Lieutenant and Adjutant Arthur Stewart Fielding Davison, who died at Eshowe on 27th March 1879, was the third son of Captain Davison, of Sedgefield, Durham, and of South Stoneham House, Hampshire, by his marriage with Louisa, daughter of T. Chambers, Esq., of Sheerness, Kent. He was born on 22 May 1856, and
was educated at Harrow; leaving the school in 1873, he proceeded to Captain Massy’s, at Croydon, to read for the Army Examination. He entered Sandhurst in 1874, and, passing out with a first class certificate, wasgazetted to a Lieutenancy in the 99th Foot; his commission being antedated a year in consequence of his success at the college. Joining the regiment at the Curragh, he served with it at that station, at Kilkenny, at Templemore, and at Chatham, passing most creditably, in the meantime, through a course of garrison instruction, and coming out from the School of Musketry at Hythe with a first-class certificate. In November 1878, while at Chatham, he received the appointment of Adjutant.In December 1878, the 99th Regiment was ordered out to Natal, to join the force then being prepared toact against the Zulus in the event of their refusing to comply with the terms of Sir Bartle Frere’s ultimatum.
Disembarking at Durban, Lieutenant Davison proceeded with the regiment to the Lower Thukela Drift, and took part in the subsequent advance of Colonel Pearson’s Column, in January 1879, into the enemy’s country. The last letter received from him by his family was one written in excellent spirits from Cape Town, bearing date 3
January. He was present at the battle of Nyezane on the morning of the 22 , and at the subsequent occupation of Eshowe. In the protracted waiting-time, which succeeded the arrival of the column at that position, throughout the wearisome routine that fell to the lot of the beleaguered force, he distinguished himself by the gaiety of his spirits and by his thoughtfulness for others. The constant exposure to which the garrison was subjected proved, however, too much for his strength, and early in March he was stricken with typhoid fever; from the first days of his illness he continued to grow weaker and weaker, and eventually died just a week before the besieged garrison was relieved. In a letter to Captain Davison, bearing date 10th April 1879, Colonel Welman wrote: “In your son we have lost a brave and skilful officer. He was a general favourite in the regiment.” Lieutenant Davison is commemorated on the ‘South Africa 1879-80-81’ memorial in the Sandhurst Chapel.