Henry Abel Smith
Sir Henry Abel Smith
KCMG, KCVO, DSO
Henry Abel Smith and Lady May Cambridge.
|17th Governor of Queensland|
18 March 1958 – 18 March 1966
|Monarch||Queen Elizabeth II|
|Premier||Sir Frank Nicklin|
|Preceded by||Sir John Lavarack|
|Succeeded by||Sir Alan Mansfield|
|Born||8 March 1900
|Died||24 January 1993
|Spouse(s)||Lady May Cambridge
(m. 1931–93; his death)
Richard Abel Smith
|Awards||Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George
Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order
Distinguished Service Order
|Years of service||1919–1950|
|Unit||Royal Horse Guards|
|Battles/wars||Second World War|
He was born in London, on 8 March 1900, the son of Francis Abel Smith (1861-1908), of Selsdon Park and Wilford House, and his wife Madeline St. Maur Seymour (1862-1951). His grandparents were Henry Abel Smith (1826–1890) and Elizabeth Mary Pym (1826–1877), and his great-grandparents were Francis Pym (1790–1860) and Lady Lucy Leslie-Meville (1796–1848), daughter of Alexander Leslie-Melville, 9th Earl of Leven. He descended from the Smith's banking family and was also a descendant of Edward Seymour, 8th Duke of Somerset.
Abel Smith was commissioned into the Royal Horse Guards from the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, in December 1919. He served in the Second World War, winning the Distinguished Service Order. He retired as a Colonel in 1950.
On 24 October 1931, he married Lady May Cambridge, at St. Mary's Church, Balcombe, Sussex. She was born Princess May of Teck, and was a niece of King George V and Queen Mary, and a great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria. They had three children:
- Anne Mary Sibylla Abel Smith (born 28 July 1932); she married David Liddell-Grainger (26 January 1930 – 12 March 2007) on 14 December 1957; they were divorced in 1981 but have five children and eight grandchildren. Her eldest son is the Conservative Member of Parliament Ian Liddell-Grainger.
- Colonel Richard Francis Abel Smith (11 October 1933–23 December 2004); he married Marcia Kendrew (born 27 March 1940) on 28 April 1960; they have one daughter and four grandchildren.
- Elizabeth Alice Abel Smith (born 5 September 1936); she married Peter Wise (born 29 December 1929) on 29 April 1965; they divorced in 1975 and had one daughter who died as an infant.
Sir Henry was appointed Governor of Queensland from 18 March 1958, serving until 18 March 1966. He was highly respected in the office of governor. People lined the streets as a mark of high esteem to bid farewell to him and Lady May Abel Smith on their final day in office on their way to Brisbane Airport.
Sir Henry died at Barton Lodge, Winkfield, Berkshire, on 24 January 1993 aged 92. His funeral service took place at St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle. His cremated remains were buried at the Royal Burial Ground, Frogmore. His wife survived him by only sixteen months.
Titles, styles, honours, and arms
|Ribbon bars of Col. Sir Henry Abel Smith|
- 1961: Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (KCMG)
- 1958: Knight of Justice of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem (KStJ)
- 1950: Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (KCVO)
- 1945: Companion of the Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
|Ancestors of Henry Abel Smith|
- Portraits of Henry Abel Smith at the National Portrait Gallery, London
- Henry Abel Smith at Find a Grave
Sir John Lavarack
|Governor of Queensland
Sir Alan Mansfield