|Egypt, the Sudan, the Mediterranean
|Unidentified Chief Stoker
Rudolph E. L. M. P. de Lisle,
Killed at Abu Klea
The Rifle Brigade
|"Why worry? Be a coward and be happy."
from the 1939 film The Four Feathers
The Shropshire Light Infantry
Alfred Berry Brewster was born in London, England on 7 November, 1856.
Brewster Bey entered Egyptian Service in 1877 in the Customs Administration and Coastguard
Service. In 1879 he was appointed to the position of Director of Customs at Suakin by General
Gordon. He served in the Commissariat staff during the Egyptian Campaign and was awarded
the Egypt Medal w/Clasp as well as the Khedive's Star. He returned to Suakin and 1883 did
duty in Valentine Baker Pasha's Intelligence Department (1884).
In 1885 he served under General Graham at Suakin as Chief Interpreter and Secretary to the
He took part in several engagements and received a Mention in Despatches from General
Graham (30 May, 1885). Most notably Brewster entered Dervish camp alone prior to a planned
attack on Saukin and convinced a large number of the enemy to come over to the British side.
These same men later served in the capture of Tamai.
Brewster remained Director of Customs for Saukin until 1890 when he transferred to the
Coastguard Service as Secretary and Controller. He was chosen as Private Secretary by both
Khedive Mohammed Tewfik and Abbas II
He had a brother T. A. Brewster who was the publisher of the Port ElizabethAdvertiser, Port
Elizabeth, Cape Colony, South Africa.
|Alfred Berry Brewster,
Director of Customs for Suakin in
11 July, 1877
|Alfred Berry Brewster
Shanklin, Isle of Wight, England
26 August, 1886
|Marie Cecile Brewster?
Brewster was married to Marie Cecile in 1886 and had at least one child, a daughter named Adele Cecile who married
Felix Edmund Powell on 11 July 1911. Her marriage was short with her dying in Alexandria in 1913. A biographical
sketch of Brewster was published in The Anglo-African Who's Who and Biographical Sketchbook (1907).
His career was highlighted in the London Gazette in 1884 when he was granted by the Queen the right to wear the
"Insignia of the Third Class of the Order of Medjidieh". It also states that the award was for Brewster's services while
"actually and entirely employed by His Highness [the Khedive] Beyond Her Majesties Dominions".
He was mentioned again in 1896 when he was awarded the Order of Osmanieh of the Third Class by the Khedive and
the Sultan in Constantinople.
Mentioned once again in 1905 when as Private Secretary to the Khedive of Egypt he was granted the Imperial Ottoman
Order of Medjidieh, Grand Officer.
|Gen. Charles 'Chinese' Gordon: "If you, as a servant of your god, must use one hundred thousand warriors to destroy me, a solitary servant of
my God, then you whisper to me Muhammed Ahmed: who will be remembered from Khartoum, your god or mine?"
from the 1966 film production of Khartoum.
Arthur Lea Birch
50th Regiment of Foot
The Royal West Kent Regiment
|Private George S. West
The Royal Berkshire Regiment
Carte de Visite
No 2219 Private George S. West was born in
Windsor, Berkshire in 1862. He attested with the
41st Brigade at Reading on 21 September, 1880.
He was described at standing 5 feet 6 inches tall with
a dark complexion, hazel eyes and dark brown hair.
It is also mentioned that he had a anchor tattooed
on his left forearm.
West was posted as a Private with the 1/Royal
Berkshire Regiment on 1 July 1881 and received his
first Good Conduct Pay on 9 June, 1882. He was
entitled to his second Good Conduct Pay on 18
September, 1886. He transferred to the Army
Reserve for his required six years on 18 September,
George West saw active service with his battalion
during Wolseley's Nile Campaign of 1884-85...
|No. 1796 Private Matthew White
Soldier's Account Book and Parchment
1880 - 1895
Certainly not encountered with the
same frequency as photographic
portraits, original soldier's discharge
documents can none the less offer an
excellent starting point for further
research into the named soldier's
history. These documents which
remained in the soldier's possession
after discharge offer a visual record of
his military career second only to his
actual service record which remained
This particular set of items which
include a soldier's regimental account
book with its original handmade oilskin
cover, two parchment army discharge
documents and a paper merchant
marine discharge certificate all belonged
to No. 1796 Private Matthew White of
the 107th Regiment of Foot/1st
Battalion, The Royal Sussex Regiment.
