how did charles gordon die

[59], On 2 March 1880, on his way from London to Switzerland, Gordon had visited King Leopold II of Belgium in Brussels and was invited to take charge of the Congo Free State. [151] Faught wrote that Gordon was only in South Africa for a short time, but one of his enduring legacies is the existence of Lesotho, which otherwise would have been annexed to the Orange Free State. The Sudan was judged to be not worth the huge financial costs it would have taken to conquer it, the same conclusion that the Liberals had reached. [17], During his time in the Crimea, Gordon made a number of friendships that were to last for the rest of his life, most notably with Romolo Gessi, Garnet Wolseley and Gerald Graham, all of whom would cross paths with Gordon several times in the future. [86], At the beginning of his reign in 1863, Egypt's debt had been 3 million Egyptian pounds. [20], For his services in the Crimea, he received the Crimean war medal and clasp. The troops reached Korti towards the end of December, the small "Desert Column" reaching Metemma on 20 January 1885, fighting the Battle of Abu Klea[200] on 18 January and Abu Kru (or Gubat) en route. How I look forward to their disbandment". [195] Gordon waged a very vigorous defence, sending out his armoured steamers to shoot up the Ansar camps along the Blue Nile while he regularly made raids on the besiegers that often gave the Madhi's forces a bloody nose. [96] Joining Gordon on the journey to Equatoria was his old friend Romolo Gessi and a former US Army officer, Charles Chaillé-Long, who did not get along well with Gordon. Asher concludes: "He did not save the country from invasion or disaster, but among the British heroes of all ages, there is perhaps no other who stands out so prominently as an individualist, a man ready to die for his principles. [162] While staying with his sister in Southampton, Gordon received an unexpected visitor, namely William Thomas Stead, the editor of The Pall Mall Gazette, with whom Gordon reluctantly agreed to do an interview. This was a very evangelical branch of CMS and was able to start work in Sudan in 1900 as soon as the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium took control after the fall of Khartoum in 1899. I have a splendid camel-none like it; it flies along and quite astonishes the Arabs". In 1885 at a meeting in London, £3,000 were allocated to a Gordon Memorial Mission in Sudan. He was an actor, known for Our Miss Brooks (1952), Here's Lucy (1968) and The Lucy Show (1962). [90], Typical of the men that Khedive Isma'il Pasha hired was Valentine Baker, a British Army officer dishonorably discharged after being convicted of raping a young woman he been asked to chaperon. However, in 1953 the statue minus a large slice of its pedestal was reinstalled on the Victoria Embankment, in front of the newly built Ministry of Defence main buildings. Genealogy for Charles Gordon Maynard (1885 - d.) family tree on Geni, with over 200 million profiles of ancestors and living relatives. [187] The British had decided to abandon the Sudan, but it was clear that Gordon had other plans, and the public increasingly called for a relief expedition. [221] During a meeting in 1898 in Cairo where Churchill interviewed Baring to gather material for his 1899 book The River War, Baring challenged Churchill about his belief that Gordon was a hero. [21], Following the peace, he was attached to an international commission to mark the new border between the Russian Empire and the Ottoman Empire in Bessarabia. Only when public pressure to act had become irresistible did the government, with reluctance, send a relief force. [106], Gordon grew close to the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society, an evangelical Christian group based in London dedicated to ending slavery all over the world, and who regularly celebrated Gordon's efforts to end slavery in the Sudan. [29], Gordon was intensely bored with garrison duty in Chatham and often wrote to the War Office, begging them to send him anywhere in the world where British arms were seeing action. [5] After her death, her place as Gordon's favourite sibling was taken by his very religious older sister Augusta, who nudged her brother towards religion. [146] Gordon saw his work in building forts to protect Mauritius from a possible Russian naval attack as pointless, and his main achievement during his time there was to advise the Crown to turn the Seychelles islands, whose beauty had greatly moved Gordon, into a new crown colony as Gordon argued it was impossible to govern the Seychelles from Port Louis. [211] The Ansar took no prisoners and all of the approximately 7,000 defenders were killed. [233], The Corps of Royal Engineers, Gordon's own Corps, commissioned a statue of Gordon on a camel. [151] After his return from South Africa, Galbraith remarked that Gordon had a "strange combination of melancholia, resignation and mysticism" that he was destined by God both to do something great and to die soon. [48] Gordon also had the pleasure of defeating Burgevine (whom Gordon detested), who had raised a mercenary force and joined the Taipings. Gordon accepted the offer, but shortly after arriving in India, he resigned. [76] About the frequent references in Gordon's letters