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Queen's South Africa Medal (second striking): CM.1424-2009

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Object information

Current Location: In storage

Maker(s)

Mint: London
Ruler: Victoria (1837-1901)
Artist: Saulles, George W. de
Ruler: Victoria regina et imperatrix (With the title of)

Entities

Categories

Description

During the 1830s and 1840s several Dutch republics had been established outside the British Cape Colony in South Africa, among which were Transvaal and the Orange Free State, all now in modern South Africa. Transvaal was annexed briefly by the British but its independence re-established in the First Boer War.
In the 1880s however the discovery of vast gold reserves in Transvaal brought large numbers of foreign settlers, largely British, across the border, and an attempted coup at the instigation of Cecil Rhodes in 1895. Military escalation followed, negotiations failed and the two Boer republics, convinced that the British intended annexation, declared war in the Cape Colony in October 1899.
The immediate result was the siege of British troops in Ladysmith, Mafeking and Kimberley, while field forces attempting to come to their relief were defeated in several open battles by Boer contingents. Kimberley, the first town to be relieved, could open its gates only in mid-February; Mafeking, famously, had to hold out until May. Other smaller sieges included the investment of the British garrison at Wepener from 9 April 1900 till 25 April when reinforcements arrived who drove off the besiegers.
This medal was awarded to Lt. D. T. Davies of the Kaffir Rifles, who was therefore presumably among the defenders at Wepener. His subsequent operations included suppressing various Boer forces in the Wittenbergen area in July 1900. By now Boer resistance in the field was effectively crushed, but a dogged and bitter guerilla campaign lasted until May 1902 when the last Boer forces finally surrendered.
The period between mid-1900 and mid-1902 therefore saw numerous small actions in the two home and two occupied provinces, service in which was generally recognised by the issue of bars for those provinces. Lt. Davies was awarded those for the Cape Colony and Transvaal. Lester Watson purchased his medal at some point before 1928.

Notes

History note: Gift of L. Hoyt Watson; ex Lester Watson Collection, bt before 1928

Legal notes

Given by Lester Watson through Cambridge in America, 2009

Measurements and weight

Diameter: 36.3 mm
Weight: 47.43 g

Place(s) associated

  • London

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (2009) by Watson, Lester

Dating

Production date: AD 1902

Materials used in production

Silver

Techniques used in production

Struck

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: Bust of Victoria facing left with veil

  • Text: VICTORIA REGINA ET IMPERATRIX
  • Location: Obverse
  • Type: Design

Inscription present: Britannia in foreground facing right holding standard and waving wreath over army marching along shore, with ships offshore in background

  • Location: Reverse
  • Type: Design

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: CM.1424-2009
Primary reference Number: 141518
Watson Catalogue: 336
Ordering: M-0307
Previous object number: LW.0307
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Saturday 22 January 2022 Last processed: Sunday 23 January 2022

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Coins and Medals

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Queen's South Africa Medal (second striking)" Web page available at: https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/141518 Accessed: 2023-02-03 08:11:04

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{{cite web|url=https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/141518 |title=Queen's South Africa Medal (second striking) |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-02-03 08:11:04|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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