National Gallery of Canada / Musée des beaux-arts

Bulletin 6 (III:2), 1965

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Orpen Portraits in the Canadian
War Memorials Collection

Robert F. Wodehouse, Curator of War Art

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Louis James Lipsett (1874-1918) was born at Bundoran, Ireland, 14 June 1874 of a family of Welsh origin. He was educated at Bedford School and Sandhurst and commissioned 2nd Lieutenant Royal Irish Regiment (18th Foot) on 10 October 1894. He served in the Tirah Campaign, North West Frontier of India, and later in South Africa and in a variety of Staff appointments. Appointed General Staff Officer for Western Canada with the local rank of major in 1911 under the policy of standardizing training between Great Britain and the Dominions agreed to at the Imperial Conferences of 1907 and 1909. He served under Lieutenant-General Sir Archibald Macdonell during this period and instructed, among others, Sir Arthur Currie (then Lieutenant-Colonel Commanding 50th Gordon Highlanders in Victoria) and Major-General Garnet Hughes (then 2nd in command of the 50th Gordons). On outbreak of war was offered and accepted command of the 90th Winnipeg Rifles (the Little Black Devils), 8th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force. He succeeded Brigadier-General A. W. Currie in command 2nd Canadian Infantry Brigade when latter was appointed to command 1st Canadian Division, and succeeded Major-General Mercer, when latter was killed at Mount Sorrel, in command of 3rd Canadian Division in June 1916. Transferred back to the British Regular Army as GOC 4th Division in 1918. Killed at Haspres, France, 14 October 1918. Buried with full honours for his rank at Quéant in France by members of the 3rd Canadian Division in the presence of H. R. H. the Prince of Wales, General Horne, commander First Army, and Sir Arthur Currie, Canadian Corps Commander. He was awarded a CB, a CMG, and the French Légion d'Honneur and Croix de Guerre avec étoile en argent et avec palme for his services.

Sir Frederick Oscar Warren Loomis (1870-1937) was born at Sherbrooke, Quebec, 1 February 1870. He was educated at the University of Bishop's College, and became a general contractor. He enlisted in the Canadian Militia as a private in 1886; in 1914 he was given command of the 13th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force. He was promoted brigadier-general in 1916, and in 1918 major-general, commanding the 3rd Canadian Division. He was awarded the DSO in 1915 (bar in 1918), as well as several foreign decorations; he was created a CMG 28 in 1917, and a KCB in 1919. He retired to civilian life in 1919, and he died in Montreal on 15 February 1937.

Sir David Watson (1871-1922) was born at Quebec, 7 December 1871, the son of William Watson and Jean Grant. He was educated in the public schools of Quebec, and became a journalist. In 1901 he became managing director of the Quebec Chronicle. In 1900 he was gazetted a lieutenant in the 8th Royal Rifles of Quebec, and in 1911 he became its commanding officer, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel. On the outbreak of war he was given command of the 2nd Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force. In 1915 he was promoted to be brigadier-general in command of the 5th Brigade and in 1916 he was given command of the 4th Canadian Division, with the rank of major-general. At the end of the war he was the senior divisional commander of the Canadian Corps. He died in Quebec on 19 February 1922. In 1918 he was created, in recognition of his war services, a KCB.

Henry Willis-O'Connor (1886-1957), born 1 April 1886 at Ottawa. Served with the Governor General's Foot Guards, Ottawa, from 1911 to 1914. Joined 2nd Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force, 22 September 1914 as Captain and Adjutant and proceeded to France with the unit in February 1915. He was twice wounded in May and June of 1915 after which he was appointed ADC to GOC 1st Division in September 1915. Promoted temporary major Apri1 1916. Appointed ADC to GOC Canadian Corps June 1916. Returned to Canada 1919. Appointed ADC to the Governor General (Lord Byng) in 1921. Retired from the Army in 1946 with the rank of colonel. He died in Ottawa, 25 April 1957 .He was awarded the DSO and was twice mentioned in despatches in World War I.

Reginald Theodore Carlos Hoidge (1894-1963) was born in Toronto, the son of John Robert Hoidge. He enlisted in the Officers Training Corps of the University of Toronto in October 1914, receiving his commission as 2nd lieutenant in the Royal Garrison Artillery in June 1916. He transferred to the Royal Flying Corps two months later. He joined No.56 Squadron in January 1917 and accompanied it to France in April of that year. There he flew in company with such outstanding fliers as Captain Albert Ball, VC, Major J. T. B. McCudden, VC, Major G. T. C. Maxwell, and Lieutenant A. P. F. Rhys Davids. All in all, he is credited with destroying or sending down out of control a total of 25 enemy aircraft. In September 1917 he took part with Rhys Davids in the combat in which Fliegerleutenant Werner Voss was killed. Voss was at the time the second-highest-scoring German pilot, with 49 credited victories.

After completing 83 patrols with No.56 Squadron, Hoidge was posted back to Britain in November 1918 and joined the
staff of the Central Flying School. Shortly afterwards he was injured in an accident and returned to France only in September 1918, where he joined No.1 Squadron. He returned to Canada in May 1919.

He was one of the early outstanding Canadians with the RFC, being promoted lieutenant (honorary captain) in the RAF in April 1918. He is listed in the memoirs of Lord Douglas of Kirtleside as one of a group of pilots under his command who were capable of successfully combatting the Flying Circus of Von Richthofen at a crucial moment in the war. He was awarded the Military Cross in July 1917 and a Bar in October of the same year. He settled in New York City, where he died in 1963.

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