Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

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Will
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Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Will » Wed Jul 17, 2019 6:41 pm

Here is a fairly well known Boer War casualty, Major Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO. His sword a Gordon Highlanders field officer pattern with plain 34 3/4" blade except for his initials "CMW" This S.J. Pillin sword made in 1898 ( ser # 100619 compared to known dated examples) the same year as his promotion to major. Fully checkered back strap and pommel.
The guard liner shows its age and previous Blanko. The blade is sharpened and seems to be as heavy and sturdy as the sergts version.
All the historical work has been done for me and his name I found mentioned in three period Boer War books I have. The Gordons memorial lists Maj Miller-Wallnutt DSO top left fourth down.

"Major Miller-Wallnutt of the 2nd Battalion was killed at Wagon Hill, Ladysmith on 6th Jan 1900. He was born on 30th Mar 1861 in Edinburgh, educated there, and entered the Argyll and Bute Artillery Militia. On 23rd Apr 1881 he joined the 75th and was promoted to Lieutenant in the Gordon Highlanders on 1st Jul in the same year. He served in the Egyptian and Sudan campaigns, fighting at Tel-el-Kebir, El Teb and Tamai. He was also on the Nile expedition to rescue General Gordon and the storming of the Heights at Malakand and Dargai. He was promoted to major on 18th may 1898.
In South Africa the 2nd Battalion came under siege in Ladysmith. Major Miller-Walnutt commanded a company at the battle of Wagon Hill. He was with Lieut Digby Jones RE when he was shot, some say by the Boer General de Villiers. At the next moment de Villiers was himself shot in the head by a sapper. Claude Charles Miller-Wallnutt was described as 'a man cast in the mould of a Berserk Viking' which conjures up a picture of a fierce and scary highland fighter. His award of the DSO was gazetted on 20th may 1898." From: https://www.britishempire.co.uk/forces/ ... llnutt.htm
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Matt Easton
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Matt Easton » Fri Jul 19, 2019 5:23 pm

Very nice and an unusual blade! Being the 1892 pattern blade on a Highland Field Officer's hilt, instead of the normal 'claymore' blade, and an enlarged size no less - 2 inches longer than regulation? And what's the width?
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

Will
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Will » Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:12 pm

Matt the blade at ricasso is 1 1/8" wide and .275 inch thick.

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Matt Easton
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Matt Easton » Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:51 pm

Nice, so it's extra large then. Reminds me of the City of London Yeomanry swords.
Last edited by Matt Easton on Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

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Matt Easton
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Matt Easton » Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:55 pm

I know this is super anal, but I'd be interested in the weight as well. Over 950g?
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

Will
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Will » Sat Jul 20, 2019 1:45 am

Hi Matt the sword weighs 2 lbs 4 oz. or 1020 g. The guard thickness is .085 inch and the fuller is 14 inches long.

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Matt Easton
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Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Matt Easton » Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:12 am

Thanks Will, as I suspected, that's pretty heavy for the type.
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

Will
Posts: 130
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:27 pm

Re: Maj Claude Miller-Wallnutt DSO Gordon Highlanders

Post by Will » Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:46 am

Hi Matt do you have any similar swords from the Boer War era? Would be interesting to know if other officers ordered custom swords during the Boer War as they tended to do back in the India Mutiny and Crimea days.

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