Medals to Musicians, Bandsmen & Bandmasters

Frederick William Hall was born in London on 7 May 1861. He
attested for the 19th Foot in London on 6 Aug 1876 aged 15
yrs, 3 months.  He gave his trade as Musician.  He had been
tutored on the French Horn during his school years & had a
3rd class certificate of education.  

He joined the depot of the 2nd Batt’n at Aldershot on 7
August. The 2nd  Batt’n of the 19th Reg’t had been serving
in India & when they returned to UK on 16 Jan ’77 he joined
up with them.  He served with the Band of the  2nd Batt’n at
Parkhurst,  Aldershot, Sheffield, Belfast Curragh camp, &

Hall turned 18 on 7 May ’79 & rec’d his first Good Conduct
Pay of 1d on 7 May ’80.

Promotion came fairly quickly for Hall. He was appointed
Lance Cpl on 30 Sep ’83, Corporal on 5 Jan ’84 & Lance
Serg’t on 1 Dec ’85.  He was appointed Band Serg’t on
14 Mar ’88.  He then transferred to the 1st Batt’n of the
Yorkshire Reg’t as Band Serg’t on 28 Aug ’88 when the 1st
Batt’n was serving on the Channel Islands of Jersey.

On 1 Oct 1894 he was recommended for the Army Long
Service medal which was subsequently presented to him,
whilst on parade by Lt Col Bruce, Colonel of the Regiment.
It is named to him as ‘Band Serg’t.
By 1890 Hall had married Ellen & they had one son, Charles William in 1888. More children were added about every two
years - Emily, William, Ellen, Frederick, Mary, & Dorothy, being the youngest born just before Hall left for South Africa.

In October of 1899 the South African war broke out & the Yorkshire Reg’t, like many other Regiments in the Victorian army
that fall, was shipped off to participate in that conflict.

The 1st Battalion sailed on the Doune Castle about 24th November 1899, and arrived at the Cape on 15th December.
The 1st Yorkshire were dropped at Cape Town, and this battalion went up to the Colesberg district to help General French
in his efforts to repel the Boer invasion of the colony. They remained in that area
until the beginning of February 1900.  Lord Roberts was making up a force for his great effort.
The Yorkshires, along with other Regiments, was slated to join his forces at Modder River .The Reg’t saw action at
Paardeberg on 18th February suffering many casualties.

It is likely Hall moved with his Regiment but did not see action at Paardeburg or any of the other battles the Yorkshire men
were to partake in.
I am not exactly certain what Hall’s duties might have been in the conflict. However, he must have taken sick in March 1900,
as the Regiment was in the De Aar area at the time, & he was admitted to the newly established Military Hospital in
Deelfontein in April 1900, suffering from enteric fever.  Deelfontein was selected as an ideal location for a large hospital.
Many patients suffering from enteric fever were sent there for treatment
ABOVE: A portrait photo of Band
Serg`t Hall taken sometime circa 1895.

RIGHT:  is a shot of the Yorkshire Reg`t
Band, photo taken in same time frame.  
Serg`t Hall (wearing LS medal) is in the
front seated row to the right of the central
group of Instruments, to the left is the
Bandmaster.  At this time Serg`t Hall was
the senior Band Sergeant in the band.
RIGHT: This is how the cemetery looked circa 1902.

BELOW: How the cemetery looks today .Some of the grave markers did not
survive as the metal crosses were removed during 2WW.
BELOW: Shots of the De Aar Memorial
Garden – where Serg`t Hall is noted on the
memorial & his burial plaque number.
The Yorkshire Reg’t had many deaths due to enteric fever during
1900, including Band Serg’t Hall who passed away on
13 Apl ’00, in his 39th year. Hall was subsequently buried in the
Military cemetery at De Aar, with many of his comrades
who also died at the hospital.

Hall may have taken his Long Service medal to South Africa with
his kit. After his death his personal effects would have
been returned to Ellen including his LS medal. She would also
have received his South Africa campaign medal as well,
when it was issued a couple years later.

It is unknown if Ellen received a pension after William’s death, as
Hall’s papers do not survive in the National Archives.  He
was close to pension when he went to South Africa, he had a few
months over 20 years adult service, & may have gone
to pension when he returned from active service, so it is likely
Ellen received some form of pension or a monetary payout.

A large memorial was erected in York dedicated to the memory of
the members of the Yorkshire Regiment who died on
active service in South Africa. It survives to this day & some
photos are shown of it in this display. Band Serg’t Hall’s
name is on the memorial face for the 1st Battalion.**
*I am not certain exactly where
Band Serg’t Hall died.  One source
note says Deelfontein & another
(the SA casualty Roll) states
De Aar. They are close together
& the Military Hospital & Cemetery
were situated at Deelfontein.  The
hospital complex is long gone
today but the cemetery and
memorial garden remains & that
is where Serg’t Hall & his comrades

** The Yorkshire Regiment Memorial
photos were taken by Paul Vollender.
The photos of the Military Cemetery
in Deelfontein & Memorial Garden in
De Aar were taken by Gerhard
Engelbrecht of South Africa.

I would like to give much thanks &
appreciation to both gentlemen for
taking the time & effort to obtain
these photos.
Both medals are named as follows: