Family Group Sheet
Family Group Sheet
NameLord John Edward Bernard SEELY CB, CMG, DSO, PC, TD 1st Baron Mottistone of Mottistone
Birth1868
Death1947
EducationHarrow and Trinity College Cambridge
FatherSir Charles SEELY 1st Bart (1833-1915)
MotherEmily EVANS (-1894)
SpouseEmily Florence CRICHTON
Birth1870
Death1913
Children
Birth9 Aug 1913
Death14 Jan 1998
Birth1899
Death1963
Notes for Lord John Edward Bernard SEELY CB, CMG, DSO, PC, TD 1st Baron Mottistone of Mottistone
John Edward Bernard Seely, 1st Baron Mottistone CB, CMG, DSO, PC, TD (31 May 1868 – 7 November 1947) was a British soldier and politician. He was a Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) from 1900 to 1904 and a Liberal MP from 1904 to 1922 and from 1923 to 1924. He was Secretary of State for War for the two years prior to World War I

Jack Seely was the son of Sir Charles Seely, 1st Baronet. He was educated at Harrow School, where he met an older Stanley Baldwin and a younger Winston Churchill, and at Trinity College, Cambridge. Churchill became a lifelong friend. He was later called to the Bar, Inner Temple. Seely served the Hampshire Yeomanry, joining the Imperial Yeomanry in the Second Boer War, having succeeded in arranging transport to South Africa for his squadron, with the assistance of his uncle Sir Francis Evans, 1st Baronet, chairman of the Union Castle Line. He was mentioned in despatches, awarded a medal with four clasps as well as the DSO in 1900. He was known as "Colonel Seely" during his time as a politician before the First World War.
[edit]Political career

Seely was elected Member of Parliament for the Isle of Wight in 1900, a seat he held until 1906, and again from 1923 to 1924; he also sat for Liverpool Abercromby between 1906 and 1910 and for Ilkeston between 1910 and 1922. He served as Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies under Herbert Henry Asquith between 1908 and 1911, as Under-Secretary of State for War from 1911 to 1912, and became a member of the Privy Council in 1909. According to the Dictionary of National Biography, "Since his chief, Lord Crewe, was in the Lords, important work fell to the under-secretary, in particular the introduction of the measure which brought about the Union of South Africa." In 1912, Seely was appointed Secretary of State for War, with a seat in the Cabinet, a post he held until 1914. With Sir John French he was responsible for the invitation to General Foch to attend the Army Manoeuvres of 1912 and was active in preparing the army for war with Germany. The mobility of the proposed Expeditionary Force, and in particular the development of a Flying Corps (the origin of modern day Air Force) were his special interests. According to The Times, these developments played a significant role in the victory during World War I.

When the Curragh incident in Ireland in 1914 forced him to resign, he left England to fight in the First World War, becoming a Major General and commander of the Canadian Cavalry Brigade. Seely won several medals and merited mention in dispatches five times, enhancing his reputation for bravery in battle. After being gassed in 1918, he returned to England as the only member of the Cabinet, besides Churchill, to see active service in the war. He was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Munitions and Deputy Minister of Munitions in 1918, and Under-Secretary of State for Air and President of the Air Council[citation needed] in 1919. However, he resigned both posts at the end of 1919 after the Government refused to create a Secretary of State for Air (as it later did).

Later career

He was made Chairman of the National Savings Committee in 1926, a post he served in until 1943, the same year he became Vice-President. During this time he was asked by the Government to conduct the publicity in regard to the conversion of the 5% war loan. According to The Times, "in the Second World War the activities of the National Savings Committee were largely extended and became a vital part of the national war effort." He continued to have an influential role in domestic politics; in fact, due to his influence in the formation of the all-party Government of Co-operation in 1931, Lloyd George called him the "Father of National Government." He died in Westminster aged 79.

Other posts

Seely was also an Honorary Major-General, a Colonel of the Territorial Army, an Honorary Colonel of 72nd (Hampshire), an Honorary Air Commander Auxiliary Air Force, and Vice-President of the RNLI. Moreover, he served as Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire from 1918 to 1947, as a Justice of the Peace for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, as the first Chairman of Wembley Stadium, and as a director of Thomas Cook. On 21 June 1933 he was raised to the peerage as Baron Mottistone, of Mottistone in the County of Southampton.
[edit]Reputation

The Times called him a "Gallant Figure in War and Politics" and F. E. Smith, 1st Earl of Birkenhead, wrote, “In fields of great and critical danger he has constantly over a long period of years displayed a cool valour which everybody in the world who knows the facts freely recognizes.” Ferdinand Foch, better known as Marshal Foch, the Supreme Commander of the Allied Armies in the final year World War I, gave him a cigarette case inscribed, “Au Ministre de 1912: au Vaillant de la Grande Guerre.”
[edit]Family

