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Gordon Graham

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Gordon Graham
Born17 Jul 1920 (1920-07-17)
Glasgow, Scotland
Died24 April 2015 (2015-04-25)
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service1940–1946
RankMajor
Service number176441
UnitQueen’s Own Cameron Highlanders
Battles/warsWorld War II:
AwardsMilitary Cross & Bar

Gordon Graham was an influential publisher and decorated Second World War soldier who fought at the Battle of Kohima and dedicated much of his retirement to remembering the sacrifice made by all nations to what Earl Mountbatten described it as "probably one of the greatest battles in history". He was described as a man of exceptional initiative in peace and war.[1]

Early Life[edit | edit source]

Born on 17 July 1920 in Glasgow, William Gordon Graham enlisted in the British Army in 1940 after graduation from Glasgow University. Whilst at university he and five friends formed Glasgow University Mountaineering Club.[2]

Military Service[edit | edit source]

He enlisted in the British Army at Strensall Camp near York on 18 July 1940[3] was commissioned into the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders and spent most of the war years with its 1st Battalion. He was awarded the MC and Bar whilst fighting in the Far East as part of the British 2nd Division.

During the Second World War, there were only 500 awards of the Military Cross (MC) and Bar.[4] Graham's first MC was for his "magnificent example, personal courage, initiative and inspiring leadership" during 14 May to 12 June 1944 as part of the Battle of Kohima.[5] The Bar to his MC was awarded for "skillful and inspiring leadership" together with his "magnificent contempt of danger" during the crossing of the Irrawaddy River on the night of 24-25 February 1945.[6] Before the end of World War Two he became a Press Relations Officer on the staff of Commander-in-Chief, India, who at the time was General Auchinleck.[7] Although he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel before being demobilised in 1946, on his release from active military duty he was granted the honorary rank of Major.[8]

Civilian Life[edit | edit source]

During his civilian career, Graham worked internationally in India, the USA and UK. In 1955 he moved from Delhi to New York to be International Sales Manager for McGraw Hill; then in 1963 to London to work for the publisher Butterworths.[9] In 1975 he was appointed chairman of Butterworths.[10] On the Members Council for 15 years (1972-1987)[11] from 1985-87, after its first contested election,[9] he became president of The Publishers Association where he dedicated himself to improving relations with booksellers and librarians.[12] On 2 July 1993, he received an honorary doctorate from Stirling University[13], going on to publish at least five books afterwards.

Aged 70 following retirement from Butterworths, Graham founded and edited the quarterly journal LOGOS. He relinquished his editorial responsibilities in 2008.[14] He also instigated the collection of the Burma Campaign Memorial Library within London University's School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).[15] Graham was also the initiator and until his death Honorary President of the Kohima Educational Trust. The Trust was founded in 2004 by British veterans of the Battle of Kohima, in gratitude to the Naga people of north-east India who had supported the Allies during the battles with the Japanese in 1944.[12]

Published Works[edit | edit source]

  • As I Was Saying, Essays on the International Book Business (1994), Hans Zell Publishers.
  • Butterworths: History of a Publishing House (1995), Butterworths.
  • The Trees are All Young on Garrison Hill (2005), The Kohima Educational Trust.
  • From Trust to Takeover (2006), Wildly, Simmons and Hill Publishing.
  • Immigrant Publishers: The Impact of Expatriate Publishers in Britain and America in the 20th Century (2009), Transaction Publishers.

References[edit | edit source]

  • Bell, Hazel (April 1998). "Personalities in Publishing: Gordon Graham". Journal of Scholarly Publishing. 20: 182–185.
  • Graham, Gordon (2005), The Trees Are All Young on Garrison Hill, Marlow, Buckinghamshire: The Kohima Educational Trust, pp. 12, 14, ISBN 0-9552687-0-2
  • University of Stirling, Honorary Graduates: 1988 - 1997, University of Stirling, retrieved 12 July 2015
  • Owen, Charles (2015), Gordon Graham, Kohima Educational Trust, retrieved 4 December 2015
  • de Ballaigue, Eric (2015), Gordon Graham: Obituary, The Bookseller, retrieved 12 July 2015
  • Lyman, Robert (2004), Book Review for 'Burma: The Forgotton War', retrieved 14 December 2016
  • Daily Telegraph (2015), Gordon Graham, publisher - obituary, Daily Telegraph, retrieved 4 June 2015
  • The Society of Young Publishers (2010), Sixty years of dedication: a profile of Gordon Graham, The Society of Young Publishers Mentoring Scheme, retrieved 15 July 2015
  • The Times (2015), Gordon Graham, The Times, retrieved 7 July 2015
  • The Medal Year Book, Honiton: Token Publishing, 2009, p. 84, ISBN 978-1-870192-83-5
  • Who's Who (1997), GRAHAM, (William) Gordon, A&C Black

External links[edit | edit source]

Category:1920 births Category:2015 deaths Category:Recipients of the Military Cross Category:British Army officers Category:British Army personnel of World War II Category:Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders officers Category:Publishers


This article "Gordon Graham" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical and/or its subpage Gordon Graham/edithistory. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one.

  1. The Times 2015.
  2. Graham 2005, p. 12.
  3. Graham 2005, p. 14.
  4. The Medal Year Book 2009, p. 84.
  5. Public Record Office WO 373/39
  6. Public Record Office WO 373/40
  7. Charles Owen 2015.
  8. War Office P176441 dated 31 August 1946
  9. 9.0 9.1 Bell 1998.
  10. de Ballaigue 2015.
  11. Whos's Who 1997.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Daily Telegraph 2015.
  13. University of Stirling.
  14. The Society of Young Publishers 2010.
  15. Lyman 2004.