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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 5 months 2 weeks ago #93917

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There is an excellent article in the February edition of Medal News by DavidH.

It relates the story of Colour Sergeant J Johnson of the Manchesters who was the most senior NCO to lose their life at the Battle of Wagon Hill on 6 January 1900.

It is an amazing story of how David was contacted by the descendants of Colour Sergeant Johnson and this connection resulted in David receiving an archive of photos of letter relating to the recipient. It is these letters to his wife that tell his story in this fascinating and sad article.

Great work, DavidH.
Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 5 months 2 weeks ago #93921

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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 4 months 2 weeks ago #94367

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Picture courtesy of Morton and Eden

QSA (3) Cape Colony, Transvaal, Wittebergen (Capt. A. G. Sharp. Manch: Rgt.);
KSA (2) (Capt. A. G. Sharp. Manch: Rgt.);
1914-15 Star (Major. A. G. Sharp. R. War. R.);
British War and Victory Medals, 1914-1919 (Major A. G. Sharp.);
Memorial Plaque (Alfred Granville Sharp);
Canadian Memorial Cross, GV (Major. A. G. Sharp.);

Group held within a medal-framed and glazed display, medals toned, the first pair very fine, remainder about extremely fine.

Major Alfred Granville Sharp was born at St. John’s, Notting Hill, London, on 26 January 1875, the son of Lieutenant-Colonel William Granville Sharp, late Madras Staff Corps, and Ellen Sharp (née Tomkins). Raised in Kingston-upon-Thames, he received his first commission as a Second Lieutenant with the 3rd Battalion, 63rd (Manchester) Regiment on 15 March 1894, and was promoted to Lieutenant on 7 December 1895. He served with the 2nd Battalion in the Second Anglo-Boer War in South Africa, reaching the rank of Captain, he was later placed on half-pay.

Emigrating to Canada, he and his wife settled in Duncan, British Columbia in 1911 – on Vancouver Island – eventually purchasing a farm in the Quamichan Lake area. Quickly becoming a popular figure in the area, upon the outbreak of hostilities in WWI he returned to England, whereupon he was attached to the 9th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment for service in the Great War. Boarding the H.M.T. Royal Edward on 18 June 1915, the 9th Royal Warwicks under Lieutenant-Colonel C. H .Palmer departed for Gallipoli, landing initially at Alexandria before moving onwards to Mudros (on the island of Lemnos) on 9 July 1915. Arriving at ‘V’ Beach near Cape Helles four days later, they saw action in the trenches nearby, suffering the loss of Lieutenant-Colonel Palmer, their inspirational CO, who was shot by a sniper on 25 July, with other officer casualties following soon after. On 29 July the battalion returned to Mudros, before being landed at ANZAC Cove with their division on 4 August 1915. As part of the attempt to seize the strategic Sari Bair Ridge, the battalion, led initially by Major W. A. Gordon, attacked the highpoint of Koja Chemen (or Hill 971) in full view of the enemy above them (alongside the 6th South Lancs and 6th Gurkhas) and for a time took the position, ‘holding on like grim death’ as recorded by one eye-witness, but fearsome Turkish counterattacks forced them back down its slopes, with one company of the 9th Bn apparently being surrounded and killed en masse. Further attacks and counterattacks followed, with Major Gordon suffering a wound on 8 August, whereupon command devolved onto Major Sharp in turn. Taking command of his battalion for just two days, Major Sharp was killed in action on 10 August 1915, after which the 9th Warwickshires were withdrawn, with the loss of all of its officers. In this disastrous 4-day period the battalion suffered 5 officers killed, 9 wounded and 1 missing, and 57 men killed, 227 wounded and 117 missing. It is worth noting that Majors Gordon and Nevill, who survived their wounds, later received the D.S.O. As reported in newspaper articles in the days that followed, Major Sharp’s widow, Ethel, received, unusually, a personal telegram from the King and Queen, as follows: ‘The King and Queen deeply regret the loss you and the army have sustained in the death of your husband in the service of his country. Their Majesties extend to you their deep sympathy with you in your sorry.’ Given the direct and personal nature of this telegram, it was speculated at the time that he ‘must have distinguished himself, or possibly received some posthumous decoration for gallantry.’ Given that Gordon and Nevill, who survived, received the D.S.O., it seems possible, even plausible, to speculate that he may perhaps have been recommended for the Victoria Cross, although no other evidence exists to support this. It was some years later in fact, in 1920, that the Victoria Cross warrant was amended to explicitly allow for the award of posthumous VC awards for the Great War. Major Sharp is commemorated at the Helles Memorial, Turkey.

Sold for a hammer price of GBP 2,400. Totals: GBP 2,962. R 69,190. AUD 5,550. NZD 5,950. CAD 4,930. USD 3,630. EUR 3,350
Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 2 months 2 weeks ago #95254

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Picture courtesy of Noonan's

IGS 1854 (1) Samana 1891 (2135 Pte. J. Ceasar [sic]. 2nd Bn. Manch. R.);
QSA (3) Cape Colony, Transvaal, Wittebergen (2135 Pte. J. Caesar. Manch: Regt.)

