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    Unknown VC Recipient

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    Hi all, I'm doing a bit of research into VC recipients and came across this image, does anyone know who he is and the actions that resulted in the award of the VC, as usual any help much appreciated




    Alex K


    Edited by Alex K
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    This is Henry James Raby, the exact same image is shown in the book, 'The VC and DSO' volume 1, page 9 by Creach and Humphries.

    His medal group as worn above is in the Lord Ashcroft collection as per this link


    Regards Simon

    Edited by coldstream
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    Here is the entry in full from the above book.

    RABY, HENRY JAMES - Commander Royal Navy. Was born 26 September 1827, the son of the late Arthur Turnour Raby Esq of Llanelly, County Carmarthen. He was educated at Sherborne School and entered the Royal Navy in 1842 as a first class volunteer, HMS Monarch. In 1848 he was rated Mate and two years later was commissioned as Lieutenant. In this grade he served for some time in the Wasp on the west coast of Africa and on the outbreak of the war with Russia in 1854 was sent to the Black Sea. There he landed with the Naval Brigade and served in the trenches from 23 October 1854 until 16 September 1855. As second in command of a ladder party on the Redan he performed the act of gallantry which won him the Victoria Cross on its institution and which is thus described in the London Gazette 24 February 1857. 

    'Henry James Raby Commander, John Taylor Captain of the Forecastle, Henry Curtis Boatswains Mate, Royal Navy. On 18 June 1855 immediately after the assault on Sevastopol , a soldier of the 57th Regiment who had been shot through both legs was observed sitting up and calling for assistance. Climbing over the breastwork of the advanced sap, Commander Raby and the two Seamen proceeded upwards of seventy yards across the open space to the salient angle of the Redan and in spite of the heavy fire that was still continuing, succeeded in conveying the wounded Soldier to a place of safety at the imminent risk of their own lives.'

    For his service in the trenches he was, in September 1855, promoted to be Commander and received the ribbon of the Legion D'Honour, the Crimean,  Sardinian and Turkish medals with the clasps for Sebastopol and Inkerman and the Order of the Medijie 5th Class. Commander Raby was the first Officer to be decorated by Queen Victoria at the first presentation when the new decoration was inaugurated in Hyde Park 26 June 1857.

    His next appointment was to the command of the Alecto on the West Coast of Africa in 1859-62 in which time he commanded the boats of the squadron at the capture of Fort Nova when he was wounded and for this and other services in the suppression of the slave trade was repeatedly mentioned in despatches. He received his promotion to the rank of Captain in November 1862 for his services on the West Coast. In 1863 Captain Raby married Judith, daughter of the late Colonel Watkin Forester of Holt Manor, Trowbridge. He next commanded the Adventure on the China Station form 1868 to 1871. In 1877 he retired from the active list and his subsequent step was gained on retirement in 1878. He had in 1875 been made a CB (Military) and was granted a good service pension. Admiral Raby spent his later days in Southsea where he took a great interest in the Royal Seaman and Marines Orphanage, the Royal Sailors Home and in various other philanthropic institutions in the town. He died on the morning of 13 February 1907 at his residence, 8 Clarence Parade, Southsea.

    Hope this helps and best regards Simon

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