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QSA Lt Woolf MID Jewish

Queen’s South Africa Medal, bar Cape Colony, Lieutenant Reginald Nunes Woolf, Western Province Mounted Rifles, MID for the Defence of Tontelboschkolk during 1901. Son of Sydney Woolf, Jewish MP for Pontefract.

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SKU: J6867 Category:
Origin: United Kingdom
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Queen’s South Africa Medal, bar Cape Colony, Lieutenant Reginald Nunes Woolf, Western Province Mounted Rifles, Mentioned in Despatches for the Defence of Tontelboschkolk 3rd December 1901.


Reginald Nunes Woolf was a 33 year old Stock Broker living in Cape Town, when he signed up for service in the Boer War, he first attested as a Trooper on 11th January 1901, 4 months later he received a commission as Lieutenant on 18th May 1901 which he served as until his discharge on 31st December 1901.


For his good service he would be listed in Lord Kitchener’s Mentions “For good service in the defence of Tontelbosch Kop: November 25 to December 3 1901.” Announced in the London Gazette on 25th April 1902, page 2769


The Siege of Tontelboschkolk, 28th November to 5th December 1901:


“The farm Tontelboschkolk, some 80km north-east of Calvinia, was used by the British as a remount and grain depot.
It was garrisoned by 90 men of the Western Province Mounted Rifles and more than 100 Bushmanland Borderers, dispersed in 6 small forts, with the British Officers quartered in the 4 farmhouses on the property.


It was surround on 28th November 1901 by Cape Rebels under Malan, Maritz, Van Deventer and Lategan.


Vice, the Intelligence Officer at Calvinia, reported to Colonel du Cane at Clanwilliam on 1st December 1901, reporting:


“TBK was heavily attacked on morning of 28th at 2am by a force of enemy estimate 600 strong. They have succeeded in getting possession of the houses and outbuildings and have consequently cut off the water. They kepy up a heavy fire all that day and during the night again attempted to take our position, but were easily driven back, and our men succeeded in getting a limited supply of water from the dam. Friday the firing continued throughout the whole day, but not so heavy as on the previous day, water was also got into the forts that evening. Yesterday ‘Saturday’ continuous fire was heard till about 11am when runner was too far off to hear.”


During the siege, although the Boers managed to capture from 400 horses and mules, their main object of the attack, they could not capture the depot, which was solidly held by the small garrison. The Boers retreated on 5th December and the British withdrew the garrison shortly afterwards.”


Reginald Nunes Woolf, was born during 1866 in Knottingley, West Yorkshire. He was the son of Sydney Woolf, MP, Liberal Member of Parliament for Pontefract, Yorkshire.


The Woolfs were also a prominent Jewish family, his father being recorded in the New Synagogue Records with the Hebrew name Tsadok Yehuda. He was also a member of the Anglo Jewish Association.


His father was a successful pottery manufacturer, his father Lewis Woolf was first a China Merchant who expanded into Pottery and took over Ferrybridge, Knottingley, Pottery in Pontefract during 1851.


Things were going well for the Woolfs, Sydney and his brothers ran the Poterries at Knottingley and he became one of the leading citizens of the town who formed the Knottingley Town Hall and Mechanics Institute Company Lmited and became its chairman.


In the 1880 Election he was elected as the Member of Parliament for Pontefract, which he held since 1885 as a member of the Liberal Party.


As MP for Pontefract he commonly teamed up with then Secretary State for War, and former MP for Pontegract, The Right Honourable Hugh Culling Eardley Childers who was the son of a Reverend but his family had deep Jewish roots going back generations. Childers would commonly return to speak to the people of Pontefract along side Woolf.


In 1860 he had married Isabella Nunes Bevenuta Carvalho, the daughter of David Nunes Carvalho of London.


However things went downhill and his father declared bankruptcy during 1884-5, and the family then went over to South Africa.


On 23rd December 1913 Reginald married Margaret Lessels Westwood, from Fifeshire, Scotland at Pretoria.


He died on 31st July 1930, at the age of 64, he had settled at the Farm “Twistdraai” near Trichard, Pretoria, having become a Farmer (Government Settler).