File - 31 (26) 4 - Francis Douglas Farquhar

Lieut-Col Francis Douglas Farquhar, DSO A Memorial by RG Barclay Biography - Origin unknown Lt Col Francis Farquhar by Lt Col Hugh Niven Farquhar, Francis D Officer's Service Record Coldstream Guards Lt. Col Francis Farquhar tribute article from a brother officer

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31 (26) 4 - Francis Douglas Farquhar

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  • Attributions and conjectures: Francis D. Farquhar, DSO, was born on 17 September 1874 in England. Educated at Eton, he joined the Coldstream Guards as a 2nd Lieutenant in 1896, and he soon saw action in the Boer War in South Africa 1899-1900. He was promoted Captain and posted to the ‘Weihaiwei’ Chinese Regiment of Infantry in 1901 where he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order, and he served in Somaliland in 1903-1904. In 1905 he married Lady Evelyn Hely Hutchison. In 1914, now as an acting Lieutenant-Colonel (Lt. Col.), he was serving as Military Secretary to the Governor General of Canada, The Duke of Connaught and Strathearn when World War One broke out. Farquhar, with Andrew Hamilton Gault, a wealthy Montreal businessman, approached the Canadian government with an offer to found a regiment of veteran soldiers for quick service on the front. This regiment became Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, raised in Ottawa in August 1914 from volunteers from across Canada. Lt.-Col. Farquhar agreed to become the unit’s first Commanding Officer, and the Regiment sailed for England in October 1914. He was officially appointed Lieutenant-Colonel 14 October 1914. Lt.-Col. Farquhar led the Regiment thorough its introduction to trench warfare in Belgium in 1915. On the night of 19-20 March 1915, while supervising wire-laying and a relief in place, Lt.-Col. Farquhar was shot and died soon after. Although his tenure as CO was short-lived, he is given great credit for establishing the professionalism and sense of duty within the Regiment, and contributed greatly to its fighting spirit. Ralph Hodder-Williams, who wrote the official history of PPCLI in World War One, wrote of Farquhar: “His choice was to lead [PPCLI] in the field rather than to accept such higher rank and command as he was entitled to by virtue of his ability and experience; and though he did not gather more than the first-fruits of his sowing and never saw the Regiment justify his methods in a general action, his example abode in regimental tradition as something living and very influential.”

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  • 1914-1961 (Creation)

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1.5 cm of textual records

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Lieutenant-Colonel Francis Farquhar's record of service with the Coldstream Guards, memorials written by Lieutenant-Colonel hugh Niven and RG Barclay, and a very brief biography of unknown origin.

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