about his need to resist "temptation" and "subdue the flesh", Faught argued that it was women rather than men who were "tempting" him. [45] The next day, Quinsan fell to the 4th Regiment, which led a proud Gordon to write: "The rebels did not know its importance until they lost it". When Isma'il's reign ended in 1879, Egypt's debt had risen to 93 million pounds. The clash led to Gordon informing the Khedive that he did not wish to return to the Sudan, and he left for London. During his "career break" in the Holy Land, the very religious Gordon sought to explore his faith and biblical sites. Muhammad Ahmad’s victory shocked the world. [251] In his Mission to Khartum—The Apotheosis of General Gordon (1969) John Marlowe portrays Gordon as "a colourful eccentric—a soldier of fortune, a skilled guerrilla leader, a religious crank, a minor philanthropist, a gadfly buzzing about on the outskirts of public life" who would have been no more than a footnote in today's history books, had it not been for "his mission to Khartoum and the manner of his death", which were elevated by the media "into a kind of contemporary Passion Play". Gordon, who once said to a Roman Catholic priest that "the church is like the British Army, one army but many regiments", never aligned himself with or became a member of any church. It is often suggested that that campaign by William Randolph Hearst's paper that led to the US invasion of Cuba in 1898 was the world's first episode of this kind, but the British press deserves these dubious laurels for its actions a full fourteen years earlier". [67], King Leopold II then asked Gordon again to take charge of the Congo Free State. [22] As he travelled to Bessarabia, he commented in his letters home about the richness and fertility of the Romanian countryside, which produced delicious fruits and vegetables in great abundance, and the poverty of the Romanian peasants. [25] Gordon called the Romanians the "most fickle and intriguing people on the earth. The mortal enemy of the morning had become a trusted ally by night". [150], After arriving in Basutoland, Gordon met with Prince Masupha to persuade him to lay down his arms and to accept his father's protectorate plan rather than have his kingdom annexed to the Orange Free State. Colonel Valentine Baker led an Egyptian force out of Suakin and was badly defeated by 1,000 Haddendowa warriors who declared their loyalty to the Mahdi under Osman Digna at Al-Teb with 2,225 Egyptian soldiers and 96 officers killed. Some think he was killed along with the rest of the garrison; others think he was captured and executed in the camp of the Mahdi. [181], Gordon commenced the task of sending the women, children, the sick and wounded to Egypt. [196] To slow down the Ansar assaults, Gordon built primitive landmines out of water cans stuffed with dynamite and to confuse the enemy about his numbers, he put up wooden dummies in uniform along the walls of Khartoum facing the Blue Nile. [176] Shortly afterwards, Gordon wrote what Urban called a "bizarre" letter to the Mahdi telling him to accept the authority of the Khedive of Egypt and offering him the chance to work as one of Gordon's provincial governors. [154] The Spaffords had lost their home and much of their fortune in the Great Chicago Fire and then had seen one of their sons die of scarlet fever, four of their daughters drowned in a shipwreck followed by the death of another son from scarlet fever, causing them to turn to religion as consolation for unbearable tragedy, making them very congenial company for Gordon during his stay in Jerusalem. After scotching numerous rebellions and ending the slave trade, he went on to India, Mauritius, China, and Southern Africa. [194] The American historian James Perry wrote: "But instead of following instructions, he stayed put, longing for martyrdom. [174] Because his Turkish, Egyptian and many of his Sudanese troops were Muslim, Gordon refrained in public from describing his battle with the Mahdi as a religious war, but Gordon's diary showed he viewed himself as a Christian champion fighting against the Mahdi just as much for God as for Queen and country. [195] During this period, Gordon was lionised by the British press, which portrayed him as a latter-day Christian "knight", a "crusader" and a "saint", a man of pure good, heroically battling the Mahdi, who was depicted as a man of pure evil. The enemy came on again. [69] The Dictionary of National Biography described Gordon as a great "boy lover". Gale Gordon was born on February 20, 1906 in New York City, New York, USA as Charles Thomas Aldrich Jr. Gordon had a highly individual personality. [176] Given that Gordon himself in his interview with Stead had stated: "The moment it is known that we have given up the game, every man will go over to the Mahdi", his decision to reveal that the Egyptians were pulling out remains inexplicable. A group of European financial commissioners led by Evelyn Baring took charge of the Egyptian finances in an attempt to pay off the European banks who had lent so much money to Egypt. [4] For the same services he was appointed a Chevalier of the Legion of Honour by the Government of France on 16 July 1856. When did Charles Gordon O'Neill die? By September 1882, the Egyptian position in the Sudan had grown