The Barrett J. Carr Collection of Boer War Medals

Date of Auction: 7th March 2007

Sold for £2,300

Estimate: £600 - £800

Four: Fleet Paymaster J. S. Place, one of four officers from H.M.S. Barham to be killed in action at the Battle of Jutland

Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902,
no clasp (Ast. Payr., R.N., H.M.S. Monarch); 1914-15 Star (Ft. Payr., R.N.); British War and Victory Medals (Ft. Payr., R.N.), together with 2nd Cruiser Squadron (South Africa and South America) 1908 Medal, 8 clasps, Durban, East London, Port Elizabeth, Simonstown, Capetown, St. Helena, Rio de Janeiro, Monte Video, and Spink & Son Jutland commemorative, small silver, 22mm., this last with loop and brooch-bar for wearing, good very fine or better (6) £600-800


812 no-clasp Queen’s South Africa Medals were awarded to the ship’s company of H.M.S. Monarch.

John Spencer Place was born in February 1897 and entered the Royal Navy as an Assistant Clerk in January 1892. He subsequently served in H.M.S. Monarch as an Assistant Paymaster from January 1897 to October 1900, latterly off South Africa, and was advanced to Paymaster in December 1904.

Having been promoted to Fleet Paymaster in December 1912, he was serving aboard the Southampton on the outbreak of hostilities, in which cruiser he was present in the actions at Heligoland Bight on 28 August 1914 and Dogger Bank on 24 January 1915. Appointed to the battleship Barham in July 1915, he was subsequently killed in action at the Battle of Jutland in the following year. Barham, the flagship of the Fifth Battle Squadron, was heavily engaged with Hipper’s battle cruisers, scoring hits on the Lutzow, Derfflinger and Seydlitz, but she was badly mauled in the process, several hits causing her serious casualties, among them four officers and 22 ratings killed.

Place, who was 41 years of age and left a widow, Clara Winifred Place, a resident of Warrender Park Terrace, Edinburgh, is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial.