SON of the late J. B. Bennett, painter and decorator, the late Colonel Commandant of the 1st L.A.V. Brigade was born in Glasgow in 1843. After an education at the Collegiate and other West-end schools he was trained as an art decorator, and entered his father's business, of which he became a partner. In June, 1860, he entered the Volunteer force as a gunner in the Lanarkshire Artillery Volunteers. In those days the citizen soldiers had to find their own uniform and accoutrements and pay their own instructors, and the only gun possessed by the Artillery was a wooden dummy mounted on a sham gun carriage. Colonel Bennett rose from the ranks through the various grades, and received his first commission in 1868; he was present at the two great Volunteer Reviews before Queen Victoria at Edinburgh in 1860 and 1881; and he took part in the sham fight at Capellie and Lanark, and in all the other Volunteer events of the West of Scotland from the inauguration of the movement.
    Colonel Bennett has travelled a good deal in the United States and Canada, France, Spain, Italy, and the South of Europe, and along with Mrs. Bennett visited Alexandria and the battlefield of Tel-el-Kebir, and took a large number of photographs, within three months of the decisive engagement which shattered the insurrection of Arabi Pasha. During his travels he gratified his taste for art by visiting the principal collections of Rome, Florence, and Naples, and exploring Pompeii, Herculaneum, and the Egyptian pyramids. As an art amateur he possesses one of the finest collections of pictures in Glasgow, and is a member of the Art Club. He is also an enthusiastic student of natural history, devoted especially to entomology. For ten years he was treasurer of the Glasgow Natural History Society, and for twelve years President of the Caledonian Bee-Keepers' Society. He is a Unionist in politics. He was for four years Chairman of the Painters' Association of Glasgow, and has also been President of the National Association. In 1894 he read a paper before the Architectural section of Glasgow Philosophical Society on the Building Exchanges of America. As a result of this paper, and Colonel Bennett's further efforts, the present Glasgow Building Trades Exchange was formed, and for a number of years he occupied the position of President.
    He was Deacon of the Incorporation of Wrights in 1888, and Visitor of the Incorporation of Maltmen in 1898 and 1905. He is still a member of the Trades' House and the Merchants' House.

Back to Index of Glasgow Men (1909)