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    Superb historical auction find

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    Dear Forum

    it doesn't happen very often, but we have all done it I am sure. you are at a sale or auction and you come across a must have, something you are magically drawn to and do not want to go home without it. :shame:

    I was so out of my comfort zone not a medal or a badge I had never purchased anything like it before.

    The lot was described as: "A solid silver cigar case with dedication and a tortoise shell victorian purse".


    The inscription blew me away, Superb quality engraving and if a man who was married in 1911 was called Richard St. J. J. Colthurst and he wasn't an army officer in WW1 then I am Horatio Nelson! :D


    The small victorian purse bears an escutcheon engraved C C C, so having established the weight at 115 grammes and a scrap value of £47 I sat down to bid. Having very quickly reached just below scrap value, I put my first bid in over the scrap value and bingo mine!

    Having got my prize home I began my investigations and............... well lets just say I am never going to ignore my gut feelings ever again!

    Richard St.John Jefferyes Colthurst was indeed a Captain in the London Regiment in WW1 he did not serve overseas, however his family history is more than fascinating:

    Sir Richard St. John Jefferyes Colthurst, 8th Baronet of Ardrum suceeded his father in 1951 and became the owner of the family castle which houses the famous "Blarney Stone"!.

    He was born on 19 July 1887. He was the son of Sir George St. John Colthurst, 6th Bt. and Edith Jane Thomasina Morris. He married, firstly, Cecily Charlotte Cholmondeley, daughter of Brig.-Gen. Hugh Cecil Cholmondeley and Mary Stewart Payne-Townshend, on 2 August 1911.He and Cecily Charlotte Cholmondeley were divorced in 1927. He married, secondly, Denys Maida Hanmer West, daughter of Augustus William West and Fanny Madeline Jane Hanmer, on 3 February 1927. He died on 18 February 1955 at age 67.

    He was educated at Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill, London, England. He graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge University, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, with a Master of Arts (M.A.). He gained the rank of Captain in the service of the London Regiment. He held the office of High Sheriff of County Dublin between 1920 and 1921.He succeeded to the title of 8th Baronet Colthurst, of Ardum, co. Cork [i., 1744] on 28 February 1951.

    He is also for good measure a direct descendent of William the Conqueror!

    The small tortoise shell purse monogrammed C C C must have belonged to his first wife Cecily Charlotte Cholmondeley and she was the niece of none other than George Bernard Shaw the Colthurst family regulary spent time with GBS.




    Captain Colthurst on a visit to George Bernard Shaw (the famous author took this photograph).


    An amazing find I am sure you will agree!

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    The purchaser of such a fine wedding gift has now been identified!

    Blarney Boys' National School has stood in its present site for more than a hundred years. In 1898 Sir George Colthurst the 6th Baronet, a wealthy benefactor, donated the site to the then Blarney village school. The school was founded under the patronage of the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne and built originally to accommodate 450 boys and girls from the village. Many changes have occurred since the school's ambitious opening. The school's first Head Master was a Mr. Eugene Cotter, and with two assistant teachers, was responsible for 135 boys and 180 girls.

    It appears the school from which Mr Cotter sent that gift lives on today as "Scoil Chroí Íosa an Bhlárna".


    Many thanks to John Mulcahy for this additional information.

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    • 1 year later...

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