14 – Sir Henry Knight Storcks
Lieutenant General Sir Henry Knight Storcks
1811 – 1874
Governor of Malta 1864-1867
Sir Henry Knight Storcks GCMG GCB (1811 – September 6, 1874) was a British soldier and colonial governor.
Educated at Charterhouse School, he entered the Army on January 10, 1828 as an ensign of the 61st Regiment of Foot. He was promoted lieutenant on March 2, 1832, exchanged to the 14th Regiment of Foot on March 23, 1832, and was promoted captain on October 30, 1835. Exchanging to the 38th Regiment of Foot on May 30, 1836, he served with them in the Ionian Islands in 1840 and was promoted major on August 7, 1840. He married a Neapolitan lady surnamed Mizzoli in 1841, but she died in 1848.
He went on half pay from the regiment on May 23, 1845, and served in a variety of staff posts. He served as an Assistant Adjutant General during the seventh of the Cape Frontier Wars from 1846 to 1847, and was subsequently promoted to an unattached lieutenant colonelcy September 15, 1848. From 1849 to 1854, he was Assistant Military Secretary at Mauritius, and was promoted colonel on November 28, 1854.
Promoted major-general, Storcks superintended the British bases set up in Ottoman territory during the Crimean War, where he supported the nursing efforts of Florence Nightingale. After the war, he was awarded the KCB (January 2, 1857) and employed from 1857 to 1859 by the War Office as Secretary for Military Correspondence.
He now began his career in colonial government, appointed Lord High Commissioner of the Ionian Islands on February 2, 1859. While serving there, he was created GCMG in 1860, and reorganized the judiciary of the islands before the end of the commissionership (by treaty) on November 14, 1863. He was made a GCB on July 1, 1864. Sent next to Malta, he was appointed Governor on November 15, 1864. However, he was called the next year to Jamaica to investigate the disturbances there, including the Morant Bay rebellion, and was appointed Governor of Jamaica on December 12, 1865. He held that post until July 16, 1866. Upon his return, he was created a Privy Councillor (November 10, 1866). He resigned the Governorship of Malta on May 15, 1867.
Now back at the War Office, he was appointed Controller-in-Chief and Under-Secretary at the War Office on December 19, 1867. There, he was involved in the re-organization of Army logistics that took place after the Crimean War. He was appointed Surveyor-General of the Ordnance on August 5, 1870, the first to hold that post since the Crimean War. On October 10, 1870, he was appointed colonel of the 70th Regiment of Foot, an office he held for the remainder of his life.
Entering politics, he was elected Member of Parliament for Ripon in 1871, and was promoted lieutenant general October 25, 1871. While in Parliament, he spoke in favor of the abolition of the purchase system of Army commissions. He was also a strong supporter of the Contagious Diseases Acts, a stance which contributed to his defeat by Earl de Grey in 1874. He died shortly after losing the election, on September 6, 1874.