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Mal Murray View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Medal Index Cards
    Posted: 22 Nov 2011 at 13:21
The following information describes how to read a Medal Index Card, it is intended as a basic introduction to the Cards.
 
The following information was resourced from the British National Archives, further reading or information may be viewed there at;
 
 
There are three basic designs of the Medal Index Card.
 
Design 1.
 
Medal Card - Design 1

The top of the medal card contains the soldier's name, rank(s), number(s) and unit(s).

The left hand side of the card contains a printed list of the campaign medals. A note in the 'roll' and 'page' column meant the soldier was awarded that medal. You may also see 'do', which meant 'ditto'. You can use these references to consult the medal roll; to find out more.

You might find information regarding the theatre of war first served in and the date the individual entered that theatre. If this part of the card is blank, this usually means that the individual went to France in 1916 or later.

You may see remarks concerning the career or fate of the individual, such as date of death and the date a soldier was discharged. The original medal issue and medal receipt may also be noted.

"Clasp and Roses" or "Cl" means the soldier received the dated clasp to adorn the ribbon of the 1914 Star, or a silver rosette to go on the ribbon when only ribbons are being worn.

"EMB" or "Emblems" denotes that an individual had been "Mentioned in Despatches" (MID) and that at least two "oak leaf" MID emblems had been sent to the recipient.

Occasionally the medal card will confirm that the individual did not receive any medals, including many soldiers who went to France after 11 November 1918. They thought they were entitled and applied, but had their application refused. Others failed to meet the required criteria for certain awards, had not served abroad, or forfeited their campaign medals due to a disciplinary infringement.

Design 2.
 
Medal Card - Design 2
 
 
This design contains the same information as the first card, the difference being that the medal entitlement is at the top right hand corner. The entire lower half of the card is left free for any remarks.
 
Design 3. The Silver War Badge.
 
Medal Card - Design 3
 
This MIC was used for individuals who received the Silver War Badge only. The card contains information about an individual and often gives the date of enlistment, date of discharge and reason for discharge. The card will also give the Silver War Badge roll reference. You can use this reference to consult the medal roll.
 

Abbreviations

Medal cards often contain abbreviations and alphanumeric codes and we have listed some common ones below. The codes for those who saw their first operational service from 1 January 1916 onwards differ slightly from those who saw operational service before 1916.

 
 
Up to 31 December 1915 From 1 January 1916
1 1 Western Europe
a France and Belgium
b Italy
2 2 Balkans
a Greek Macedonia, Serbia, Bulgaria and European Turkey
b Gallipoli (Dardanelles)
3 Russia (4 - 5 August 1914 to 1 - 2 July 1920)
3 4 Egypt
a 4 - 5 November 1914 to 18 - 19 March 1916
b 18 - 19 March 1916 to 31 October - 1 November 1918
4 5 Africa
a East Africa, Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia
b South West Africa
c Cameroon
d Nigeria
e Togoland
5 6 Asia
a Hedjaz
b Mesopotamia
c Persia
d Trans Caspia
e South West Arabia
f Aden
g Frontier regions of India
h Tsingtau
6 7 Australasia
a New Britain
b New Ireland
c Kaiser Wilhelmland
d Admiralty Islands
e Nauru
f German Samoa
Up to 31 December 1915 From 1 January 1916
1 1 Western Europe
a France and Belgium
b Italy
2 2 Balkans
a Greek Macedonia, Serbia, Bulgaria and European Turkey
b Gallipoli (Dardanelles) (Sometimes shown as Balkans)
3 Russia (4 - 5 August 1914 to 1 - 2 July 1920)
3 4 Egypt
a 4 - 5 November 1914 to 18 - 19 March 1916
b 18 - 19 March 1916 to 31 October - 1 November 1918
4 5 Africa
a East Africa, Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia
b South West Africa
c Cameroon
d Nigeria
e Togoland
5 6 Asia
a Hedjaz
b Mesopotamia
c Persia
d Trans Caspia
e South West Arabia
f Aden
g Frontier regions of India
h Tsingtau
6 7 Australasia
a New Britain
b New Ireland
c Kaiser Wilhelmland
d Admiralty Islands
e Nauru
f German Samoa

