medal code j2298

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SCARCE SOUTH AFRICA 1879 TO THE NATAL MOUNTED POLICE

SOUTH AFRICA 1877-9, NO CLASP ‘TR. W CHARLESWORTH. NATAL MD. POLICE’

Walter Charlesworth enlisted (no 128), along with his brother Thomas (no 125) as a troopers in the Natal Mounted Police on 17th August 1876. Walter served in the Zulu War of 1879; service in Natal (no clasp).

1899 Walter Charlesworth a Road Overseer at Dundee tried at Ladysmith for supplying liquor to a native girl. Died 25th of July 1905 aged 50 yrs. See period picture of Walter in uniform with his horse.

Walter’s brother Thomas also served in the Zulu War (no clasp medal) but died on 6th February 1884 while serving as a Mounted Constable. He drowned while swimming with his horse over the flooded Peters Creek, south of Darwin in the Northern Territory, Australia. He was trying to locate an overdue coach which was carrying a large consignment of gold. His body was later recovered by a police search party and buried near where he was found.

The Natal Mounted Police represented the only permanent force in Natal. Initially this force had very little support from the Colonial authorities, the Commanding Officer (Major, later Major General Sir John Dartnell), having a difficult time trying to obtain arms and equipment. In 1894 the title was changed to the Natal Police. When Shepstone annexed the Transvaal in 1877, Sub-Inspector Phillips, with 25 NMP, formed the sole escort. 26 men of the Natal Mounted Police were killed at Isandlwana. Later in the War, part if the unit took part in the hunt for Cetshwayo and part joined Baker Russell’s Column in pacifying North Western Zululand in August/September 1879. Post Zulu War the Natal Mounted Police took part in both the Basutoland and 1st Boer Wars.

89 no clasp medals to the Natal Mounted Police, 7 of which were returned unissued.

Condition NEF, nice dark patina. A very desirable unit.

Code J2298         Price £