27 March 2011

Victoria Cross: C. C. Teesdale


Lieutenant, Royal Artillery

Born: 1 June 1833, Grahamstown, Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Died: 1 December 1893, South Bersted, Sussex

Citation: For gallant conduct, in having, while acting as Aide-de-Camp to Major-General Sir William Fenwick Williams, Bart., K.C.B., at Kars, volunteered [on 29 September 1855] to take command of the force engaged in the defence of the most advanced part of the works, — the key of the position — against the attack of the Russian Army; when, by throwing himself into the midst of the enemy, who had penetrated into the above redoubt, he encouraged the garrison to make an attack, so vigorous, as to drive out the Russians therefrom, and prevent its capture; also for having, during the hottest part of the action, when the enemy's fire had driven the Turkish Artillerymen from their guns, rallied the latter, and by his intrepid example induced them to return to their post; and further, after having led the final charge which completed the victory of the day, for having, at the greatest personal risk, saved from the fury of the Turks, a considerable number of the disabled among the enemy, who were lying wounded outside the works, — an action witnessed, and acknowledged gratefully before the Russian Staff, by General Mouravieff.

[London Gazette issue 22043 dated 25 Sep 1857, published 25 Sep 1857.]

Note: Teesdale, the first VC recipient born in South Africa, was awarded the Legion d'honneur and made a Companion of the Order of the Bath in 1856. At the time of his death he was Major-General Sir Christopher Teesdale, VC KCMG CB.
Kars, part of the mediaeval kingdom of Armenia, is now in Turkey.

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