Lieutenant Colonel David Henderson was one of ten ‘special officers’ sent to South Africa during the Boer War to establish an intelligence organisation. He was the Director of Military Intelligence in Pretoria in 1901-1902.
Having recognised that the ad-hoc nature of the intelligence effort during the Boer War was perhaps not the best approach to the art, he wrote and published a pamphlet in 1904, the first of its kind, titled “Field Intelligence, Its Principles and Practice”.
In this work, essentially the beginnings of British Military Intelligence Doctrine, he made specific recommendations for the formation of an Intelligence Corps and laid down the principles on which it should be operated and administered. Although his recommendations were not implemented, it was a far-reaching, albeit short, document which set the standard for the future.
Clearly a man of considerable ability, as Lieutenant General Henderson he was a key figure in military flying during the first World War and commanded the military wing of the Royal Flying Corps which, in 1918, became the Royal Air Force.