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Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

The Boer War

1899 1902

To the men & women of Carlow County who fought in this war!

1899 1902 - South Africa

Queen's South Africa Medal
This medal was awarded to all who served in South Africa between 11 October 1899 and 31 May 1902 during the Boer War.

Carlovians who served in the Boer War

Queen's South Africa Medal with 4 Bars.
Obverse of Queen's South Africa Medal

Private Thomas Bolton

This medal was awarded to Private Thomas Bolton, 1st Bn. Grenadier Guards (correctly named: 7152. Pte. T. Bolton. Gren. Gds). He was born in Carlow, Ireland and enlisted in Dublin, 1897. His address is given as 3 St. Columbas Road, Drumcondra, Dublin. Discharged 19/08/1902 after being found medically unfit for further service.

Some additional information from having a closer look at the service papers:

Born: Tullow in County Carlow, Ireland. Occupation on enlistment: fireman. Enlisted into the 2nd Battalion Grenadier Guards and served with them in the Boer War before being transferred to the 1st Battalion (invalided). Pte. Bolton does not appear to have been entitled to the King's South Africa Medal or any other award.

Service History: Home - from 15/12/1897 to 12/07/1898; Gibraltar - 13/07/1898 to 03/10/1899; Home - 04/10/1899 to 17/03/1900; South Africa - 18/03/1900 to 03/03/1901; Home - 04/03/1901 to 19/08/1902.

Images are of the original Queens South Africa Medal for the Boer War with 4 clasps (Cape Colony, Wittebergen, Driefontein & Diamond Hill) awarded to Pte. Bolton.

Please note that the service history does not confirm the entitlement to the Battle Bars 'Driefontein' and 'Diamond Hill'. Both bars appear genuine in every way and so I have no reason to doubt they were part of Pte. Bolton's entitlement. The bars are most likely not mentioned in the service papers because they were issued after Pte. Bolton had been invalided out of the army (I have found this to be the case with other Boer War medals). My sincere apologies for not pointing this out earlier but I hadn't noticed it before. I don't think this should affect the medal's authenticity although I thought it only fair that I should mention it. Source: Seller talking to Buyer on eBay c2007

Arthur William Pack-Beresford

PACK-BERESFORD - Major Arthur William - Royal Artillery Died of enteric at Bloemfontein. 5th March 1902. Aged 33. Second son of Denis W. Pack-Beresford, of Fenagh House, Bagnalstown. Joined Royal Artillery Feb. 1887. Went to South Africa as a Special Service Officer and served with the South African Light Horse and then commanded Robert's Horse. Severely wounded at Sanna's Post 31 March 1900. Afterwards served with the South African Constabulary.

Submitted by M Purcell

Robert Clayton Browne-Clayton (1870-1939) Brigadier-General DSO. GOC Infantry Brigade Wellington College Militia South Irish Horse.

Robert Clayton Browne-Clayton was the son of William Clayton Browne-Clayton, of Browne's Hill, Co. Carlow. He was commissioned in the 5th (Royal Irish) Lancers from the Militia on 24 December 1890. Browne-Clayton was Adjutant of his regiment during the South African War (1899-1902), during which he was three times mentioned in despatches, but on 22 May 1909 he retired from the army in the rank of major. He was 39. His retirement did not completely curtail his military activity, however. He remained as an officer in the Special Reserve, serving with the South Irish Horse.

Submitted by M Purcell

Edward Walker

He fought in the Boer War hence his nickname "Dutch" Walker. He was born in 1881 and grew up in Bridwell Lane and died at his home on Pollerton Road in December 1960. He was the father of Tom "Drakes" Walker. There was also a "Smuts" Deegan and "Buller" Moore. Buller's grand son Tim lives on Pollerton Road, I think Mr. Deegan lived in St Mary's Park or Patrick's Avenue.

Submitted by P Walker c2007.

Billy Bunbury 2nd Lieutenant  (1878 - 1900)

2nd Lieutenant the Hon. William McClintock Bunbury was born at Lisnavagh in 1878, the eldest son of Thomas Kane (Tom) McClintock Bunbury, 2nd Baron Rathdonnell, and his wife, Lady Katherine Anne (Kitty) Rathdonnell. Billy was educated at the Dragon School in Oxford and Eton College where, like his father before him, he captained the rowing team. He joined the Scots Greys shortly after leaving school and was with that regiment when it was posted to South Africa to deal with the escalating tensions between the British army and the Boers of the Transvaal and Orange Free States.

