Somewhat off topic - I was watching a programme last week and the medal "expert" commented that some soldiers used to pawn their medals and would erase the name on the medal so that people wouldn't know that they'd come upon hard times.
With regard to J Stanton's medals , I wouldn't be too unhappy if I don't sell them as with having so much time on my hands during "lockdown" I might do enough research to be quite savvy about QSAs.
Your comment about ex-soldiers on hard times erasing their medals before pawning them agrees with what I was told many years ago. Sometimes, given the seismic economic shifts of the last Century and a bit, I wonder how any Victorian/Edwardian medals survived.
Regarding the "minefield" of QSA collecting, the subject is a matter of personal preference. When I started my first QSA collection here in OZ in the 1970's, there was almost zero info. No books, no internet. Any QSA other than those impressed in the thin skeleton caps was regarded as suspect and engraved examples were often regarded as re-named. It was by no means The Garden of Eden for medal collecting. Best sources were the big medal dealers of the day. Then, I found Alec Kaplan to be tops. Today, with books, medal dealers, medal auctions and the WWW there is a mint of information out there. In my opinion, this site is pre-eminent in that regard.
Concerned about "Provenance"? Well, its nice if you can get it - however the medal represents a segment of a man's life and times probably unlike anything else he saw. Sometimes, surprises crop up. "Condition"? A matter of preference. I really don't mind. Judging by posts on this site, others feel similarly. "Naming"? Certain styles are documented and shown on this site. Not too hard these days. "Clasps"? Occasionally a glitch. However often a chap only entitled to a Cape Colony clasp on his QSA saw more action than a member of the Kimberley Town Guard!
The "lockdown" is certainly a good research opportunity. Anyway, whatever collecting field you pursue, good luck to you. Keep batting on.
The following user(s) said Thank You: djb, Scooby-Doo