Awards to the Indian Army from the Collection of AM Shaw

Awards to the Indian Army from the Collection of AM Shaw

Mike Shaw

It is now almost 40 years since I began collecting British military medals, and about 30 since I began to emphasize those medals related to British India. Originally I was a coin collector, but upon being introduced to these medals I found them to be far more interesting to me than coins, so I moved on. I have had a great deal of fun over those years in putting together this collection, and have been fortunate in having been helped by numerous other collectors and dealers, and I extend my thanks to all of them. Perhaps the most fun was in learning about the British Indian Army, its unique ranks, its changing structure over time, and some of the characters who served in it, both Indian and British. Of course this meant putting together a library on this vast subject, which I am retaining, since I still have a healthy interest in it.

You may wonder why, then, I have decided to sell nearly all of my collection, retaining only a very few pieces to which I have an emotional attachment. Once again, I have found another numismatic area which fascinates me, in which I am rather a tyro at this time, but which I hope to learn more about as rapidly as I can. This sale of my collection will allow me to put together a representative sample of items in this new field.

I can only hope that those who acquire the medals now being sold will appreciate them as much as I have. When I began collecting, medals to Indians were not much favoured among collectors, save for a very few who were interested in the Indian Army. I can remember well when now much sought-after medals such as the MacGregor Memorial Medal might linger in a dealer’s stock for a year or more. Today, such a medal would be the first to go when listed. I can appreciate that I was fortunate enough to collect many of these medals when they were available, and hope that they will now end up in equally appreciative hands.

Mike Shaw
November 2012