Police Awards From the Collection of John Tamplin

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Date of Auction: 2nd April 2003

Sold for £1,300

Estimate: £1,200 - £1,500

A rare K.P.M. and Bar awarded to Inspector J. H. Harvey Clark, Jamaica Constabulary, later Tanganyika Police

King’s Police Medal, G.V.R., 2nd issue, with Second Award Bar, laurel type (James H. Harvey-Clark, Inspr. of Police 3rd Cl., Jamaica) in case of issue, good very fine £1200-1500


K.P.M. (For Distinguished Service) London Gazette 1 January 1936. Full details of the events which led to this award are contained in files at the Public Record Office. The occasion was a riot at Falmouth in Jamaica on 20-21 May 1935, in the course of which one rioter was shot dead, and in which several policemen were injured by missiles, including Clark

Bar to K.P.M. (For Gallantry) London Gazette 1 February 1937: ‘James Herbert Harvey Clark, Inspector of Police, Jamaica.’ The Colonial Office recommendation states: ‘For courage in arresting an armed murderer. The murderer took refuge in a cave and fired on everyone who approached. Inspector Harvey Clark arranged for all entrances to the cave but one to be blocked, and then crawled into the cave through the remaining entrance and called upon the murderer to surrender. The murderer attempted to fire at him but fortunately his revolver misfired. Inspector Clark argued with him for about three-quarters of an hour and eventually persuaded him to surrender.’

The Bar, one of only 54 ever awarded, was presented to Clark by His Excellency the Governor, Sir Edward Denham, G.C.M.G., K.B.E., on 12 April 1937. Two months later he was awarded the 1937 Coronation Medal.

James Herbert Harvey Clark was born in Kingston, Jamaica, on 19 January 1905, son of George Harvey Clark, a Resident Magistrate and second generation Jamaican. Clark was educated at Munro College in Jamaica, and at Bedford School in England. He joined the Jamaica Constabulary as a Sub-Inspector on 1 October 1925, being promoted to Inspector 3rd Class in June 1930, and an Inspector 2nd Class in April 1938. In 1943 he was appointed an Inspector 1st Class. Clark was appointed an A.D.C. to H.R.H. the Duke of Gloucester during the latter’s visit to Jamaica in March 1935. He was in charge in West Jamaica during the riots in May 1938.

Leaving Jamaica, Clark was Superintendent of Police in Charge at British Honduras from 1944 to 1950. On 9 February 1950 he was appointed Senior Superintendent in Tanganyika, where he served for some three years. He arrived in the Colony on 5 March 1950, and was stationed at Tanga. In October 1951 he was transferred as Assistant Commissioner of Police, from Tanga to Mwanza, and left Tanganyika on leave on 10 July 1952 pending his retirement. Sold with extensive research including full details of both awards.