1908 North West Frontier - role of the Royal Warwicks

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1908 North West Frontier - role of the Royal Warwicks

Postby Mark » 03 Jun 2008 21:32

I have a group of medals (including an India General Service Medal 1908 with North West Frontier 1908 clasp) to a soldier who served in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment on the North West Frontier in 1908 - he was later killed in the First World War.

Can anyone tell me what the Royal Warwicks were up to on the North West frontier in 1908?

Thanks in advance!

Mark
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby Half Moon » 16 Aug 2010 03:26

They were involved with the Mohmand Expedition.

I've been trying to dig up info on this campaign for a couple of weeks now and have only hit brick walls. I'd love to give you more info but alas...

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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby QSVC » 04 Oct 2010 23:26

Hello,

I have a similar grouping to a Royal Warwicks man, he was killed in action on the 30th of November 1914. I have some material I located a while ago and will locate it and post here if I can. We've renovated since and I seem to have found a number of 'safe places' at the time to store material that are only occuring to me a year or so later so it may take some time. From memory they were involved in quite an action for the time.

I'll see what I can find.

Robert
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby QSVC » 04 Oct 2010 23:50

Didn't take anywhere near as long as I thought..This is from a Dreweatts catalogue published in 2008, a medal group for auction to Brigadier-General Percy Thuillier Westmorland., C.M.G., D.S.O. And the section which would be of interest...

Awarded for the action near Matta Mughal Khel, April 24th 1908, Whilst the left column under Colonel Unwin was occupying the attention of the right flank of the Mohmand position, General Anderson's right column was going into action near Matta. Here up to 8000 tribesman (mainly from the Baezai clan) had constructed a series of strong sangars stretching for about one and a half miles along a line of low foothills. The right column made up of 1150 infantry drawn from six different corps included 300 men from the 1st Royal Warwickshires under the command of Major Westmorland. They prepared to advance up the slopes to the west. The slopes were covered with flags and sangars of the tribesmen who were clearly present in great strength along a front of one and a half miles. Anderson brought forward all of his infantry in line and prepared to attack. The action began at 7am and lasted until 10.20am. Anderson's orders forbade him from doing anything more than driving the enemy to his right as the dominating feature, he ordered the men of the Warwickshire Regiment under Major Westmorland to seize the knoll and clear it. The general advance had not progressed very far when the tribesmen opened a heavy fire, the Royal Warwicks charged straight on their objective, the small hill, pushing parties up the slopes, then collecting together in an area of dead ground near the crest before rushing the summit with fixed bayonets and taking the hill. Eventually the position was won and the tribesmen fell back into the hills towards the Burjina Pass after having received- and given out- a fair degree of punishment. Reference taken from - Frontier and Overseas Expeditions from India, Volume 1, pages 37,38,39

I hope this is of interest as a component of their experience on the NWF, I apologise for any improprietry, its now been hat long ago that I can't recall any other details or sites.

Robert
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby jonc@adelaide.on.net » 05 Oct 2010 05:05

The Royal Warwicks were involved in 2 operations on the NWF 1908 and each has a supplement to the appropriate volume of Frontier & Overseas Expeditions from India. They are particularly interesting as they were written soon after the event and contain numerous details and sections that the substantive volumes do not - eg named casualties, ammunition expended per unit etc.

The Mohmand operations are covered in Frontier & Overseas Expeditions from India VOL I Supplement A. - Naval & Military Press do a reprint.
The operations against the Afridis are covered in Frontier & Overseas Expeditions from India VOL II Supplement A which I found on the web and downloaded but neglected to record the source. Worth downloading if you can find it, as it gives insight into Frontier fighting just out of the forum's era - separate reports on signalling, on engineering etc.

Cheers

Jon
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby QSVC » 06 Oct 2010 23:28

Hmmmmm, the National Army Museum have it for 14 quid, Naval & Military Press 38 quid. It appears to be the same book.......But I wasn't as fortunate as you, that was all I found.......the reprint for sale. I'd be interested in the signal reports, must pick up a copy..

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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby middlefield » 09 Dec 2010 16:12

I read this post with interest as I collect medals to the Warwicks, and have a keen interest in the 1908 campaign. I have a number of India General Service 1908's in my collection and was fortunate enough to be able to add the one below to my collection recently;

Image

An excellent reference for anyone interested in finding out more about the campaign is the book North West Frontier 1908 by Peter Duckers, it lists all the details of the campaign, casualties, gallantry awards and even ammunition expended. I have the medal roll for the Royal Warwickshire Regiment for this medal which lists at approximately 850 including officers awarded the India General Service 1908.

