Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (27 & 28 September 2016)

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Date of Auction: 27th & 28th September 2016

Sold for £2,400

Estimate: £500 - £600

The Maori War medal awarded to Captain the Hon. A. E. Harris, 43rd Foot, who was thrice mentioned in despatches for services in New Zealand 1864-65

New Zealand
1845-66, reverse undated (Captn. Hon. A. E. Harris. 43rd Foot) very fine £500-600


Arthur Ernest Harris was born on 31 January 1835, son of William, 2nd Baron Harris of Seringapatam and Mysore, and Isabella Helena Temple. He was appointed Ensign in the 55th Foot on 14 April 1854, but exchanged to the 43rd Foot on 5 May following; Lieutenant, 23 March 1855; Captain, by purchase, 23 July 1861; retired 30 September 1866.

Harris served throughout the Indian Mutiny campaign of 1857-58, as Aide-de-Camp to Brigadier Macduff. He served in the New Zealand war of 1864-65, and was present at Maketu and Te Ranga (despatches); and with the expeditions in the province of Taranaki, and in command of outposts, destroying many Pas and fortified villages (despatches).

Despatch from Major J. M. Colvile, 43rd Light Infantry, Commanding, Maketu,
London Gazette 15 July 1864: ‘Finding the enemy mustering strong, I sent for a further reinforcement of 30 men under the command of Captain Harris, 43rd Light Infantry... My best thanks are due to Captains Smith [awarded Victoria Cross for Te Ranga] and Honourable A. E. Harris, 43rd Light Infantry, for the able manner they led their companies into action.’

Despatch from Colonel H. H. Greer, Commanding Taurangra District,
London Gazette 16 September 1864: ‘Captain the Honourable A. Harris, 43rd Light Infantry, who was detached to the right in command of two companies of the 43rd, to enfilade the enemy’s position, and afterwards brought the companies, at a critical moment, to assist in the assault.’

Despatch from Major-General Chute, Commanding Forces in New Zealand, dated Wellington, 15 February 1866,
London Gazette 15 May 1866: ‘Prior to my departure from Opunaki I instructed Captain the Hon. A. E. Harris, 43rd Light Infantry, to capture and destroy a pah near Warea, to which it was reported the rebels from Waikato had retired. In this service he was to be aided by Captain Livesay, with a detachment of the 43rd Light Infantry from Opunaki, and the military settlers from Tipoka. This duty was effectually performed, the enemy having been driven from the place with loss, and the village destroyed.’

After his retirement Captain Harris became a Justice of the Peace for County Westmeath. In April 1900 his name was changed by Royal Licence to Harris-Temple. He died on 12 August 1906. Sold with copied research.