Boer War British Artillery Officer's Sword,
Provenance, For Sale
In overall good replated condition, the Boer War British Artillery
Officer's Sword, by descent, of Lieutenant Reginald Wellesley Wilson,
First Northumberland Volunteer Artillery / Elswick Battery.
By repute of the vendor to us, this is the sword of Lieutenant
Reginald Wellesley Wilson, First Northumberland Volunteer Artillery
/ Elswick Battery.
Lieutenant Reginald Wellesley Wilson: First Northumberland Volunteer
Artillery. Reginald Wilson (1875-1957) was an engineer in the Armstrong
Whitworth armaments company, who also served as a Volunteer officer
in South Africa, during the Boer War, as a member of the celebrated
Battery. He was awarded the QSA (bars CC, OFS, Tr, SA 01) and
on his return to England was made a Freeman of the city of Newcastle
on Tyne. He continued to work as a manager and engineer for Armstrong
Whitworth through the Great War. The story of the Elswick
Battery is probably unique in the annals of British military
history. Lieutenant (later Captain) Wilson was one of only six Volunteer
officers in the unit’s complement of 253 who went to South
Africa, only 175 returned to England.
The 32 1/2 inch blade has been re-plated (as has the hilt and scabbard),
so the etching is very feint, only part of the maker' / retailer's
name visible; it appears this was done many years ago as it was
done well (the proof slug has not been plated). The blade has rust
streaks towards the point, which indicates the inside of the scabbard
was damp before it was stored. The hilt is very good. The fishskin
grip has some age (fading) but is good, as are the twisted grip
wire bindings. The plated steel scabbard is in good condition. The
sword sheathes and draws a little loosely.
A good example and with provenance! Just £500. Please quote
item reference number Q20. Further / full sized images upon request.
Box 0348-1.18 (2.320).