Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (17 & 18 May 2016)

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Date of Auction: 17th & 18th May 2016

Sold for £5,500

Estimate: £2,600 - £2,800

A rare Great War Mesopotamia operations C.M.G., inter-war C.I.E., C.V.O. group of nine awarded to Colonel W. W. Chitty, Indian Army, a veteran of the Uganda operations of 1898-1900 who was taken P.O.W. on the fall of Kut in April 1916

The Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St. George (C.M.G.), Companion’s neck badge, silver-gilt and enamel, in its Garrard & Co. case of issue; The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire (C.I.E.), Companion’s 3rd type neck badge, in gold and enamel, in its Garrard & Co. case of issue; The Royal Victorian Order (C.V.O.), Commander’s neck badge, silver-gilt and enamel, the reverse officially numbered ‘C846’, in its Collingwood case of issue; East and Central Africa 1898-1900, 2 clasps, 1898, Uganda 1899 (Cpt. W. W. Chitty, 1/Uganda Rif.), clasps joined by wire rivets; 1914-15 Star (Lt. Col. W. W. Chitty, 119/Infy.); British War and Victory Medals, M.I.D. oak leaf (Col. W. W. Chitty); Delhi Durbar 1911; France, Croix de Guerre 1914-1918, generally good very fine or better (9) £2600-2800


C.M.G. London Gazette 23 October 1919.

London Gazette 3 June 1929.

London Gazette 2 January 1933.

Walter Willis Chitty was born in June 1866, the son of Captain Arthur Whatley Chitty, C.I.E., and was educated at Clifton. First commissioned in the East Yorkshire Regiment in February 1885, he was appointed to the Indian Army in the following year.

In May 1898, and having been advanced to Captain, Chitty was appointed to the Indian Contingent for the Uganda Rifles, arriving in Mombasa in the following month. He subsequently served as a member of the Ogaden Expeditionary Force, with a Company of the Uganda Rifles at Kismayu, and accompanied the Wakedi Field Force in March-April 1899. Having then embarked for England on leave, he returned to Mombasa in April 1900 and served in the 3rd Nandi Punitive Expedition (Medal & 2 clasps).

Returning to India in May 1901, Chitty was advanced to Major in the 119th Infantry in February 1903 and to Lieutenant-Colonel in February 1911, the year of the Delhi Durbar.

In November 1914, he was embarked with his regiment for Mesopotamia, where he was present at the battles of Sharbo on 12 April and Ctesiphon in late November 1915. He had meanwhile gained advancement to Colonel and appointment as A.Q.M.G. 6th Division, in which capacity he served on General Townshend’s staff at Kut, being taken P.O.W. on the town’s fall in April 1916.

He subsequently journeyed into captivity in the company of Major McKenna, I.A., Major Barnes, I.M.S. and Captain Shakeshaft of the Norfolks, their Turkish hosts displaying ‘a mixture of brutish callousness, stupidity and ignorance’ throughout. Originally incarcerated ay Yozgad - where he was the senior officer - Chitty moved to Broussa in December 1916, where Townshend was held. He was awarded the C.M.G., twice mentioned in despatches (
London Gazettes 4 April and 19 October 1916, refer) and received the French Croix de Guerre.

Retiring from the Indian Army on his repatriation, Chitty joined the Military Department of the India Office as P.A. to the Military Secretary. He was appointed C.I.E. in 1929 and C.V.O. in 1933, the same year in which he retired to take up residence as a Military Knight of Windsor. Alas, his retirement was short-lived, for he died while playing a round of golf in July of the same year. His funeral was held at St. George’s, Windsor; sold with copied research.