A good description of the Warwicks activities in the campaign was written in The Antelope in 1908 (regimental magazine):

Following the retirement from 'Green Hill' at Matta on 24 April 1908, the last party had scarcely reached the plain when some thirty of the enemy emerged from a nulla to the left of 'Green Hill'. Lieuts. Waterworrh and Martin went back to the aid of a man who was wounded in the foot, Private Gurney, 'G' Company, and the enemy were pressing hard. Word was called to Major Westmorland 'Lieut. Martin is hit' and things looked serious, he was just about to advance his covering party with fixed bayonets when the enemy, who were now within 20 or 30 yards of Martin, were suddenly seized with panic and bolted. Meanwhile, Lance Corporal Moore and Private Stone had both been wounded in assisting the wounded Officer and man. The whole of this time all the above had been under a hot cross fire. During this critical period and throughout the day Sergts. Mitchell and Milledge had been of the greatest assistance in controlling the fire of the men and showing a splendid example by their coolness, steadiness and courage. Second Lieut. Hume-Spry who had retired a party from 'Green Hill' with Major Westmorland was assisting Private Wincup (wounded in the thigh) a short distance from the foot of the hill, when 9101 Private H. Lloyd 'A' Company came to their assistance. Lloyd gallantly covered their retirement and while they were resting, proceeded to make head cover for them, when he was shot through the chest, the same bullet, so it is supposed, entered Hume-Spry's back, fortunately just clear of the spine. Hume-Spry however, continued the command of the party and those who came to their assistance until all were in safety. Major PT. Westmorland and Lieut. G.F. Waterworth were awarded the D.S.O. whilst Sergt. J. Milledge, Lance-Corporal W. Moore and Privates H. Lloyd and A. Stone received the D.C.M. Lloyd was subsequently discharged as a result of his severe wounds.
Last edited by middlefield on 13 Dec 2010 10:45, edited 1 time in total.
Interested in the history and medals of the 6th Foot and Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby QSVC » 13 Dec 2010 02:19

Thats an interesting addition to the Royal Warwicks story, thanks for posting that. I have a similar grouping to a Mons star man killed in action on the 31st of October 1914, would you have any information where they were that day?

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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby middlefield » 13 Dec 2010 10:43

Hi Robert

Thanks for your response, I'll check on that tonight at home but that sounds to me like the first battle of Ypres from the date, but I will confirm.

Would you mind sending me a pm with the roll number and name? I'm running an extant medal list on the IGS1908 and it would be good to cross another one off!
Interested in the history and medals of the 6th Foot and Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

My blog: http://warwickshireregimentmedals.blogspot.com/
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby Mareseatoats » 05 Apr 2011 21:41

I am also interested in information on the award of the India General Service Medal 1908. My great uncle served with the 1st Bn The Connaught Rangers in India from January 1909 until they left to go to France in WW1 in August 1914, and I am interested in any actions that the unit was involved in during the period from 1909 to August 1914 in India that may have resulted in the award of the IGSM and which clasps they may have been issued to go with that medal, if awarded

Is there anybody who is able to tell me or point me in the direction where I may find the informaiton, the Connaught Rangers Association were unable to help me, they do not appear to have any records back past WW1 of which actions their units were involved in, except those prior to 1900.

I would appreciate any assistance.
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Re: The North West Frontier 1908 and the Royal Warwicks

Postby Mark » 05 Apr 2011 22:58

Mareseatoats wrote:I am also interested in information on the award of the India General Service Medal 1908. My great uncle served with the 1st Bn The Connaught Rangers in India from January 1909 until they left to go to France in WW1 in August 1914, and I am interested in any actions that the unit was involved in during the period from 1909 to August 1914 in India that may have resulted in the award of the IGSM and which clasps they may have been issued to go with that medal, if awarded


Hi Mareseatoats

I am afraid the Connaught Rangers did not qualify as a unit for the India General Service Medal 1908. There were only two clasps to this medal for the period 1908 to the outbreak of the First World War- these were: North West Frontier 1908 and Abor 1911-12. The next clasp was issued for the Third Anglo-Afghan War in 1919.

It is possible that the 'odd' man from the Regiment received the medal if he was on attachment to a unit that qualified for it. However, as a unit they did not receive it.

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