Sir Hew Dalrymple Ross was born in Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland in 1779.
At the age of fourteen he entered the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich and two years later was commissioned Second Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery. Ross built his career with the Royal Artillery and Royal Horse Artillery, fighting at the battle of Waterloo and commanding the ‘Chesnut’ troop. From 1828 Ross held delegated command of all troops in the four northern counties of the districts near Carlisle, and he was also appointed magistrate for the county of Cumberland.
He continued to move up the ranks in the 1840s and in 1841 Ross was appointed Deputy Adjutant-General of Artillery. He remained in this role until 1854 when he was appointed Lieutenant General of the Ordnance under personal recommendation of Lord Raglan, Master General, though others had wanted the appointment of Lieutenant General Sir John Burgoyne instead. However, by February 1855 when Palmerston became Prime Minister the Office of Ordnance’s days were numbered and in June 1855 it was absorbed into the War Office, making Ross’ role as both the Lieutenant General and Surveyor General, which he also performed, redundant.
Ross and Burgoyne were both promoted to Field Marshal in 1868, and having served as Commissioner for the Royal Military Academy and Royal Military Asylum for several years Ross was then appointed to Lieutenant-General of Chelsea Hospital.
Sir Hew Dalrymple Ross died on 10 December 1868 at his London home.