I was fortunate to be able to purchase the medal awarded to George Dymond on a popular auction late last year. About 15 years ago I was the underbidder on the last occasion that the medal was offered for sale. As a dedicated collector of medals awarded to the Dukes, I was delighted to be lucky this time round. Fathoming out his genealogy to determine exactly who he was has taken time. Hopefully he will now be remembered.
Single– QSA one bar CC: (1400 Pte. G. Dymond. D. of E. Own V. R.)Extremely Fine.
Private George Dymond was Killed in Action on 7 September 1901. He was shot through the head when a Boer patrol tried to take horses which were being grazed at Bonteheuvel, about six miles from Griquatown. The “F” Company guard drawn under Sergeant T. Riley succeeded in bringing all the horses back.
Orpen records that just 4 members of the Dukes were Killed in Action while serving with the Regiment during the Anglo Boer War with a further 3 members dying of wounds. In addition, a further 10 members of the Regiment were killed while serving with Kitchener’s Horse. All told, some 45 further individuals died of disease while serving during the War.
George Dymond was initially buried at Griquatown (now Griekwastad) but was subsequently reinterred at the West End Cemetery in Kimberley where his name is recorded on an impressive memorial. He is also commemorated on the Cape Town Boer War memorial on the Grand Parade in Cape Town.
At the start of the Second Anglo Boer War the DEOVR were employed guarding the railway between Cape Town and De Aar. In May 1900 the battalion were part of the force under Sir Charles Warren operating north of the Orange River in the Cape Colony. Although it has not yet been determined when George first attested for service and took to the field as a member of “F” Company it is reasonable to deduce that he was one of the first of British troops to cross the Vaal River. Under the command of Captain Gregory, he presumably went out as far as Steyn’s farm and did not remain with the rest of the column when they occupied Douglas on 21 May 1900. Having concentrated at Faber's Put they were attacked by Boer forces on 30 May 1900. The Boer attack failed largely due to the DEOVR's actions in holding the position and then driving back the Boer forces with 2 companies. In 1901, and until the close of the war, the Regiment was chiefly employed in the west of Cape Colony, about Griquatown and Danielskuil where Boer attacks and casualties were both frequent.
George Dymond’s death certificate was signed by Captain W.F. Gregory the Officer Commanding “F” Company DEOVR at Griquatown on 9 September and records that George served as Trooper No 1400 in “F” Company. This certificate simply records his father as “J. Dymond”, his birthplace as “Cape Colony”, his age as “20 years” and his civil occupation as “unknown”. It would seem to be probable that George was born in Worcester, Cape Colony, The Cape Times announcing the birth of a “son to the wife of John Dymond”. His father, John Dymond, was born in Devonshire in 1848 and was married three times. He joined the Woodstock Masonic Lodge in 1894 when his occupation was recorded as an Engine Driver. John Dymond’s first wife seemingly died in England and subsequent to her death he came out to the Cape with his son Henry William who was born in about 1872. George’s mother’s name was Elizabeth Jacoba Combrinck and she died on 17 February 1901 just some 7 months before George was killed. Some 8 years later George’s father married once again when he married Maria Jane Ruthven at Somerset West/Sir Lowry's Pass on 6 July 1909. Maria was a widow and having been born in Mowbray in 1858 was 10 years younger than her husband. She was the daughter of John Ruthven and Esther or Hester Ruthven (born Hare). Her father John was born in Middlesex, England on 17 February 1814. Esther was born in Essex, England in July 1822.
Maria predeceased George’s father and died on 8 July 1924, his own death following 7 years later on 11 June 1931 at the age of 83 years. His death certificate noted his occupation as “Retired Engine Driver” and “Pensioner (S.A.R.)”, the cause of his death as “cardiac failure” and his usual place of residence as “151 Rochester Road in Salt River”.
The following user(s) said Thank You: djb, QSAMIKE, Rory, Moranthorse1
Great result Rob. You r post has led me to ponder on how many medals that others might covet, having missed out on them, are in collections which may not appear in the market for years to come.
There must be many. I recall losing out on an innocuous NGR QSA to a Curry who was Station Master at Van Reenen's at the start of the war. I knew where it went and, after a number of years, approached the owned who was willing to part with it. Why was it important? Because I had the medals to his three brothers, two with QSA's to the NGR and the third, a younger brother, a WWI trio.
I need to learn / remember how to post photographs! I am sorry that I did not include any in my first posting. I thought it was sad that those who put together and constructed the monument were not able to include his initial. I thought that was quite sad. He, like many more who fought on both sides of the conflict, ought and need to be remembered. That is one of the reasons why I submitted my initial posting. Perhaps this was due to his father being so distraught after the early death of his mother just a few months before.
Once again thank you for your fine photos (it is better than the image I managed to find on the Web) and for all the many other images you post on the Forum.