Egypt medal with clasp The Nile 1884-85 converted to a place card or menu holder 1464. Pte. R. COWAN . 1/ CAMn HIGH rs.
Robert Cowan was born in Dumbarton on January 11 1857. In the 1871 census his family was residing in Glasgow and he is shown as living at home with parents James and Elizabeth and siblings James, Elizabeth, Mary and Margaret.
When he attested on January 12th 1879, he gave his occupation as a shoemaker. His enlistment documents indicate some prior service in the 2nd Lanark Militia.
His first impressions of army life couldn't have been positive since he deserted only 4 months later and 6 months after that he rejoined awaiting trial and was sentenced to 60 days. He was released from prison on Jan 24th, 1879 and deserted the following week!
He rejoined 4 years later and was imprisoned for 90 days and following his release he served peacefully for 5 years earning some good conduct pay along the way.
He served a total of 3 years and 335 days in Egypt with the remaining time at home. The Egypt medal(and Star) were his only medals. His medical records indicate he suffered from some common soldier's complaints while serving in Egypt.
Pte. Cowan was transferred into the reserve in April 1888
The stand for the medal is hallmarked as 1899 Birmingham with the marks of Silversmiths Horton & Allday who operated in Birmingham from 1888 to 1933