General Sir Charles Thomas Van Straubenzee GCB


Van Straubenzee was born in Malta on 17 Feb 1812 the son of a Major in the RA. His name came from his great grandfather who was a Dutch officer who came to live in England around 1745. and was commissioned into the Ceylon Rifles in 1828. He transferred to the 39th Regiment of Foot in 1833 and, during the Gwalior Campaign, he took part in the Battle of Maharajpore in 1843. He took temporary command of his regiment when the Commanding Officer, Thomas Wright, was wounded and brought the Regiment out of action.

In 1844 he exchanged to the 13th LI and then in 1846 he transferred to the Buffs of which he became Commanding Officer in 1851 and fought in the Crimean War commanding the 1st Brigade of the Light Division and taking part in both assaults on the Redan during the Siege of Sevastopol. In 1857 he became Commander of British Troops in China and Hong Kong and led an attack on Canton during the Second China War.

In 1862 he was made General Officer Commanding a Division of the Bombay Army at Ahmedabad and subsequently took overall command of the Bombay Army. He became Governor of Malta in 1872 to 1878, during which time he was promoted to General and made Knight Grand Cross of the Bath (1875). He was Colonel of the 47th Regiment from 31 may 1865 to 7 Dec 1867 and of the 39th Regiment from 8 Dec 1867 until his death. He was married to Charlotte Richardson in 1841. He died on 10 Aug 1892 and was buried at Bathwick cemetery near Bath.


Regimental Details | Commanding Officers




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by Stephen Luscombe