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Identity statement

Reference code(s)
GB0099 KCLMA Bethell A E
BETHELL, Adm Hon Sir Alexander Edward (1855-1932)
Level of description
collection level
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
3 boxes or 0.03 cubic metres


Name of creator(s)
Bethell, Hon, Sir, Alexander Edward, 1855-1932, Knight, Admiral
Administrative / Biographical history

Born in 1855; entered the Royal Navy in 1869; Sub Lt, 1875; Lt, 1878; Commander, 1891; Capt, 1898; Assistant Director of Torpedoes, 1903-1907; R Adm, 1908; Director of Naval Intelligence, 1909-1912; Commander-in-Chief, East Indies, 1912; Vice Adm, 1913; commander, Royal Naval War College, Portsmouth, 1913-1914; commanded battleships of 3 Fleet, 1914; commander, Channel Fleet, 1915; Adm, 1916; Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth, 1916-1918; Adm commanding Coast Guard and Reserves; retired, 1918; died in 1932.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Placed in the Centre by the family in 1986.

Content & structure

Scope and content

Papers relating to early naval career, 1872-1907 including midshipman's log books; papers relating to service as Director of Naval Intelligence, 1909-1912, Commander-in-Chief, East Indies, 1911-1918, commander of Royal Naval War College, Portsmouth, 1913-1914, commander of 3 Battle Fleet and Channel Fleet, 1914-1915 and Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth, 1916-1918; correspondence with Adm Sir Alexander Duff, 1917-1918, AF Lord Fisher, 1909-1918 and AF Lord Jellicoe, 1913-1918; personal papers and correspondence, 1865-1932; miscellaneous papers, 1901-1911; correspondence between the family and researchers using the papers, 1935-1979.

System of arrangement

The papers are arranged in sections according to military service. Correspondence with senior naval personnel, personal papers and correspondence, miscellaneous papers and correspondence with researchers have been grouped separately

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Trustees of the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, attention of the Director of Archive Services.

Language/scripts of material
Finding aids

Draft catalogue available online and in hard copy in the Centre's reading room.

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals
King's College London College Archives



Decorations: KCB, GCMG

Description control

Rules or conventions

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal Place and Corporate Names 1997.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

Date(s) of descriptions

Updated 2016

Box List(s)

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  • Armed forces
  • Higher science education
  • International conflicts
  • International relations
  • Military education
  • Military organizations
  • Organizations
  • State security
  • War
  • Wars (events)
  • World War One (1914-1918)
  • World wars (events)

Personal names

  • Bethell, Sir, Alexander Edward, 1855-1932, Knight, Admiral
  • Duff, Sir, Alexander Ludovic, 1862-1933, Knight, Admiral
  • Fisher, John Arbuthnot, 1841-1920, 1st Baron Fisher of Kilverstone, Admiral of the Fleet
  • Jellicoe, John Rushworth, 1859-1935, 1st Earl Jellicoe, Admiral of the Fleet

Corporate names

  • RN, Royal Navy


  • Dutch East Indies
  • East Indies, South East Asia
  • Indonesia, South East Asia
  • London, England
  • Plymouth, Devon, England

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