William Manning (colonial governor)

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Brigadier-General Sir
William Henry Manning
23rd Governor of British Ceylon
In office
10 September 1918 – 1 April 1925
Preceded by Reginald Edward Stubbs
acting governor
Succeeded by Cecil Clementi
acting governor
Commissioner of British Somaliland
In office
February 1910 – November 1910
Preceded by Harry Edward Spiller Cordeaux
Succeeded by Horace Byatt
Governor of Nyasaland (acting)
In office
6 February 1911 – 23 September 1913
Preceded by Henry Richard Wallis (acting)
Succeeded by George Smith
Governor of Jamaica
In office
7 March 1913 – 11 May 1918
Preceded by Philip Clark Cork
Succeeded by Robert Johnstone
Personal details
Born 19 July 1863
Died 1 January 1932
Citizenship British

Brigadier-General Sir William Henry Manning GCMG KBE CB (19 July 1863–1 January 1932) was a British soldier and colonial administrator.

Manning was educated at the University of Cambridge as a non-collegiate student[1] and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst and was commissioned a Lieutenant in the South Wales Borderers in 1886.[2] In 1888 he transferred to the Indian Army,[3] and served in the 51st Sikhs. He was wounded in the Second Burmese War and also served in the First Miranzai Expedition and the Hazara Expedition on the North-West Frontier in 1891. He commanded the Mlanja and Chirad-Zulu expeditions in British Central Africa in 1893–1894.

In 1897 he was appointed Deputy Commissioner and Consul-General for British Central Africa and commander of its Armed Forces with the local rank of Lieutenant-Colonel,[4] and served as Acting Commissioner for nearly two years. He commanded the operations against Chief Mpezeni in North-East Rhodesia in 1898, for which he was promoted Brevet Major in 1898[5] and Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel in 1899.[6] During this time he raised and commanded the Central Africa Regiment and was the first Inspector-General of the King's African Rifles, 1901–1907, with the local rank of Brigadier-General (although his substantive rank was still Captain).[7] From December 1902[8] to 1903 he also commanded the Somaliland Field Force and from 1903 to 1904 he commanded its 1st Brigade. In April 1903 he defeated the Mad Mullah's army in battle, inflicting 2,000 casualties. For services in Somaliland he was appointed Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in 1903[9] and Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KCMG) in 1904.[10] In February 1904 he was promoted Brevet Colonel[11] and in August 1904 he was finally promoted to the substantive rank of Major.[12]

In February 1910 Manning was appointed Commissioner and Commander-in-Chief of the Somaliland Protectorate[13] and in November 1910 Governor and C-in-C of the Nyasaland Protectorate,[14] where the border post Fort Manning (today Mchinji, Malawi) was named after him. He retired from the Indian Army in December 1910.[15]

In February 1913 he became Governor of Jamaica[16] and was granted the perpetual honorary rank of Brigadier-General,[17] which he had held for most of his service since 1901. In September 1918 he was appointed Governor of Ceylon. He was appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1918 and Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George (GCMG) in the 1921 New Year Honours.[18] He retired in 1925.



Government offices
Preceded by
Reginald Edward Stubbs
acting governor
Governor of British Ceylon
Succeeded by
Cecil Clementi
acting governor