Hugh McCalmont

Sir Hugh McCalmont
Hugh mccalmont.jpg
Sir Hugh McCalmont
Born 9 February 1845
Dublin, Ireland
Died 2 May 1924(1924-05-02) (aged 79)
London, England
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg British Army
Rank Major-General
Commands held 8th Division
Battles/wars Red River Rebellion
Third Anglo-Ashanti War
Russo-Turkish War
South African War
Second Anglo-Afghan War
Anglo-Egyptian War
Nile Expedition
Awards Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath
Commander of the Royal Victorian Order

Major-General Sir Hugh McCalmont KCB CVO (9 February 1845 – 2 May 1924) was an Anglo-Irish soldier, politician, and horseman. He was elected as an Ulster Unionist Member of Parliament for North Antrim in 1895, resigning in 1899 by becoming Steward of the Manor of Northstead.

Early life and education

Hugh McCalmont was born in Dublin, the eldest son of James McCalmont (of Abbeylands, Belfast) and Emily Anne Martin.[1] He was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford.[2]

He was the nephew of author Violet Florence Martin and the composer Robert "Ballyhooly" Martin, who composed the Killaloe March.[2]


McCalmont was commissioned into the 6th Dragoon Guards in 1865.[3] He saw service in the Red River Rebellion in 1870, the Third Anglo-Ashanti War in 1873 and the Russo-Turkish War in 1877.[4] McCalmont also took part in the South African War in 1879, the Second Anglo-Afghan War in 1879 and the Anglo-Egyptian War in 1882 as well as the Nile Expedition in 1884.[4]

In 1884 he became aide-de-camp to General Wolseley.[5] He was elected as an Ulster Unionist Member of Parliament for North Antrim in 1895 but resigned in 1899 by becoming Steward of the Manor of Northstead.[6]

He was commanding the troops in the Cork district, when on 1 April 1902 he became General Officer Commanding 8th Division within Third Army Corps in Ireland.[7][8] He served temporarily as commander of the Third Army Corps from December 1902 to March 1903, during the absence for a royal tour of India of the Commander, the Duke of Connaught and Strathearn.[9]

In 1907 he was given the colonelcy of the 7th Queen's Own Hussars, a position he held until his death in 1924.

McCalmont lived at Abbeylands, a two-storey Victorian house in Whiteabbey, near Belfast, until it was set on fire by Suffragettes in 1914[10] causing £20,000 of damage.[11][12] Unionist leader, Edward Carson, had declared against votes for women, meanwhile his Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) had been drilling troops at Abbeylands House. In protest the Suffragettes burnt the building to the ground on 27 March 1914, complaining that they were being imprisoned while the UVF were gun running and preparing for civil war.[13][14][15]

Personal life

In 1885, he married the Hon. Rose Elizabeth Bingham, daughter of John Charles Robert Bingham, 4th Baron Clanmorris of Newbrook.[1] His son, Dermot McCalmont (1887–1968), inherited a fortune from his second cousin, Harry McCalmont, and was the owner of race horse The Tetrarch.[16]


  1. ^ a b Burke, Sir Bernard, ed. (1914). Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knighthood (76th ed.). Burke's Peerage & Gentry. p. 2404.
  2. ^ a b "Obituary: Sir Hugh McCalmont – Soldier and Horseman". The Times. 3 May 1924. p. 14.
  3. ^ "No. 22983". The London Gazette. 23 June 1865. p. 3152.
  4. ^ a b The families of French of Belturbet and Nixon of Fermanagh, and their descendants by Henry Biddall Swanzy, p.15
  5. ^ C.E. Callwell (ed.), The Memoirs of Major-General Sir Hugh McCalmont (Hutchinson, London, 1924), pp. 47-48.
  6. ^ New Ulster Biography
  7. ^ "No. 27434". The London Gazette. 16 May 1902. p. 3254.
  8. ^ Army Commands Archived 5 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence". The Times (36939). London. 1 December 1902. p. 10.
  10. ^ Bence-Jones, Mark (1988). A Guide to Irish County Houses. London: Constable. p. 1. ISBN 0-09-469990-9.
  11. ^ "The Women's Suffrage Movement" (PDF). NI Assembly Education. Retrieved 16 April 2015.
  12. ^ Burning Outrage in Ireland The Mercury, 30 March 1914
  13. ^ "The suffragette struggle in Ulster". Belfast News Letter. Retrieved 16 April 2015.
  14. ^ "Prison, Protests and Hunger Strikes". Belfast Media Group. Retrieved 16 April 2015.
  15. ^ "A role in Home Rule". Irish Times. Retrieved 16 April 2015.
  16. ^
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for North Antrim
Succeeded by
Military offices
Preceded by
General Officer Commanding the 8th Division
Succeeded by

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