Brigadier General Harold Edward 'Pompey' Elliott, CB, CMG, DSO, DCM, VD

Date of birth1878-06-19 Australia: Victoria 
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs)  1898  Enlisted as a private in a squadron of the 4th Victorian Contingent, the Imperial Bushmen. 
Date of honour or award  1900  Awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) for his particpation in an attack on a Boer force which resulted in the capture of 33 men and 54 horses. 
Date commissioned  1900  Obtained a commission as a lieutenant in the 2nd Berkshire, but chose to remain with the Australians. 
Other  1900-05  Arrived in South Africa and promoted to corporal. 
Date returned to Australia  1901-07   
Other  1901-08  Sailed again for South Africa and joined the Border Scouts. 
Date and unit at appointment (Officers)  1904-03  Enlisted in the 5th Australian Infantry Regiment and commissioned as a lieutenant. 
Date promoted  1911  Appointed major and second in command of the Regiment. 
Date promoted  1913-07-01  Appointed lieutenant colonel and commanding officer of the 58th Battalion, Essendon Rifles. 
Other  1914-08  Selected to command the 7th Battalion when the AIF was formed. 
Date promoted  1915-03-01  Appointed to brigadier general and given the task of organising the 15th Brigade. 
Date wounded  1915-05-25  Wounded in the ankle at Gallipoli and evacuated. 
Other  1915-06-02  Returned to the 7th Battalion. 
Other  1915-08  Evacuated to England with pleurisy. 
Other  1915-11-22  Returned to the 7th Battalion. 
Other  1915-12-18  Evacuated from Gallipoli with a sprained ankle. 
Other units  1916-01-24  Appointed to command the 1st Brigade. 
Date promoted  1916-03  Appointed Brigadier General and commanding officer of 15th Brigade. 
Date of honour or award  1917-01-01  Gazetted Companion of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George (CMG). 
Date of honour or award  1917-02-15  Gazetted Russian Order of St Anne - 3rd Class. 
Date of honour or award  1917-03  Awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO). 
Date of honour or award  1918-06-03  Gazetted a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB). 
Date of honour or award  1919-01-07  Gazetted French Croix de Guerre. 
Date returned to Australia  1919-05-05   
Other  1919-09  Reappointed to command the 15th Militia Brigade. 
Other  1921  Requested to be placed on the unattached list. 
Other  1926  Again reappointed to command the 15th Brigade. 
Date promoted  1927-08  Promoted to major general and appointed to command the 3rd Division. 
Date of death1931-03-23 Victoria 

Harold 'Pompey' Elliott was a senior First World War officer, businessman, and politician. He was born on 19 June 1879 at West Charlton, Victoria. Elliott joined the University of Melbourne's officer corps while a student but left to enlist in the 4th Victorian (Imperial) Contingent and fight in the Boer War. Elliott proved himself a skilled and courageous soldier; he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal, Mentioned in Despatches, and once received Lord Kitchener's congratulations for his defence of a post. Equally successful as a student and athlete, Elliott returned to university, earned a number of scholarships and prizes, played football, and was a champion shot-putter. He was called to the Victorian and Commonwealth Bar in 1907 and established a firm of solicitors. He married Catherine Campbell in 1909 and in the meantime had joined the militia as a 2nd Lieutenant. By 1913 he had reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and was given command of the 58th Battalion. The army was Elliott's passion and he immersed himself in military lore. When the First World War began Elliott was given both command of the 7th Battalion and the nickname 'Pompey' that stuck for the rest of his life. He landed at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915, was shot in the foot, evacuated and did not return until June. Once back he quickly gained a reputation for courage and leadership. Four of the seven Victoria Crosses awarded at Lone Pine went to Elliott's battalion. A short-lived command of the 1st Brigade was followed in March 1916 by promotion to Brigadier General and command of the 15th Brigade. Through no fault of Elliott's, the brigade's first action on the Western Front, at Fromelles, was a disaster in which over 5,500 men were killed or wounded in one night. Elliott wept as he met survivors coming out of the line. But war also energised Elliott. Careful of men's lives, he was sometimes reckless with his own. A frank, outspoken man, he clashed with his superiors and was considered a difficult subordinate. In battle he proved to be an excellent, sometimes inspirational, leader. He expected to be given a divisional command and the denial of his ambition in May 1918 remained a source of bitterness until his death. For the rest of the war he led with characteristic zeal and in January 1919 he received the fondest of farewells from his brigade. In the 1919 federal election he successfully stood for the Senate as a Nationalist; he was re-elected in 1925. He also took command of the 15th Militia Brigade. Alongside his political and legal career, Elliott was involved in the Returned Sailors and Soldiers Imperial League of Australia. His protests at having been denied higher command continued and were rejected by the Military Board and the Minister for Defence. Only in 1927 was Elliott promoted to Major General and given command of the 3rd Division; however, his bitterness, expressed in correspondence to his superiors, remained. In March 1931 he committed suicide.