William Galbraith (British Army officer)

Major-General Sir William Galbraith KCB (14 May 1837 – 15 October 1906) was a British Army officer who served as Adjutant-General in India.[3]

Sir William Galbraith
Born14 May 1837[1]
Died15 October 1906(1906-10-15) (aged 69)
Fulham, London
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Battles/warsSecond Anglo-Afghan War
AwardsKnight Commander of the Order of the Bath

Early life and education

Galbraith was born in Ireland, the son of the Rev. John Galbraith, rector of Tuam, and his wife, Sarah. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin.[3]

Military career

Galbraith was commissioned into the 85th Regiment of Foot on 1 June 1855.[4] He became assistant adjutant-general in Koorum District of India and, in that capacity, saw action at the Battle of Peiwar Kotal in November 1878 during the Second Anglo-Afghan War.[5] He also took part in operations in the Hariab and Khost Valleys.[5] He became military commander in Saugor in January 1887 and took part in the Hazara Expedition of 1888.[5] He went on to be General Officer Commanding Sirhind District in November 1888, Adjutant-General in India in October 1890 and General Officer Commanding Quetta District in April 1895.[6]

Personal life

In 1896, he married Helen Mary Handcock, daughter of Lieutenant-General Arthur Gore Handcock, CB, with whom he had two sons, both born in British India. Their eldest son, Lieutenant Arthur Hugh Courtney Galbraith (1897–1918), was killed in action in the First World War.[7] Their younger son, Major Ian William Galbraith MC (1899–1939), married Mary Florence Baker, daughter of Rear-Admiral Julian Alleyne Baker. They both drowned on 14 June 1939, when their canoe capsized in the Indus River near Gilgit, British India, where he was the Political Agent. Ian was awarded the Military Cross in 1917 and the Albert Medal for Lifesaving in 1921.[8][9][10]


  1. Who Was Who: A Companion to "Who's Who". A. & C. Black. 1967. p. 264. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  2. 1901 England Census
  3. "Obituary: Sir W. Galbraith". The Times. The Times Digital Archive. 17 October 1906. p. 8.
  4. "No. 21723". The London Gazette. 1 June 1855. p. 2110.
  5. "The New Annual Army List Militia List and Yeomanry Cavalry List". 1899.
  6. "Army Commands" (PDF). Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  7. UK, Commonwealth War Graves, 1914–1921 and 1939–1947
  8. India, Select Births and Baptisms, 1786-1947
  9. India, Select Deaths and Burials, 1719–1948
  10. "Major and Mrs. Ian Galbraith – Drowned in the Indus". The Times. The Times Digital Archive. 15 June 1939. p. 16.
Military offices
Preceded by
William Elles
Adjutant-General, India
Succeeded by
Gerald Morton
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