Antiques Roadshow: Family shocked at antique medal valuation
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Antiques Roadshow expert Mark Smith, who is a military museum curator and specialist in military medals, was delighted to see a stunning array of medals on the BBC show. After evaluating the impressive collection, the owner was left stunned by the price and the history. However, Mark advised them to complete the set after a Russian medal mysteriously disappeared.
The owner of the medals seemed shocked by the information given about their history but she had another problem with her collection, which was the missing Stanislaus medal.
Mark suggested the possibility of buying a replacement but the problem was the price.
The expert then valuated the items, with the military cross and bar estimated at £3,500, the Order of St Anna at £5,000, and the missing Stanislaus also at £5,000.
“If you had the whole lot, it’s a £15,000 group of medals,” Mark said to the shocked owner as she said, “Oh my goodness” in disbelief.
“My God, I’ll be careful with these then!” she joked.
Mark suggested that it “could be done” to get all the medals back together but it will cost £5,000 to replace the missing medal.
“Good news and bad news,” the expert remarked.
Earlier in the show, the owner of the medals explained: “These belonged to my great grandfather and the medals were brought out at a dinner party by my grandmother many years ago.
“[She] wanted to show a guest who was interested in them,” she said.
However, one medal mysterious disappeared after the dinner and has yet to be recovered.
“We have no idea what happened to it.”
Mark questioned her knowledge about the medals and she explained: “We have the military cross and that’s about it I’m afraid!”
The expert then described the piece, saying: “You not only have a military cross, but you have what is known as a military cross and bar.
“So the bar represents the second award of that medal so he’s won that twice, so he is a very brave man.
“He then has the 1914-15 star, the British War Medal, and the Victory Medal, which is known as the ‘trio’,” Mark continued.
The expert added: “That is the classic set of war medals for someone who was out in France right at the start of the war and, probably, all the way up to the end.
“And then you have this wonderful thing, which is the Russian Order of St Anna but the one thing you don’t have here is the Order of Saint Stanislaus.
“I had a look at what your great grandfather was doing and, whilst he was fighting on the Western Front, when the war finished, he went off to Russia,” Mark continued to explain.
“That’s why this medal is called the 1914-1920 British War Medal because it also covers that period when we were fighting with the White Russian Army at the end of World War One.”
“Now, he won the two military crosses on the Western Front, one in 1916 and the other in 1917, so he’s probably in the Somme and then Ypres for the Battle of Passchendaele,” Mark stated.
“So, in itself, that is quite spectacular.”
“Then he has, in this case, the two Russian awards, both given to him by the Russians for fighting against the Bolshevik armies with the White Russian army.
“This is all actually quite spectacular!”
Antiques Roadshow continues on BBC One on Sunday at 8pm.
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