Superb Messina Earthquake Veteran's WW1 Submarine Service Distinguished Service Medal Group of Ten - CERA. A.W.C. Maggs, Royal Navy and Royal Australian Navy

Superb Messina Earthquake Veteran's WW1 Submarine Service Distinguished Service Medal Group of Ten - CERA. A.W.C. Maggs, Royal Navy and Royal Australian Navy

  • Product Code: MM-5532
  • Regiment: Royal Navy
  • Era: WW1 and WW2
  • Availability: Out of Stock

  • Price: £2,450.00

A superb Messina Earthquake Veteran’s first world war ‘Submarine Service’ DSM and long service group of ten awarded to Chief Engine Room Artificer Albert William Courtney Maggs, Royal Navy and later Royal Australian Navy, who having served aboard H.M.S. Adamant, H.M.S. Dolphin and H.M.S. Alto would then serve aboard H.M. Submarine VI being awarded the Distinguished Service Medal in 1917. Maggs would later see action in the Pacific during the Second World War aboard both HMS Wyrallah and HMAS Goulburn before being discharged on 15th September 1944. 

George V Distinguished Service Medal named to 270879 A.W.C. Maggs. C.E.R.A. Submarine Service 1917. 
1914-15 Star named to 270897 A.W.C. Maggs. E.R.A.2. R.N. 
British War Medal officially re-impressed to 270897 A.W.C. Maggs. C.E.R.A.2. R.N. 
WW1 Victory Medal named to 270897 A.W.C. Maggs. C.E.R.A.2. R.N. 
1939-45 Star unnamed as issued 
Pacific Star unnamed as issued 
War Medal 1939-45 named to 9250. A.W.C. Maggs. 
Australia Service Medal 1939-45 named to 9250. A.W.C. Maggs. 
George V Royal Navy Long Service & Good Conduct Medal named to 270897 A.W.C. Maggs. C.E.R.A.2. H.M.A.S. Platypus
Messina Earthquake Medal 1908 (Silver) named to 270897 A.W.C. Maggs. Act E.R.A.4. H.M.S. Lancaster. 

Please note that the BWM has been officially re-impressed. 

The medals are in good condition and are mounted for display. 

London Gazette: 2nd November 1917 (DSM)

Albert William Courtney Maggs was born in Bexley, Kent on 6th March 1888 and entered the Royal Navy as a Boy Artificer on 17th January 1903, serving on H.M.S. Lancaster between 8th January 1907 and 28th January 1909 providing relief in the aftermath of the Messina Earthquake of 1908, his entitlement to this medal being confirmed on the roll.

The Messina Earthquake of 1908 took place on 28th December 1908 in the Sicily and Calabria area of Italy, being of 7.5 magnitude. It was soon realised that the Italian authorities had a major disaster on their hands with a terrible death toll, with estimates of between 75,000 and 82,000 casualties. Many nations came to the aid of the affected areas and various ships in the Mediterranean at the time were deployed to offer whatever help could be given. Messina was the worst affected population centre and a number of Royal and British Merchant Navy vessels landed men to assist, from digging survivors out from collapsed buildings to assisting with the evacuation of the injured and homeless. A Royal decree of 20th February 1910 announced that a commemorative medal was to be produced, to be awarded to everyone who came to the aid of the Italian people in the disaster.

Maggs was serving as an Engine Room Artificer 3rd Class in H.M.S. Maidstone on the outbreak of the Great War, he served in H.M.S. Adamant from November 1914 to March 1915 – both 8th Submarine Flotilla, being promoted to ERA 2nd Class 1st January 1915. Dolphin between March 1914 and February 1916, and thereafter in HMS Alecto, including time in H.M. Submarine V1.

Maggs remained in naval service after the war, and from March 1919 was on loan to the Royal Australian Navy for two years, and subsequently drafted to the Submarine Depot Ship HMAS Platypus for Submarine J2. His loan period was extended by a year and then a further two years in March 1922. He transferred to HMAS Sydney in July 1922 and then the Light Cruiser HMAS Brisbane in April 1923 and promoted Chief Engine Room Artificer 1st Class, being awarded his Long Service and Good Conduct Medal on 15th December 1921.

He reverted to Royal Navy service in April 1924, but was then loaned to the Royal Australian Navy again until 1930 for supervision of building the new submarine for the Australian Navy HMAS Oxley at Barrow. He then formed one of its crew upon its commissioning.

Oxley with her sister ship Otway were temporarily assigned to the Royal Navy’s 5th Submarine Flotilla. On 8th February 1928, the two submarines set out for Australia in the longest unescorted voyage undertaken by a British submarine. The submarines were diverted to Malta after cracks were found on Otway’s engine columns. On arrival in Malta, similar fractures were found in Oxley’s engine columns, and the two boats were detained while improved columns were fabricated and installed.

In August 1929 he was drafted to HMAS Penguin ‘for Submarine HMS Oxley’. Finally being discharged Engagement expired on 5th March 1930.

Recalled in July 1940, he served on HMAS Wyrallah (re-named Wilcannia), an Anti-Submarine patrol vessel and HMAS Goulburn, a minesweeper, seeing service in the Pacific and New Guinea, until finally being discharged as ‘Permanently Unfit for Naval Service’ on 15th September 1944.

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Tags: WW1 Medals, First World War, WWI, World War One, Military Medals, Campaign Medals, British Medals, Gallantry Medals, DSM, LS&GC, Long Service Medals, Submarines, Royal Navy

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