Seely was a member of a family of politicians, industrialists and significant landowners. His father Sir Charles Seely, 1st Baronet, brother Sir Charles Seely, 2nd Baronet, nephew and grandfather were all Members of Parliament. His grandfather Charles Seely (1803–1887) was a noted philanthropist and famous for hosting Giuseppe Garibaldi, the Italian revolutionary hero, in London and the Isle of Wight in 1864. Seely's nephew Sir Hugh Seely, 3rd Baronet and 1st Baron Sherwood, was Under-Secretary of State for Air during the Second World War. His eldest son from his second marriage, David Peter Seely, 4th Baron Mottistone, was the last Governor of the Isle of Wight; he was baptised with Winston Churchill and the then Duke of Cornwall (subsequently Edward VIII, and then later HRH Duke of Windsor) as his godparents.

The family had homes in Nottinghamshire and the Isle of Wight as well as extensive property in London. It is with the Isle of Wight that Jack Seely will always be associated. His Aunt's husband, Col. Harry Gore Browne, won the Victoria Cross during the Indian Mutiny. Gore Browne was manager of the extensive Seely estates on the Isle of Wight. Queen Victoria lived nearby at her favourite residence, Osborne House.

[edit]Medals and awards

He received the following awards and medals: CB Companion in The Most Honourable Order of the Bath (1918), CMG Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (1918), DSO Distinguished Service Order (1900) and TD. He was also awarded the Order of the Crown (Belgium), the Croix de guerre, the Légion d'honneur, which is France's highest honour, and the Freedom of the City of Portsmouth in 1927 (UK)[1].
[edit]Marriage

In 1895, Seely married Emily Florence, daughter of Colonel Honourable Sir Henry George Louis Crichton, KCB. After her death, he married Hon. Evelyn Izme Murray, JP (d. 11th Aug 1976) on 31 July 1917. She was the widow of George Crosfield Norris Nicholson and daughter of Montolieu Oliphant-Murray, 1st Viscount Elibank. His first son, 2Lt Frank Reginald Seely was killed in action with the Hampshires on 13 April 1917. His heir John Seely (1899–1963) was an architect whose work included the interior of Eltham Palace in the Art Deco style. His grandson Brough Scott who presented horseracing television programmes, wrote a biography of Seely, Galloper Jack.


From the Daily Telegraph
23rd March 2008

The mighty Warrior, who led one of history's last-ever cavalry charges

Equine hero: General Jack Seely and Warrior, painted by Sir Alfred Munnings in 1918

By Brough Scott

One of the last great cavalry charges took place 90 years ago at Moreuil Wood. Brough Scott, whose grandfather led the field, tells the story of the special horse who fearlessly carried the general into battle

Warrior was ready. It was 9.30 on the morning of March 30, Holy Saturday, 1918. He had somehow survived four years of shell and bullet and privation, and Passchendaele, but now, in the little hamlet of Castel, not 10 miles south-west of Amiens, the horse faced his most dangerous mission of all.
Watch: Galloper Jack - A grandson's search for a forgotten hero

He would lead one of the last great cavalry charges in history - at Moreuil Wood, on the banks of the Avre river in France. Victory would not only secure the river bank, it would help stem the German Spring Offensive of 1918.

Behind Warrior were the 1,000 horses of the Canadian Cavalry. In the 10 days since the German breakthrough against the Fifth Army at St Quentin, they had trekked a 120 mile, anti-clockwise loop south from Peronne to cross the Oise east of Noyon and then worked back north to get round the spearhead of the enemy advance. In Warrior's saddle - as so often in the 10 years since he had bred the little bay thoroughbred back home on the Isle of Wight - was my grandfather.

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General Jack Seely, 51, was no shrinking violet, and legend has it that he later recommended Warrior for the Victoria Cross with the simple, if not very modest, citation: "He went everywhere I went."

Jack and Warrior had first arrived in France on August 11, 1914. Before that he had been an MP for the Isle of Wight, elected while serving in the Boer War. But although he became a senior member of the Asquith Cabinet, his political career foundered when, on March 30, 1914, he had to resign as Secretary of State for War over the mishandling of the drama known as the Curragh Crisis - when Kildare-based officers refused to march against the Ulster Unionists.

