Dictionary of National Biography, 1912 supplement/East, Cecil James
EAST, Sir CECIL JAMES (1837–1908), lieut.-general, born at Herne Hill, London, on 10 July 1837, was son of Charles James East, merchant, of London, by his wife Eliza Frederica Bowman. After private education he entered the army on 18 Aug. 1854 as ensign in the 82nd regt., and became lieutenant on 6 June 1855. He served with his regiment in the Crimea from 2 Sept. 1855, and was present at the siege and fall of Sevastopol, for which he received the medal with clasp and Turkish medal. Subsequently he took part in the war of the Indian Mutiny in 1857 and was severely wounded at Cawnpore on 26 Nov. 1857, when he was awarded the medal. Promoted captain on 17 Nov. 1863, he joined the 41st regiment, and served as assistant quartermaster-general with the Chittagong column of the Lushai expeditionary force in 1871-2; he was mentioned in despatches and received the thanks of the governor-general in council as well as the medal with clasp and brevet of major (Lond. Gaz. 21 June 1872). Through the latter part of the Zulu war of 1879 he acted as deputy adjutant and quartermaster-general, and was present at the engagement at Ulundi, receiving the medal with clasp and brevet of colonel (Lond. Gaz. 21 August 1879). During the Burmese expedition in 1886-7 he commanded the first brigade after the capture of Mandalay and was mentioned in despatches by the government of India (Lond. Gaz. 2 Sept. 1887), receiving two clasps and being made C.B. on 1 July 1887. From 1883 to 1888 he commanded a second-class district in Bengal and Burma, and a first-class district in Madras from 1889 to 1893, having been made major-general on 23 Jan. 1889. Leaving India in 1893, he was till 1898 governor of Royal Military College at Sandhurst. He was nominated K.C.B. on 22 June 1897, having become lieut.-general on 28 May 1896. After 1898 he resided at Fairhaven, Winchester, where he died on 14 March 1908, being buried at King's Worthy.
He married (1) in 1863 Jane Catharine (d. 1871), eldest daughter of Charles Case Smith, M.D., of Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, by whom he had issue one son and a daughter; (2) in 1875 Frances Elizabeth, daughter of Rev. Arthur Mogg of Chilcompton, Somerset, and widow of Edward H. Watts, by whom he had a daughter.
[The Times, 16 March 1908; selections from State Papers in Military Dept, 1857-8, ed. G. W. Forrest, 1902, ii. 383; Dod's Knightage; Hart's and Official Army Lists; Walford's County Families.]