James has a slice of Bri­tish mil­i­tary mem­o­ra­bilia with a re­mark­able story at­tached

EDP Norfolk - - EDP NORFOLK MAGAZINE - James Hawkins Juels’ Ltd, Nor­wich

The story be­hind a Water­loo medal

Our next trea­sure has his­tor­i­cal links. A few years ago a medal, ac­com­pa­nied by a small ivory and gold por­trait, came on to the open mar­ket;

I was the high­est bid­der and pur­chased it.

It was linked to one of the most fa­mous and sig­nif­i­cant bat­tles in his­tory – Water­loo, which changed the shape of Europe for a cen­tury. I asked the archivist at Welling­ton Bar­racks to help shed some light on the medal.

Ed­ward Par­doe was born on April 4, 1796, the fourth and youngest son of John Par­doe Esq, MP for Ley­ton, Es­sex, and Jane Oliver Par­doe. When Ed­ward was 13 years old he at­tended Eton School. Af­ter his 17th birth­day his fa­ther pur­chased a com­mis­sion for him into the first reg­i­ment of Foot Guards as an en­sign on April 29, 1813.

Hav­ing taken part in sev­eral skir­mishes he was in­volved in his first ma­jor bat­tle at the siege of Ber­gen-op-Zoom in March 1814. Dur­ing one pa­trol he was en­gaged by the French de­fences; de­spite be­ing over­whelm­ingly out­num­bered and se­verely wounded he fought on be­fore be­ing over­run. For his coura­geous ac­tions he was men­tioned in dis­patches.

Hav­ing re­cov­ered from his wounds he later joined a com­pany com­manded by Lt Colonel H D’Oyly. Par­doe had the hon­our of car­ry­ing the reg­i­men­tal colours into bat­tle at Water­loo. He was in the cen­tre of a four deep square with the un­folded colours still in his grasp when ‘this slaugh­ter­ing busi­ness be­gan.’

Soon af­ter the great French cav­alry at­tacks, the or­chard at Hougoumont had been lost and Lord Sal­toun and the light com­pany re-joined the bat­tal­ion just be­fore the Im­pe­rial Cav­alry of France at­tacked again.

“He un­folded again the colour but the Ad­ju­tant Gun­thorpe called out to fold it up again. En­signs Par­doe and Barton were both look­ing to the men fir­ing and keep­ing well locked up, and thus beat­ing the cav­alry again, though they brought up at the end In­fantry and the balls whis­tled about us pro­fusely. With great grief one hit poor Par­doe in the fore­head; he dropped on his face and spoke no more!” said an ac­count of the bat­tle.

The Lon­don Gazette said: His Royal High­ness has pleased to ap­prove of the First Reg­i­ment of Foot Guards be­ing made a Reg­i­ment of Gre­nadiers and styled The First or Gre­nadier Reg­i­ment of Foot Guards in com­mem­o­ra­tion of their hav­ing de­feated the Gre­nadiers of the French Im­pe­rial Guard upon this mem­o­rable oc­ca­sion’.

En­sign Ed­ward Par­doe’s name is in­scribed, along with other of­fi­cers who gal­lantly lost their lives at the Bat­tle of Water­loo, on the me­mo­rial in the chapel in Water­loo.

At Juels Lim­ited we are al­ways look­ing to pur­chase any mil­i­tary mem­o­ra­bilia. This col­umn is sponsored by Juels’ Lim­ited, Royal Ar­cade, Nor­wich. juel­slim­ juel­[email protected] 01603 666373

Photo: Getty

ABOVE: The Water­loo medal LEFT: The medal and minia­ture por­trait of En­sign Par­doe

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