THE VICTORIA CROSS AWARDED TO GENERAL JAMES BLAIR, 2ND BOMBAY LIGHT CAVALRY, HAS BEEN SOLD AT AUCTION BY SPINK OF LONDON.
29 July 2021

Medal entitlement of General James Blair,
2nd Bombay Light Cavalry

  • Victoria Cross
  • Companion, Order of the Bath ( CB )
  • Indian Mutiny Medal ( 1857-58 )
    • 1 clasp:
    • "Central India"


The Victoria Cross and campaign medal awarded to General James Blair, 2nd Bombay Light Cavalry, have been sold at auction in London by Spink on Thursday, 29th July 2021. The estimated sale price was between £160,000 and £200,000. The sale hammer price realised £180,000. The identity of the purchaser has not been revealed.


For the award of the Victoria Cross

[ London Gazette, 25 February 1862 ], Neemuch and Jeerum, Indian Mutiny, 12 August and 23 October 1857, Captain James Blair, 2nd Bombay Light Cavalry.

For having on two occasions distinguished himself by his gallant and daring conduct.

1. On the night of the 12th August 1857, at Neemuch, in volunteering to apprehend 7 or 8 armed mutineers who had shut themselves up for defence in a house, the door of which he burst open. He then rushed in among them, and forced them to escape through the roof; in this encounter he was severely wounded. In spite of his wounds he pursued the fugitives, but was unable to come up with them, in consequence of the darkness of the night.

2. On the 23rd October 1857, at Jeerum, in fighting his way most gallantly through a body of rebels who had literally surrounded him. After breaking the end of his sword on one of their heads, and receiving a severe sword cut on his right arm, he rejoined his troop. In this wounded condition, and with no other weapon than the hilt of his broken sword, he put himself at the head of his men, charged the rebels most effectively, and dispersed them.

James Blair was invested with his Victoria Cross by GOC Bombay Lieutenant General Sir William Mansfield, in Bombay, India, in 1862.


General James Blair died on the 18th January 1905 and was buried in the Holy Trinity Churchyard, Melrose, Roxburghshire, Scotland

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Iain Stewart, 29 July 2021