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P.F.

Acquiring a relative’s medal- is it possible?

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Dear Gentlemen,

I recently went searching for a distant relative (Great-great-great uncle!!) who was in the British Army in the mid 1800s. I made contact with a researcher who sent me copies of my relative's service records. There are some amazing records out there, I must say!

The records state that he was a recipient of the 5 Good Conduct Badges as well as a "Silver Medal for Long Service & Good Conduct".

My query is this- is it possible to acquire a copy of my relative's Long Service Medal from the Government? I believe this is possible with American service personnel so it got me thinking. It's just something I wanted advice on before I go and buy a reproduction myself. I would like to make a display.

Many thanks,

Pierce

 

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Pierce

Sadly, no.  I know that HM government issues replacements to serving members of the Forces and to the surviving family of those killed or died on service.   I think they may also issue replacements to survivng vets in extraordinary circumstances, but certainly not in the case of service that long ago.  

Your only recourse is to assemble a set of specimens representing the medals your ancestor earned, which can be either exciting or frustrating, depending on your personality and whether you'll accept copies, name erased samples, named medals to others and so on.  Good luck, whatever you decide to do!

Peter

 

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Dear Peter,

Many thanks for your detailed reply. It is as I had thought but I am glad to have confirmation.

Best wishes
Pierce

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Gentlemen,

I know what the Silver Medal for Long Service & Good Conduct looks like but I am not sure what the 5 Good Conduct Badges are- perhaps some sort of sleeve insignia?

I would be grateful if a member could post an example of the Good Conduct Badge from this period 1850-1874.

With thanks
Pierce

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Pierce

The so called 'good conduct badge' was a chevron, worn point up on the lower sleeve and earned for a certain number of years' service without any charges against one's conduct [drunkennes, AWOl, etc].  In Victorian times each extar badge brought a penny a day increase in pay - to a base pay of something like 18 pence, i think, so not an inconsiderable incentive.  Here are the periods required to earn them in various decades, as quoted on the Victorian wars Forum:

he 1836 and 1854 rules awarded badges at 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 years of service. 
The 1860 rules awarded badges at 3, 8, 13, 18, 23, 28, 33, and 38 years of service.
The 1870 rules awarded badges at 2, 6, 12, 18, 23, and 28 years of service. 
The 1876 rules awarded badges at 2, 5, 12, 16, 18, 21, and 26 years of service. 
The 1885 rules awarded badges at 2, 6, 12, 18, 23, and 28 years of service.

Hope that helps.

Peter

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Peter,

Thank you for these most helpful replies.

My ancestor served between 1850 and 1874 as a Gunner, so I am assuming he got the majority of his Good Conduct Badges by years of service under the 1860 regulations.

Best regards
Pierce

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That sounds right.  So, he's have worn dark blue with, I think, gold [yellow] GC stripes.  Emphasis on 'think', as I haven't checked.  By 1874 the Gunners would have been in khaki like everyone else and the stripes would be khaki or white, as I recall. 

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Peter,

You are a wealth of information- thank you.

Do you have photos of the sort of blue uniform this man may have worn?

Many thanks
Pierce

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Maybe email the individual company that does the replacement medals/orders for the replacement medals and see if they can issue a replacement?

I'd start there then work my way on to the used market, you never know, you may get lucky and have someone actually do the order.

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Peter- thank you once more for your input. :)

Rogi- I never thought of that, thank you for the advice. :)

Apart from discharge papers (which thankfully are quite detailed), would there be any other documentation in the British Archives that could relate to this man or give new information? For example, I do not have a date of birth or date of death.

Best regards
Pierce

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Peter- thank you once more for your input. :)

Rogi- I never thought of that, thank you for the advice. :)

Apart from discharge papers (which thankfully are quite detailed), would there be any other documentation in the British Archives that could relate to this man or give new information? For example, I do not have a date of birth or date of death.

Best regards
Pierce

No problem :) do you know any other information, possibly a service number (if they existed back then) British Military items aren't my forte but if your relative was awarded with a bravery medal it should probably be in the lists somewhere.

As for Long Service Good Conduct medals, I'm unsure and would definatley wait for someone with more knowledge on the matter :)

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