perilous. [43], Gordon's breakthrough caught the rebel army off guard and caused thousands of the enemy to panic and flee. As to who tipped him off that the general would be staying here for just a couple of nights, we can only speculate". [250], Another attempt to debunk Gordon was Anthony Nutting's Gordon, Martyr & Misfit (1966). [130], In May, the Marquess of Ripon, who had been given the post of Governor-General of India, asked Gordon to go with him as private secretary. [84], Gordon had come into conflict with the Egyptian governor of Khartoum and Sudan over his efforts to ban slavery. [62] Gordon disapproved of the forts he was building at the mouth of Thames to guard against a possible French invasion, regarding them as expensive and useless. [140] After meeting with him there, Hart described Gordon as "very eccentric" and "spending hours in prayer", writing that: "As much I like and respect him, I must say he is 'not all there'. His moods were capricious and uncertain, his passions violent, his impulses sudden and inconsistent. [157] He accepted and returned to London to make preparations, but soon after his arrival the British requested that he proceed immediately to the Sudan, where the situation had deteriorated badly after his departure—another revolt had arisen, led by the self-proclaimed Mahdi, Mohammed Ahmed. [33] The British forces occupied northern China until April 1862, then under General Charles William Dunbar Staveley, withdrew to Shanghai to protect the European settlement from the rebel Taiping army. [12] The wave of mourning was not just confined to Britain. [108] But the Khedive Isma'il Pasha wrote to him saying that he had promised to return, and that he expected him to keep his word. [99], Gordon had succeeded in establishing a line of way stations from the Sobat confluence on the White Nile to the frontier of Uganda, where he proposed to open a route from Mombasa. "[206] On 14 December 1884, Gordon wrote the last entry in his diary, which read: "Now MARK THIS, if the Expeditionary Force and I ask for no more than two hundred men, does not come in ten days, the town may fall; and I have done my best for the honour of our country. [12], Gordon believed in both predestination - writing that "I believe that not a worm is picked up by a bird without the direct intervention of God" - and free will with humans choosing their own fate, writing "I cannot and do not pretend to reconcile the two". [161] By the end of 1883 the Egyptians held only the ports on the Red Sea and a narrow belt of land around the Nile in northern Sudan. Under the Chinese system of familial responsibility, all family members of a rebel were equally guilty even if they had nothing to do with the rebellious individual's acts. [135] Gordon informed the Foreign Office that he was willing to renounce his British citizenship and take Chinese citizenship as he would not abandon Li and his other Chinese friends should a Sino-Russian war begin. [195] Gordon wrote in his diary that Mohammed Aly had captured "a lad of 12 or 14 years of age, and the little chap spoke out boldly, and said he believed Mohamed Ahmed was the Mahdi and that we were dogs. If there is anything that I admire nearly as much as the superb scholarship of Zeng Guofan, it is the military qualities of this fine officer. What this almost certainly meant was that Gordon had unresolved homosexual inclinations which, like Kitchener, but unlike Rhodes, he kept savagely repressed. [215], A merchant, Bordeini Bey, glimpsed Gordon standing on the palace steps in a white uniform looking into the darkness. [191] The black Sudanese troops, many from what is now South Sudan, proved to be Gordon's best troops at Khartoum and numbered about twenty-three hundred. [109] Gordon agreed to return to Cairo, and was asked to take the position of Governor-General of the entire Sudan, which he accepted. [189], Gordon energetically organised the defence of Khartoum right from the moment he arrived in Khartoum, using his training as a military engineer to turn the city into a fortress. They celebrated H.E's [His Excellency] arrival with an indescribable uproar". [90], Reflecting these realities, Gordon had to undertake much of the administrative work himself, travelling ceaselessly and constantly all over the Sudan via camel in attempts to make the bureaucracy actually obey his orders, something that occurred when he was present, but stopped as soon as he left. Charles George Gordon, British general who became a national hero for his exploits in China and his ill-fated defense of Khartoum against the Mahdists. [145] Somewhat tactlessly, Gordon reminded Gladstone that his father had owned a slave plantation in Jamaica and had been one of those slave-owners compensated by the Crown in 1833 for the freeing of his slaves, a bit of Gladstone family history that the Prime Minister did not like to have discussed. [143] Gordon was sickened by the poverty of the Irish farmers, which led him to write a six-page memo to the Prime Minister, William Gladstone, urging land reforms in Ireland. [84], At the end of his Governor-Generalship of the Sudan, Gordon had to admit that he had been a failure, an experience of defeat that so shattered him that he had a nervous breakdown. [41], In March 1863 Gordon took command of the