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Hamilton, Admiral Sir Louis Henry Keppel (1892-1957)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0064 HTN/201-251
Held at: National Maritime Museum
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Full title: Hamilton, Admiral Sir Louis Henry Keppel (1892-1957)
Date(s): [1903-1956]
Level of description: Subfonds
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Extent: 13ft; 390cm
Name of creator(s): Hamilton | Sir | Louis Henry Keppel | 1890-1957 | Knight | Admiral


Administrative/Biographical history:

Hamilton (known throughout his career as 'Turtle'), son of Admiral Sir Frederick Tower Hamilton, entered the Navy in 1903. After Dartmouth he served on the Mediterranean Station, 1908 to 1910, in the ALBEMARLE and the PRINCE OF WALES. Between 1910 and 1911 he was in the VANGUARD in the Channel and went in the VENUS to the Indian Durbar of 1911. He was made lieutenant in 1913, after which he went to the CUMBERLAND and took a prominent part in the Cameroons operations, 1914 to 1915. Subsequently he began a long service commanding destroyers in the Harwich Force. Between 1915 and 1916 he was in the MOORSOM and in the TAURUS from 1917 to 1918. He was appointed to the STRENUOUS, home waters, in 1921, to the QUEEN ELIZABETH, home waters, 1922 to 1924 and in 1925 to the Royal Yacht, VICTORIA AND ALBERT, becoming a commander in 1926. He next served in the destroyers WANDERER and WILD SWAN, Mediterranean and China, 1927 to 1928, returned to the Mediterranean for a short period in 1929 and was at the Admiralty from 1931 to 1932. He was promoted to captain in 1932, commanded the NORFOLK, flagship on the East Indies Station, 1935 to 1937, and was Captain of the Royal Naval College, Greenwich, 1938 to 1939. Promoted to rear-admiral in 1941, he commanded the First Cruiser Squadron, Home Fleet, from 1940 to 1942, during which he was ordered to abandon the Arctic convoy PQ17. He was Flag Officer, Malta, 1943 to 1945, and then went to Australia as First Member of the Commonwealth Naval Board, 1945 to 1948. He was made an admiral in 1947 and retired in 1948.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Sir Louis Henry Keppel Hamiltom. The diaries cover most of his career and all periods afloat from 1908 to 1928. There are also diaries for journeys in the merchant ships Lagos, 1915, and in the Usaramo to Lisbon in 1924. In addition there are official reports and signals for the time when Hamilton commanded the First Cruiser Squadron and a very full collection of letters written by him to his family, 1906 to 1956. There are also photograph albums of Osborne and Dartmouth, 1903 to1907 of the Durbar, 1911, and of other periods in Hamilton's life. Finally, there are lecture notes and memoranda from Dartmouth, 1922 to 1924, and papers relating to Australia, 1947.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Papers from 1939 are not available for inspection until 1985.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue online at the: National Maritime Museum website .

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The papers were presented by Hamilton's sister, Miss Jean Hamilton, in 1957.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Edited by Sarah Drewery, Jul 2011.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:

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