International Journal of Veterinary and Animal Medicine

ISSN 2517-7362

Directors of Veterinary Services in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan: Frederick Ulysses Carr, 1908-1917 (Principal Veterinary Officer to 1910)

R. Trevor Wilson*

*Bartridge Partners, Bartridge House, Umberleigh, North Devon EX37 9AS, UK

Corresponding author

Wilson RT
Bartridge House
Umberleigh, UK
EX37 9AS
Tel: +44 (0)1769 560244

  • Received Date:December 08, 2017
  • Accepted Date:January 04, 2018
  • Published Date:January 20, 2018

DOI:   10.31021/ijvam.20181103

Article Type:  Review Article

Manuscript ID:   IJVAM-1-103

Publisher:   Boffin Access Limited

Volume:   1.1

Journal Type:   Open Access

Copyright:   © 2018 Wilson RT.
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0


Wilson RT, Directors of Veterinary Services in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan: Frederick Ulysses Carr, 1908-1917 (Principal Veterinary Officer to 1910). Int J Vet Anim Med.2018 Jan;1(1):103


In the final 20 years of the 19th Century the Sudan was in turmoil. An indigenous religious uprising against the Egyptian rulers was eventually put down by the Egyptian and elements of the British Army in 1898. The capital, Khartoum, was captured and a condominium known as the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan was established. The country remained largely under military rule for many years. A Veterinary Service was installed mainly to provide health care to the enormous numbers of cavalry and transport animals (horses, mules, donkeys and camels) that the military required to govern and control the still turbulent population. Between the establishment of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan in 1901 and the achievement of independence by the Republic of Sudan on 1 January 1956 a total of 12 people served as Principal Veterinary Officers (to 1910) or as Directors of Veterinary Services (from 1910 to 1956). The early incumbents of the post were serving military officers seconded, usually for rather short periods, from the British Army Veterinary Corps to the Egyptian Army which in turn employed them directly or seconded them to the Sudan. Frederick Ulysses Carr was the fourth officer to head the veterinary services in Sudan and served for the longest time, almost ten years in all.

Background and Early life

Frederick Ulysses Carr -- possibly named in honour of Ulysses S Grant, 18th President of the USA and in office 1869-1877 -- was born in Brighouse, West Riding of Yorkshire on 19 February 1872 [1]. He was the fourth child of George Carr, born in Ossett and a Police Inspector at the time of the birth, and Martha Hopkinson of Haworth.1 George had been living in lodgings and was a Police Sergeant in Haworth in 1861. George, aged 32 and son of a Manufacturer, married Martha Hopkinson, aged 19 and daughter of a Gentleman, at the Church of St Michael and All Angels at Haworth on 23 April 1862 when he had already been transferred to Wath on Dearne near Doncaster also in West Yorkshire. On the census return of 1861 George was listed as Unmarried and was initially described as a Bachelor on his marriage certificate but this had been crossed out and Widower inserted. George had previously married, by License, a Jane Rigg on 26 August 1854 at the Parish Church of Kendal in Westmorland [2] when he was employed as a Fuller but he joined the police force when living at Batley Carr near Dewsbury on 4 December 1856. Jane died shortly after this event. In 1871 George was a Police Sergeant living on Keighley Road, Skipton with his wife and three children. Promoted to Superintendent by 1881 George and Martha were living in High Street, Knaresborough with three of their children including Frederick aged 9. Ten years later in 1891 George, a retired Police Officer, was living with wife Martha in Poulton near Morecambe in Lancashire. Back in Haworth at Number 7 Greenfield Terrace in 1901 George is a Retired Police Superintendent and although he is married his wife is not present but his married daughter Lucy and her daughter Elsie are living with him. His wife Martha Carr aged 58 and born in Haworth was in fact a visitor in the household of Ezra Townend, a Wool Merchant, at 73 Heckmondwyke Road, Dewsbury: the reason for this visit has not been ascertained. Martha Carr died in the spring of 1905 aged 63 [3] and was buried in the churchyard of St Michael and All Angels, Haworth. George was still at 7 Greenfield Terrace aged 81 in 1911 but was now being looked after by his 19-year old granddaughter Elsie May Argyle. George died aged 82 towards the end of 1912 [4] and was buried with his wife in St Michael’s churchyard.

Frederick Ulysses Carr was baptised at the Anglican church of Saint Martin in Brighouse on 14 April 1872. He was living with his parents in Knaresborough in 1881 where he attended Clarendon House School situated in a house at 21 York Place (Figure 1a). The Headmaster was William Gelder and obviously a person of some repute as he was appointed a Land Tax Commissioner in 1906. When his parents moved to Halifax Fred, who was a good looking lad (Figure 2a) continued his education at the Higher Grade School in that town. He was later apprenticed to Parlane McFarlane Walker, Veterinary Surgeon, of Blackwall House, Blackwall, Halifax where he continued to be a good looking youth (Figure 2b). Frederick aged 19 was in lodgings together with another Veterinary Student at 65 College Place in Camden town in 1891 while studying at the Royal Veterinary College (Figure 1b). At Camden he won a First Prize for his Essay on Meat Inspection (Figure 3). Frederick Ulysses Carr qualified as Member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (MRCVS) on 14 December 1893 and was then a Senior Assistant at the College until 1895.

Figure 1

Figure 1

(a) Clarendon House school at 21 York Place, Knaresborough and
(b) 65 College Place, Camden Town

Figure 2

Figure 2

Ulysses Carr at (a) Halifax Higher Grade School,
(b) apprentice to Parlane McFarlane Walker

Figure 3

Figure 3

Silver salver presented to Ulysses Carr at the Royal Veterinary for the best Essay on Meat Inspection

Whilst at the College a dog was brought to the clinic whose paw had been crushed by a passing vehicle. The leg had to be amputated and Carr got a Mr Mosely, who was a dental surgeon, to make an artificial limb constructed of aluminium covered with white buckskin, laced behind and with a soft rubber sole. “The joints are at the right spots and pitched mathematically at the correct inclination which permits the use of the foot with natural action and freedom from jar” [5].

Army Veterinary Department, 1895-1908

Having moved to London from the Northern provinces he was probably a clean-shaven man-about-town during his tenure at the veterinary college (Figure 4a).2 In March 1895, however, Carr joined the Army Veterinary Department. His joining was published in the London Gazette: “Frederick Ulysses Carr, Gent., to be Veterinary Lieutenant, in succession to Veterinary-Captain Edward H Kelly on temporary half-pay on account of ill health, Dated 13th March, 1895” [6]. Although his parents had moved to retirement in Morecambe at this time Frederick still maintained his connection with Halifax as is shown by his image as a smart young and now-mustachioed young military officer (Figure 4b). It is probable that this connection was through McFarlane Walker, a connection that was to endure throughout his life as well as his friendship with the photographer. (Figure 4a and 4b)

Figure 4

Figure 4

Frederick Ulysses Carr at
(a) the Royal Veterinary College and
(b) as a junior Veterinary Officer

It seems he was immediately posted to India where he served in the Bombay Command [7]. As early as July 1896 he was presented by the Officers of the 5th Lancers stationed at Muttra with an impressive hand-beaten silver rose bowl some eight and one half inches (22 cm) high and weighing one and one half pounds (0.73 kg) (Figure 5). In 1897 he was with the Army Veterinary Command of the Bengal Command and was Veterinary Officer with the 1st Brigade in the Mohmand Expedition from September to 6 October 1897. He was then Veterinary Officer with the 5th Brigade of the Tirah Expeditionary Force from 8 October 1897 to 6 April 1898. For these activities he was awarded the India Medal of 1895 with clasps for Punjab Frontier 1897-1898 (10 June 1897-6 April 1898) and Tirah 1897-1898 (2 October 1897-6 April 1898) [8]. This campaign medal was the first of many, together with other honours, he was to receive over the next twenty years (Figure 6).

Figure 5

Figure 5

Silver rose bowl presented to Ulysses Carr by Officers of the 5th Lancers in India, July 1896

Figure 6

Figure 6

Honours and campaign medals of Frederick Ulysses Carr

Lieutenant Carr returned to England on leave in 1898. At the outbreak of the Boer War in 1899 he was sent to South Africa with the Cavalry Division under the command of General French. He then served in South Africa with the Army Veterinary Department from 5 November 1899 to 1 November 1901 where he was one of the 125 military and 240 civil veterinarians who served in the country during the war [9,10]. At this period he was one of the 131 officers -- there were no other ranks -- that was the whole complement of the Army Veterinary Department [11]. Veterinary Lieutenant Carr apparently refused command of French’s Scouts as well as a commission in the 10th Hussars (to which he was attached) but instead preferred to lead a group of Native Scouts on intelligence collection. He was present at the Battle of Sanna’s Post on 31 March 1900 at which the Boers routed the British.

A series of skirmishes around Avontoor in Uniondale district in Western Cape took place between the British and the Boers during 1901. At one of these on 19 August a Boer Commando led by the notorious Commandant G. J. Scheepers attacked a British column under Lieutenant Colonel H. Alexander to the north of Avontoor. The 10th (Prince of Wales’s Own Royal) Hussars lost three men killed and 14 wounded one of the latter being Veterinary Lieutenant F.U. Carr of the Army Veterinary Department attached to the 10th Hussars.

Carr’s horse was shot from under him; he was severely wounded in both thighs and was taken prisoner (Figure 7a). Eventually the Boers allowed him to return to the British lines and provided him a Boer pony (Figure 7b).3 Back with his British comrades in Uniondale he spent a considerable time in the hospital. He was evacuated back to Britain on 1 November 1901 [11-13].

Figure 7

Figure 7

(a) Carr with a Boer probably taken when he was a captive,
(b) the Boer pony at Haworth

For his service in South Africa Lieutenant Carr was rewarded, on 11 November 1902, with the Queen’s South Africa Medal. He gained six (of a total of 26 although not all of these could be awarded to one person because of some exclusions) clasps, all of which were for involvement in specific actions rather than for simple presence in an area for this medal. The clasps were Relief Of Kimberley (15 February 1900), Paardeberg (17 February 1900), Driefontein (10 March 1900), Johannesburg (29 May 1900), Diamond Hill (11 June 1900), Witten bergen (1 July 1900) [14,15]. In addition to the Queen’s Medal he was awarded the King’s South Africa Medal with both the clasps usually awarded with it: South Africa 1901 and South Africa 1902. Issue of the King’s Medal was authorized on 6 September 1904 [16]. As some compensation for his injuries he received a wound gratuity of six months pay from the Medical Board.4

Lieutenant Carr had hoped to return to India after his convalescence but this was not to be. Carr returned to South Africa and then went on to Australia with the British Army Remounts Commission in late 1901 and early 1902 [17]. The remount system was inefficient during much of the Boer War -- in which losses of horses due to both enemy action and disease were enormous B and in response to a request from Lord Kitchener a Remounts Commission commanded by Major General Viscount Doune as Inspector General of Remounts was sent to South Africa and then on to Australia. Doune had asked that Carr be appointed as his ADC but this request was refused although Captain (but he was not yet a Captain) Carr was the veterinary officer on this Commission. It left Southampton on 17 December 1901 on board RMS Saxon bound for Cape Town where it arrived on 31 December. Whilst in Cape Town Carr met two other veterinarians who were to become Directors-General of the Army Veterinary Department -- Major Layton John Blenkinsop and Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Smith. He also met a Mr Bass of the 10th Hussars who was in Cape Town on leave to meet his Agent: “He is the possessor of something like eighty or ninety thousand year, so he requires someone to manage his affairs at home whilst he is away fighting”.5

After initial inspections, the Commission left Cape Town on 11 January 1902 to arrive overland at East London on 29 January. It then travelled to the remount depots at Durban and Natal by ship. Working its way through Natal to the Transvaal and the Orange River Colony the Commission arrived at Cape Town via Kimberley. Doune there applied to the General Officer Commanding, Cape Town, for passages to Melbourne but was told that the orders made no mention of a veterinary officer accompanying him. Doune replied that Carr was his ADC and telegraphed the Chief of Staff in Pretoria confirming this and saying that surely Carr should travel with him: the Commission then boarded the RMS Athenic.6 Setting sail on 6 March on a 23-day voyage to Hobart in Tasmania and then to Melbourne on the Australian mainland the ship arrived on 29 March [18]. The Commission was not long in Australia but was shipping out horses as early as 5 April (Figure 8). Less than three weeks later, on 22 April 1902, the Commission left Sydney on the SS Ventura, accommodated in Cabins and accompanied by its Servants (Carr’s Batman was 28-year old Private Williamson) and arrived at Honolulu on 8 May 1902. It then proceeded to San Francisco where it arrived on 13 May in transit for London [19].

Figure 8

Figure 8

Horses awaiting loading for South Africa at Melbourne Docks and members of the Remount Commission on board the SS Orange Branch on 5 April 1902

Veterinary Lieutenant F U Carr returned to England, was then on the Staff at Hounslow Heath Camp and was in the Cavalry Barracks there in June 1902. He was one of the troops assigned to parade in the pageant for the Coronation of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra on 25 June 1902 [20]. The Coronation was postponed, however, to 9 August due to the King suffering from appendicitis and, as there is no King Edward VII Coronation Medal in silver among Carr’s medals it is possible he did not take part in the re-arranged parade.7 Veterinary Lieutenant Frederick Ulysses Carr was promoted to Veterinary Captain with effect from 27 August 1902 [21] or 13 September 1902 [22,23]. He continued his work with the Remount Commission and visited Cyprus and Damascus (then part of the Ottoman Empire).

In 1903 Captain Carr was at Woolwich before being posted on Secondment for service under the Colonial Office, a William Henry Simpson being appointed Veterinary Lieutenant in succession to him [24]. During 1903-1906 he served as Senior Veterinary Officer with the rank of Captain in the Mounted Infantry Battalion of the Northern Nigeria Regiment of the West African Field Force. In 1904, however, he was reported as being at Woolwich [21] but over the following years he was listed as being in Northern Nigeria [25,26]. Carr was not, in fact, in Nigeria continuously throughout the period of his assignment there. He was, for example, in England early in 1905 when he gave a lecture to the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce on industrial development in Northern Nigeria (Figure 9). In Northern Nigeria he was friendly with Muhammad Abbass, the Emir of Kano, whose horses he attended. On a journey from Hadejia, during December 1905 when this small Sultanate was resisting British occupation, Fred was struck with a bout of malaria. The nearest doctor was 115 miles away but after three days and several changes of ponies on the road, the doctor was with him and following quinine injections in the arms and legs recovery was achieved.8 For his service in Nigeria he was awarded the Africa General Service Medal (instituted in 1902) with clasp for Northern Nigeria 1906.

Figure 9

Figure 9

Flier of the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce announcing a lecture to be given by Captain Carr (note the “A” instead of the “U” initial)

Returning to England after his service in Nigeria Captain Carr was in residence at The Gables in Aldershot sometime in 1907 (Figure 10).

Figure 10

Figure 10

Captain Carr at the Gables, Aldershot sometime in 1907

Sudan, 1908-1917

Captain Frederick Ulysses Carr arrived in Sudan on 24 September 1908 [27]. He took up the position of Principal Veterinary Officer and was one of only two heads of the Sudan Veterinary Service to be appointed to this or the later position of Director without having previously served in the country. His appointment was to have a strongly positive effect on the country’s veterinary services and his tenure of almost 10 years was the first indication of some sort of permanency in the fight against animal diseases. He expressed clear, sound and far-sighted views in his first annual report in 1909 [28]. Carr banned exports of livestock to Egypt from the three Northern Province because of rinderpest but organized shipment of stock from other areas by sea from the Red Sea ports. Carr set up quarantine stations and developed the concept of exporting livestock from disease-free zones. From the beginning of his tenure he worked closely with the Wellcome Tropical Research Laboratories based at the Gordon Memorial College in Khartoum. Here he collaborated with such notables as Sir Andrew Balfour who was Director in the period 1902-1913 and Medical Officer of Health, Khartoum Sanitary Adviser to Sudan Medical Department in 1904-1913 and the Pathologist (and later Director and also Sir) El Kaimakan R.G. Archibald Bey, D.S.O., Order of the Medjidie 4th Class [29].

In 1910 his job title was changed from Principal Veterinary Officer to Director. He was the first veterinarian to assume this title and remained in post for a further seven years until his death in 1917. During his tenure the foundations of the civilian Sudan Veterinary Service were laid but it was still largely staffed by army veterinarians seconded to the Egyptian army. In 1910 he was allocated £Egyptian 5000 for developing exports and to help to increase the numbers of technical and subordinate staff. In 1913 the Department boasted the Director, two Assistant Directors, 13 Veterinary Inspectors, two Egyptian Veterinary Officers, nine British NCOs, clerical staff, 100 Egyptian NCOs and men and 34 Sudanese Attendants (up from himself and two Veterinary Inspectors when he arrived in Sudan in 1908) [30]. The increase in professional and support personnel meant it was now possible to organise the Department on more spacious lines and it was divided into General Veterinary, Veterinary Survey (later being renamed Research), Quarantine and Breeding sections The monetary injection and the increased staff complement paid for itself handsomely as by 1913 the value of livestock exports was £E218,300 compared with £E40,800 in 1909 (Table 1) although rinderpest and the resurgence of contagious bovine pleura pneumonia resulted in heavy losses of livestock. Hide exports in 1913 were valued at £E15,641 up from £E4,927 the previous year [30,31]. The Finance Department recognized these very considerable achievements, recording in its Annual Report for 1912 that:
The cattle trade has now taken the second place in the country’s exports and there appear to be very good prospects that this trade will steadily increase in the future. The difficulties to be overcome in developing and safeguarding an export trade are considerable, but these difficulties have so far been successfully surmounted by the Veterinary Department, and with every year the risk is less” [30,32].

