HMS SHAH South Africa Zulu Wars Medal 1879
Correctly named as follows: “SHAH” J. PITMAN. A. B. HMS.
James Pitman was born in Abbotsbury, Dorset in February 1856. He joined the Royal Navy aboard HMS Achilles as Boy 1st Class in March 1874 and Ordinary Seaman HMS Warrior and Duke of Wellington 1875-6.
Pitman joined HMS August 1876 to Ooctober 1879, thus not only serving in the Zulu Was, including the Battle of Gingindlovu but also took part in the engagement between Shah and the Peruvian Navy iron-clad Turret ship HUASCAR on May 29th 1877.
In company with the corvette Amethyst, Shah engaged the rebel iron-clad in a 3 hour engagement. However, the HUASCAR managed to escape to shallow waters at the close of the day and a subsequent cutting out expedition also failed. Pitman was rated AB in Dec 1877 and stayed with Shah until 31st October 1879.
He would later serve with Duke of Wellington Nov 1879-Jan 1880, Excellent Jan 1880 to Oct 1881, Diamond Oct 1881 to July 1882 and Royal Adelaide July 1882 until invalided on 4th Oct 1882. Service record shows Pitman (sic). Original medal roll and the medal itself Pitman.
It has brooch mounting marks and a seemingly contemporary copy suspension and clasp, hence the low price for this very interesting Naval Zulu Medal.
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