Read Billy's Boer War Letters - 9th December 1899 - 12th February 1900

Submitted by M Purcell & Turtle Bunbury

6569 Private Edward Nolan (click this link to read Edward Nolan's account).

Joe Green after the battle of Colenso

Paddy Scully of Pollerton

Jim Bradey

George Murphy of Closh

Sir Richard Pierce Butler

Sir Richard Pierce Butler, 11th Bt. was born on 28 September 1872. He was the son of Sir Thomas Pierce Butler, 10th Bt. and Hester Elizabeth Bellingham. He married Alice Dudley Leigh, daughter of Very Rev. Hon. James Wentworth Leigh and Frances Butler, on 2 June 1906. He died on 25 March 1955 at age 82. Sir Richard Pierce Butler, 11th Bt. was educated at Harrow School, Harrow on the Hill, London, England. He was educated at Downton Agricultural College. He held the office of Deputy Lieutenant (D.L.) of County Carlow. He gained the rank of Captain in the service of the 8th Battalion, King's Royal Rifle Corps.  He fought in the Boer War. He held the office of High Sheriff of County Carlow in 1905. He succeeded to the title of 11th Baronet Butler, of  Cloughgrenan, Co. Carlow [I., 1628] on 8 March 1909. He fought in the First World War in 1914, where he was mentioned in despatches twice. He gained the rank of Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel in the service of the Remount Service.  He gained the rank of Honorary Major in the service of the 8th Battalion, King's Royal Rifle Corps. He was invested as a Officer, Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) in 1919. "D" company of the 2nd Battalion. Royal Dublin Fusiliers.


Trooper E.R. Eustace

Surname 1st name / initials Regimental No. Rank Attestation date Discharge date Next of kin Remarks
Eustace E R 260C Trooper 20/10/1899 13/11/1900 Mr J Eustace Tallow, Co Carlow, Ireland Dis, Time Expired

This information was taken from the nominal roll of the Bethune's Mounted Infantry, a colonial unit of the Boer War of 1899-1902. The index was compiled from WO 127 at the National Archives, Kew by Ted Beard.

Bethune's Mounted Infantry

  Portrait of Lt Col  E. C. Bethune
Lt-Col E. C. Bethune, commanding 
Bethune's Mounted Infantry. Bethune
was an unusual cavalryman having lost
his right hand earlier in pre-war India.
(From Robinson's Celebrities of the Army, 1900).
An irregular British South African Unit. Victorians, unable to enlist in any of the official
Victorian Contingents, rushed to South Africa to join any unit they could find. There were
many. Bethune's was one such unit. It included Irish, Americans, Scandinavians and Australians.

Source: Defending Victoria website

William Rice

Served in the Boer War. He was from Carlow. It is said that he took part in a ? military propaganda film during the Boer war where he "wore a bandage and used crutches to limp across a field. Part of the "fee" for doing this was a "slap up meal".


John Moran

John Moran

Notes on John Moran:

This picture was taken in Ludgate Hill, London EC., in uniform of the 3 Dragoon Guards. 

He served in the British Army during the second Boer War which was during 1899-1902 in the 3 Dragoon Guards, and was stationed at Canterbury, Kent in England around about the 1880's  After completing his service in the army he returned to Carlow where he married twice. His second wife (name unknown) died as she stepped outside the back door of their house in Sleaty.

Source: M. Brennan (John Moran was my Grandmothers uncle)

Sabina Farley - Nurse - Princess Christian Army.

I have a female ancestor who indirectly is connected with Carlow and the Boer War. My g-grandmother Jane Lemon was born in Carlow, the daughter of John Lemon (jeweller) and Elizabeth Adams. She in turn married a Charles Thomas Farley (photographer) in Carlow and they moved to Drogheda. One of their children, a daughter Sabina born June 26th 1871 grew up became a nurse (being influenced by Florence Nightingale) and joined the Princess Christian Army Nursing Reserve #358 and on June 2nd 1900 was one of 14 nurses sent to the Princess Christian Army Hospital at Pinetown, Natal, SE Africa After the war she was awarded the Silver Badge of Courage and the South African Medal. She continued in military Nursing and was sent to Flanders at a front lines hospital in WW1 and was ultimately gassed by Phosgene Gas. She was sent to Adelaide Hospital in Dublin to recuperate. On Oct. 24, 1917 she was awarded the Red Cross for Valor by King George V at Buckingham Palace. She was appointed as Matron of the Army Hospital at Fermoy but she never recovered fully from the gassing and died there on January 1918 and was given a full military Funeral. She is buried at Mt. Jerome Cemetery in Dublin. I know she doesn't qualify as a "Carlow" Boer War participant but I thought her story might be of interest anyway. I am attaching two pictures of her. One in the infirmary with some of the patients and the other a group picture of her and a group of soldiers and officers she worked with.

Thanks for all you do in preserving info for us on the internet

Michelle Wilson Vermont USA

William Albert Vickerman

Orange River Scouts

William Albert Vickerman
Reg. no. 169 (42102)
Religion: R C, Age: 20, Nationality: Irish, Trade: None
Previous service: P W L H 6 m Len H for 3 months
Height: 5 ft 4, Weight: 140 lbs, Chest: 34
Complexion: Medium, Eyes: Grey, Hair: Brown, Scar on left f arm
Enlisted: 10 Apr 1902 Green Point
Born: Carlow Ireland 3 Aug 1883
Father: Mr WA Vickerman, Classenbosh, Constantia, Cape Town
Rank: Trooper
Discharged on disbandment of regiment 30 Jun 1902 after 2 mths 21 days
Character: Good
Address after discharge: As above.

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