The Robin Scott-Smith Collection of Medals to Casualties

Date of Auction: 17th July 2019

Sold for £2,400

Estimate: £2,000 - £2,600

The Scinde, Persia and Indian Mutiny campaign group of three awarded to Private David Alexander, 78th Highlanders, late 22nd Foot, who was severely wounded by a musket bullet in the right arm at the defence of Lucknow

Meeanee Hyderabad 1843 (David Alexander 22nd Regt.) fitted with silver clip and bar suspension; India General Service 1854-95, 1 clasp, Persia (D. Alexander, 78th Highlanders); Indian Mutiny 1857-59, 2 clasps, Defence of Lucknow, Lucknow (D. Alexander, 78th Highlanders) the first with edge bruising and contact marks, nearly very fine, otherwise some light contact marks, good very fine (3) £2,000-£2,600


David Alexander was born at Cannongate, Edinburgh, and enlisted into the 72nd Foot at Glasgow on 10 July 1838, aged 18, a currier by trade. In the course of the following three years he was twice sentenced to solitary confinement, once for 14 days in January 1839, and again for 28 days in July 1839; tried by Court Martial and sentenced to 40 days imprisonment with hard labour in April 1841; and finally tried by Court Martial in May 1841 and sentenced to corporal punishment of 100 lashes, duly carried out. Unsurprisingly he deserted on 15 August 1841, and next turned up in the Bombay Artillery on 12 September 1842. He transferred from the Bombay Artillery to the 22nd Foot by authority of the Brigade Major dated, Bombay, on the same date.

He served with the 22nd Foot during the Scinde campaign of 1843 and was present at the battles of Meeanee and Hyderabad (Medal). He transferred to the 78th Highlanders on 1 December 1845, and served throughout the Persian campaign (Medal), and in the Indian Mutiny at the defence of Lucknow and capture of the city (Medal and two clasps). Although his name does not appear on the published casualty lists his discharge papers clearly state ‘wounded in right arm by musket bullet at Defence of Lucknow.’

He volunteered to the 31st Foot on 1 February 1859, and was finally discharged on 15 August 1861, through disability and age, having served 22 years 70 days in five different regiments. Because of his desertion in 1841 he had 3 years 97 days deducted from his service, thus leaving him a total of 18 years 228 days to be recorded. Sold with copied discharge papers.