Gault, Andrew Hamilton

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Gault, Andrew Hamilton

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Dates of existence

1882-1958

History

Andrew Hamilton “Hammie” Gault, 1882-1958, was descended from an Anglo-Irish merchant family which settled in Montreal in 1842 and became dominant players in Canadian textile manufacturing, insurance, finance, and politics. After attending Bishop's College School in Lennoxville and one year at McGill University, Gault joined the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles and served with distinction as a subaltern until the end of the South African War in 1901. He continued to serve with the Canadian militia, eventually becoming a captain with the 5th Royal Highlanders (Black Watch of Canada). Following the death of his father in 1903, he assumed control of Gault Brothers and Company, the family cotton manufacturing firm. He married Marguerite Stephens in 1904. Gault was appointed honorary Consul General for Sweden in 1909-1911, and was a member of the council for the Montreal Board of Trade, 1911-1913. Upon the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914, he offered to finance the raising of Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI). He was appointed Senior Major and Second-in-Command of the Regiment. He was wounded three times, losing his left leg, which effectively ended his active service in the field. He was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel and Commanding Officer of PPCLI in November 1918. For his service in the Great War, Gault was awarded the Order of the British Empire, the Russian Order of St. Anne with Crossed Swords and the Belgian Order of the Crown. He was Mentioned in Dispatches four times and was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for gallantry. Following the war, Gault was married in 1922 for a second time, to Dorothy Blanche “D.B.” Shuckburgh. Between the two world wars they lived at Hatch Court, near Taunton, Somerset, England, an estate that Hamilton purchased from Dorothy's aunt. They enjoyed aviation as a hobby. Gault served as a Conservative Member of Parliament for Taunton from 1924 to 1935. In 1939 he was recalled for active duty with the Canadian Army in England and was promoted to the rank of Colonel in 1940 and to Brigadier General in 1942. He returned to his Canadian home at Mont St. Hilaire in Quebec in 1944. In 1947 Gault founded the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry Association and served as the first National President. He was appointed honorary Colonel of the Regiment shortly before his death on 28 November 1958. Following his death, Dorothy Gault returned to Hatch Court, where she died in 1972. Hatch Court became the home of Dorothy’s niece Anne and her husband, Cdr. Barry Nation, who operated a small museum there dedicated to the history of Gault and the PPCLI. For further information see: First in the field : Gault of the Patricias / by Jeffery Williams. – St. Catharines, Ont. : Vanwell Pub., 1995.

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ppcli

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