Lt Edward Alfred Small, DSO

medal card Small

1885 Jan/Mar Born London.

1891 census in Montreal, Quebec, Canada

1903 Oct . Served as a Constable in the North-West Mounted Police in Canada from October 1903 to February 1906, following which he became a rancher in Alberta.

1915 Jan 9. S. Making his way to the U.K. on the outbreak of hostilities, he was appointed a 2nd Lieutenant on the General List in January 1915. Staff. Reg. Temp. 2nd Lt. E. A. Small, from a Serv. Bn., to be temp. 2nd Lt. (attd.).

1915 Jun 30 joined with the 7th Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment in Gallipoli. Lands in Dardanelles with S Staffs.

1915 Aug 9. Wounded by a gunshot to his right knee at Hill 70 - when his Battalion came under murderous shrapnel and rifle fire, every single officer being killed or wounded in the first ten minutes of the action - he was invalided home in the hospital ship Aquitania.

1916 early. Operation for appendicitis

1917 Mar. Cleared for active service and went out to France in the following month, with a new appointment in the Intelligence Corps - his service record reveals that he was subsequently employed as a 3rd Class Agent in the Field

1917 May 8. (Graded for purposes of pay as a Staff Lt., 3rd Cl.)—Temp. 2nd I/t. E. A. Small, Training Res. Bn., and to be transfd. to Gen. Last.

1917 Aug 26 (Graded for purposes of pay as a Staff Lt., 2nd Cl.)Temp. 2nd Lt. E. A. Small, Gen. List.

1917 Jul 1. S. Staff. R. The undermentioned temp. 2nd Lts. to be temp. Lts.: — E. A. Small. 1 July 1917.

1918 Nov ‘he proceeded to England to report to Mr. R. Page, M.B.E., M21a, War Office for instructions’.

1919 Jan Selected for further intelligence duties, he proceeded to North Russia.

1919 Jan 21. Special appointment. Class GG —Temp. Lt. E. A. Small, Gen. List

1919 Jun 23. Murmansk Command gazettes DSO with citation T./Lt Edward Alfred Small, Gen. List. He, with 37 partisans, gallantly penetrated into the rear of the Bolshevik lines and captured the complete brigade staff, including brigade commander, regimental commander and 50 prisoners, and took away the breech block of a 3 in. gun. On 23rd June he penetrated further into the Bolshevik lines, and burnt the Suna Bridge. At Suna. Station they surprised the guards, capturing two machine guns.

His remarkable achievements in command of partisan groups suggest employment of the clandestine kind and the subsequent award of his D.S.O. was a rare distinction indeed for a Temporary Lieutenant. Rarer still was his appointment to the Order of St. George, to which he also added the 4th Class of the Order of St. Vladimir (both confirmed in Brough’s White Russian Awards). He was also 1 of only 5 officer award Russian Order of St George (4th Class) for gallentry. Russia, Order of St. Vladimir, 4th Class with swords,

1919 Jul 9. Special Appointment Class GG.—Temp. Lt. E. A. Small, Gen. List.

1919 Oct. Returned to the U.K.. He was demobilised in the following month, the relevant papers noting that in the event of rejoining in an emergency, he was in possession of ‘special instructions’. A report dealing with Small’s demobilisation states that his name was not to be published in the London Gazette, and that any correspondence regarding him be directed to ‘Room 419’ at the War Office. Savage also had this on his file. Room 419 was one of a number occupied by MI7. In May 1918 the occupant was a Capt P Chalmers Mitchell. (Allocation of Rooms with List  of Officials Employed at the War Office, May 1918) . MI7 dealt with propoganda. History of MI7b

1920 Jun 11. M.I.D. London Gazette (North Russia and Murmansk)

1920, he was recruited for service in the Combined Intelligence Service (C.I.S.), under Ormonde Winter and Colonel Hill Dillon, at Dublin Castle, one of 60 to 100 agents employed to hunt out Republican sympathisers and, where necessary, raid their premises.

1920 Jan 21. Special Appointment Class GG (up from HH)

1920 Jun 2. Special Appointment

special appointment

1921 Apr 1. Relinquishes commission on ceasing to be employed Lt E A Small DSO. He was recommended for an award Gen Boyd, but did not get one

1922 Leaves UK for Shanghai. His name is crossed out presumably meaning he did not sail on the ship. His profession is "vice-consul" and he intends living in Russia

1923 Oct 5. Arrives in San Francisco from Kobe, Japan. He is a merchant. His sister Laura Edith is next of kin at Holland Cottage, Chertsey . He last lived at Harbin, China. And is heading to Vancouver, Canada

1933 Jan. H.M. Consul-General in San Francisco sent the following telegram to the Foreign Office: ‘Edward Alfred Small, formerly Lieutenant, Staffordshires, demobilised in 1922, is destitute and dangerously ill here. Could the War Office ascertain relatives and inform me by cable if they can furnish assistance. Small’s fate remains unknown, but related War Office correspondence ends in February 1933, when a ‘Miss Small’ is referred to the Foreign Office. The Laura Edith Small living as a boarder at Holland Cottage, Chertsey in 1911 census is "single" and born 1873 (which if correct must be his sister Edith, see 1891 Canadian census as Edith). And this must be the "Miss Small contacted by Foreign Office in 1933

1933 Feb 18. Edward Alfred Small. Burial 1933 in Montreal, Canada Death Date 18 Feb 1933 Affiliate Record Identifier 108199546 Cemetery Mount Royal Cemetery

2012 His medals sold for £15,000

An extremely rare Russia 1919 operations D.S.O. group of six awarded to Lieutenant E. A. Small, Military Intelligence Services, late South Staffordshire Regiment, one of just five British Army Officers to be awarded the Russian Order of St. George for gallantry during the Intervention: severely wounded in Gallipoli, he was subsequently employed as an agent in France by Military Intelligence and it is probable that his later work with partisans in Russia fell under the same clandestine umbrella - certainly he was employed as an agent during the Irish Troubles 1920-21

Distinguished Service Order, G.V.R., silver-gilt and enamel; 1914-15 Star (2 Lieut. E. A. Small, S. Staff. R.); British War and Victory Medals, M.I.D. oak leaf (Lieut. E. A. Small); Russia, Order of St. George, 4th Class breast badge, 34 by 34mm., silver-gilt and enamel, unmarked; Russia, Order of St. Vladimir, 4th Class breast badge, with swords, 40 by 40mm., silver-gilt and enamel, unmarked, mounted court-style as worn, minor enamel damage, very fine and better (6)

British Intelligence Dublin Castle

Yes, I think you have the right person. I am not related to the Smalls but came across them when I transcribed the letters my grandfather wrote to his mother while with the Canadian Expeditionary Force in 1917-18. While training in Witley, my grandfather rented a house nearby with Bradley Wilson and his new wife Helen McIntyre. (The Smalls and McIntyres were neighbours in Montreal and Duncan McIntyre had married one of the girls next door). Helen's grandmother was Laura Small who was a frequent visitor to the house which they christened Mousetrap Lodge. I have double checked the letters and her address is Mrs E.A. Small, Holland Cottage, Chertsey, Surrey which is the same as the address on E. Small's information card {MIC}. I wish I could give you more information on Mr. Small but do not have any. There are curious connections however. One of Bradley and Helen's two daughters was Hughie Green's first wife.