James Caesar was born at Farnham, Surrey, in 1871. He attested for service in 1st Battalion the Manchester Regiment on 15 February 1888, declaring prior service with 3rd Militia Battalion of the Queens (Royal West Surrey) Regiment, and embarked with the 2nd Battalion for India in February 1890, seeing active service on the Samana Ridge and at Gulistan. He returned to the U.K. in January 1896 and was discharged to the Army Reserve, but was recalled to the Colours on the outbreak of the South African War and rejoined the 2nd Battalion, landing at Port Elizabeth on 9 April 1900. Private Caesar returned to the UK in April 1901 and was discharged at Ashton Under Lyne on 15 April 1901. He died at Farnham on 10 August 1920.

SA01 on WO100/198p197
Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 2 months 2 weeks ago #95255

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QSA (5) Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, South Africa 1901, South Africa 1902, unofficial rivets between second and third clasps, and with top retaining rod (1576 Cr: Serjt: W. Tarpey. Manchester Regt.), suspension claw re-pinned with traces of solder repair;
British War and Victory Medals (Q.M. & Capt. W. Tarpey.);
[ Army LS&GC Ed VII ];
Army MSM GV, 3rd issue, coinage head (C. Sjt. W. Tarpey. Manch. R.)

William Tarpey was born at Bilston, Staffordshire, in 1869 and attested for service in the North Staffordshire Regiment, at Lichfield, on 13 July 1886, declaring prior service with 3rd (Militia) Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. He very shortly thereafter transferred to 1st Battalion the Manchester Regiment, serving in Ireland. He was promoted Corporal in July 1892 and to Sergeant in February 1895. In 1896 he was posted to the staff of the 3rd (Militia) Battalion, Manchester Regiment at the depot at Ashton Under Lyne.

He was mobilised for service with 5th (Militia) Battalion which arrived at Cape Town on 10 July 1901, and was ordered to Winburg to take over town defences and to act as railway guards. The battalion returned to the UK in July 1902, and he was posted as Colour Sergeant Instructor to the 5th Volunteer Battalion. He was discharged to pension on 12 July 1907, and was awarded the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal per Army Order 242 of 1907.

On the outbreak of the Great War, Tarpey volunteered for home service and was posted as a Private to the 8th (Ardwick) Territorial Battalion of the Manchester Regiment, despite being 44 years of age. He was swiftly promoted to Musketry Instructor and Regimental Quarter Master Sergeant. He was appointed Honorary Lieutenant and Quarter Master on 3 July 1915 and in 1917 went to France to join the 9th (Ashton Under Lyne) Battalion in the trenches at Havrincourt Wood. In early 1918 he was appointed as the Quarter Master to the whole of the 66th Division, and on 4 July 1918 was promoted Captain.

Following the Great War he resigned his commission and was permitted to retain his rank. He was awarded the MSM per Army Order 122 of 1933 and died at Manchester in 1938.
Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Manchester Regiment 2 months 1 week ago #95323

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QSA (2) Defence of Ladysmith, Belfast (4591 Pte. T. G. Milner. Manchester Regt.);
KSA (2) (4591 Serjt: G. [sic] Milner. Manch: Regt.);
British War and Victory Medals (Q.M. & Lieut. T. G. Milner.);
Defence Medal;
Delhi Durbar 1911, silver (No. 4591 Cr. Sgt. T. G. Milner. Manch. Rgt.) contemporarily engraved in the usual regimental style;
Army MSM GVI, 3rd issue (4591 W.O. Cl. 1 T. G. Milner. Manch. R.);
Army LL&GC GV, 1st issue (4591 C. Sjt: T. G. Milner. Manch: Regt.)

Together with two silver regimental prize medals, the first engraved ‘Laver Hockey Tournament 1908 - Col. Sergt. Milner 1st Manchester Regt’, and the second ‘S.A.F.L. 1904 - Band & Drums Won By Band Sergt, Milner 1st Manchester Regt. Under Singapore Association Football League’

Thomas George Milner was born in Newbridge, Co. Kildare, and attested for the Manchester Regiment aged 15 at Preston in May 1895. He served with the 1st Battalion in South Africa during the Boer War, and was promoted Corporal in November 1900; Sergeant Drummer in April 1906; and Colour Sergeant in February 1908, serving with the Regiment in India from 1904 until 1913.

Milner served during the Great War as Acting Regimental Sergeant Major with the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion, Manchester Regiment. He was commissioned Temporary Lieutenant and Quarter Master in the 16th (Service) Battalion, Manchester Regiment (1st City), on 18 April 1918, and served with them on the Western Front from 24 April 1918. He was demobilised to reside in Devizes, Wiltshire, in September 1921, later moving to Cleethorpes and Grimsby, and served as an air raid warden for Grimsby Corporation during the Second World War.
Dr David Biggins
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