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Sir Garrett O'Moore Creagh
2 April 1848 – 9 August 1923
Victoria Cross Medal without Bar.png
Place of birth Cahirbane, County Clare
Place of death South Kensington, London
Resting place East Sheen Cemetery
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
British Indian Army
Rank General
Unit 95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot
Bombay Staff Corps
Commands held Commander-in-Chief, India
Battles/wars Second Anglo-Afghan War
Boxer Rebellion
Awards Victoria Cross
Order of the Bath
Order of the Star of India
Order of St John
Order of the Rising Sun

General Sir Garrett O'Moore Creagh VC GCB GCSI (2 April 1848 – 9 August 1923), known as Sir O'Moore Creagh,[1] was born in Cahirbane, County Clare and was an Irish recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

Contents

Background

Creagh was the eighth son of Captain James Creagh (Royal Navy) and his wife, Grace O'Moore. He was married twice, firstly to Mary Longfield (or possibly Brereton) in 1874, who died in 1876, and then to Elizabeth Reade in 1891. He had three children, one of whom was General Michael O'Moore Creagh.

He was commissioned into the 95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot in 1866 and went to India in 1869, being transferred to the British Indian Army in 1870.

Second Anglo-Afghan War

Creagh was 31 years old, and a captain in the Bombay Staff Corps during the Second Anglo-Afghan War when the following deed on 22 April 1879 at Kam Dakka, on the Kabul River, Afghanistan, took place for which he was awarded the VC:

On the 21st April Captain Creagh was detached from Dakka with two Companies of his Battalion to protect the village of Kam Dakka on the Cabul River, against a threatened incursion of the Mohmunds, and reached that place the same night. On the following morning the detachment, 150 men, was attacked by the Mohmunds in overwhelming numbers, about 1,500 ; and the inhabitants of Kam Dakka having themselves taken part with the enemy, Captain Creagh found himself under the necessity of retiring from the village. He took up a position in a cemetery not far off, which he made as defensible as circumstances would admit of, and this position he held against all the efforts of the enemy, repeatedly repulsing them with the bayonet until three o'clock in the afternoon, when he was relieved by a detachment sent for the purpose from Dakka. The enemy were then finally repulsed, and being charged by a troop of the 10th Bengal Lancers, under the command of Captain D. M. Strong, were routed and broken, and great numbers of them driven into the river. The Commander-in-Chief in India has expressed his opinion that but for the coolness, determination, and gallantry of the highest order, and the admirable conduct which Captain Creagh displayed on this occasion the detachment under his command would, in all probability, have been cut off and destroyed.[2]

Later career

In 1878 he became Captain of the Merwara battalion, commanding them from 1882 until 1886. He assumed command of the 29th Bombay Infantry in 1890, and was promoted to assistant quarter-master general in 1896. He led the Indian contingent during the Boxer Rebellion. Further promotions culminated in a K.C.B in 1904, general in 1907 and he succeeded Lord Kitchener as Commander-in-Chief, India in 1909. Creagh died at 65 Albert Hall Mansions, London SW9 on 9 August 1923.

His Victoria Cross is displayed at the National Army Museum in Chelsea, London, England.

Footnotes

  1. ^ Despite appearances to the contrary, O'Moore was his middle name, not part of his surname
  2. ^ London Gazette: no. 24784, p. 6494, 18 November 1979. Retrieved on 21 October 2009.

References

Listed in order of publication year

External links

Military offices
Preceded by
The Viscount Kitchener
Commander-in-Chief, India
1909–1914
Succeeded by
Sir Harry Duff
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