Who's Who - Sir James Edmonds

Sir James Edward Edmonds (1861-1956) was the official British historian for World War One.

Widely regarded as a form of collective hagiography in current times it was nevertheless only Edmonds' devotion to the extensive multi-volume project that ensured its eventual completion.

Although inclined to take a pro-Douglas Haig viewpoint in those volumes produced in the 1930s - to some extent driven in reaction to the publication of wartime Prime Minister David Lloyd George's scathing, self-serving War Memoirs - Edmonds' official history is by no means uncritical of Britain's wartime leadership.

Rather dry in style Edmonds primarily intended his history to serve as a publication for use in staff training exercises.  Edmonds himself - a Brigadier General - was a quite different individual in person than his history suggests, and was somewhat given to gossip.

He died in 1956.

Observation balloons were referred to as 'sausages'.

- Did you know?

Who's Who