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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50809

  • djb
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If you ever wondered where those edge knocks came from:

Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50810

  • djb
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These two are the most be-medalled of the group



On the right is Colonel Clarke, Chief Commissioner of Natal Police.
Dr David Biggins
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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50811

  • Rory
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A splendid addition to an already magnificent site. Hats off to you David

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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50812

  • Rory
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I.must get the old magnifying glass out. There must be quite a few chaps on my collection represented in that photo of the 75 medals

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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50817

  • Frank Kelley
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I think that these men were rather under rated, which does seem very unfair given the amount of dangerous work they were engaged in, on a daily basis, after their Colony was invaded, I like the images shown, particularly the post Anglo Boer War portrait of Inspector Dimmick wearing his magnificent forage cap, just superb.

djb wrote: Strangely enough the site had no page dedicated to the Natal Police. I have rectified that today by splitting the Natal Volunteers, Police and Guides into two pages.

The new Natal Police page can be found here

I have added the QSA (44 pages) and supplementary (42 pages) pages from TNA rolls. These can be downloaded. There is also a list of the NP men who served in the Provisional Transvaal Constabulary (1 page).

New photos have been added, the majority from Holt's history.

I will add the unit orders to the page in due course.

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Medals to the Natal Police 3 years 10 months ago #50819

  • Brett Hendey
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Shown below is a portrait of Colonel W J Clarke OBE, formerly Chief Commissioner of the Natal Police, after his service with the South African Mounted Rifles in World War I. The neck badge he is wearing is the Russian Order of St Stanislaus with Swords, which was awarded for service in Russia in 1919, as was his OBE.

A very fortunate grandson has inherited Clarke's medals, diaries and other memorabilia. The diaries provide a remarkable record of the life of a remarkable man.

He started his career as a merchant seaman, during which he acquired the nickname "Dogwatch" for favouring duty during this period of the day, which was avoided if possible by other seamen. He joined the Natal Mounted Police in 1878 (No. 249), and remained with the NMP throughout its existence, serving in the Zulu War, Basutoland Rebellion, and 1st Boer War. He was with the NMP contingent that provided the escort for Empress Eugenie during her pilgrimage to Zululand to visit the place where her son, the Prince Imperial, had been killed by Zulus. Because Clarke could speak French, he befriended the Empress and later met her during his visits to England. Clarke, by then a Sub-Inspector, published a record of the NMP in 1894, the year in which it was reconstituted as the Natal Police.

Clarke was the first head of the NP's Criminal Investigation Department, and built up an effective CID in spite official indifference to its needs. Clarke saw the value of fingerprinting and initially, because of general scepticism, introduced it at his own expense. The good work done by the CID under Clarke, including proving the success of fingerprinting, raised his status in the NP. He added to his history of the NMP by publishing extracts from his diary in 'The Nongqai', the magazine of the NP. In November 1906 he was appointed Chief Commissioner, a position he held until the NP ceased to exist in 1913. He held the record as the longest serving man in the 40-year history of the NMP/NP.

Brett

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