A superb and complete collection of Victorian Uniforms to Lt Colonel John Vaughan 10th Royal Hussars. Complete with Regimental Pattern Scarlet Pantaloons, Hessian Boots with Regimental Gilded Cased Spurs, Mess Kit of Regimental pattern, Pillbox Cap, Cloak and an extremely rare Astrakhan Patrol Jacket
Egypt & The Sudan - Troop Commander, ‘C’ Squadron, Omdurman
Attached to the 21st Lancers as a Troop Commander in ‘C’ Troop, he subsequently participated in the Nile Expedition of 1898 (Queen’s Medal; Khedive’s Medal & clasp). Moreover, he participated in the famous charge at Omdurman, of which action he later wrote in his autobiography, Cavalry and Sporting Memories:
‘I have seen other battles since then but never anything so spectacular. The Dervishes came over the sky line and down the slope towards us at a jog's trot of five or six miles an hour chanting little songs about Allah. They were clad in dirty white jibbahs with square coloured patches on them. They were very conspicuous, the light was good, and they were at an easy Field Artillery range.
Distributed among their infantry there were a few smallish guns, nine pounders probably, and every now and then they would turn one of these round and fire in our direction but I never saw or heard a shell arrive. l expect their home made powder was bad.
We had the artillery of three Divisions plus four or five gun-boats enfilading their right flank. Sometimes I could see shrapnel bursting exactly right, low in front of them. When the dust cleared there were a few little white patches on the ground but the line came on at the same pace. In fact the Artillery fire could do nothing to stop them. About 700 or 800 yards in front of my position there was a dip in the ground across our front into which they more or less disappeared. When we saw them again they were in easy rifle and machine-gun range. This was the first time that I had seen massed rifle and machine gun fire and it was most impressive. It just swept the Dervishes off the face of the desert in a few minutes.
I returned to my troop and presently the order arrived from 'K'; 'The 21st Lancers will clear the road into Omdurman'. We moved out in column of troops with my troop disposed as Advanced Guard. We were soon held up however by Dervishes holding the lower Eastern ridges of Surgham towards the Nile. Of course there was no road in a European sense, merely a lot of more or less parallel camel tracks.
We engaged these Dervishes with rifle fire and got a little way up the hill but could make no progress. Presently an infantry brigade arrived and cleared Surgham with the bayonet.
We then mounted and trotted to the South. I felt annoyed because although I still had the leading troop I was not ordered to send out any patrols. Presently I became aware of some snipers lining a ridge at an angle of about 280 degrees with our line of advance. They were firing into the right flank of our column of troops but not doing much harm. I then heard the joggle of troops wheeling and looking back saw the regiment wheeled into line and immediately conformed. I heard no order or trumpet to wheel into line or charge. We galloped over the snipers and then discovered a crowd of Dervishes in the wadi behind them.
The regiment presented a wonderful sight with lances down and with a better line than you could obtain in a practice charge nine times out of ten. I was lucky in that my troop on the extreme left of the line hit the wadi on the straight where the water had not scooped out any steep banks.
An instant before I glanced to the right and saw some brave little men on foot draw swords from their left armpits and rush to certain deaths on the oncoming lances.
Personally I don't remember much about it except that I snatched out my .450 Webley and cleared a way for my Arab pony through the crowd.
When I pulled up on the far bank of the Wadi, there was my dear old Troop Sergeant at my elbow, but the men were pig-sticking after the enemy all over the plain and it was the devils own job to collect them again.
However, I was the first to rally a troop and moved to the left, C Squadron and eventually the Regiment rallying on us. We dismounted some troops and opened rapid fire into the crowd in the Wadi which soon began to disperse to the S.W.
We then continued to a pool outside Omdurman where we watered the horses. There were several badly wounded Dervishes in the water but I foolishly refilled my water bottle to which I ascribe my subsequent dysentery.
We had had a pretty tiring day, starting with morning reconnaissance, two dismounted actions and a full blown cavalry charge thrown in.
I then got an order to take a patrol and locate the direction and numbers of the retreating enemy. I took six of the men with the best horses and rode South West. The desert was covered with individuals making off as fast as they could on foot. It was alright so long as I was in sight of the regiment, the enemy threw down their weapons and threw up their hands. But when I made the second ridge, perhaps two miles on, it was not at all so alright. There was a bit of mirage, but not very bad and I was guessing the length of the dust column of the enemy through my glasses when one of my men shouted: 'Look out, Sir, there is a bloke shooting at you!'
With that he dropped his lance and galloped at a bush in which the sniper was seated and ran him through. Of course the enemy's firearms were very varied and not very accurate but I thought that if I made another bound to the next ridge it might be more awkward and 'K' might get no report at all, so I wrote them down as 20,000 marching S.S.W. and returned to the Regiment.’
The Boer War - wounded - immediate D.S.O.
Advanced to Captain in October 1899, Vaughan served on the Staff during the Boer War, acting as A.D.C. to the G.O.C., Cavalry Division and as D.A.A.G., Intelligence, Cavalry Division. Thus his part in the operations leading to the relief of Kimberley and beyond (Queen’s Medal & 6 clasps; King’s Medal & 2 clasps), services that resulted in him being given the Brevet of Major in November 1900 and being twice mentioned in despatches (London Gazettes 4 May 1900 and 18 July 1902, refer).
His immediate D.S.O. was won for a gallant cavalry action near Boschmanskop in April 1902, when, owing to casualties, he took command of a squadron of the Queen’s Bays, prior to leading a charge of the 7th Hussars. Cavalry & Sporting Memoriestakes up the story: