A Collection of Awards for the Boer War formed by Doug Jenkins

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Date of Auction: 27th September 2017

Sold for £2,800

Estimate: £3,000 - £4,000

A good Boer War D.C.M. group of seven awarded to Quarter Master Sergeant, later Captain, J. Horswell, Devonshire Regiment, who was awarded the D.C.M. for gallantry at Elandslaagte, 21 October 1899, and was later Mentioned in Sir Redvers Buller’s Despatch for Ladysmith

Distinguished Conduct Medal, V.R. (1977 C.Sgt. J. Horswell. 1st. Devon: Regt.); India General Service 1895-1902, 2 clasps, Punjab Frontier 1897-98, Tirah 1897-98 (1977 Color Sergt.J. Horswell, 1st. Bn. Devon: Regt.); Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902, 3 clasps, Elandslaagte, Defence of Ladysmith, Belfast (1977 C.Sgt. J. Horswell, Devon: Regt.); King’s South Africa 1901-02, 2 clasps (1977 Qr:- Mr:- Serjt: J. Horswell. Devon: Regt.); Defence Medal; Army L.S. & G.C., E.VII.R. (1977 Q.M. Sjt. J. Horswell. Devon Regt.); Meritorious Service Medal, G.VI.R., 1st issue (Q.M. Sjt. J. Horswell. D.C.M. Devon. R.) contact marks and edge bruising, nearly very fine and better (7) £3000-4000


D.C.M. London Gazette 19 April 1901

John Horswell was born in Plymouth, Devonshire on 26 August 1864 and attested there for the Devonshire Regiment on 3 February 1888, having previously served in the 2nd (Volunteer) Battalion. Promoted Corporal on 29 October 1890, he served with the 1st Battalion in Egypt, January 1891 until December 1892, and in India, December 1892 to September 1899, taking part in the operations in the Khanga and Chillas Valley in 1893, and with the Tirah Expeditionary Force on the North-West Frontier in 1897-98, and was promoted Sergeant on 15 April 1893 and Colour Sergeant on 2 January 1894.

Arriving in South Africa with his Regiment on 21 September 1899, he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his gallantry at the battle of Elandslaagte, 21 October 1899, and subsequently took part in the Relief of Ladysmith, being Mentioned in General Sir Redvers Buller’s Despatch after the Relief (London Gazette 8 February 1901). Promoted Quartermaster Sergeant on 20 September 1902, he was posted as Quartermaster Sergeant of the 4th Battalion on 31 March 1904, and then, in the same role, to the 3rd Battalion on 28 July 1908. He was discharged on 2 February 1909, after 21 year’s service.

Horswell was appointed Quartermaster of the 7th (Cyclist) Battalion, Devonshire Regiment, and was Commissioned Lieutenant on 21 March 1914. He served with them at home throughout the Great War and retired in 1920, having reached the upper age limit, and retained the rank of Captain. He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, together with an annuity of £10, on 8 September 1938, and died in 1942.

Sold with a magnificent photograph album, with photographs from the recipient’s service in India, the recipient’s Soldiers Record of Service Book, bound in cloth covers, with enclosed Mounted Infantry Certificate; Parchment Certificate of Discharge; the recipient’s Certificate of Education and Certificate of Musketry; Commission Document appointing the recipient a Quartermaster in the Territorial Force, dated 21 March 1914; two War Office letters regarding the award of the M.S.M.; portrait photograph of the recipient; and various copied research.