Michael Daniels
Edward St John Daniel VC
 The story of the first man to forfeit the Victoria Cross



The Life of Edward St John Daniel


Early Naval Career


On 7th January 1851, ten days before his 14th birthday, Edward St John Daniel enrolled as a Naval Cadet with HMS Dauntless. It is reported that he initially trained on HMS Victory at Portsmouth (famous as Nelson's flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805). His naval education continued during a 12 months spell in HMS Dauntless, which was on detached service. In March 1852, after serving briefly on HMS Blenheim, Daniel joined the flagship HMS Winchester under Capt. Granville Gower Loch, brother of the later Lieutenant-Governor of the Isle of Man, Governor of Victoria, and High Commissioner for South Africa, Lord Henry Brougham Loch.

Daniel soon saw his first naval action during the second Burmese War of 1852-1853. For this service he received the India General Service Medal, with clasp for "Pegu". During his time in Burma, he developed chronic leg ulcers, which affected him for the rest of his life.

On 4th February 1853, Capt. Granville Loch was shot during action at Donabew, and died two days later, aged 39. He was buried at Rangoon.

At the end of March 1853, Daniel joined HMS Contest and served on her for five months.

HMS Victory
HMS Victory

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