Number of animals
Export value (£ Egyptian)

Table 1:Changes in the number and value of livestock exports from Sudan, 1909-1912 Source:
Source: adapted from Tvedt 1983 (from Veterinary Annual Reports)

Amidst all the administrative work involved in being Director, Carr somehow found time to be in South Kordofan towards the end of 1910. Inter-tribal rivalries amongst various groups had resulted in open hostility to the Government. Eventually it was decided that a demonstration of authority and power was required. A force comprising 46 officers and 1047 NCOs and men including Cavalry, Mounted Infantry and Camel Corps was assembled at Rahad. Subsequent actions were later named as the Rahad Patrol 10-19 November 1910 and the Dilling Patrol 27 November-19 December 1910 [33]. A clasp “South Kordofan”, the second (of 16) to the new Khedive’s Sudan Medal 1910-1922 was awarded for presence at one or both of these actions. The South Kordofan clasp was one of the less common ones to the new medal, most were awarded to Sudanese and Egyptian personnel and only 13 -- of which Carr had one -- were awarded to British officers.

Carr was promoted to Major on 16 May 1911. This would not have affected his rate of pay as Captains and Majors were on the same scale. As a newly promoted Captain he would have received an annual salary of £292 but as a Major (with five years seniority as a Captain) his salary would have been £328 10 shillings [34]. He would, of course, be provided free accommodation, a Batman (personal servant) and received other perks. In addition, life was not quite all work. There was polo, horse shows and horse racing. In January 1912, for example, one of his ponies won two second prizes. In early February his pony Suheil won one race and another named Greyleg was second in another. The strain of work was, however, already affecting his health: he got “very tired sometimes, as for me this country has so far been very hard work”.9 He was again in Cyprus towards the end of 1912 but when he was staying at Shepheard’s Hotel in Cairo on his way back to Sudan he found bad news awaiting him as his father had died. He was then worried about the ability of his sister to pay her way and immediately proposed to relieve her of any “monetary anxiety” he arranged to send her fifteen pounds a month -- equivalent to £180 per year and if he could afford this on his army salary that emolument was obviously enough for him to do better than just survive.10 Two days later in Khartoum he again wrote to his sister about money matters but also “I feel rather tired and shall be very glad when I can go home. I now begin to be rather afraid of the cold, as sometimes in the evenings here, I find it colder than I like”.11

His hard work had nonetheless already been rewarded in a personal sense and in a non-monetary manner as notices towards the end of 1911 had appeared in the official London and Edinburgh Gazettes:

December 21, 1911.
The King has been pleased to give and grant unto the undermentioned officers employed with the Egyptian Army His Majesty’s Royal licence and authority to accept and wear Decorations (as stated against their respective names) which have been conferred upon them by His Highness the Khedive of Egypt, authorised by His Imperial Majesty the Sultan of Turkey, in recognition of valuable services rendered by them:C Fourth Class, Imperial Ottoman Order of the Osmanieh. Major Frederick Ulysses Carr, Army Veterinary Corps [35,36].

Away from Sudan and back in Haworth from 1909 up to 1913 Frederick Ulysses Carr was listed on the Keighley District Electoral Roll as entitled to vote in Parliamentary, County and Parochial elections as he owned Property at 30 Mytholmes Lane, Haworth (Figure 11): his father George was also registered in the same manner from his property at 7 Greenfield Terrace, Haworth (Figure 11) [37].

Figure 11

Figure 11

Houses in Haworth owned by Frederick Ulysses Carr at
(a) 30 Mytholmes Lane and by his father George Carr at
(b) 7 Greenfield Terrace

On 1 March 1914, El Miralei F U Carr Bey, credited with holding the Turkish Order of Osmanieh 4th Class and Director of Veterinary Services was in Kassala on Inspection Duty.12 In May of that year his entry in the British Army list was: Major; Principal Veterinary Officer on Headquarters Staff of Egyptian Army and Director Veterinary Department Sudan Administration 24 September 1908 [38]. Carr left Sudan on annual leave at the end of June 1914 (he was one of nine Veterinary Service staff on leave at the time out of a total complement of 16 professional veterinary officers) [27]. He remained on the strength of the Egyptian Army until 4 August of that year but on the outbreak of World War I he was restored, on 5 August, to the Establishment of the British Army [39], only a very few days after his arrival in England on leave: this listing published five years after the effective date does remark that Major Carr was since deceased. On 12 August he was at the South Western Hotel in Aldershot waiting to “leave very soon and where for I do not know” but believing that his sister Lucy would “have a certain amount of pleasure in knowing that I am employed to do my little bit in the huge machine which will, from the combined armies, take the field”.13

Carr arrived in France on 16 August. Only nine days after landing, on 25 August, he was taking part in the retreat from Mons of the British Expeditionary Force. He was later present at the (First) Battle of the Marne on 7-10 September 1914 and was then involved at the Battle of the Aisne from 12-15 September. In this second battle, history repeated itself as again his horse was shot from under him and he was badly wounded. After a period of recovery and consequent on a request of the Commander in Chief of the Egyptian Army (who had given permission for him to rejoin the British Army only two months previously) he was again seconded for service with the Egyptian Army, effective 17 October 1914 [40].

