Reference code: GB99 KCLMA Godley
Title: GODLEY, Gen Sir Alexander John (1867-1957)
Dates of creation of material: 1901-1954
Level of description: item level
Extent: 0.01m3 or 1 box of papers
Born 1867; educated Royal Naval School, New Cross, London, Haileybury College, Hertfordshire, United Services College, Westward Ho!, Devon, Royal Military College, Sandhurst, Surrey; Lt, 1 Bn, Royal Dublin Fusiliers, Mullingar, Ireland, 1886; Adjutant, 1 Bn, Royal Dublin Fusiliers, 1889-1890; two year tour of duty at depot of Royal Dublin Fusiliers, Naas, Ireland, 1891-1893; Mounted Infantry Course, Aldershot, 1894; Adjutant, Mounted Infantry, Aldershot, 1895; Capt, 1895; Adjutant, Special Service Mounted Infantry Bn, Mashonaland Field Force, during Mashonaland Campaign, Southern Rhodesia, and command of a mounted column, 1896-1897; Brevet Maj, 1897; attended Staff College, Camberley, Surrey, 1898-1899; Adjutant, Special Service Mounted Infantry Regt (Protectorate Regt), during the Second Boer War, South Africa, 1899-1901; commander western defences at the Siege of Mafeking, 1899-1900; Brevet Lt Col, 1900; transferred to Irish Guards, 1900; Staff Officer to Lt Col Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell and Lt Col Herbert Charles Onslow Plumer; Brevet Lt Col and commanded Rhodesian Mounted Bde, 1900-1901; Maj, 1901; invalided back to England, 1901; Deputy Assistant Adjutant General (commanding Mounted Infantry), Aldershot Command, 1901-1903; Commandant, School of Mounted Infantry, Longmoor Camp, Aldershot Command, 1903-1906; Brevet Col, 1905; Col, 1906; Assistant Adjutant General and General Staff Officer, Grade 1, 2 Div, Aldershot Command, 1906-1910; temporary Maj Gen and General Officer Commanding, New Zealand Forces, 1910-1914; served World War One, 1914-1918; Commander, New Zealand Expeditionary Force, 1914-1919; Maj Gen, 1914; Commander, New Zealand and Australian Div, Egypt and Gallipoli, 1914-1915; temporary Lt Gen, 1915-1918; Commander, ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps), Gallipoli and Egypt, 1915-1916; Commander, 2 ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps), later renamed British 22 Corps, Egypt and Western Front, 1916-1919; temporary Commander, 3 Corps, BEF (British Expeditionary Force), 1918; Lt Gen, 1918; Commander, 4 Corps, BAOR (British Army of the Rhine), Mar 1919; Commander, 2 Corps, BAOR (British Army of the Rhine), Jul-Dec 1919; Military Secretary to Secretary of State for War, 1920-1922; Commander in Chief, BAOR (British Army of the Rhine), 1922-1924; Gen, 1923; on Military Committee of Experts in connection with the Inter-Allied Conference on the Dawes Report, 1924; General Officer Commanding in Chief, Southern Command, 1924-1928; Aide de Camp General to HM King George V, 1925-1929; Governor and Commander in Chief of Gibraltar, 1928-1933; Col, Royal Ulster Rifles, 1922-1937; retired, 1933; Chairman Royal Empire Society; Governor Haileybury College and Imperial Service College; commanded platoon in the Home Guard, 1939-1944; died 1957.
Purchased by the Centre in 1986, 1988 and 1990.
SCOPE AND CONTENT
The collection mainly comprises letters to Godley from military correspondents, 1901-1954. The largest section features correspondence between Godley and Col Sir Clive Wigram, Assistant Private Secretary to HM King George V, 1911-1933, notably Godley's descriptions of operations in Gallipoli and on the Western Front during World War One, 1915-1918, and Wigram's notes on political and social affairs in Great Britain during the same period. Another large file contains correspondence between Godley, Alfred Charles William Harmsworth, Viscount Northcliffe, and others, 1922, concerning arrangements for a visit paid by Northcliffe to Cologne just before his death, including objections from the British government to the trip, and Godley's views on the possible risks involved. Other correspondence consists of letters to Godley from various military friends and acquaintances, including FM William Riddell Birdwood, 1st Baron Birdwood of Anzac and Totnes, FM Frederick Rudolph Lambart, 10th Earl of Cavan, AF Sir John Michael de Robeck, 1st Bt, Gen Sir Ian Standish Monteith Hamilton, Lt Gen Sir Frederick Stanley Maude, Gen Sir John Maxwell, Gen Sir Archibald (James) Murray, FM Herbert Charles Onslow Plumer, 1st Viscount Plumer of Messines, and FM Sir William (Robert) Robertson, 1st Bt.
The collection also includes two unpublished volumes containing copies of Godley's letters to Louisa Marion Godley, Lady Godley, during service on the Western Front, 1916-1918, and a copy of Godley's memoirs, Life of an Irish Soldier (John Murray, London, 1939).
The collection was acquired in three accessions, namely the correspondence with Col Sir Clive Wigram and Alfred Charles Harmsworth, Viscount Northcliffe, and most of the letters from various military correspondents, 1901-1954, in 1986; two volumes of letters from Godley to his wife, 1916-1918, in 1988, and further general correspondence in 1990. The first accession, purchased jointly with the New Zealand National Archives in Wellington, was separated, and the Wigram letters are now housed in New Zealand. The whole of this accession is available on microfilm in the Centre.
For ease of access, all the general correspondence from the first and third accessions has been amalgamated, and the entire section arranged alphabetically by correspondent. The letters purchased in 1990 are not available on microfilm, but all have complete annotated transcripts attached, presumably written before they were sold.
CONDITIONS OF ACCESS AND USE
Open, subject to signature of reader's undertaking form.
Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Trustees of the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, attention of the College Archivist.
The items described in Section One of the catalogue, the correspondence between Godley and Col Sir Clive Wigram, are held at the National Archives of New Zealand, Wellington, and may be consulted on microfilm at the Centre.
The National Archives of New Zealand hold microfilm copies of the correspondence between Godley and Alfred Charles William Harmsworth, Viscount Northcliffe, 1922, and the first accession of general correspondence from military friends and acquaintances, 1901-1954.
Diary, 1896, at the National Archives of Zimbabwe, Harare; correspondence relating to the Curragh Incident, 1914, at the Imperial War Museum, London; correspondence with Maj Gen Sir Edward Louis Spears at the Churchill Archives Centre, Cambridge University; correspondence with Edgar Vincent, 1st Viscount of Stoke D'Abernon, British Ambassador at Berlin, 1923-1926, in the British Library Manuscript Collections, London.