Since February 1915, Seely had commanded the assorted bunch of ranchers, clerks, expats, Mounties and Native Americans who made up the three regiments of the Canadian Cavalry. Jack Seely was a popular general. But not as popular as his horse.
If ever an animal was a symbol of indomitability for weary soldiers to follow, it was this short-legged, wide-eyed, star-foreheaded, independent-spirited but kindly gelding who, in January 1918 had been immortalised in the first of the portraits painted by Alfred Munnings as war artist to the Canadian Cavalry.
Warrior was brave but not stupid, fast but not fragile, tough but not thick. His father, Straybit, had won the lightweight race at the Isle of Wight point-to-point in 1909.
Warrior was a survivor. In September 1914, his groom Jack Thompson had to gallop him 10 miles across country to escape encirclement by the advancing enemy. In 1915, a shell cut the horse beside Warrior clean in half, and a few days later another destroyed his stable, seconds after he had left it.
On July 1, 1916, that fateful first day of the Somme, he and the Canadians were readied to gallop through a gap in the enemy line that never came. In 1917, only frantic digging extricated him from mud in Passchendaele, and only three days before March 30, 1918, a direct hit on the ruined villa in which he was housed left him trapped beneath a shattered beam. Yes, a survivor: but could he survive Moreuil Wood?

With hindsight it is easy to say that, at that point in the war, the Germans were overstretched, the Americans were arriving, and Allied victory was inevitable. That is not how it seemed then - the Germans had smashed the British line, advancing 40 miles and taking more than 100,000 prisoners. The gloom was shared by the greatest war reporter, not to mention war leader, who ever put pen to paper. "Actual defeat seemed to stare the Allies in the face," he wrote. Winston Churchill was on his way.

As Warrior champed at the bit for the attack on Moreuil Wood, Churchill, as a special envoy from Prime Minister David Lloyd George, was being briefed, first by Marshal Foch of France and later by General Rawlinson, the commander of the beleaguered British Fifth Army, at his headquarters 10 miles south of Amiens. "The men are just crawling slowly backwards," he told Churchill. "They are completely worn out." Rawlinson was asked if he would still be in position next day. "He made a grimace," Churchill records with majestic understatement, "the dominant effect of which was not encouraging to my mind."

Cavalry had been made all but redundant by trench warfare. The Germans had disbanded theirs at the end of 1917. Lloyd George had argued for the Allies to do the same after the disaster of the advance of tanks and 27,500 horses on Cambrai, when Seely and Warrior had trotted behind the leading tank, only to see it crash through the bridge into the canal at Masnières.
Horses were easy targets, but a committed group could still act as a sort of early day parachute brigade. At full gallop they could shift hundreds of men half a mile in a couple of minutes.
It was in this climate that Seely took the decision to charge. The signal group would lead - 12 men ready to plant a red pennant with a black C on a white star for the Canadians to aim for. In the group was Seely's 35-year-old aide de camp, the remarkable Prince Antoine d'Orléans-Bragance ("Orléans" as great-grandson of France's last reigning monarch, Louis-Philippe, and "Braganza" because his maternal grandfather was the last Emperor of Brazil). And where was Seely himself? Not for nothing had he named his horse Warrior. The general led the charge.
In fact, he could not hold Warrior. "He was determined to go forward," said Seely of his charger, after they had crossed the bridge and come up out of the hollow, "and with a great leap started off. All sensation of fear had vanished from him as he galloped on at racing speed. There was a hail of bullets from the enemy as we crossed the intervening space and mounted the hill, but Warrior cared for nothing." Seely, Prince Antoine and six of the others made it. Five didn't.

The pennant was planted. Squadron after squadron came thundering up the hill, taking terrible casualties but going on to exact many of their own. They were supported by the Royal Flying Corps, which dropped 190 bombs and fired 17,000 rounds into the mêlée. The German official history records that one bomb knocked out an entire battalion staff: "Moreuil Wood is hell." Especially for horses.

The worst slaughter was to the east. Moreuil Wood was triangular, a mile long on each side. Lieutenant Gordon Flowerdew took his 75-strong squadron of Strathcona's Horse round the northern tip, only to gallop up out of a hollow and be confronted by two rows of machine guns. The Germans had rumours of a tank attack coming down from Villers-Bretonneux. Horses did not have a chance. "Sir," sobbed Sgt Watson when he finally crawled back with the news. "Sir, the boys is all gone."

