Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (8 & 9 May 2019)

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Date of Auction: 8th & 9th May 2019

Sold for £3,800

Estimate: £2,000 - £2,600

A Great War ‘Western Front’ D.S.O. and ‘capture of Ponchaux October 1918’ Bar group of six awarded to Lieutenant-Colonel H. I. Storey, Devonshire Regiment

Distinguished Service Order, G.V.R., with Second Award Bar, silver-gilt and enamel, with integral top riband bar; Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902, 6 clasps, Cape Colony, Tugela Heights, Orange Free State, Relief of Ladysmith, Transvaal, Laing’s Nek (Lieut. H. I. Storey. Devon. Rgt.); King's South Africa 1901-02, 2 clasps, South Africa 1901, South Africa 1902 (Lieut. H. I. Storey. Devon Rgt.) official correction to second initial; 1914-15 Star (Major H. I. Storey. Devon. R.); British War and Victory Medals, with M.I.D. oak leaves (Lt. Col. H. I. Storey.) light contact marks, otherwise nearly very fine or better (6) £2,000-£2,600

Footnote

Provenance: Christie’s, December 1990.

D.S.O. London Gazette 15 February 1917.

D.S.O. Second Award Bar London Gazette 8 March 1919; citation published 4 October 1919:
‘For conspicuous gallantry and ability to command. On October 8th, 1918, he captured Ponchaux, strongly held, with his battalion a village which had held up the advance for several days. It was owing to his high state of discipline and training which he had instilled into his battalion that the enemy’s defences were broken and marked success obtained, a large number of prisoners and machine guns being taken.’


M.I.D. London Gazette 1 January 1916; 4 January 1917; 22 May 1917; 30 May 1918; and 8 July 1919.

Henry Innes Storey was born in India on 20 February 1879, son of H. F. Storey of the Public Works Department India. He was educated at Clifton College and, on leaving, joined the 3rd Militia Battalion, Devonshire Regiment, transferring to the 1st Battalion in May 1899. During the Boer War he served at the relief of Ladysmith, including the action at Colenso, 15 December 1900, where he was slightly wounded; operations of 5-7 February 1900 and action at Vaal Krantz; operations on the Tugela Heights, 14-27 February 1900; action at Pieters Hill; operations in Natal, March to June 1900, including action at Laing’s Nek; and operations in the Transvaal, 30 November 1900 to 31 May 1901 (Queen’s Medal with 6 clasps, King’s Medal with 2 clasps).

Promoted to Captain in May 1904, Storey was seconded for service in 1909 with the West African Frontier Force, becoming a Company Commander in the Gold Coast Regiment. During his service in Africa he contracted Blackwater Fever, but by the outbreak of the Great War he was fit again and re-established with the Devons.

In the early days of the Great War Captain Storey, with 2nd Lieutenants Joy and Copner plus 15 N.C.Os., received orders to proceed to Exeter and form the nucleus of the new Service Battalions of the Regiment, Storey being promoted Temporary Major in the 8th Battalion. On 25 July 1915 the battalion, with Storey commanding A Company, left Southampton for France, disembarking at Le Havre and entraining for Wizernes, where they were inspected and complimented on their soldierly bearing. They then joined the 20th Brigade of the 7th Division. Storey was transferred to the 9th Battalion on 13 September 1915, and assumed command of the battalion in time for the battle of Loos, where on the first day of that battle he was severely wounded in the arm whilst attacking Gun Trench. He re-joined the battalion on recovering from his wounds the following May, in time for the vast amount of work to be carried out on training in preparation for the ‘Big Push, later known as the battle of the Somme. Colonel Storey commanded the 9th Battalion during its famous action at Mansell Copse, where Captain D. L. Martin’s plasticine model of the area and his prophecy proved so accurate. The battalion suffered great losses during the battle, including Captain Martin and Captain Hodgeson, who was a poet of some renown. The Devonshire Cemetery at Mansell Copse remains a poignant reminder to all who visit it.

On 18 February 1917, Colonel Storey assumed command of the Divisional School, a post he held until October when he again returned to command the 9th Battalion during the Third Battle of Ypres, Passchendaele. November 1917 saw the battalion entrain for Italy, being employed on that front until September 1918 when they returned to the Western Front. It was in the final days of the war that he won the Bar to his D.S.O. for the capture of Ponchaux by his battalion in October 1918.

Sold with original warrant for the D.S.O.; five M.I.D. certificates, dated as above; Immediate Rewards Notice, dated 3 March 1919; letter of congratulations from General Rawlinson on award of Bar to his D.S.O., dated 6 March 1919; and two bullets, one with 18 carat gold mount engraved ‘H.I.S. Colenso 15 Dec: 1899’, this contained in a fitted leather case with silver name plate on lid. Together with a quantity of copied research and photographs.