Afghanistan - Battle of Maiwand 1880 Bronze Medallion given to those who attended the 2004 opening of the Animals in War Memorial in Hyde Park, London.
According to Wikipedia, Bobbie belonged to Lance-Sergeant Peter Kelly of the 66th Regiment of Foot (the Berkshire Regiment). He was initially stationed at Brock Barracks, and went overseas with the regiment in the late 1870s.
In 1880 the regiment was stationed at the fort in Kandahar, Afghanistan, which had been occupied by the British since January 1879, just after the start of the Second Anglo-Afghan War.
On 3 July 1880, a column of some 2,700 troops under Brigadier George Burrows set out from Kandahar to assist friendly tribesmen in putting down a rebellion by Ayub Khan. Bobbie accompanied the troops. For ten days, Burrows searched for the rebel force. Meanwhile, the friendly tribesmen turned out not to be so friendly, leaving Burrows' force to face an ever-increasing rebel army in countryside where every man's hand was ready to turn against them.
Eventually, the British force was surrounded and attacked by a much larger Afghan force. Along with a line of Indian regiments and cavalry, the 66th Foot made a determined stand while the guns were evacuated, Bobbie barking furiously at the attackers. The British were overrun, over half of the 66th Regiment being wiped out, while the survivors had no option, but to retreat to Kandahar. In the confusion, Bobbie got lost, but the following day, survivors making their way back to the fort spotted him trying to catch up, though he was wounded. He was re-united with his owner, who was also on the wounded list.
Upon arrival back in England, Bobbie was presented to Queen Victoria, along with several soldiers of the regiment, who received Distinguished Conduct Medals. Bobbie was awarded the Afghanistan Medal.
A year later, Bobbie was accidentally run over and killed by a hansom cab in Gosport, Hampshire. He was stuffed and can be seen today at The Rifles Berkshire and Wiltshire Museum in Salisbury. He was loaned to Reading Museum for a World War One exhibition.
As well as the display in the Regimental Museum at Salisbury, Bobbie is featured on this commemorative coin given to those who attended the 2004 opening of the Animals in War Memorial in Hyde Park, London.
Yarwood Unlisted. Diameter 30.4mm. EF. £25.00
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