On 15 December 1915 Major F. U. Carr was promoted to Temporary Lieutenant-Colonel [41]. Further honours were about to come his way as, on 17 June 1916, the London and Edinburgh Gazettes announced: Whitehall, June 17, 1916

The KING has been pleased to give and grant unto the under mentioned Gentlemen His Majesty’s Royal licence and authority to wear Decorations (as stated against their respective names) which have been conferred upon them by His Highness the Sultan of Egypt in recognition of valuable services rendered by them:-

Third Class of the Order of the Nile. Major Frederick Ulysses Carr, Army Veterinary Corps, Principal Veterinary Officer, Egyptian Army [42,43].

Yet further recognition was in the offing. In a Despatch to the Secretary of State for War from General Sir Reginald Wingate, G.C.B., Sirdar and Governor-General of the Sudan with dateline Khartoum, 8th August, 1916 and under the general heading of Operations in Darfur, Wingate concluded, as usual with the time-honoured phrase of those “deserving of special notice and commendation” (i.e. a Mention in Despatches). He placed these in two categories -- No. I. DARFUR OPERATIONS (comprising a list of several hundred names) ~~ and ~~ NO. II. List of Officers and Officials mentioned for administrative work connected with the situation in the Sudan created by the War: --- Personal Staff (five names) and Headquarters (a list of 16 names some being civilians) including Carr, Maj. F. U, Army Veterinary Corps [44]. This Despatch makes it clear that Carr was not actually in Darfur at the time and explains why he did not receive the clasp “Darfur 1916” to his Khedive’s medal.

There was also further recognition.
War Office
1st January 1917.
His Majesty the KING has been graciously pleased to approve of the undermentioned rewards for distinguished service in the field, dated 1st January, 1917: --- Major (temporary Lt Col) F U Carr, AVC employed Egyptian Army to be Brevet Lt Col [45,46].

The end was, however, near. In an unusually long and piteous letter to his sister Lucy written in No 19 General Hospital, Alexandria on 15 May 1917 he relates in detail his health problems. He had been very ill. During the hot weather he had been jaded and weary but had still had a very strenuous time as regards work. He had been in Cairo from December 1916 and whilst staying at Shepheard’s Hotel he awoke to find his mouth filled with blood and bleeding continued for the next two days before on 7 February he made “a most undignified exit from Shepheards Hotel -- being carried out on a stretcher, was placed in an ambulance and was taken to Nasrieh Hospital”. Bleeding continued and after 12 weeks in the Cairo Hospital he was moved to Alexandria at the end of April. He was glad to say he was on the mend but he had been told that improvement would be slow. Lucy would be pleased to know that as soon as the High Commissioner [Viscount Wingate] heard he was in hospital he and Lady Wingate had come to see him and then made frequent enquiries as to his progress. His Highness the Sultan had also sent his Chief Chamberlain to enquire of his wants and express his sympathy.14

The good wished of rulers and plenipotentiaries, the ministrations of the nurses for whom nothing was too much trouble, the change to a more amenable climate in Alexandria were all of no avail. Carr was transferred from Egypt to the 3rd London General Hospital at Wands worth where he arrived on 5 November 1917. He died a short while later on 10 November 1917 age 45 [47] having been removed from the strength of the Egyptian Army on 9 December 1917. His death certificate gives his address as Greenfield House, Keighley and the cause of death as (1) Pulmonary Tuberculosis, 1 year 2 months and (2) Syncope: no post mortem was carried out (Figure 12). It would seem from his earlier letters that Carr had been infected with tuberculosis for much longer than the 14 months indicated by the doctor who certified his death.15

Figure 12

Figure 12

Official death certificate of Frederick Ulysses Carr

A memorial service for Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Ulysses Carr was held in London at which were present many notables of the veterinary profession including Sir John Mcfadyean, the father of veterinary bacteriology and long time editor of the Journal of Comparative Pathology and Therapeutics and Lady McFadyean and Lady Susan Stockman who was McFadyean’s daughter married to Sir Stewart Stockman the Chief Veterinary officer of the British Ministry of Agriculture. Carr’s remains were then transferred in a coffin that had two large horseshoes inscribed on the lid and that was draped with a Union Jack. Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Ulysses Carr was buried in the family grave in the Churchyard of Haworth St Michael and All Angels on 15 November (Figure 13). Telegrams expressing sympathy were sent to Lucy Argyle [Carr’s dear sister Lucy] by the War Office, The Sirdar of the Egyptian Army and the Officers past and present of the Northern Nigeria Mounted Infantry [48].16 A week later Lucy received a telegram from the Keeper of the Privy Purse:
Buckingham Palace. The King and Queen deeply regret the loss you and the Army have sustained by the death of your brother in the service of his country. Their Majesties truly sympathise with you in your sorrow.17

