George Henry DEAN CBE

DEAN, George Henry

Service Number: Officer on enlistment - no service number
Enlisted: 11 March 1915, Adelaide South Australia Australia
Last Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
Last Unit: 13th Light Horse Regiment
Born: Campbelltown, Adelaide, South Australia, 29 June 1859
Home Town: Gilberton, Walkerville, South Australia
Schooling: St Peter's College Adelaide, South Australia
Occupation: Grazier stock & station agent and soldier
Died: Natural Causes, Gilberton, Walkerville, South Australia, 12 February 1953, aged 93 years
Cemetery: Mitcham Anglican Cemetery, South Australia
Mitcham Cemetery
Memorials: Adelaide Grand Masonic Lodge WW1 Honour Board (1), Adelaide Rowing Club WW1 Pictorial Honour Board, Hackney St Peter's College Honour Board
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World War 1 Service

11 Mar 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Adelaide South Australia Australia
12 May 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Lieutenant Colonel, SN Officer on enlistment - no service number, 13th Light Horse Regiment, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
12 May 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Lieutenant Colonel, SN Officer on enlistment - no service number, 13th Light Horse Regiment, HMAT Persic, Melbourne
12 Sep 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Lieutenant Colonel, SN Officer on enlistment - no service number, 13th Light Horse Regiment, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
3 Jun 1932: Honoured Commander of the Order of the British Empire, In recognition of service to rifle clubs

Help us honour George Henry Dean's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Faithe Jones

Dean, George Henry


A detailed biography is contained in the Australian Dictionary of Biography HERE (

George Henry Dean (1859-1953), was a 56 year old stock agent from Marryatville, South Australia when he was appointed in the A.I.F. on 11 March 1915.

A member of the Adelaide Rowing Club, his image has been sourced from the Honour Board held at the Club.  

Having been a militia Light Horse officer and Brigade Commander (8th Light Horse Brigade) pre-war, he was appointed Commanding Officer of the 13th Light Horse Regiment on 4 May 1915 and embarked for overseas from Melbourne on 12 May 1915 aboard HMAT Persic.  The 13th like the other Light Horse Regiments, fought at Gallipoli in a dismounted role as infantry.

While at Gallipoli, like many he succumbed to illness brought about by poor sanitation and hygiene due to the nature of the terrain climate and the large number of bodies interred around the Peninsula.   He was evacuated to England and then returned to Australia on 19 April 1916. On 29 July 1916, he was promoted to Colonel and appointed as Officer Commanding Troops on Transports and embarked from Sydney on 3 November 1916, from Melbourne on 4 August 1917 and from Sydney on 21 March 1918. After the war he was placed on the reserve list as an Honorary Brigadier. 

He was the father of Colonel Edwin Theyer Dean who also served in the First and Second World Wars.   A total of four of his five sons served overseas in 1914-18; the fifth, medically unfit for active service, was placed in charge of a recruiting depot.

George Dean had been a great proponent and exponent of service rifle shooting.  He had been invovled in the integration of Rifle Clubs under Defence legislation, and he led the Australian team team to  the mecca of service rifle shooting in the British Commonwealth, at Bisley in the UK in 1912.  He was Chairman of the Commonwealth Council of Rifle  Associations from 1903-1921.  The main service rifle range in Adelaide was until the 1990s, located at Osborne near Port Adelaide. It was named Dean Range, after George Dean, in 1948.

George Dean also played a leading roll in the formation of the RSL in 1916. 

He died at home at Gilberton in 1953.

Brigadier-General Dean was awarded the CB.E. among the King's Birthday honors this year. He also served in the Great War, and until his retirement in 1919 had 42 years' service in the military forces. He is known throughout the Commonwealth for his active interest in rifle shooting.