William Napier (Royal Navy officer)

Admiral William Rawdon Napier, CB, CMG, DSO (13 June 1877 – 8 April 1951) was a Royal Navy officer who served as First Naval Member and Chief of the Australian Naval Staff from 1926 to 1929.

William Napier
Born13 June 1877
Southsea, Hampshire
Died8 April 1951 (aged 73)
Fareham, Hampshire
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Service/branchRoyal Navy
Years of service1887–1929
Commands heldChief of the Australian Naval Staff (1926–29)
HMS Vernon (1924)
HMS Royal Sovereign (1922–24)
HMS Castor (1920
HMS Coventry (1919–20)
HMS Buttercup (1916)
HMS Sir Thomas Picton (1915–16)
HMS Thames (1909–11)
HMS Vesuvius (1906–08)
Battles/warsFirst World War
AwardsCompanion of the Order of the Bath
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George
Distinguished Service Order
Mentioned in Despatches

Naval service

Napier joined the Royal Navy as a naval cadet in January 1891.[1] He was promoted to lieutenant on 15 January 1898. From 25 July 1902 he was posted to the cruiser HMS St George, serving in the Cruiser squadron,[2] before becoming torpedo officer (T) in the cruiser HMS Good Hope when it commissioned for service in the Atlantic Fleet in November 1902.[3]

He served during the First World War and was mentioned in despatches for his service in the Gallipoli Campaign[4] and awarded the Distinguished Service Order for minesweeping operations.[5] He was appointed First Naval Member and Chief of the Australian Naval Staff in 1926; promoted vice-admiral on 31 July 1929 and retired the following day.[6]

He was promoted to full admiral in 1933.[7] He died at his home in Fareham in Hampshire in 1951.[7]


  1. ^ Dreadnought Project.
  2. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence". The Times (36812). London. 5 July 1902. p. 9.
  3. ^ "Naval & Military intelligence". The Times (36858). London. 28 August 1902. p. 4.
  4. ^ World War 1 at Sea from the London Gazette, August 1914 to December 1920
  5. ^ Naval Gallantry Awards 1917
  6. ^ "No. 33523". The London Gazette. 6 August 1929. p. 5145.
  7. ^ a b Admiral Napier Dead Canberra Times, 11 April 1951.
Military offices
Preceded by
Rear Admiral Percival Hall-Thompson
Chief of the Australian Naval Staff
Succeeded by
Vice Admiral Sir William Kerr
William Napier

William Napier may refer to:

William Ewart Napier (1881–1952), American chess master

William Francis Patrick Napier (1785–1860), British soldier and military historian

William Napier (astronomer) (born 1940), astronomer and author

William Napier, 9th Lord Napier (1786–1834), Royal Navy officer, politician and diplomat

William Napier (novelist), historical novelist pseudonym of Christopher Hart

William Napier (VC) (1828–1908), English recipient of the Victoria Cross

William Napier (Royal Navy officer) (1877–1951), British admiral

William Craig Emilius Napier (1818–1903), British general

William Napier (lawyer) (1804–1879), Singapore lawyer and newspaper editor; Lieutenant-Governor of Labuan

William Joseph Napier (1857–1925), member of parliament for Auckland, New Zealand

William Napier, 11th Lord Napier (1846–1913), British peer

William Napier, 13th Lord Napier (1900–1954), Scottish soldier and courtier

William Napier, 7th Lord Napier (1730–1775), Scottish peer

Sir William Napier, 3rd Baronet (1867–1915), British baronet and soldier

Commonwealth Naval Forces
First Naval Members,
Australian Commonwealth Naval Board
Chiefs of the Naval Staff
Chiefs of Navy

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