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VC Search - help needed please

#1
One and All,

Not sure if this the right area, but I have tried everything else.

A long departed relative of mine won the Victoria Cross in 1880.

I am justifiably proud of this and on a seemingly endless search for the VC itself. I would just like to know where it is, I would have to sell my house, wife and children to buy it, so that is out.

I have done a fair bit to date and always end up with the same answer - Not Publicly Held.

For your information, I have undertaken the following:

RA / VC & GC Society / Lord Ashcroft /Sotheby's (last sighting 1912 so everything suggests it is not within the family somewhere) and The VC Society.

Appreciate it is a long shot, but anybody got any ideas of where to go now??

All the best,

Al J.
 

Fang_Farrier

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#2
One and All,

Not sure if this the right area, but I have tried everything else.

A long departed relative of mine won the Victoria Cross in 1880.

I am justifiably proud of this and on a seemingly endless search for the VC itself. I would just like to know where it is, I would have to sell my house, wife and children to buy it, so that is out.

I have done a fair bit to date and always end up with the same answer - Not Publicly Held.

For your information, I have undertaken the following:

RA / VC & GC Society / Lord Ashcroft /Sotheby's (last sighting 1912 so everything suggests it is not within the family somewhere) and The VC Society.

Appreciate it is a long shot, but anybody got any ideas of where to go now??

All the best,

Al J.
Regimental Museum/Association of whoever he was with when he won it may be able to help.
 
#3
No trace since 1912? Then it's probably in private hands or a branch of your family that is either keping quiet about/does'nt know what it is.

Ask your question here British Medals Forum • Information

You have to register but there is a lot of knowledge and experience on the site.

Out of interest, what are your relative's details? Name, service number and unit will help to narrow it down.

Good luck in your search.
 
#4
yup, also it may help to try a post on some collectors websites! Ive got to be honest its a long shot as A VC will be a collectors pride and joy and they may not be willing to let you know they have it. These are extreamly valuable items

I believe all VC citations are recorded in the london gazette so if you havent already that should be a good start for any reasearch you want to do
 
#5
Many thanks FourZeroCharlie, will give that a go.

My relative was Serjeant Patrick Mullane of the Royal Horse Artillery and he won his VC on 27July 1880 during the Battle of Maiwand. I have a wealth of knowledge on PM due to documents passed down through the family and I am as confident as I can be the medal is not with us anywhere without going into reams here.I have a copy of the Auction Ledger of 1912 which adds to that notion. I am in touch with the Royal Artillery and they know as much as I do I think.

As I said initially, I have done a fair bit of research, so if you would like to know more let me know, would be happy to oblige.

I think my one hope is someone in the know happens to read this! The VC has been out there for 98 years, a few more won't make any difference.

All the best,

Al J.
 
#8
Onetap,

I have a copy of a letter to The Daily Telegraph in 1940 written by the son of somebody who was at the 1904 auction. Apparently a Captain Buckingham was selling his medal collection which included my Great Great Great Uncle's VC. PM entered the Auction Room and upon being identified, Capt Buckingham 'handed' the VC back to Patrick Mullane. We then have a 6 year gap before the 1912 Auction.

Intrestingly, I have a handwritten - his own hand - and a typed copy of his life story. Apart from mention of the Action in 1880, there is no helpful reference to the VC, including Sotheby's either 1904 or 1912.

Al J.
 
#11
I have a copy of a letter to The Daily Telegraph in 1940 written by the son of somebody who was at the 1904 auction. Apparently a Captain Buckingham was selling his medal collection which included my Great Great Great Uncle's VC. PM entered the Auction Room and upon being identified, Capt Buckingham 'handed' the VC back to Patrick Mullane. We then have a 6 year gap before the 1912 Auction.
How odd, maybe it had been sold without his knowing; sounds like Capt. Buckingham was a fine chap!
Did PM sell it in 1912?
 
#12
From the London Gazette:

For conspicuous bravery during the action at
Maiwand, on the 27th July, 1880, in endeavouring
to save the life of Driver Pickwell Istead.
This Non-Commissioned Officer, when the battery
to which he belonged, was on the point of retiring,
and the enemy were within ten or fifteen yards,
unhesitatingly ran back about two yards and
picking up Driver-Istead,'placed him on the
limber, where, unfortunately, he died almost
immediately.
Again, during the retreat, Sergeant Mullane volunteered
to procure water for the wounded, and
succeeded in doing so by going into one of the
vil'ages in which so many men lost their lives.

Viewing Page 2553 of Issue 24973
 

sirbhp

LE
Book Reviewer
#15
on the opposite side to this I am looking for a walt from 1880 who pretended to be a VC winner a Capt t Liebrant he posed as such for over a year , I wonder is their a record of people being prosecuted for this ??
 
#16
Onetap,

Don't know is the quick answer. PM died in 1919 and as far as I know was of sound mind etc. Hehad 'taken to drink' as he himself states, so who knows the circumstances of it being sold again.

I have wondered if Capt Buckingham handed it back for a set period only and asked for it back at some point. Might be way off.

From reading his memoirs it is very hard to conclude what occurred between 1904 and 1912 - 8yr gap, not 6!.

As I mentioned, I have a copy of the auction ledger from 1912, so in the new year, when I get time, I will spend a day or two in London and visit both National Archives and Sotheby's. I'm sure I will move forward a bit if I put my mind to it.

Can I just take this opportunity to thank you all for your interest and help.

All the best,

Al J.
 
#17
FourZeroCharlie,

I am still monitoring and I am sure you will be pleased know PM's miniatures are hanging on my wall not 10 feet from where I type this.

I did not buy them from DNW, but from a dealer in London about 5 years ago. I have spent some time previously looking at the photograph on your link, so I am as sure as I can be they are one and the same. All I need now is the full size one!!
 
#18
sirbhp,

Re Liebrant:

There will probably be a record in the National Archives somewhere. I will try and remember to look when I finally get there re PM.
 
#19
Good for you, Al.........though you realise that you'll have to pledge your house and every male first-born (yea, unto 5 generations) to buy it back.

...............that, or beat Lord Ashcroft to the punch.
 

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