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NAVAL GENERAL SERVICE MEDAL

Price £2,450

NAVAL GENERAL SERVICE MEDAL

NAVAL GENERAL SERVICE MEDAL, 1793-1840, single clasp, Algiers (Poulton Williams, Midshipman.).

A lightly toned and attractive almost extremely fine.

Ex Spink, July 1974. Glendining, October 1907 (29/-) Poulton Williams joined the Royal Navy on the 13th of April, 1812, was Midshipman in 1816 aboard the 74-gun HMS Superb during the battle at Algiers, and the passed his examination on the 21st of October, 1820, to become a Lieutenant. At the culmination of a full career of over 50 years, he was promoted to the rank of Commander on the 1st of July, 1864. Sold with copy service details and roll page. Genealogical research has shown that he retired to half pay at an address at No. 2 Grovelands, Brixton, near Plymouth, with his wife Maria. He appears to have died in 1870.

At Algiers, a combined Anglo-Dutch fleet attacked the heavily fortified city of Algiers on the 27th of August, 1816. In retaliation for a number of attacks and raids on smaller vessels, and in an attempt to free a number of Christian slaves held within the city, the British and Dutch ships arrived and demanded compliance with their conditions. With no answer forthcoming, the first Algerian shot was fired at 3.15pm as the British and Dutch ships approached, and in turn the combined fleet opened fire, attacking the city’s considerable fortifications and batteries. Fire ships were sent into the harbour, and in addition an ordnance sloop carrying 143 barrels of gunpowder was run ashore. Thirty-three Algerian vessels were destroyed, and the city was greatly damaged by fire and cannonade.

The following day, the Dey of Algiers agreed to the British demands, releasing the slaves. During the battle, HMS Superb fired 4,500 round shot and suffered 8 killed and 84 wounded during the bombardment of Algiers. Some 1,362 medals or clasps were issued for Algiers