Son of Theophilus and Mary Davies; husband of Eileen Kathleen Davies
Captain Davies was promoted to rank of Major, after some months with the First Contingent, and was given the command of the Fourth New Zealand Rough Riders. While in charge of the Fourth he was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, and was made Companion of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath for meritorious service in April 1901. (St Clair Inglis, p.9)
He returned to New Zealand aboard the S.S. 'Tagus' in June 1901.
Davies joined the Brigade Staff, North Island Regiment 8 NZMR as Brevet-Colonel, sailing from Auckland aboard the S.S. 'Surrey' in February 1902. After May 1902 he was in command of a mobile column (the first colonial officer given such a command). (Stowers, R., p.146)
Mentioned in Lord Kitchener's final despatch on 23 June 1902.
He gained the Queen's Medal with five clasps and the King's Medal with two and the C.B. in 1900. In 1901 he commanded the Auckland District and in 1902 he received Brevet Lieutenant Colonelcy. He was made Inspector General of the New Zealand Forces in 1906 with the rank of Colonel. He was also the third military member of the Council of Defence.
In 1909 he came to England as New Zealand's representative at the war Office, where the imperial authorities were so impressed with his ability that in 1910 they offered him command, as temporary Brigadier-General, of the 6th Infantry Brigade at Aldershot. Transferred to the British Army permanently in February 1915 after having been attached to it from the New Zealand Army in order to gain higher command experience. He went on to command the 20th (Light) Division: the first 'colonial' officer to command a division in the war. Source: Te Ara Biography.
In the grand days of August, 1914 he went on service with French's "contemptible little army" and was through the Mons and the Marne. A strong character at all times, he never hesitated to speak straight, and so forceful a personality found difficulty countenancing weakness. His health suffered during the retreat, and he returned to take an English command. He stretched forth an ever- welcoming hand to all his countrymen with whom he came in touch, and would go far out of his way to see some New Zealand cadets in his command or some wounded in hospital.
At mid-day, Tuesday, the 14th, there was a funeral service in the Guards Chapel of Queen Alexandra's Military Hospital, Millbank, and he was afterwards buried with all military honours in Brompton Cemetery. Among the New Zealander's present were the High Commissioner, Brig,-Gen. Richardson, Col. Heaton Rhodes, Col. Wylie, Col. Hall, Commander Cornwall, and Mr James Coates, and there was a firing party composed of New Zealanders and men of the British regiments.
His daughter, Miss Eileen Davies, has been working almost continually at Walton Hospital since its opening three years ago, and all those who have known her in those hospital wards will send her and Mrs Davies their deepest sympathy."
Mentioned in Dispatches twice in the South African War and twice in the World War I.
An obituary in The Chronicles of the N.Z.E.F., May 24, 1918, page 173, "The sudden death on, on May 9th, of General Davies brought to a close the life of a distinguished New Zealander, and of a soldier we greatly admired. His career had been one of deep interest. For many years at Inglewood, Taranaki, he lived the hard, open air life of a surveyor, taking at the same time an enthusiastic part in the Mounted Rifles work. He passed through the ranks of the Hawera Mounted Rifles to the rank of Captain. He went with the North Island Company, 1st Contingent, to South Africa, and served in five contingents, commanding the 3rd, 4th and 8th, and for some time commanding a composite column. His knowledge of surveying and the open country assisted him in earning a reputation as a tactician. He adversely criticised a scheme for rounding up of a Boer force, and was sent for by Roberts to give further explanations. The Commander-in-Chief recognised the soundness of his objections, and thereafter Davies's natural ability and strength of character ensured a successful military career. AWMM