|General Sir Herbert Stewart
A cabinet photograph by Chancellor of Dublin, showing Stewart in the uniform
of an aide-de-camp to the Queen. He is wearing the breast badge of a
Companion of the Order of the Bath (Military Division), the Zulu War medal,
Egypt medal with one clasp, the neck badge of the Order of Osmania, and the
Khedive’s Star, dating this photo between October of 1882 and Stewart’s
return to Egypt in January of 1884.
Born at Sparholt in Hampshire, the eldest son of the Rev. Edward Stewart,
Herbert Stewart was educated at Brighton College and Winchester College
before being commissioned in the 37th Regiment in 1863.
After serving with his Regiment in India, he returned to England in 1873,
having exchanged into the 3rd Dragoon Guards. He served in the 1878 Zulu
War as a Brigade Major in the Cavalry Brigade, earning a Mention In
Despatches from General Marshall.
Stewart served as a Staff Officer under Sir George Pomeroy Colley and was
present at Majuba Hill on the 27th of February 1881, where he was taken
prisoner by the Boers. He was not released until the end of March of the
In August of 1882, he secured a position on the staff of the Cavalry Division
in Egypt. Following the British victory at Tel-el-Kebir, he leaded a “brilliant
advance” upon Cairo, taking possession of the city and the Citadel. He was
three times mentioned in dispatches, received a brevet of Colonel, made a
Companion of the Order of the Bath, and made aide-de-camp to Queen Victoria.
In January 1884 he was placed in command of the Cavalry Brigade as a Brigadier under Sir Gerald Graham and took part in all of
the actions from El Teb to the advance on Tamai. For his services he was raised to a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath.
Stewart was subsequently given command by Lord Wolseley of a column for the relief of General Charles Gordon and the besieged
garrison at Khartoum. Traveling across the desert, Stewart’s forces encountered the Mahdi’s army in force on the 16th of January
1885 near the wells at Abu Klea in the Sudan. The following day his forces repulsed a charge by ten thousand Dervishes.
Unfortunately, Colonel Burnaby was killed, along with 8 other officers and 65 other ranks and Stewart himself was mortally
wounded, forcing command to be transferred to Sir Charles Wilson. A wounded Stewart lingered for nearly a month, living long
enough, however, to learn of his promotion to Major-General.
Major-General Sir Herbert Stewart, K.C.B. died on the 16th of February 1885, and was buried at the wells near Jakdul in the