Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (8 December 2016)

Date of Auction: 8th December 2016

Sold for £8,000

Estimate: £5,000 - £6,000

A rare Royal Indian Marine C.I.E. group of seven awarded to Captain S. D. Vale, R.I.M., who was mentioned in despatches for services as Assistant Marine Transport Officer with the China Expeditionary Force

The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire, C.I.E., Companion’s 3rd type neck badge, gold and enamels, converted for wear as a breast badge, the reverse inscribed ‘Captain S. D. Vale, R.I.M. June 3rd 1918’; India General Service 1854-95, 2 clasps, Burma 1887-89, Chin-Lushai 1889-90 (3rd Gde. Officer S. D. Vale, H.M.I.M.S. “Irrawaddy”); China 1900, 1 clasp, Relief of Pekin (Lieut. S. D. Vale, Royal Indian Marine.) officially impressed naming, clasp sprung at one side; Africa General Service 1902-56, 1 clasp, Somaliland 1902-04 (Lieut: S. D. Vale. R.I.M.S. Mayo) officially impressed naming; British War Medal (Commr. S. D. Vale. R.I.M.); Delhi Durbar 1911, named (Comder. S. D. Vale R.I.M.); U.S.A. Military Order of the Dragon (Lieut. Seymour D. Vale R.I.M. No. 503) complete with Pagoda top suspension, replacement ribbon, mounted for wearing, some light contact marks but generally good very fine or better ((7) £5000-6000


Seymour Douglas Vale was born in West Malvern, Worcester on 27 October 1865, and was trained aboard the ‘Worcester’ Nautical College, serving an apprenticeship of four years with Messrs George Thompson & Company. He served as 2nd Mate of the Barque Scottish Bard and the ship Salamis, and passed the Board of Trade examination for a First Mate's Certificate in London 8 December 1886.

He joined the Indian Marine as a 3rd Grade Officer on 21 September 1888, being appointed to Enterprise (January 1888) and to Irrawaddy (September 1888). He served in the latter ship whilst in support of military operations in Upper Burma and the various skirmishes against the Chin and Lushai Tribes 1889-90. He next served aboard Enterprise (June 1889) and was seconded for Special Duty with the China Expeditionary Force (November 1889). He joined Dalhousie (February 1890) and was promoted to 2nd Grade Officer on 1 April 1890 before serving aboard Clive (December 1890), and Canning (December 1890). Promoted to 1st Grade Officer on 1 April 1892, he joined Lawrence (May 1892) and was promoted to the newly introduced rank of Lieutenant on 10 January 1893, and subsequently served aboard Canning (January 1890). He joined the Royal Naval College at Greenwich on 30 September 1893 and remained on course until 30 June 1893 obtaining an Honorary Passing Certificate.

On his return to India he joined Canning (August 1894), was appointed Lieutenant in Command of Pagan (November 1894) and next served aboard Minto (December 1897), and Dalhousie (January 1898). He transferred to the Defence Squadron and next joined Canning (April 1899), Clive (April 1900), and Dalhousie in Command (June 1900). In July 1900 he was appointed Assistant Marine Transport Officer with the China Expeditionary Force and was mentioned in Despatches by General Gaselee on 17 January 1901. He next served aboard Mayo (December 1901), Minto in Command (January 1902), and Clive (July 1902) for service as Assistant Marine Transport Officer, China.

Vale subsequently commanded Mayo during the operations off the Somali coast in 1903. He next served aboard Canning (September 1903), was appointed Staff Officer Bombay Dockyard (December 1903) and promoted to Commander 3rd Class 7 December 1893. He subsequently commanded the following ships: Canning (September 1906), Dalhousie (April 1907), Northbrook (October 1907), and Hardinge (October 1907). Promoted to Commander 2nd Grade on 13 October 1907, he was appointed Staff Officer at Kiddapore Dockyard (April 1908) and Assistant Port Officer at Bombay (August 1910). He was promoted to Commander 1st Grade on 1 November 1911 and appointed Principal Port Officer Burma in February 1913. He retired in 1915 having reached 50 years of age, but he was immediately re-employed until the end of the war and retired as a Captain in 1919. His 30 year service with the Royal Indian Marine was recognised when he was made a Companion of the Indian Empire in June 1918.