Warrior and Seely were now in the wood and what they were seeing was war at its most bayonet-thrusting horrible. In the thick of it was Fred Harvey, a 6ft 2in rancher from Fort Macleod, Alberta, who had made his debut for Ireland 11 years earlier as a fly-half on the wrong end of a 29-0 thrashing by Wales at the Arms Park. In March 1917, he had won the VC for single-handedly charging a machine gun. He never wrote about it, but at a regimental dinner in Calgary many years later confided: "I don't know about 1917, but I think I did a VC's worth at Moreuil."
The engagement went on into what became a rainy afternoon, and as the light faded an unlikely looking little motorcade came down the valley. "The Bois de Moreuil lay before us," wrote Churchill, who was accompanying the French prime minister, Georges Clemenceau, at "Le Tigre's" insistence. "The intervening ground was dotted with stragglers, and here and there groups of led horses - presumably Seely's Brigade - were standing motionless. Shrapnel continued to burst over the plain in twos and threes, and high explosive made black bulges here and there.
"A wounded, riderless horse came in a staggering trot towards us. The poor animal was streaming with blood. 'The Tiger', aged 72, advanced towards it and with great quickness seized its bridle, bringing it to a standstill. The blood accumulated in a pool along the road. The French General expostulated with him and he reluctantly returned to his car. As he did so, he gave me a sidelong glance and said in an undertone - 'Quel moment délicieux.'?"

It was not so delicious for Seely, Warrior and the other survivors as they held a sad Easter Service next morning. Though Moreuil Wood had been taken and the German advance had been checked, a quarter of the men and half of the horses had been lost.

Another summons came that afternoon. Seely and Warrior were to report six miles north to Gentelles at 2am to plan an attack in the morning. On the way, Warrior lamed himself in the dark and was out of action. Next day, Seely was gassed and both his replacement horses were killed. It was Warrior's last great escape.
Warrior lived until 1941, when Seely felt that the extra corn rations needed to keep the 33-year-old hero going could not be justified in wartime. On that Good Friday he wrote "I do not believe, to quote Byron on his dog Boatswain, 'that he is denied in Heaven, the soul he had on earth.'?"
After the his injury in 1918, Warrior had recovered sufficiently to join the victory parade in Hyde Park and three years later won the race at the Isle of Wight point-to-point that his sire won in 1909. You might have guessed the date: March 30.

Sunday Telegraph readers can buy the DVD of Brough Scott's documentary about his grandfather, Galloper Jack, for the special price of £12.99 with free p&p on 0870 460 4177


From the Daily Telegraph 23/12/2011

Wartime adventures of a general and his horse
General Jack Seely

SIR – The extraordinary adventures of General “Ma” Jeffreys (Weekend, December 29) and his bay, Landrecies, remind me of another famous man with a famous horse that survived the terrors of the First World War trenches.

This was General Jack Seely and his war horse Warrior. Seely had been obliged to give up his role as Minister for War in Asquith’s war council, so he volunteered and was sent to the Western Front. He took his horse Warrior too and, despite being involved in many dangerous actions, they both survived to enjoy their retirement in the Isle of Wight.
The whole story is contained in Brough Scott’s book Galloper Jack.

Barry Kitson
Chieveley, Berkshire


From: http://www.brookvillagehistory.co.uk/index.php/peo...ly/10-his-life-story


Sir Charles, perhaps unexpectedly, left the Brook estate to his youngest son, General Jack Seely, MP, who had formed strong connections and relationships with Brook village and its lifeboat.

It is said that his proudest moment was the day he became a rowing member of the Brooke lifeboat crew. For a detailed account of his life read Galloper Jack by his grandson, Brough Scott, or any of his books which are mainly autobiographical.

Adventure (1930); Fear and Be Slain (1931); Launch! (1932); For Ever England (1932); My Horse Warrior (1934); The Paths of Happiness (1938)


As well as being a Liberal Member of Parliament from 1900 to 1922, Jack Seely was Secretary of State for War from 1912 to 1914. During this time, Brooke House welcomed a number of politicians, including Winston Churchill and Lloyd George. The Astors and the Prince of Wales, later Edward VIII, were regular visitors - particularly in Cowes Week when Queen Mary frequently visited the Seelys at Brooke House and later Mottistone Manor while King George V was sailing (see A King, a queen, etc.).


In 1917 Jack Seely married widowed Evelyn Nicholson who had one son, John (later Sir John Nicholson, Lord Lieutenant of the Isle of Wight).


In the early 1920s, Jack Seely sold Brooke House to his elder brother, the second Sir Charles Seely (1859-1926) when he moved with his family to Mottistone Manor. In 1926 Charles died unexpectedly just after the transaction and Brooke House was inherited by his son, Hugh.

Jack Seeely’s knowledge of Brook and Mottistone and those that lived there are threaded through the books he wrote to keep his family afloat. His descriptions of local events, people and places have been a rich resource for this local history.

Evelyn, Lady Mottistone, JP, lived at Mottistone Manor until her death in 1976 and touched the lives of many who lived in Brook and Mottistone, especially the children.
Last Modified 24 May 2014Created 28 Jan 2018 using Reunion for Macintosh