. 352.
  9. ^ "The London Gazette". 3 July 1908. p. 4825. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  10. ^ a b c d e f Sir Winston Churchill; Martin Gilbert (2001). The Churchill War Papers: The Ever-Widening War, 1941. W. W. Norton & Company. p. 692. ISBN 9780393019599. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  11. ^ "The London Gazette". 27 October 1908. p. 7750. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  12. ^ "The London Gazette". 10 November 1914. p. 9129. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  13. ^ "The London Gazette". 15 October 1915. p. 10150. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  14. ^ "Supplement to the London Gazette". 7 January 1918. p. 379. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  15. ^ "The London Gazette". 10 June 1921. p. 4634. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  16. ^ "The London Gazette". 28 October 1924. p. 7744. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  17. ^ "The London Gazette". 29 January 1929. p. 686. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  18. ^ "The London Gazette". 13 January 1939. p. 282. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  19. ^ "Society" (PDF). Brooklyn Eagle. 3 February 1944. p. 8. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  20. ^ "Supplement to the London Gazette". 1 January 1934. p. 6. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  21. ^ "The London Gazette". 30 June 1939. p. 4435. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  22. ^ "Supplement to the London Gazette". 1 January 1943. p. 6. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  23. ^ Christopher Hassall (1948). The Timeless Quest: Stephen Haggard. A. Barker. p. 26. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  24. ^ a b "Haggard, Stephen Hubert Avenel". Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  25. ^ Athene Seyler; Stephen Haggard (2013). Robert Barton (ed.). The Craft of Comedy. Routledge. p. 1955. ISBN 9781136312946. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  26. ^ "Haggard is Dead on Active Service; British Actor and Novelist, Son of Consul General Here, Was Army Captain in Near East, Had Big Roles in London, Made Debut in Munich Under Reinhardt in 1930 – Played Here in 1934 and 1938". The New York Times. 3 March 1943. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  27. ^ Christopher Hassall (1946). The Timeless Quest: Stephen Haggard. Arthur Barker. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  28. ^ a b Christopher Hassall (1948). The Timeless Quest: Stephen Haggard. A. Barker. p. 27. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  29. ^ "New Hampshire, Death Records, 1654–1947". FamilySearch. 11 February 1913. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  30. ^ "Gerard Corley Smith" (PDF). Charles Darwin Foundation (reprinted from The Times 3 November 1997). April 1998. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  31. ^ a b c d Virginia Haggard (2009). Lifeline (illustrated ed.). AuthorHouse. ISBN 9781467888042. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  32. ^ Benjamin Harshav (2004). Marc Chagall and his times: a documentary narrative (illustrated ed.). Stanford University Press. ISBN 9780804742146. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  33. ^ Virginia Haggard-Leirens (1986). My life with Chagall: seven years of plenty with the master as told by the woman who shared them (illustrated ed.). D.I. Fine. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  34. ^ "Virginia Haggard-Leirens d'André Colinet". Cinergie.be. 1 March 2005. Retrieved 1 April 2013.
  35. ^ "The London Gazette". 24 April 1969. p. 4365. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  36. ^ "Sir Godfrey Digby Napier Haggard". findagrave.com. Find A Grave. Retrieved 28 March 2014.