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

Date of Auction: 22nd July 2015

Sold for £2,200

Estimate: £1,800 - £2,200

A Great War ‘Siberia’ D.S.C. and Croix de Guerre group of four awarded to Surgeon-Lieutenant N. H. Smith, Royal Navy, for services with H.M.S. Suffolk’s armoured train during the battles in the Ussuri Valley in August 1918

Distinguished Service Cross, G.V.R., the reverse hallmarked London 1918, with its Garrard & Co. Ltd. case of issue; British War and Victory Medals (Surg. Lt. N. H. Smith. R.N.); French Croix de Guerre 1914-1918, with bronze star, extremely fine (4) £1800-2200


D.S.C. London Gazette 22 April 1919:

‘In recognition of the bravery and devotion to duty displayed by him in carrying out his professional duties during the battles in the Ussuri district between the 14th and 28th August, 1918.’

The original recommendation for the D.S.C., states: ‘Bravery and devotion to his professional duties in the Battles in the Ussuri District between the 14th and 28th August 1918, this Officer had the care of the 25th Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment, as well as the “Suffolk” ’s guns crews, the one and only Military Doctor attached to the battalion being sick during this period.’

Croix de Guerre London Gazette 17 January 1919. The recommendation states: ‘Has given proof of his bravery and devotion in his professional duty in the battles in the Ussuri District.’

Neville Hardcastle Smith was born in 1889 and educated at Sherborne School and Clare College, Cambridge. Qualified M.R.C.S. and L.R.C.P., he was commissioned into the R.A.M.C., attaining the rank of Captain, and later entered the Royal Navy as Surgeon-Lieutenant, serving in China, Siberia and with the North Russian Expeditionary Force. He served in H.M.S. Suffolk from May 1917. The operations of Suffolk’s armoured train are fully described in Britain’s Sea Soldiers.