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Sir George Spafford Richardson
Born 14 November 1868
Died 11 June 1938
Place of birth Northamptonshire, England
Place of death Auckland, New Zealand
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
New Zealand New Zealand
Service/branch Flag of the British Army British Army
New Zealand New Zealand Army
Years of service 1886–1928
Rank Major General
Unit Royal Artillery
New Zealand Militia
New Zealand Staff Corps
Royal Naval Division
New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Commands held New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the United Kingdom
Battles/wars World War I
Awards Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire
Companion of the Order of the Bath
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George
Mentioned in Despatches (3)
Chavalier of the Legion of Honour (France)
Croix de Guerre (France)

Major General Sir George Spafford Richardson, KBE, CB, CMG (1868–1938) was a New Zealand military leader and administrator. He was born in Northamptonshire, England in 1868.[1] He was mentioned in Despatches, and was one of only 14 members of the New Zealand Army to receive the French Legion of Honour decoration during World War I.

Military ServiceEdit

Richardson was a New Zealand staff officer who gained prominence while attached to the British Royal Naval Division at Gallipoli. Born in England, Richardson had come to New Zealand in 1891 as a Royal Artillery gunnery instructor, before being commissioned into the New Zealand Staff Corps. He was serving on the Imperial General Staff in London when the War broke out and deployed to France as Chief of Staff of the Royal Naval Division. Richardson landed at Gallipoli with the Division on 25 April and his work as a staff officer throughout the campaign was so highly regarded that he was promoted and appointed Deputy Adjutant and Quartermaster General of the British Salonika Force from December 1915 to February 1916. In recognition of his distinguished service in these campaigns Richardson was awarded the Croix de Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur in March 1916.[2] He subsequently served in London as General Officer Commanding the New Zealand Division in the United Kingdom and representative to the War Office until the end of the War.

Post WarEdit

Major General Richardson was made Administrator of Western Samoa in 1923 and was appointed a New Zealand representative to the League of Nations in 1928.[3] He died while serving as the Deputy Mayor of Auckland in 1938.[4]

Awards and decorationsEdit

For his World War I service Richardson was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath, Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George, Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and was also mentioned in despatches on three occasions.[5] He was also appointed a Chevalier of the Legion of Honour by the President of France in March 1916.[2][6] This French award is uncommon to New Zealanders: fewer than 100 awards have been made, and Richardson was one of only 14 members of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force to be decorated with the Legion of Honour during the war.[6][7] He was also awarded the Croix de Guerre by the King of Belgium.[8] Richardson was advanced and knighted as a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in June 1925.

RibbonsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. McGibbon, Ian. "George Spafford Richardson". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/biographies/3r16. Retrieved December 2011. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 London Gazette, 30 March 1916, p.3445.
  3. R. Jones, ‘Richardson, Major General Sir George Stafford, KBE’, An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, H. McLintock ed., 1966, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/1966/R/RichardsonMajor-generalSirGeorgeSpafford/en (3 Dec 08).
  4. Brewer, Mark E., New Zealand and the Legion of Honour: The Great War, The Volunteers: Journal of the New Zealand Military Historical Society, 2011.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 McDonald, Wayne, Honours and Awards to the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the Great War 1914–1918, Napier: H. McDonald, 2001, p.269.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Brewer, Mark, 'New Zealand and the Legion d'honneur: The Great War, Part One', The Volunteers: The Journal of the New Zealand Military Historical Society, 37(2), November 2011.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Brewer, Mark, 'New Zealand and the Legion d'honneur: The Great War, Part Three', The Volunteers: The Journal of the New Zealand Military Historical Society, 38(1), July 2012, pp.20–23.
  8. London Gazette, 6 February 1922, p.1062.

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