The Barrett J. Carr Collection of Boer War Medals

Date of Auction: 7th March 2007

Sold for £650

Estimate: £500 - £600

Four: Chief Petty Officer J. H. Hird, Royal Navy

Egypt and Sudan 1882-89
, dated reverse, 1 clasp, Alexandria 11th July (A.B., H.M.S. Alexandra); East and West Africa 1887-1900, 1 clasp, Gambia 1894 (P.O. 1 Cl., H.M.S. Raleigh); Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902, no clasp (P.O. 2nd Cl., H.M.S. Pearl); Khedive’s Star 1882, the first with contact marks, nearly very fine, the remainder very fine and better and a scarce combination of awards (4) £500-600


A total of 203 Queen’s South Africa Medals were awarded to the ship’s company of H.M.S. Pearl, 189 of them without clasp.

John Henry Hird was born in West Teignmouth, Devon in June 1862 and entered the Royal Navy as a Boy 2nd Class in October 1878. Having witnessed active service in H.M.S. Alexandra at the bombardment of Alexandria in July 1882, he was advanced to Petty Officer 1st Class during his time aboard the Raleigh, from which ship he was landed during the course of the Gambia punitive operations of 1894. Sadly, however, following brief service off South Africa in the Pearl in April-May 1902, he died of tuberculosis at Simonstown Hospital on 3 December 1904.