Kenneth McLaren

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Kenneth McLaren DSO (sometimes known as Kenneth MacLaren), [1] (1860–1924) was a Major [2] in the 13th Hussars regiment of the British Army. After his military service he assisted with the growth of the Scouting movement founded by his friend Robert Baden-Powell.


In 1898 McLaren married Leila Evelyn Landon, who died in 1904. He married Ethyl Mary Wilson in 1910 despite the advice of Baden-Powell, who considered her below his station. [3]

Military service

McLaren had schooled at Harrow [4] and studied at Sandhurst [5] before joining his regiment, the 13th Hussars in 1880. [6] He was posted to India, where he served as regimental adjutant and later aide de camp to General Baker Russell. [1] [7] In South Africa he was gravely wounded at the Siege of Mafeking in March 1900, and taken prisoner by the Boers. [1] He was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) in November 1900. [8] McLaren played polo throughout his military service, [9] and was umpire of one of the two matches in the 1908 London Olympics. [10]

McLaren first met Baden-Powell (also a 13th Hussars officer) in 1881. Although McLaren was 20 at the time, Baden-Powell nicknamed him "the Boy", on account of his appearance. [5] [6] [11] [12] [13] The two became fast friends, their relationship being one of the most important friendships in Baden-Powell's life. [3] [13] [14]

McLaren was recalled to military service in World War I, but retired again in 1915 due to ill-health. [4] [15]

Boy Scouts

McLaren was one of the staff at Baden-Powell's Brownsea Island Scout camp in 1907. [3] [13] [16] [17] Baden-Powell convinced McLaren to be his first manager at the C. Arthur Pearson Limited office of The Scout magazine but McLaren resigned that position in March 1908. [3] [18] [19]

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  1. 1 2 3 "Captain Kenneth MacLaren, 13th Hussars, who it will be remembered was for a time adjutant of the regiment, was in July 1899 acting as A.D.C. to General Sir Baker Russell. He was then ordered to South Africa, as Colonel R. S. S. Baden-Powell had applied for his services. Captain MacLaren had been seriously wounded outside Mafeking, 31 March 1900." CHAPTER XXXVI. South African War, 1899–1900. Part Two. To December 1900.Regimental History, C. R. B. Barrett, History of the XIII Hussars, 1911 Archived 1 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  2. "Obituary Many of our older readers will have heard with deep regret of the death of Major Kenneth McLaren, late of the 13th Hussars. Cavalry journal, Volume 15 – Page 105
  3. 1 2 3 4 Jeal, Tim (1989). Baden-Powell . London: Hutchinson. pp. 74–83. ISBN   0-09-170670-X.
  4. 1 2 Military career [ permanent dead link ]
  5. 1 2 Craigmoe, Peter (2006). Burnham: King of Scouts. ISBN   978-1-4120-0901-0 . Retrieved 4 February 2010.
  6. 1 2 Jeal, p. 66
  7. "Naval and military intelligence". The Times. 1895. Retrieved 2 February 2010.
  8. "No. 27359". The London Gazette . 27 September 1901. p. 6305.
  9. The Badminton Magazine of Sports and Pastimes, Volume 9, p. 277, Longmans, Green and Co., 1899 (Original from Princeton University)
  10. Horace A. Laffaye, Nigel À Brassard, The Evolution of Polo, McFarland, 2009, ISBN   0-7864-3814-2, p. 119
  11. Brian Gardner, Mafeking: a Victorian legend, Cassell, 1966, p. 19
  12. Ronald Hyam, Britain's imperial century, 1815–1914: a study of empire and expansion, Barnes & Noble Books, 1976, ISBN   0-06-493099-8, p. 137
  13. 1 2 3 Warren, Allen (2008). "Powell, Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-, first Baron Baden-Powell (1857–1941)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press.
  14. The character factory: Baden-Powell and the origins of the Boy Scout movement – Page 48; Michael Rosenthal
  15. Supplement 4039 to the London Gazette , 24 April 1915.
  16. Knobel, Bruno (1962). Das große Abenteuer Lord Baden-Powells (in German) (2 ed.). Zürich: Polygraphischer Verlag AG Zürich. p. 197.
  17. "1907-eine Bewegung entsteht Die Insel Brownsea: Es geht los!". SCOUTING – Unabhängige Zeitschrift für Pfadfinderinnen und Pfadfinder (in German). 2/2007: 10. 2007.
  18. "Gilwell Gazette Vol 1 No.7" (PDF). 20 April 2007. Retrieved 4 February 2010.Cite journal requires |journal= (help)[ permanent dead link ]
  19. Ernest Edwin Reynolds (1962). BIPI (in German) (3 ed.). Augsburg: Verlag Die Brigg. p. 91.