Journal of Henry Lyon

Scope and Content

Correspondence and papers, dated 1897-1917, of Henry Lyon, Assistant District Commissioner, Niger Coast Protectorate, 1894-99 ; includes narrative, dated 2-12 Jan. 1897, of Lyon's experiences near Benin City following reports of massacres there. Notebook with journal entries, dated 2nd to 10th January 1897, describing the mission to Benin City which resulted in the death of Acting Commissioner J.R.Phillips, of the Niger Coast Protectorate, and eight other Europeans. Documents, dated 1897 and 1917 relating to Lyon's service with the Niger Coast Protectorate and to his military career.

Administrative / Biographical History

Henry Lyon, Assistant District Commissioner, Niger Coast Protectorate, 1894-99In 1894 Henry Lyon was Secretary in the London office of the Niger Coast Protectorate which had come into being in May 1893. By January 1897 he was acting as an Assistant Commissioner in Sapele, Nigeria where he learnt about the killing of J.R. Phillips and eight other Europeans on the road to Benin City. This event led to the punitive expedition to Benin City, under the command of Admiral Sir Harry Rawson. By March 1898 Lyon was in the Benin City office, having been seconded for service in the Niger Coast Protectorate from his regiment (the South Lancashire Regiment). In 1899 Lyon resigned from the NCP and may have been in South Africa during the Boer War. During the 1st World War Lyon was Acting Sergeant in the 6th South African Infantry but, after service of one year and 119 days, was discharged in March 1917 as "being temporarily unfit for war service".

Conditions Governing Access


Acquisition Information

Donated in 1984

Other Finding Aids

This description constitutes the only finding aid at present.