Other Abbreviations

ARZ Class Z Army Reserve. In December 1918 soldiers being demobilised were first posted to Class Z. They could return to civilian life but knew they were obliged to return if necessary. The Z Reserve was abolished on 31 March 1920.
Cl An individual had been sent a dated clasp. This clasp would go on the ribbon of the 1914 Star, or a silver rosette would go on the ribbon when only medal ribbons were being worn
Comm Commissioned
EMB or Emblems An individual had been "Mentioned in Despatches" (MID) and at least two "oak leaf" MID emblems had been sent to the recipient
KiA or Killed If a soldier died in action, it is often marked on the card. Sometimes it will just say "Dead" but occasionally it will not be noted at all.
KR 392 King's Regulation 392 which covered causes of early discharge whether through ill health, misconduct or other reasons
Rep Replaced. This is an unusual comment implying that the index card was replaced at some point
Retd or Rtd (sometimes "Retd undisposed of") Returned. If there was an error in the inscription, the medals would have to be returned to the Medals Office. Another reason for return was if the individual had moved house and the parcel was not deliverable.
TE or T/E or T of E Time Expired. This is when the soldier had reached the end of his agreed period of military service. It applies only to pre-war soldiers of the regular army or Territorial Force. These men were allowed to go home but from 1916 many TE men returned to active service as conscripted soldiers.


Edited by Mal Murray - 22 Nov 2011 at 13:25
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Nov 2011 at 13:35

Other index cards

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documentsonline/medals.asp

You can find other medal cards on DocumentsOnline. Some of the information on these cards will lead you to other records while others will not. The catalogue reference of the document will indicate whether you have located one of these cards:

  • The Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) cards: catalogue reference WO 372/23
  • The Military Medal (MM) cards: catalogue reference WO 372/23
  • The Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) cards: catalogue reference WO 372/24
  • The Mentioned in Despatches (MiD) cards: catalogue reference WO 372/24
  • The Territorial Force Efficiency Medal (TFEM) and Territorial Efficiency Medal (TEM) cards: catalogue reference WO 372/24.

The DCM, MM, MSM, TFEM, TEM and MiD indexes rarely use the first name of the recipient, so it is necessary to search using the soldier's first initial.

These cards cover awards granted between about 1909 - 1931. Apart from providing name, rank, number and unit, these cards often provide the Army Order number and date upon which the award was announced. Army Orders are preserved at The National Archives in the series WO 123 but very few lists of the recipients survive.

Most of the DCM, MM and MSM card indexes usually note in which operational theatre the award was won.

The Territorial Force Efficiency Medal (TFEM) was instituted in 1908 as a long service award for other ranks in the Territorial Force. Qualification for the award was 12 years' service, with war service counting double. The TFEM was renamed the Territorial Efficiency Medal in 1921 when the TF became the Territorial Army. The name and design of the award was changed again in 1930, becoming the Efficiency Medal (Territorial), sometimes noted as EM(T).

The DCM, MM, MSM and MID indexes all provide the date upon which the award was announced in the London Gazette. You can use the date you can consult the The London Gazette website. Some of the award dates are given as a numerical code- use the table below to interpret it.

Gazette Code Number

Date(s)

59 11 February or 13 March 1919
60 18 or 24 or 30 January or 22 February 1919
61 29 March 1919
62 14 May 1919
63 17 June 1919
64 3 July 1919
65 23 July 1919
66 20 August 1919
67 20 August 1919
68 22 September 1919
69 16 October 1919
Peace Gazette 3 June 1919
Prisoner of War 30 January or 19 June 1920
   

Indian Army Medal Index Cards

DocumentsOnline holds the medal cards of over 20,000 soldiers who served in the Indian Army during WW1. The cards record the medal entitlement of soldiers who were entitled to, or made a claim for, campaign medals.

  • Indian Army medal cards can be found within catalogue references WO 372/25 to WO 372/29.

The Army Medal Office created these cards after the war had ended, and generally they record the latest unit that the soldier served in and the last rank he held. Some of the medal cards record claims for medals that were made as late as the 1930s.

The cards record a soldier's entitlement to the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. Many soldiers were also awarded one or more clasps to go with the British War Medal, and this is also recorded on the cards. The award of a clasp is indicated by a reference on the right hand side of the card, but unlike other medal cards the reference will not direct you to other records.

Unlike the other medal index cards, which have been scanned 6 per page, you will only receive one medal card per download.

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