Jump to content
Gentleman's Military Interest Club
tygrynio71

how to obtain info on the waterloo medal

Recommended Posts

Hi all, Im very new here

I came across a Waterloo medals and one of them has this on the rim **Serg Major. W. Fielding. 95 foot

I was googling a little and the only similar person that comes out is Colonel Lieutenant William Fielding.

is there any archive where I can get some information about this person?

any help appreciated

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tygrynio17

Welcome to the GMIC!  This topic has come up before on this forum, so here is a link to some answers:

 

As you can see in the linked discussion, Paul Wood, one of our senior members, obviously has access to details of recipeints of the medal, so he may well pipe up here as well.

There was a bit of a scandal several decades ago when it was discovered that somebody in the UK was re-naming Crimea medals so that they appeared to have been awarded to Light Brigade 'Chargers' but I'm not aware that the Waterloo medal is being tampered with, as I think while expensive they are still not too had to find on the market. However, someon like Paul or a number of our other members can likely speak to that.

It is possible that a Sgt Major might be commissioned and rise to the rank of Colonel, but less likely during the period in question, as he would likely have been in for many years toi get to SM rank and would then have to 'start over' as a Lieutnenant and work his way up the commissioned rnks, so my guees is tat these are two different peopl, but it's only a guess.

Peter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I cannot find any Fielding on the roll who served with the 95th foot at Waterloo. Is it possible to see an image of the naming on the medal.

Not being on the roll does not necessarily condemn it. I have seen two Waterloo medals not on the roll which were genuine and with subsequent research were confirmed.

However there are also many renamed medals (usually contemporary), the reason is that wearing a Waterloo medal gave one great kudos and several free pints in the local hostelry and so many pretended to be veterans. I will do more research but I am not over confident in finding anything.

Paul

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi everyone, thank you kindly for reply

I had an opportunity to purchase these medals but wanted to make research first making sure they are real. My husband collects medals (mostly Irish) but now and again he gets some English too. 

here are some photos.

Can't post any more, any idea how can I upload more photos of the second medal?

 

DSCN5927.JPG

DSCN5928.JPG

DSCN5929.JPG

DSCN5924.JPG

Edited by tygrynio71

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is a Military General Service Medal not a Waterloo , If the clasp on the medal says Barossa. then it is correct, however on the roll he entitled to it as a private soldier. The W. Fielding 95th Foot is as issued but the rank Sgt Major has been engraved subsequently. What you need to realise is that the Military General Service was not issued until 1848, 37 years after the battle in question to all surviving men who had served but with the rank the held at the time of the campaign. Now it is likely that Fielding served for many years after Barossa and ended up with the rank of Sgt Major before retirement. When he received his medal it is quite likely that he thought the should have his correct final rank on his medal and took it to the local jeweller to do so, it most certainly appears to be absolutely contemporary with the issue of the medal. While to some people this be a negative thing and it certainly will have some affect on the value (in my opinion unjustifiably) but they don't realise that these medals were not issued for the benefit of collectors but were rather worn with pride by the recipient who most likely was around 60 years old and felt extremely proud that he had attained the distinguished rank of Sergeant Major during his career.

I think it is a nice medal.

Paul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Skimmed and privately engraved, with later straight bar suspension ( originally issued with a ring suspension many Waterloos were altered in the 1840's to fit in with other subsequently awarded medals) , the MGS roll does not mention anything about him being present at Waterloo. Many of his contemporaries in the regiment took part in Waterloo and I suspect when he got his MGS he thought it might be a good thing to find a Waterloo medal to go with it, so, that as he saw it, not to look out of place. I am almost certain that it was worn by Fielding and adds a bit of fun to it but as a renamed Waterloo it is only worth about £400 at most, however I do think the medals should be kept together as I am sure they were both worn by Fielding from 1848. Thank you for your most interesting enquiry.

Paul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anita were it to appear in auction I would estimate the pair at £1,000 or so. Interestingly the MGS is listed as appearing in a London auction in December 1905. I wouldn't recommend paying much more that £1,200 for the pair but it  has its interest.

Paul

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Paul - Eric here, Anita's husband

I really appreciate the help on this matter, I nearly forked out 3000 Euros for this set. and it was very kind of you to help us out.

All the best

Anita and Eric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anita and Eric, had  the Waterloo been 100% then the price for the pair would have been not too bad but....

Paul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Paul is indeed a gent, his erudition matched by his helpfulness!

The modern notion that no soldier wears/wore medals to which he was not entitled is just that, a modern notion, made even more prevalent in the 'Google age', in which instant verification is a possibility.  Old soldiers with long and honourable service 'improving' their medal issue was not uncommon, I don't think 'back in the day', as the kids say.  Fielding, for example, may have served through the Waterloo campaign and been detached from his unit - sick, on an 'errand' or some such when the medal was issued and felt he really was entitled.  

Or, he may have wanted the benefits Paul outlined or felt that it reflected badly on him that a man of his rank had NOT qualified.  Not at all in the same category as the total 'Wallies' - fakers - about whom the Americands get so exercised that they actually have a 'Stolne Valor Act' making it a crime to benefit from wearing medlas one hasn't earned, so even the free pint becomes a crime.  

Either way, as i say, i suspect that this kind of thing was not rare and would be relcutant to pass judgemtn on the SM but am glad you didn't fork out that large sum for the 'pair'! :)

Peter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×