From Private to Field-Marshal

From Private to Field-Marshal

Read FREE!

From Private to Field-Marshal

From Private to Field-Marshal

Read FREE!

Excerpt

The only justification for publishing this book is that it describes the climbing of a soldier from the bottom to the top of the military ladder, and even in this feat there is nothing remarkable beyond the fact that it happens to be the first of its kind in the annals of the British Army.

Energy and determination are usually essential to advancement in any vocation, and are at the disposal of every one possessing a good constitution. Given the exercise of these qualities and the same help from real friends as I enjoyed--friends who had nothing to gain and perhaps something to lose by showing friendship--any man can equal what I have accomplished.

Still, the story here given may not be wholly without interest, especially to those who have their lives in front of them, and in the hope that it will prove to be so I have decided to let it go forth. Doubtless it has many defects, both in substance and style, which would have been less apparent if its preparation had been in more practised hands, and for these imperfections I ask lenient treatment.

In writing the chapters dealing with my service in the ranks and as a Subaltern Officer I have had to depend chiefly upon memory, which has become blurred and unreliable owing to the lapse of time and the crowded events of the last few years. Consequently it has not been possible to make this part of the book as complete as, to my mind, it deserves to be, for the period in question was in some ways the most fascinating and happy of all. For instance, I derived greater satisfaction from being promoted Lance-Corporal in 1878--the first rung of the ladder --than I did from being created a Baronet forty years later . . .

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