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Francis Smyth Baden-Powell, always known as Frank, (29 July 1850 – 1933) was a British barrister, officer and painter.


Frank Baden-Powell was born on 29 July 1850, the third son of the Rev. Prof Baden Powell and his third wife Henrietta Grace Smyth.

Frank's elder full brothers were Warington Baden-Powell and Sir George Baden-Powell, and he had two younger brothers, Robert Baden-Powell and Baden Baden-Powell, and a younger sister, Agnes Baden-Powell. There was another brother Augustus (May 1849 – March 1863) who died aged 13. His father had had another son, Baden Henry Powell, by his second wife.
The Baden-Powell family - Back row, standing (left to right): Major B. F. S. Baden-Powell; Miss Agnes D. S. Baden-Powell; Mr. Frank Baden-Powell; Colonel R. S. S. Baden-Powell. Front row, seated:Sir George Baden-Powell; Mrs. Henrietta Grace Baden-Powell and one of her grandchildren; Mr. Warington Baden-Powell

After he took Honours at Balliol College, Oxford, Frank was then called to the Bar from the Inner Temple. However, he joined the army and, as Lieutenant Frank Baden-Powell, he was attached to the Camel Corps during the 1st Sudan War (1884–1885). The Camel Corps had been formed for the Gordon Relief Expedition. The Guards detachments of the Corps consisted of 23 officers and 400 men from the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions of the Grenadier Guards, 1st and 2nd Battalions of the Coldstream Guards and the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the Scots Guards.[1]

In 1902, Frank visited Mafeking, South Africa, the scene of his brother Robert's triumph; while there, he paid a call on the Convent of the Sisters of Mercy.[2]

Baden-Powell married on 28 May 1902, at St Paul's Church, Knightsbridge, Florence (Sidney) Watt, a New Zealander daughter of James Watt,[3][4] and their 1902 honeymoon was a round-the-world trip.[5] Florence died on 17 October 1914, at 18 Sloane Court, London. Their only child, a son (Robert Harold) "Bobby" Baden-Powell was born on 11 November 1903.

Between 1904 and 1911, they lived at 33-38, Palace Gate, Kensington.;[6] but in 1907 Frank was in South Africa.[7]

Frank was a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.


Frank's father, the Rev. Prof. Baden Powell was artistic, as was Frank's mother, Henrietta Grace Smyth, and her mother, Annarella Warington and Henrietta's father, William Henry Smyth; and so, too, were some of Frank's siblings, Robert in particular. But Frank was the only one of this artistically-talented family to make a living from his brush.[8] Although not an RA , he regularly exhibited there.

Here is a list of works of art shown by Frank at Royal Academy Exhibitions (held annually). The list is taken from "The Royal Academy of Arts; A Complete Dictionary of Contributors and their work from its foundation in 1769 to 1904" by Algernon Graves, published in London in 1905.


BADEN-POWELL, Frank...Painter.
8, St. George's Place,
Hyde Park.
1880. 746 Bodekessel, Harz.
889 "On Guard," Gravetye.
1077 Crust of the Earth.
1881. 693 Bodethor, Hartz Mountains.
1412 Trafalgar refought.
1884. 1731 Regret-sculpture.
1888. 595 Lieut. Baden-Powell and the Camel Corps, etc.
1894. 892 The Wooden Walls of Queen Victoria.
1896. 309 The Admiral's Daughter outward bound.
1223 Betula-alba.
1902. 740 Nelson's Foudroyant wrecked on the coast of Lancashire.

During his career he also showed at the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, The Walker Gallery in Liverpool, the Manchester City Art Gallery and the Glasgow Institute of Fine Art.

Four of his paintings are in public collections. You can see them at http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings/paintings/search/painted_by/frank-smyth-baden-powell

One of his works was a pencil-and-grey-wash drawing entitled "Millais at his last Varnishing Day."[9]

Another was the design a "Commemorative Diploma" for the Royal Naval Exhibition of 1891 in Chelsea, England. The exhibition featured displays and artifacts from famous ships and sea battles.[10]

Frank was also an Exhibitor at The Salon, Paris.

In 1948, Walker's Galleries of London, England, gave "An Exhibition of Silhouette Portraits Life-size Heads by Frank Baden-Powell".[11]

Other works are known to exist, e.g.

"A Quiet Backwater" Oil on canvas board Initialled 190 x 290mm.
"Drummer Boys of the Royal Berkshire Regiment", signed and dated "War Fund 1900" underneath and titled verso, watercolour highlighted with white, 8 1/2" x 7".
"CIRCLE OF C M POWELL, Shipping in a Squall", watercolour, unsigned, 11 1/2" x 17 1/4", gilt frame.[12]

Frank also corresponded with Louisa Caroline Stewart née Mackenzie (1827–1903), the second wife (m.1858) of William Bingham Baring, second Baron Ashburton (succeeded 1848; 1799–1864).[13] Louisa was a well-known figure in society, especially in the artistic world, as was her mother, Mrs Stewart Mackenzie, who was also a close friend of Sir Walter Scott.[13]

Frank died in Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, in Q4, 1933, aged 83.[4]

"Lieutenant Frank Baden-Powell, Scots Guards, Nile Expedition, 1885 | Online Collection | National Army Museum, London". nam.ac.uk. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
"The Story of the Sisters of Mercy, South Africa" (PDF). 7 January 2009. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
"Marriages". The Times (36783). London. 2 June 1902. p. 1.
"FreeBMD Home Page". freebmd.org.uk. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
"Papers Past — Manawatu Standard — 22 January 1909 — PERSONAL.". Archived from the original on 2014-06-16. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
"Palace Gate | British History Online". british-history.ac.uk. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
On 24 May 1907, Richard John Cuninghame wrote from Africa to his wife, "...The cow elephant episode was quick work... for B-P was what the Yank's called 'just a bit rattled'. The BP that I had charge of was Frank Baden-Powell... he got his photo I believe and that is the main thing."
The Story of Baden-Powell 'The Wolf That Never Sleeps' by Harold Begbie https://books.google.com/books?isbn=3847208438 Harold Begbie
Summer Exhibition RA; untraced; Phillips, 8 May 1979 (122). See cutting NPG SB (Millais) inscr. ‘Daily Telegraph, ?10–15 May 1979’http://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/personExtended/mp03083/sir-john-everett-millais-1st-bt?tab=iconography
http://www.antique-shop.com/forums/index.php?topic=5230.msg%msg_id% This reference seems bona fide
Walker's Galleries (London, England) (1948). An Exhibition of Silhouette Portraits Life-size Heads by Frank Baden-Powell (1850-1933). Walker's Galleries. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
"Inventory Acc.11388 Ashburton Papers" (PDF). National Library of Scotland, Manuscripts Division. 7 September 2004. Retrieved 2015-02-10.

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