Auction: 18002 - Orders, Decorations and Medals
(x) The 7th (The Princess Royal's) Regiment of Dragoon Guards
The Regiment arrived at the Cape in 1843. Within a short period of time it was noted that heavy cavalry was a branch of the army ill-suited for the local terrain; Dragoon trappings were much too cumbersome for the little Cape horses and it was foreseen that the troopers might be employed as mounted infantry armed with rifles from the 60th Regiment. Loading a rifle on horseback was a difficult exercise however, and before the horses had been fully trained, the Regiment was called upon.
At the Battle of Guanga, having just burnt Chief Stock's Kraal to the ground, a raiding column under Somerset containing two squadrons of Dragoon Guards, unexpectedly found a considerable body of the enemy on the march under Chief Seyolo. Over-confident, the natives were in open country and the British commander was quick to seize his opportunity. After artillery had not altogether successfully played upon the enemy, the 7th D.G. led the only cavalry charge of the war. Wielding their heavy sabres the Dragoons scattered the enemy and the carbines of the following Cape Mounted Riflemen completed the task.
South Africa 1834-53 (Lieut. P. Thompson, 7th. Dgn. Gds.), contact marks, edge nicks and polished, nearly very fine
Pearson Scott Thompson was appointed a Cornet in the 7th Dragoon Guards in August 1842 and was advanced to Lieutenant in June 1844. It was in this capacity that he witnessed active service in South Africa against the insurgent Boers in 1845 and in the Second War of 1846-47 (Medal). He was present at the Battle of Guanga, where the 7th D.G. suffered the loss of one officer killed and had 11 wounded, versus a loss to the enemy of some 400 warriors.
He was subsequently appointed a Captain in the 14th Light Dragoons and saw further action in the Indian Mutiny in the Central India Field Force under Sir Hugh Rose, including the siege and capture of Jhansi in 1858. He also commanded the cavalry the capture of the fort of Loharri and was present at the capture of Koonch and in the various skirmishes leading to the capture of Calpee, including the action at Galowlie; commanded the left wing of the 14th Hussars at the action of Morar and the engagements on the heights before Kotakeserai and Gwalior, prior to the capture of the latter fort and city. He subsequently distinguished himself as C.O. of a field detachment for three months in Bundlecund, where he was present in a successful attack against a superior body of rebels at Gorotha. He was thanked by the Governor of Bombay and twice mentioned in despatches, in addition to being given the Brevets of Major and Lieutenant-Colonel (Medal & clasp).
Thompson - who attained the rank of Colonel in the 14th Hussars in January 1867 - commanded the regiment from 1864-1875 and was appointed C.B. (London Gazette 2 June 1869, refers). He attained the rank of Major-General in October 1877 but died at Beverley, Yorkshire in the following year; he is recorded as author of The Story of the Regiment.
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