Queen’s South Africa, 3 bars, Elandslaagte, Defence of Ladysmith, Belfast, KSA, 2 bars, 4760 Private William Henry Soper Dart, Devonshire Regiment. From Teignmouth, Devon local.
QSA officially impressed: “4760 Pte W.H.S. Dart, Devon: Regt”
KSA officially impressed: “4760 Pte W. Dart. Devon: Regt”
Fitted with sewn on original silk ribbons.
Confirmed on the roll, with copy service papers, and his full medal entitlement.
Private William Henry Soper Dart, served during the Boer War in South Africa with the 1st battalion of the Devonshire Regiment.
During the early stages of the war, he took part in the Battle of Elandslaagte fought on 21st October 1899, during the Battle the regiment took part in a frontal assault on the Boer positions.
After the battle, the Devons became under siege in the town of Ladysmith, and also notably fought in the action on the 6th January 1900 known as “Wagon Hill”.
He would earn his 3rd “Battle Clasp” at the Battle of Bergendal (Belfast) on 27th August 1900.
William Henry Soper Dart, was born in Teignmouth Devon circa 1878.
His father Henry was from Teignmouth.
He enlisted with his local Militia, the 4th Bn Devon Regiment on 31st July 1896, aged 18, having joined from the 1st Devon Artillery Volunteers, whilst he was a teenager.
Not long afterwards, he advanced to the full time Army, joining the Devonshire Regiment on 19th September 1896.
Although he was 18, he already had a collection of tattoos, whose descriptions barely fit on his service papers;
A Crown over 1896, figure of a woman and mounted hussars
Right forearm, figure of a woman front left forearm tow whips crossed a horse shoe a bridle and spurs a heart and clasped hands under True Love, other scars in the front left leg.”
He saw the following service:
Home, 19th September 1896 – 8th November 1898
India, 9th November 1898 – 20th September 1899
South Africa, 21st September 1899 – 18th Jan 1902
India, 19th Jan 1902 – 29th January 1904.
Home, 30th January 1904 – 18th September 1908.
Discharged after 12 years service on 18th Sept 1908.
Served: “South Africa War of 1899-1902, including Action of Elandslaagte, Defence of Ladysmith & BElfast.”
“Medals: South African Medal 1900 with clasps inscribed Elandslaagte, Defence of Ladysmith, and Belfast.
King’s South African Medal with clasps 1901 + 1902”
Apart from his time in the Army, he spent most of his life at home in Devon, mostly living in his hometown of Teignmouth.
He was living there after his discharge in 1911, where he worked as a General Carter, with his wife Amy (from Crockernwell) and 2 children.
In 1939, he lived in Clampet Lane, Teignmouth, and was working as a G.W.R. Labourer in the Signal and Telegraph Department.
His wife Amy was a Cafe Proprietress.
The couple lived at the Triangle Cafe, which his wife owned and ran, right by the Teignmouth Beach and Pier.