Brigadier Edward Allan Wood CMG, DSO and 3 bars, QSA

One of 16 men to have 3 bars to DSO

1865 May 6. Wood was born in Shahjehanpore, Bengal, India (IGI) , the ninth son of Oswald Wood and Grace Wood, who served in Punjab Uncovenanted Civil Service and who later became a judge ( Covenanted service was given by the elite top ranks of the Civil Service who gave a pledge good behaviour. Lower ranks that took Uncovenanted Service were recruited in India, be they English, Indian, or Anglo Indian) . Siblings include Augustus Ottiwell Wood, Ernest Perceval Wood, Irwin Septimus Wood (Nat Arc file on insane destitute son of Mr Oswald Wood, late an uncovenanted servant of the Indian Govt  in 1882), Arthur Robert Wood, Decimus Bell Wood, Grace Maria Wood (Married General Sir Beauchamp Duff), Oswald Bell Wood, James Young Wood , Herbert Montagu Wood, Henry Charles Creighton Wood, Sidney Alexander Wood,

1892. Financial difficulties were said to have prevented Wood from entering Sandhurst or from accepting a commission in the field from the Commander-in-Chief India, Field-Marshal Lord Roberts.  Instead, he apparently joined the army as a private soldier, enlisting in the 2nd Dragoon Guards, then transferring to the 17th Lancers. 

1895 Dec 29. Lt Edward Allen Wood rode in the Jameson Raid in the Bechuanaland Border Police column under the command of Lieut-Colonel Raleigh Grey, 6th Dragoons. The BBP was an Imperial unit raised on 4 August 1885 by then Lt. Col. Frederick Carrington 1 of the South Wales Borderers, with a strength of 500 men. Their weaponry included Martini-Henry rifles equipped with a bayonets and Maxim automatic machine guns. The Jameson force that rode out from Pitsani camp on the 29 December 1895 numbered close to 600 and consisted of almost 400 Rhodesian Police who were employed by the Charter Company, 120 men recruited at Mafeking and some Cape ‘Boys’. They had six Maxims, two 7 pound mountain and one 12 and half pound guns. The plan was a three day hard ride to Johannesburg where the majority, the disenchanted Uitlanders, the mainly British expatriate community, would rise up on this catalyst against the Transvaal authorities and tip the republic neatly into the welcoming and grateful arms of the Empire. To the participants they were embarked upon a great adventure and one which they were led to believe had ‘official’ sanction. But by 2 Jan 1896 they had been forced to surrender close to Johannisburg and imprisoned by the Boers. They were taken back to England for trial after their release.

1896 He served with the Matabeleland Mounted Police in the Matabeleland Relief Force. The Matabeleland Relief Force was organised at Mafeking, 850 strong. This included 100 B.B.P. and M.M.P. returned from England who had taken part in the Jameson Raid. All carried the Martini-Henry rifle.

1898 Married Myra Cotterell daughter of Dr Cotterell of Bognor.

1901 Aug 16. MID Capt E A Wood South African Police. For gallantry and good service in action on Wilge River on 16t h August , 1901

Boer War.He was present at the relief of Mafeking with the South African Constabulary.

1902 Jun 23. MID Capt E A Wood, South African Constabulary.

1906 Mar 16. He resigned from the BSAP and does not re-appear in records till 1914

1914 he was in England and immediately offered himself for military service. Wood was 49 (he gave his age as 42 when he enlisted) and his official military status was ‘Captain, Retired, British South Africa Police’. He became a company commander in 6th Battalion King’s Shropshire Light Infantry. 

1915 Oct 6. Took command of 6th Shropshires

1916 Jan/Mar. Married Marguerite Dawson Gillott (nee Birrell-Campbell )

1916 Jul 28. CO of 6th Battalion K.S.L.I. Lt.Colonel E. A. Wood

1916 Sep 7. 6th KSLI, Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel E.A. Wood, was gassed at Arrowhead Copse on the Somme and had to be evacuated to UK

1916 Oct 24. Lt.Colonel E. A., Wood, returned to 6th KSLI

1917 Jan 1. Awarded DSO. Gazette. Temp. Lt.-Col. Edward Allan Wood, Shrops. L.I.

1917 Sep 12. 6th KSLI. Colonel Wood was again absent through sickness.

1917 Sep 25. Gazetted bar to DSO T./Lt.-Col. Edward Allan Wood, D.S.O., Shrops. L.I. Citation

T./Lt.-Col. Edward Allan Wood, D.S.U., Shrops. L.I. For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. His personal example and leading were largely responsible for the dash and grit shown by his battalion during two days' severe fighting. He personally supervised the forming up of his battalion under heavy hostile barrage; leading them to the line of deployment, he deployed them punctually and without confusion four hundred yards from the final objective. During the ensuing three days his personal influence and skill kept his battalion secure against frequent counter-attacks, although his flanks were in a precarious situation owing to the neighbouring troops having been driven back.