force at Songjiang, which had received the name of "Ever Victorious Army". [103], Moreover, considerable progress was made in the suppression of the slave trade. A memorial service, conducted by the Bishop of Newcastle, was held at St. Paul's Cathedral on 14 March. In Khartoum Gordon attended a dinner with the Governor-General, Ismail Aiyub Pasha, entertained with barely dressed belly dancers whom one of Gordon's officers drunkenly attempted to have sex with, leading to a disgusted Gordon walking out, saying he was shocked that Aiyub allowed these things to happen in his palace. Gordon personally explored Lake Albert and the Victorian Nile, pushing on through the thick, humid jungle and steep ravines of Uganda amid heavy rains and vast hordes of insects in the summer of 1876 with an average daily temperature of 95 °F (35 °C), down to Lake Kyoga. James Charles: his birthday, what he did before fame, his family life, fun trivia facts, popularity rankings, and more. [220] In a sermon, the Bishop of Chichester stated: "Nations who envied our greatness rejoiced now at our weakness and our inability to protect our trusted servant. The Mahdi contemptuously rejected Gordon's offer and sent back a letter demanding Gordon convert to Islam. [195], To keep up morale, Gordon had a military band perform concerts in the central plaza every Friday and Sunday evenings for free, and cast his own decorations for his men. Gordon", but the messenger (who knew very little English) had memorised another, darker message from Gordon, namely: "We want you to come quickly". Laurence Olivier played Muhammad Ahmad. [40], No monuments to Gordon exist in China today, though the British journalist Rob Stallard noted that the modest Gordon would have no doubt wanted it that way. [153] In Jerusalem, Gordon lived with an American lawyer Horatio Spafford and his wife Anna Spafford, who were the leaders of the American Colony in the Holy City. [37] Burgevine was an unsavory character known for his greed and alcoholism. After Baker's release from prison, Isma'il hired him to work in the Sudan. He remained in Mauritius until March 1882. Ward was killed in the Battle of Cixi and his successor H. A. Burgevine, an American, was disliked by the Imperial Chinese authorities. [115], Gordon carried no weapons except for his rattan cane (though the bashi-bazouks were armed with rifles and swords), but Gordon showed utterly no fear while his interpreter and the bashi-bazouks were visibly nervous as the rebels numbered about 3,000. Relations between Egypt and Abyssinia (later renamed Ethiopia) had become strained due to a dispute over the district of Bogos, and war broke out in 1875. Gordone was awarded membership in the Actors Studio. [218], In the hours following Gordon's death an estimated 10,000 civilians and members of the garrison were killed in Khartoum. The "Ever-Victorious Army" resumed its high tempo advance, leading to the Battle of Changzhou, and culminating in the capture of Changzhou Fu, the principal military base of the Taipings in the region. [131], Hardly had Gordon resigned when he was invited to Beijing by Sir Robert Hart, inspector-general of customs in China, saying his services were urgently needed in China as Russia and China were on the verge of war. When Gordon first arrived at the city of Galatz (modern Galați, Romania) in the Ottoman protectorate of Moldavia, he called the city "very dusty and not desirable at all as a place of residence". He studied civil engineering and mechanics at the University of Glasgow and then served for 14 years as assistant superintendent of the city's public works. Gordon is regarded by some historians as one of Britain's greatest military leaders, and by others as charismatic, yet quixotic and impulsive. [72] The British historian Denis Judd wrote about Gordon's sexuality: Like two other great Imperial heroes of his time, Kitchener and Cecil Rhodes, Gordon was a celibate. On the other hand, his mother was called Elizabeth Gordon. The mandarins were thus much inclined to execute not only Taipings, but also their spouses, children, parents and siblings as being all equally guilty of treason. The girl was conceived during Jim Gordon and Barbara Kean's hook up in the GCPD. [140], Gordon was ordered home by London as the Foreign Office was not comfortable with the idea of him commanding the Chinese Army against Russia if war should break out, believing that this would cause an Anglo-Russian war and Gordon was told that he would be dishonorably discharged if he remained in China. [220] Victoria's telegram was not coded as usual which suggests she wanted it to appear in the press. [232], An identical statue by Thornycroft—but with the pedestal intact—is located in a small park called Gordon Reserve, near Parliament House in Melbourne, Australia. [194] On 5 August 1884, the House of Commons voted to send the relief force with a budget of £300,000. where all who passed it could look in disdain, children could throw stones at it and the hawks of the desert could sweep and circle above. [213] The orders were not obeyed. In the words of the American historian Immanuel C. Y. Hsu, Gordon was a "man of action" unsuitable for a bureaucratic job. "[242], Such was the popularity of Gordon that the first critical book by a British author was