Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (22 July 2015)

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Date of Auction: 22nd July 2015

Sold for £1,900

Estimate: £1,700 - £1,900

An impressive O.B.E., Second World War Italy operations M.C. group of nine awarded to Lieutenant-Colonel W. W. McHarg, Royal Artillery, who was decorated for his gallantry at the crossing of the Savio

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, O.B.E. (Military) Officer’s 2nd type breast badge, silver-gilt; Military Cross, G.VI.R., the reverse officially dated ‘1945’; 1939-45 Star; Africa Star, clasp, 1st Army; Italy Star; Defence and War Medals 1939-45; General Service 1918-62, 1 clasp, Palestine 1945-48 (Capt. W. W. McHarg, M.C., R.A.); Efficiency Decoration, E.II.R., Territorial, with Bar, the reverse of the Decoration officially dated ‘1952’ and the reverse of the Bar ‘1958’, mounted as worn, generally good very fine (9) £1700-1900

Footnote

O.B.E. London Gazette 11 June 1960. The original recommendation states:

M.C. London Gazette 28 June 1945. The original recommendation states:

‘During October 1944, 324 Anti-Tank Battery was supporting 12 Infantry Brigade in the forming of a bridgehead across the River Savio. Only one arc bridge was in position and a few tanks crossed. It became essential to put 6-pounders into action on the far side of the river. In attempting this the Battery Commander and one Troop Commander were killed. Captain McHarg assumed command and, undeterred by the very heavy fire coming down on the river, personally reconnoitred a crossing and put the necessary guns in action.

Two days later a Troop Commander reported that he was unable to move a 6-pounder up to an exposed position to support the infantry. Captain McHarg then went forward and personally drove the tractor down a road covered by Spandau fire and placed the gun in action in the F.D.Ls.

Throughout this period when the Battery had suffered the loss of three officers, Captain McHarg’s determination and unfailing courage were a magnificent example and inspiration to all ranks of the Battery.’

William Wilson McHarg was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery in November 1940 and was serving as an Acting Captain in 324 Anti-Tank Battery, 14th Anti-Tank Regiment, R.A. at the time of winning his M.C. for the above cited deeds in Italy in October 1944.

Post-war, and having seen service in Palestine, McHarg was awarded the Efficiency Decoration (London Gazette 15 July 1952, refers) and Bar (London Gazette 18 November 1958, refers), in addition to the O.B.E. for his successful command of 279 (Ayrshire) Field Regiment, R.A. (T.A.) in the period June 1957 to November 1959. He retired in the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel on standing down from command of the unit in May 1960; sold with copied research, including extensive recommendation for the award of his O.B.E.