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Ronald Lindsay

ronald lindsay, ronald lindsay obituary
Sir Ronald Charles Lindsay GCB KCMG CVO PC 3 May 1877 – 21 August 1945 was a British civil servant and diplomat He was Ambassador to Turkey from 1925 to 1926 and to Germany from 1926 to 1928, Permanent Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs from 1928 to 1930 and Ambassador to the United States from 1930 to 1939


  • 1 Background and education
  • 2 Career
  • 3 Personal life
  • 4 References

Background and educationedit

Lindsay was the fifth son of James Lindsay, 26th Earl of Crawford, by Emily Florence Bootle-Wilbraham, daughter of Colonel the Honourable Edward Bootle-Wilbraham, second son of Edward Bootle-Wilbraham, 1st Baron Skelmersdale David Lindsay, 27th Earl of Crawford, was his elder brother1 He was educated at Winchester


Lindsay was appointed Third Secretary in the Diplomatic Service in January 1901,2 and advanced to First Secretary in 19113 From 1913 to 1919 he was Under-Secretary of Finance for Egypt,1 and was made a Grand Officer of the Order of the Nile by the Sultan of Egypt in 19154 From 1919 to 1920 he was Councillor of the Embassy in Washington DC,5 before being posted as Minister Plenipotentiary to France in September 19206 Following this, in 1921, he was appointed the Assistant Under-Secretary of State for the Foreign Office, a post he held until 1924 In 1925, he was appointed the Ambassador to Turkey7 and was sworn of the Privy Council later that year8 In 1926, he moved to become Ambassador to Germany9 He returned to London in 1928 to become the Permanent Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, the civil service head of the Foreign Office1 After two years as Permanent Secretary, Lindsay was named as the Ambassador to the United States in November 1929 and took up the position early the next year1011 He was the first ambassador to move into the brand-new British embassy in 1930,12 and remained in Washington for almost a decade, retiring in June 1939 to be replaced by Lord Lothian5

Lindsay served an extraordinarily long term of nine years as US ambassador, his tenure being extended because of his effectiveness as a diplomat and the growing importance of American assistance during the years leading up to World War II13 His last major official act as ambassador was to host the 1939 Royal Garden Party for King George VI and Queen Elizabeth during the first-ever visit to the United States by a reigning British monarch14 Their visit was controversial, given the then strong “America First” isolationism prevalent in the country, and the Royal Garden Party at the British Embassy was considered the social event of the year in Washington1516

Lindsay was appointed a Member of the Royal Victorian Order MVO in 1908,17 a Companion of the Order of the Bath in 1922,18 a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1924,19 and a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George in 192620

Personal lifeedit

Lindsay was married twice, both times to Americans; in 1909 to Martha Cameron, daughter of J Donald Cameron and his wife Elizabeth Sherman Cameron; after her death in April 1918, he married Elizabeth Sherman Hoyt, daughter of Colgate Hoyt, in 1924 Both wives were grandnieces of William Tecumseh Sherman There were no children from either marriage15 Lindsay died in August 1945, aged 68 Lady Lindsay died in September 1954, aged 6821


  1. ^ a b c d thepeeragecom Rt Hon Sir Ronald Charles Lindsay
  2. ^ "No 27300" The London Gazette 29 March 1901 p 2194 
  3. ^ "No 28563" The London Gazette 19 December 1911 p 9562 
  4. ^ "No 29368" The London Gazette 16 November 1915 p 11320 
  5. ^ a b c "New Ambassador", in Time, 1 May 1939
  6. ^ "No 32081" The London Gazette 12 October 1920 p 9886 
  7. ^ "No 33027" The London Gazette 6 March 1925 p 1602 
  8. ^ "No 33069" The London Gazette 24 July 1925 p 4935 
  9. ^ "No 33222" The London Gazette 19 November 1926 p 7475 
  10. ^ "No 33592" The London Gazette 28 March 1930 p 1960 
  11. ^ "Ambassador Ronald", in Time, 25 November 1929
  12. ^ "A History of the Gardens of the Ambassador's Residence, British Embassy, Washington" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-01-07 
  13. ^ "The End of the Lindsay Era and the Beginning of the War Years in the Embassy's Gardens" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-03-28 
  14. ^ "The Royal Garden Party" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-03-28 
  15. ^ "Film footage: The Royal Visit, British Embassy" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-03-28 
  16. ^ "The Aftermath of the Royal Garden Party" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-03-28 
  17. ^ "No 28131" The London Gazette 24 April 1908 p 3077 
  18. ^ "No 32716" The London Gazette 2 June 1922 p 4322 
  19. ^ "No 33007" The London Gazette 30 December 1924 p 4 
  20. ^ "No 33179" The London Gazette 2 July 1926 p 4405 
  21. ^ "The Education and Career of an Embassy Gardner" Landscape of a Washington Place Retrieved 2014-01-07 
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Sir Horace Rumbold, Bt
British Ambassador to Turkey
Succeeded by
Sir George Clerk
Preceded by
The Lord D'Abernon
British Ambassador to Germany
Succeeded by
Sir Horace Rumbold, Bt
Preceded by
Sir Esme Howard
British Ambassador to the United States
Succeeded by
The Marquess of Lothian
Government offices
Preceded by
Sir William Tyrrell
Permanent Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Sir Robert Vansittart

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