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James Simpson (British Army officer)

General Sir James Simpson GCB (1792 – 18 April 1868) was a British Army officer of the 19th century. He commanded the British troops in the Crimea from June to November 1855, following the death of Field Marshal Lord Raglan.

Sir James Simpson
Crimean War 1854-56 Q71516.jpg
James Simpson
Badminton House, Gloucestershire
Died18 April 1868 (aged 75–76)
Crimea, Russian Empire
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service1811–1855
Commands heldBritish Troops in the Crimea
South-West District
29th (Worcestershire) Regiment of Foot
Battles/warsPeninsular War
Crimean War
AwardsKnight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour (France)
Knight Grand Cross of the Military Order of Savoy (Sardinia)
Order of the Medjidie, First Class (Ottoman Empire)

Military careerEdit

Educated at the University of Edinburgh, Simpson was commissioned into the 1st Regiment of Foot Guards on 3 April 1811.[1] He served with his regiment during the Peninsular War and the Waterloo Campaign, and then commanded the 29th Regiment of Foot in Mauritius and Bengal.[1]

In 1839 Simpson married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Robert Dundas, 1st Baronet of Beechwood. She died in 1840.[1] Promoted to major general on 11 November 1851, he became General Officer Commanding the South-West District that same month.[1]

In February 1855 he was sent out to the Crimea to act as chief of staff to the army commander Lord Raglan. Raglan died on 28 June, and Simpson reluctantly took command of the army.[1] He resigned on 10 November, and was succeeded by Sir William Codrington.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Simpson, Sir James". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
Military offices
Preceded by
Sir George D'Aguilar
GOC South-West District
Succeeded by
Henry Breton
Preceded by
Sir Ulysses Burgh, 2nd Baron Downes
Colonel of the 29th (Worcestershire) Regiment of Foot
Succeeded by
John Longfield
Preceded by
Sir Hugh Gough, 1st Viscount Gough
Colonel of the 87th (Royal Irish
Fusiliers) Regiment of Foot

Succeeded by
Lord William Paulet