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18 September 2014
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A Soldier's Tale


Click on the objects pictured below to piece together the military career of Frederick Henry Johnson Hall. Choose between his five medals, watch, soldier's service book, ration tin and cemetery report, to find out what they can tell you about him.

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Image of Frederick Henry Johnson Hall
Image of Frederick Henry Johnson Hall Image of Frederick Hall's Queen's South Africa Medal 1899-1902 Image of Frederick Hall's King's South Africa Medal 1901-1902 Image of Frederick Hall's 1914-15 Star Image of British War Medal 1914-20Image of Frederick Hall's Victory Medal 1914-18
Image of Frederick Hall's watch Image of Frederick Hall's service book
Image of Frederick Hall's ration tin Image of Frederick Hall's cemetery certificate
Obverse of King's South Africa Medal

Reverse of King's South Africa Medal

King's South Africa Medal 1901-1902

Obverse: head of Edward VII with legend 'EDWARDUS VII REX IMPERATOR' ('Edward VII King Emperor')
Reverse: these are the same as the Queen’s medal: the figure of Britannia with a flag in her left hand extending a laurel wreath towards advancing soldiers. In the background is the sea with two warships; above are the words 'SOUTH AFRICA'.

Personal details engraved on the rim
Fred’s medal is named as follows: '90018 Dvr F HALL M Batty RHA'. This is his unique regimental number and his rank of Driver. Notice that the naming differs slightly from the Queen’s Medal in that it includes 'M Batty' his 'battery' (a concentration of gun artillery): this is a useful piece of information as the location of 'M Battery' at particular times during the campaign can be ascertained.

The clasps
Only two clasps were issued for this medal: South Africa 1901 and South Africa 1902. The medal was never issued alone (that is without the Queen’s medal).

The ribbon
The ribbon is 32mm wide, and described as green, white and yellow in equal widths. (Incidentally, the ribbon on FH’s medal is the wrong way round - the green should be on the left. Soldiers received the medals, clasps and ribbons separately, and often attached them together incorrectly.)

Who received it?
Struck in silver, it was awarded to all those who were serving in South Africa on or after 1 January 1902, and provided they had completed 18 months war service on that date or by 1st June 1902. The medal is named on the rim in the same style as the Queen’s Medal. Very few King’s Medals were awarded to the Royal Navy, as by the middle of 1901, most of the sailors who served in the Naval Brigades had returned to their ships.

More about researching medals and badges.

 





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