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» What was the uniform of field marshals/generals in the zulu war?
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» Henderson and the NNH at Rorke's Drift
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» The trashing of the Zulu monument to the brave warriors at Isandlawana March 12, 2024 has been blamed on scrap metal scavengers.
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» The Goodwill Zulu Festival: Celebrating the Welsh and KwaZulu Natal Shared Heritage.
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» South Africa 1877-79, 1 clasp, 1877-8-9 (4389 Fr. Sergt. S. Smith. O/2. Bde. R.A.)
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 Tremyneer John . Zulu medal

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Peter W




Posts : 3
Join date : 2012-12-16

Tremyneer John . Zulu medal Empty
PostSubject: Tremyneer John . Zulu medal   Tremyneer John . Zulu medal EmptySun Feb 03, 2013 10:05 pm

I have my G Grandfather's 1879 South Africa medal. He was PO 1 Tremyneer John Pankhurst who was serving on HMS Active. On the medal roll he is just shown as T Pankhurst
he was born Sept 1842 at Minster,  Kent.
He served on several ships between Aug 1870 and May 1885  , Minotaur, Excellent 4 times, President,  and Active. His son James Adolphus Pankhurst. also served on several ships.

Apart from being a PO and having a very good naval record little is known about what he did. It was always the story that he had gone a shore in Africa leading a naval gun crew, but his record only shows him having the medal and no bar.

The naval records seem to be a bit of a mess because he is also shown in one record as being on HMS Terrible and HMS Powerful as well.

The medal has been passed down the family and I have it in a frame, I was surprised at its value and maybe now it should be locked away which would be a shame.
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Tremyneer John . Zulu medal Empty
PostSubject: Re: Tremyneer John . Zulu medal   Tremyneer John . Zulu medal EmptySun Feb 03, 2013 11:54 pm

Peter W,

Welcome to the forum, and thank you for posting the information on your Great Grandfather’s medal.

The medal roll does show that he was entitled to the South Africa Medal, without clasp, so he did not serve ashore with the Naval Brigade. As a Petty Officer 1st Class he would have been very busy on HMS Active, with half of her crew gone.

The 1881 census shows him to be a Naval Pensioner, married with 2 daughters and 3 sons.

Do you happen to have a photograph of you great grandfather that you could post?


Petty Officer Tom

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Peter W




Posts : 3
Join date : 2012-12-16

Tremyneer John . Zulu medal Empty
PostSubject: Re: Tremyneer John . Zulu medal   Tremyneer John . Zulu medal EmptyMon Feb 04, 2013 12:45 am

Shame we do not have any pictures of him` On his joining papers shows him as 5 ' 2" sallow complexion, Ruddy hair, and Hazel eyes. I guess that they did not have kodak Instamatic camera 's in their kit bag.

Although his name was Tremyneer John he quite often used the name john and also thomas. On his continuous service papers It starts off Thomas Pankhurst and signed as J Pankhurst . It could of course be a mistake of the Captain who wrote it all !!!

He also had 3 good conduct badges, we know he got one of those and an extra 1/5d as a gunner, the other were 1879 but no details.

I guess that moving the ship around the Indian ocean with half the crew must have been difficult but the cook would have had an easy time. There does not seem to be anything listed about daily life on board the ship.

His daughter married a soldier instead of a naval man so that stopped a long naval family tradition since then everyone has been in the Army .

Would you know what GL is His medal is inscribed T PANKHURST [i]P.O1 .GL.H.M.S.ACTIVE

They had to wait for the medals as well his was sent to on 7th October 1881. Its a nice medal to have but we are a bit detached from the history of both him and his service. Not like today when we get almost daily details and photo's of our lads in the services.
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PostSubject: Re: Tremyneer John . Zulu medal   Tremyneer John . Zulu medal EmptyMon Feb 04, 2013 1:32 am

Peter W,

“P.O.1st GL” is probably “P.O. 1st CL” which is the abbreviation for Petty Officer 1st Class. September, 1881 was about the time that most of the medals for HMS Active were sent out.


Petty Officer Tom

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Peter W




Posts : 3
Join date : 2012-12-16

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PostSubject: Re: Tremyneer John . Zulu medal   Tremyneer John . Zulu medal EmptyMon Feb 04, 2013 8:30 am

Now that makes sense, thanks very much.
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