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Biography of Sir David Beatty


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Beatty, Sir David. British admiral. Born in 1871. Entering the navy in 1884, he served with distinction to Sudan operations from 1896-98, and in China, 1900, rising to the rank of captain. In 1901 he married Ethel Field, only daughter of Marshall Field, the noted Chicago merchant. In 1910 he was made rear-admiral, and in 1912 was placed in command of the first British battle-cruiser squadron. On January 24, 1915, Beatty's squadron encountered a German squadron of fast cruisers. After sinking the German cruiser "Blucher," Beatty drove the remaining enemy vessels to the shelter of their mine fields. On May 31, 19176, Beatty led his squadron against the entire German high seas fleet in the great battle of the Skager-rak off the cost of Jutland, bearing the brunt of that tremendous action for three hours, suffering and inflicting terrible losses, until the arrival of the main British fleet. Following this action which forced the German fleet to disastrous flight to its protected base, never to reappear in battle formation, Beatty was made vice-admiral and placed in command of the grand fleet. On November 21, 1918, Admiral Beatty received, off the coast of Scotland, the surrender of all the important components of the German navy--90 ships in all, besides 87 U-boats, the greatest naval surrender of modern times. Beatty's exploits, particularly in the battle off Jutland, entitle him to a high place in naval history.