Smith, Sir Harry George Wakelyn

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Smith, Sir Harry George Wakelyn

Sir Harry George Wakelyn Smith, 1787–1860, British general and administrator. He served in the Peninsular War and in the War of 1812 and was a brigade major at the battle of Waterloo. He commanded a division in the Kafir War (1834–36), in which he made his famous ride of 700 mi (1,130 km) from Capetown to Grahamstown in less than six days. He was governor of the newly annexed frontier territory, named Queen Adelaide prov., from 1835 until the annexation was repudiated by the British government in 1837. He was then transferred to India as deputy adjutant general. He distinguished himself in the Sikh Wars and was created baronet for the victory at Aliwal (1846). Returning to South Africa as governor of the Cape Colony (1847–52), he resumed his policy of expansion and carried on war with the Boers, accelerating their movement northward.

See his autobiography (ed. by G. C. Moore Smith, 2 vol., 1901).

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