1917 Nov 9. Colonel Wood was promoted to command the 55th Infantry Brigade. Brigade Comdrs. and to be temp. Brig.-Gens, whilst so empld.: Temp. Lt.-Col. E. A. Wood, D.S.O., Shrops. L.I., and to be transfd. to Gen. List

1918 Apr 4th . Avre counter attack. The 36th Australian Infantry Battalion (commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel J A Milne) counter-attacked south of the railway. 'The attack went forward about 5.45pm, the reserve company of the 35th joining in on the left, and the 7/Queen's, led by Br.-General E A Wood (55th Bde), on the right; the 6/London followed in the second line. These fresh troops, few in number but thrown in exactly at the right moment, pressed forward with great spirit and swept back the advancing Germans.' (‘Military Operations. France and Belgium, 1918)

An Australian report says Energetic steps had also been taken by the 55th Brigade immediately south of the Australians. Its commander Brigadier-General Wood, a senior officer of stout build and of most stalwart disposition, had his headquarters at the “Monument Farm.” He had by him his reserve battalion. the 7th Queen’s, and, during the fight, fearing that the Germans might get round his left, he placed one of his companies along the railway cutting there. Two more he held ready for counter-attack. At 10.30, learning that the Australian flank was ahead of the easternmost bridge over the railway cutting, his anxiety as to the flank was relieved: but, the 6th London, having been given to him as reserve, he now sent for one of its companies which he ordered to support the 7th Buffs, south of the railway.

Another web report that I have not been able to substantiate reads Alone and unarmed, he captured more than twenty Germans by pelting them with lumps of chalk and old boots! He was an inspiring figure.  One of his soldiers, Private Robert Cude (7th Buffs), declared that he would ‘serve in Hell, so long as General Wood was in command of the Brigade’. 

1918 Sep 19. Second Bar to DSO T./Lt.-Col. (T./Brig.-Gen.) Edward Allan Wood, D.S.O., Shrops. L.I. For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. When ordered to withdraw he handled his brigade with marked ability and successfully covered the withdrawal; he next day organised a counter-attack, which inflicted severe losses on the enemy. A fortnight later, when his men were being forced.back by superior numbers of the enemy, he personally directed the collection and reorganisation of his troops on the battle field under very heavy rifle and machine-gun fire. He then formed his men up, and in conjunction with another division delivered a successful counter-attack, which he personally led. This counter-attack regained a portion of the ground lost in the morning, and he remained on the recaptured ground with the remnants of his brigade until relieved next morning. He did splendid work, and set a fine example to all under most difficult circumstances.

1918 Oct 24. Commanding 55 Brigade until he went sick on 24 October 1918.  

1919 Jan 1. CMG gazetted.

1919 Dec 12 3rd Bar to DSO gazetted.

1919 Dec 12. Gazetted Croix de Guerre, Temporary Brigadier-General Edward Allan Wood, C.M.G., D.S.O., General List.

1920 March 4. Leaves the Army. His had only been a temporary commission. Temp. Lt.Col. E.A. Wood , C.M.G , D.S.O. (rel. commn. on completion of service and granted hon. rank of Brig.-Gen.)

1920 Jun 3. Applies to War Office for a job in the Persian Army. He did not get this position, but his letter was passed to Tudor, and Wood was invited to apply for a position in ADRIC

1920 Oct 20. He applied to RIC Recruiting Office at Great Scotland Yard, and became 2nd in Command and then Commander of ADRIC. ADRIC no 817, RIC no 71350. Posted to A Coy

1920 Nov 2. Assumes command A Coy

1920 Dec 1. Becomes 2nd in Command of ADRIC

1921 Feb 17. Wood took over command of ADRIC when Crozier resigned. And commanded ADRIC until they were disbanded. His deputy was Lt Col F H W Guard

1921 Adjudged Bankrupt but this was annulled in October 1921 and the receiving order rescinded.

1922 Feb 1. Left the ADRIC

He spent most of his remaining years in a fruitless war of attrition with the British government, trying to obtain an officer’s pension to which he had no claim.  During the process he managed to alienate everyone who tried to help him, including King George V.  Monies given to him in good faith had a habit of disappearing or of being used for purposes for which they were not intended.

1922 Oct 18. Another Bankruptcy problem with debts of £2050 and assets of nil.

1926 Jul 20. In the Bankruptcy Court. Wood, Edward Allan, described in the Receiving Order as Brigadier General E. A. Wood, of 27, St. Georges Square, London, S.W. 1, and lately of 18A, Cathedral Mansions, Westminster, S.W. 1, Date Fixed for proceeding with Examination. July 20, 1926, at 11 a.m. Place—Bankruptcy Buildings, Carey Street, London, W.C. He eventually went bankrupt after trying to set up a bridge club.  His personal file in The National Archives is full of letters from south coast landladies petitioning the War Office for the address of Brigadier-General Wood who had left without paying his bill. 

1930 May 20. Edward Allan Wood died from cirrhosis of the liver aged 65 (army age 58).