Colour-Sergeant James Keys
The Queen's Own Cameron
Although suffering from
extensive water damage this
cabinet photograph seemed worthy
of saving because it still bears a
recognizable likeness and is
identified in pencil as to the rank,
name and regiment of the sitter.
This photograph was on the verge
of being discarded by a seller but
by presenting it here this otherwise
forgotten Colour- Sergeant’s story
has been preserved.
|A Gunner of the Royal Garrison Artillery
at his bunk
Dating from early in the reign of Edward
VII, this cabinet photograph showcases the
carefully appointed alcove that housed the
bunk of this unidentified Gunner of the
Royal Garrison Artillery.
|Two Unidentified Officers
Gibraltar & Malta
|Unidentified Egyptian Bey
This cabinet photograph by Egyptian based
German photographers Andreas Reiser and
Anton Binder depicts what I believe to
be a high ranking member (Bey) of the
Turko-Egyptian Civil Service from
sometime in the 1890s.
|No. 3901 Private/Bandsman
2nd Battalion, the Dorsetshire Regiment
Carte de Visite
While it is doubtful that Private
George Steeds musical abilities
ever made him set his eyes on a
musical career in civilian life (as a
mater of fact it they did not) it is
interesting to note the specific and
decidedly non-deadly tool of his
military trade he chose to be
photographed with. I do not believe
that violins were regularly used by
regimental bands since they would
seem to be virtually impossible to
play while marching but it may be
possible that Steeds played this
stringed instrument while
performing in other capacities such
as at regimental balls and the like.
|Bandsman Ernest Richard Wadham
Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment)
With a profile rivaling that of the great John Barrymore, Colour
Sergeant George Waters portrait seems to personify the very model
of a Victorian-era Non Commissioned Officer.
This photograph was one of two ornately mounted carte de visites
that came in a small hand made paper folder in which a family
member of Waters, many years later listed some of the particulars of
his life and military career. While some of these family related fact,
were in fact in error the information provided an excellent starting
point for further research.
Carte de Visite
Army Hospital Corps
|Charles George Gordon
Governor General of the Sudan
The Berkshire Regiment
|Armourer Staff Sergeant
Thomas Henry Ford, D.C.M.
Royal Army Ordnance Corps
1st Battalion, the Royal
Although unidentified in any way, with a bit of research and
though a process of elimination I believe this holder of the
Distinguished Service Medal (DCM) was No. 795 Armourer Staff
Sergeant Thomas Henry Ford of the Army Ordnance Corps.
|Private George Capper
Royal Marine Light Infantry
Carte de Visite
George Capper was born in Gloucester
on 8 August, 1860 and appears to have
been the son of John and Emily Capper.
His father being an agricultural carter.
Prior to enlistment George Capper had
followed his father's trade.
Capper enlisted in the Royal Marine
Light Infantry on 8 July, 1879 and was
described as being 5ft 6-3/4 inches tall
with a sallow complexion, dark brown
hair and hazel eyes.
He served at the Recruit Depot at
Walmer from 8 July, 1879 until 24
March, 1880 when he was transferred to
the Portsmouth Division. In August of
1880 he joined the ships company of the
HMS Inconstant. During this time his
character was described as being
During his tenure aboard the Inconstant
Capper's exemplary character seems to
have lapsed and his name appeared 6
times in the Company Defaulters Book.
Generally falling outside the historical
scope of this website, this rather
unusual memorial cabinet photograph
has been included her for a number of
reasons. One of these is its rather
unusual and touching nature. Secondly
with the 100th anniversary of the end of
the Great War just recently concluded,
its inclusion is more than a little timely.
This cabinet card memorializes No.1428
Private David Henry Napier of B
Squadron, 1/2nd County of London
Yeomanry (Westminster Dragoons) who
died of pneumonia (apparently
contracted at Gallipoli) at Cairo, Egypt
on 11 August 1915. He was buried at the
Cairo War Memorial Cemetery. HIs
medal entitlement included the 1914-15
Star and the British War and Victory
|Memorial Cabinet Card to
Private David Henry Napier
Army Hospital Corps