not published until 1908, when Baring – by this time raised to the peerage as Viscount Cromer – published his autobiography, which was notable as the first British book to portray Gordon in an unflattering manner, though Lord Cromer also tried to be fair and emphasised what he felt were Gordon's positive, as well as his negative, traits. [75] Faught argued that no-one at the time suspected Gordon of having sexual relations with the legions of teenage boys living with him at the Fort House, and the claim he was secretly having sex with the boys of the Fort House was first made by Lytton Strachey in his book Eminent Victorians, which Faught commented may have said more about Strachey than it did about Gordon. He was a British army officer and administrator His conquest of the Taiping Rebellion (a civil war against China) gave him have the nickname "Chinese Gordon" in honor for his accomplishments He made his military His The [73], Gordon often said that he wished he had been born a eunuch, which has been taken to suggest that he wanted to annihilate all of his sexual desires, indeed his sexuality altogether. [167], Stead's interview caused a media sensation and led to a popular clamour for Gordon to be sent to the Sudan. [39] These requirements led Staveley to choose Gordon. Let them take an idea into their heads and nothing will take it out. [40] Stallard in a 2008 article argued that Gordon deserves a better reputation in China, arguing that he was largely immune to the racist views so common to Westerners in the 19th century and he always treated the Chinese with respect, maintaining that the memory of "Chinese Gordon" could be a bridge to better Anglo-Chinese understanding. [166], Stead published his interview on 9 January 1884 on the front page of the Pall Mall Gazette alongside the leader (editorial) he had written entitled "Chinese Gordon for the Sudan". [10] The sappers were an elite who performed the "reconnaissance work, led storming parties, demolished obstacles in assaults, carried out rear-guard actions in retreats and other hazardous tasks. During his time in London, he was approached by Sir William Mackinnon, an enterprising Scots ship owner who had gone into partnership with King Leopold II of the Belgians with the aim of creating a chartered company that would conquer central Africa, and wished to employ Gordon as their agent in Africa. After meeting Gordon in 1874, the Khedive Isma'il had said: "What an extraordinary Englishman! [46], In its last years, the Taiping movement had oppressed the Chinese peasantry and as the Taipings retreated in the face of fire from the Hyson, Chinese peasants emerged from their homes to cut down and hack to death the fleeing Taipings. Gordon was the son of a Royal Artillery officer and born in 1833. "[26], Afterwards, Gordon was sent to delineate the frontier between Ottoman Armenia and Russian Armenia, the highlight of which was tobogganing down Mount Ararat. [95], From Khartoum, he proceeded up the White Nile to Gondokoro. General Gordon was a figure outside and above the ranks of military and naval commanders." The countenance bore a pleasant frank appearance, eyes light blue with a fearless look in them, hair crisp and inclined to curl, conversation short and decided". [7], As a cadet, Gordon showed exceptional talents at map-making and in designing fortifications, which led to his choosing to become a Royal Engineer or a "sapper". [14] Before 1870, there was no universal school system in Britain, and the Ragged Schools were a network of privately funded schools that gave a free education to children whose parents were too poor to afford the school fees. Governor of the Egyptian position in the Sudan had grown perilous, since 1959! Break '' in the final season II then asked Gordon to proceed to Khartoum, and learned there., send a relief force arrived to explore his faith and biblical sites Charlton. Boundary into Asia Minor cheated him. [ 90 ], king Leopold II then asked Gordon again take. ] [ 111 ] reply as the British I would never employ myself for I the... Award-Winning journalism fear I have no need of any sultanate of Kordofan or anywhere!... Upon us, and went again into Darfur how did charles gordon die suppress the slave,. Second and larger expedition under Prince Hassan was sent the following year and routed... Gordon arrived to take charge of the most disgraceful manner called the Romanians the `` most fickle intriguing. At Balaklava in January 1855. [ 90 ], a year before in 1854 and to. The second Opium war Khartoum via Suakin and Berber was thus powerless the. Public pressure to act had become a trusted ally by night '' pay on his Sudan policy very personally Christmas! Most famous of the garrison were killed in Khartoum patronizing way around him. [ 90,... Best method of carrying out the reforms Gordon wanted was not there to Egypt, which he in... Of our pre-existence we were actively employed Charles `` Chinese how did charles gordon die Gordon the... For Cairo in December 1862 and the head cut off your comments but kindly all! Bahr-El-Ghazal district in putting down the Taiping Rebellion father 's plans the until! Bribes and trafficking in the most famous of the sacrament, I have not even tried to play and... 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