Figure 13

Figure 13

The Carr family grave in the Churchyard of the Parish Church of St Michael and All Angels at Haworth (the first entry refers to Carr’s second daughter: the fourth refers to Carr’s eldest sister Lucy)

A brief casualty notice referring to Carr’s death appeared in the Veterinary Record on 17 November 1917, followed by an even briefer one on 1 December 1917. On 22 December it printed a full obituary which it had reprinted from the Sudan Times of 17 November [49]. The Veterinary Department report for 1917 paid due tribute:

Since the last report this Department has suffered an irreparable loss by the death of the Director, Lieut-Colonel F. U. Carr. Possibly only those intimately associated with him in his work in this country can really have known the eager enthusiasm, care and solicitude which were characteristic of him in everything he put his hand to. He possessed in a remarkable degree the confidence and esteem of all native and other merchants and traders, who came into even remote relationship with his Department, and still more was he admired and respected by his British and native Staff, who all feel his death as a deep personal loss [50].

A new Director was not appointed immediately as on 1 January 1918 the post was indicated as vacant. El Kaimakan J.J.B. Tapley Bey, D.S.O. who was destined to become Director and who had been in Sudan since 9 November 1911 was listed as Deputy Director [51]. One piece of good news for Lucy in 1918 was that on 20 April 1918 probate of the effects of Frederick Ulysses Carr of 7 Greenfield Terrace, Haworth valued at ,4629 19sh 9d was granted to Lucy Argyle, Widow [52].

In 1919, rather belatedly and three years after the event, the Carr family in Haworth received a communication from the Secretary of State for War, Winston S. Churchill who had been commanded by the King record His Majesty’s high appreciation of the services rendered by Major F. U. Carr in Sudan in 1914 to 1916 (Figure 14). Sometime later again, in 1920 or 1921, Lucy Argyle would have received a small packet from the War Office containing the three campaign medals that her brother had gained for his war service (Figure 15).

Figure 14

Figure 14

Communication from the Secretary of State for War conveying the appreciation of His Majesty King George V for services rendered by Carr and in recognition of his Mention in Despatches

Figure 15

Figure 15

Medal Index Card of Frederick Ulysses Carr, Army Veterinary Corps


In its Annual Report for 1925 the Sudan Veterinary Service took the opportunity to review some previous achievements and did not neglect to recognise the contribution of its former read Director A report of this nature which necessarily includes a brief review of past veterinary activities in the Sudan would not be complete without a reference to the late Lieut-Colonel F.U. Carr, Army Veterinary Corps who was principal veterinary officer, Egyptian Army, and Director of the Veterinary Department Sudan Government from 1908 until his death in 1917. During these nine years, this officer threw his whole heart into the task of developing the livestock industry of the country and the credit of any success that has been achieved is mainly his [53].

Some 55 years after the death of Lieutenant Colonel Carr, the Sudan Veterinary Association held an international congress to mark the 25th anniversary of its formation. A member of the Association succeeded in making contact via the Keighley News with Carr’s niece Elsie, the daughter of his beloved sister Lucy. He wanted a photograph or any other information she could provide to accompany a eulogy that was to recognize Carr’s contribution:

For his invaluable service to the veterinary profession in this country and his foresight and visionary efforts to develop livestock trade in those early years of livestock utilisation, the Council of the Sudan Veterinary Association takes great pleasure in acknowledging the excellent and devoted service Lieutenant-Colonel Carr has given to the veterinary profession and to this country.

Carr’s legacy was formally recognized 55 years after his demise. His influence remains, however, on 10 November 2017 when the draft of this article was completed, exactly 100 years after his death, in the enormous contribution of livestock to the food security and well-being of the people of Sudan and its neighbouring countries and to the generation of foreign exchange for Sudan’s beleaguered economy through the export of livestock and livestock products.


This paper would have been much the poorer without the willing, indeed enthusiastic, collaboration of Stephanie Toothill (greatgreatneice of Frederick Ulysses Carr) who made available a host of photographs and other items from her family archives and who promptly replied to dozens of questions. I thank Barry Oliver, greatgreatnephew, for photographs and general information; Meurig Jones ( for providing references and Clare Boulton, Head of Library and Information Services, Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons for assistance with RCVS archives. Two anonymous referees are thanked for comments which served to improve the paper.


1George Carr was born in Ossett, a fact of particular interest to the Author of this paper as the actual location was about one kilometre from where he was born and grew up.
2 Carr’s greatgreat niece Stephanie Toothill has signed photographs of two London “Gaiety Girls”. Marie Studholme was a well known and respected singer who took lead roles in many musicals and also played Music Halls whereas the other, Topsy Sinden, was less well known but still quite successful: Stephanie has a menu from the Trocadero restaurant dated 4 June 1903 signed by both these ladies so Carr must have known them reasonably well. Stephanie says that whilst in Haworth Carr “had an understanding” with an Ethel Maud Merrall who was the daughter of a well-to-do Haworth Worsted Manufacturer and friend of the Carr family but this clearly came to nothing.
3The pony’s name was ‘Kruger’ but Fred renamed it ‘Derelict’ (or Derry as he was affectionately known) because of its strange appearance: he took the pony back to England with him. It became a great favourite in Haworth village, providing rides to children and “Amarching” in time to the music when the Salvation Army Band passed his field.
4Letter from Carr on board the RMS Saxon, 17December 1901 to his parents.
5Letter from Carr “on board Railway Coach, Worcester, Cape Colony, 12 January 1902” to his parents. A Lieutenant’s salary at that time was less than £250 per year!
6Letter from Carr at Nelson Hotel Cape Town, 5 March 1902. This was the maiden voyage of the Athenic -- which in 1928 after serving as a New Zealand Hospital Ship in World War I was transformed from a luxury liner to a Whaling Factory Ship -- from Southampton to Wellington in New Zealand via Cape Town, Hobart and Melbourne. At this time he had hopes, fuelled by one of General French’s Staff, that he would be appointed to be Senior Veterinary Officer on French’s Staff.
7 A separate medal with a different coloured ribbon was issued for those serving in Hong Kong at the time of the Coronation. In 2008 one such medal came to light, crudely inscribed with Carr’s name although the medal was issued uninscribed ( The exact provenance of this medal is not known and Carr was certainly not in Hong Kong in June 1902
8This information is in a letter to his sister Lucy from about 125 miles West of Lake Chad dated 20 December 1905. Carr also refers to the abundant game (mammals and birds) that can be easily shot and would command hundreds [of pounds] in England. He also refers to the fact that he has not had a letter from home for quite a time but this was not surprising as “our runner carrying the English mail of 22nd September got an arrow in his back two days out from Kano and his mail looted”.
9Letter to his sister Lucy, 11 February 1912.
10Letter to his sister Lucy, 5 December 1912.
11Letter to his sister Lucy, 7 December 1912.
12In the Turkish military “Miralei” was equivalent to a full Colonel and “Kaimakan” (see Tapley below) to a Lieutenant Colonel: British officers in the Egyptian army were invariably given ranks higher than their substantive British ones. “Bey” is a title roughly equivalent to “Sir” in the English hierarchy and below the title “pasha” (“Lord”).
13Letter to his sister Lucy, 12 August 1914.
14Letter to his sister Lucy dated 15 May 1917: he promised to write again when his health had improved but this was the last letter he ever wrote.
15According to oral family evidence (Elsie Widdop, née Argyle, niece of Carr as told to her granddaughter and Carr’s great great niece Stephanie) at some time in Sudan or Egypt Frederick was bitten by a mule but it is not likely this had any general or lasting effect on his health.
16Sir Lee Stack had superceded Sir Reginald Wingate as Sirdar of the Egyptian Army and Governor-General of Sudan in 1916.
17The first interment is Effie, George and Martha’s second daughter whose death occurred before Frederick Ulysses was born. Her body was brought from Brighouse to Haworth and she was buried 34 years before her mother was next in the grave en-dash clear evidence that the Carrs always intended to return to Martha’s native village. Digging the grave to 9 feet cost 10shillings and (32 pence), part walling 6 shillings one and a half pennies (31 pence), tolling the bell 4 pence (less than 2 pence and together with dues to the minister, the consecration fee and other minor expenses the whole burial cost £1 1 shilling 3 pence (£1-6 pence). The fifth and last person to be interred in the grave, more than 60 years after the first burial, was Lucy Argyle, the eldest daughter and eldest child of George and Martha’s children. Other than Thomas, the second child and first son who had emigrated to Jamaica, the family was reunited in death as it had been in life.


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