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**Swanson Jubilee Medal-1887**

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  • **Swanson Jubilee Medal-1887**

    Courtesy of new Forums member Gareth !
    Thanks very much Gareth.

    From Gareth :


    Hi All,


    I approached Howard recently regarding an interesting find I made, and he very generously provided me with an account so that I could share this with those of you that have far more experience on this subject than myself.


    I have not been researching the subject of 'Jack the Ripper' for very long, but when I found a police medal in my collection with the name Swanson inscribed on it, it rang a bell and I started looking into it.

    I can't say for sure if it is Donald Sutherland Swanson's medal, but I was hoping some of the board members may have some clues.


    It is a Metropolitan Police Jubilee Medal dated 1887 with an 1897 clasp across the navy blue ribbon.


    The inscription around the medal reads:


    INSPR D. SWANSON. A. DIVN

    ( The lettering is all capitols and on a slight slant, I will try and get a photo of this asap)


    I can confirm to the best of my research that at the time of the issuance of the medal Donald Sutherland Swanson, was in A Division and was an Inspector. As to whether he was the ONLY Inspector D. Swanson at the time is unconfirmed as yet.


    I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Many thanks

    Gareth
    To Join JTR Forums :
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  • #2
    To Join JTR Forums :
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    Comment


    • #3
      There was an Inspector Donald Swanson in A division at the time that our Donald joined the Met Police in 1868 and was a relative, but the dates on the medal - 1887 and 1897 make it likely that this medal belonged to DSS. I've forgotten, offhand with no papers at present, the exact date he was transferred to the Central Office, but think it was in 1887 or early 1888. Paul or Stewart will likely know.

      On further recollection that may have been November, '87 when he was promoted to Chief Inspector.

      Thanks much, Gareth, for sharing that bit of history with us and a great entrance to the boards.

      Outstanding
      Best Wishes,
      Cris Malone
      ______________________________________________
      "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Chris,

        Thanks for the response, brilliant!

        When you say Central Office, do you mean 'A' division?

        I found this whilst digging, but I can only find it from one source:

        “He started in A Division, moved to Y Division on 9 September 1870,
        to K Division on 12 December 1871 and back to A division on 15 September 1876”

        and from the same source:

        “The elder Donald Swanson is recorded at Wellington Arch Police Station in the 1861, 1871 and 1881 censuses. He was unmarried, had joined the force
        in 1843, and had been promoted to sergeant in 1852 and inspector in 1859. He resigned on 13 December 1881, apparently following a stroke (MEPO 21/16, no 5509).
        His death was registered in the fourth quarter of 1882 at Kensington (reference 1a 19).

        According to his pension record, he had been born at Thurso on 2 February 1814, the son of William and Ellen Swanson
        - though the ages given in the census returns would imply he was born several years later. He may have been the
        Donald Swanson baptised in the neighbouring parish of Reay on 20 March 1813, the son of William Swanson and Helen (née Swanson), who had been married
        at Reay on 28 December 1810, and who later lived in Thurso. If so, he may have been related to Donald Sutherland Swanson through either his father or his mother (or both).”



        That's still not to say that he was the only Inspector D. Swanson in A division in 1887, but it's looking that way.
        I don't know about medal inscription etiquette, but I would have thought that if there were two or more people with the same name, they would include another initial?

        Gareth

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Gareth,

          The Central Office was the main Metropolitan Police headquarters at Scotland Yard itself.

          I had forgotten that the elder Donald Swanson had died in 1882. The likelyhood of another Donald Swanson that was an inspector in A division in 1887 would seem remote, indeed.
          Best Wishes,
          Cris Malone
          ______________________________________________
          "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

          Comment


          • #6
            Nice find Gareth

            Welcome to the boards

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi all,

              Gareth,

              As you state, Swanson moved to Y (Highgate) Division from A (Whitehall) on 9th September 1870. He then transferred from Y to K (Stepney) Division on 12th December 1871 (which is when he became a Detective Sergeant). On 15th September 1876 he moved back to A Division.

              Then, on 19th November 1887 he moved to the Central Office Scotland Yard.

              He became an Inspector in the CID on 6th July 1878 and Chief Inspector on 2nd February 1888.

              Golden Jubilee medals were issued to celebrate Queen Victoria reign of 50 years. They were issued in 3 groups, Gold, Silver and Bronze. Gold was presented to the Royal Family and guests. Silver to the Royal Household, Minister, top brass in the Armed Forces and a few Foriegn visitors during the celebrations. Bronze was issued to the remaining Forces members who aided with the celebrations as well as the Police.

              All Policemen (Met and City) involved in the celebrations and parade, on 21st June 1887, recieved the medals as Gareth kindly shows us. The Police ones differed from the other Bronze medals as it held their name and ranks on them.

              Medals were also issued during Victoria 1897 Diamond Jubilee celebrations however these were only to those who did not have an 1887 one. The ribbon on these medals had a broad white stripe running through it.

              Those who did have an 1887 medal were issued with clasps with 1897 markings upon them.

              Hope this helps those who are wondering what these Jubilee medals were all about.

              Monty

              Comment


              • #8
                It helps, tremendously, Neil.

                Thanks for the great info.
                Best Wishes,
                Cris Malone
                ______________________________________________
                "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

                Comment


                • #9
                  Many thanks for that Monty, that fills in loads of the gaps, and as Cris said, helps tremendously as it still keeps the medal in the frame to have belonged to D.S.Swanson

                  I'm going to have to draw up a time line doc for this - the dates are numerous.

                  Thanks for the welcome Nemo, glad it's of interest

                  Gareth

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Gareth,

                    For what its worth, I think it looks good.

                    The provenence is the key here, may I ask, how did you obtain it?

                    Monty

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi Monty,

                      My Father would buy me a medal every Birthday and Christmas in the hope that I would cultivate a 'hobby'. He gave me this medal about 30 years ago, I never became a collector but I did look after them.


                      I can't imagine that my Father knew the History of this particular medal, and unfortunately, he has since had a severe stroke which has effected his memory. However, he did write a Book about Death, so you never know.

                      Gareth

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi All,

                        hopefully attached is the best photo I could get of the Inscription around the medal.

                        Gareth
                        Attached Files

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hello Gareth

                          For what it's worth, here is an enlargement and color inversion of the photograph that you posted which might make Swanson's name a bit more readable.

                          Cheers

                          Chris

                          Christopher T. George, Lyricist & Co-Author, "Jack the Musical"
                          https://www.facebook.com/JackTheMusical/ Hear sample song at https://tinyurl.com/y8h4envx.

                          Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conferences, April 2016 and 2018.
                          Hear RipperCon 2016 & 2018 talks at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Gareth View Post
                            Hi Monty,

                            My Father would buy me a medal every Birthday and Christmas in the hope that I would cultivate a 'hobby'. He gave me this medal about 30 years ago, I never became a collector but I did look after them.


                            I can't imagine that my Father knew the History of this particular medal, and unfortunately, he has since had a severe stroke which has effected his memory. However, he did write a Book about Death, so you never know.

                            Gareth
                            Hi Gareth

                            Given that your Dad wrote a book about Death, is it possible that you got your interest in this 'orrible case from your Dad?

                            Chris
                            Christopher T. George, Lyricist & Co-Author, "Jack the Musical"
                            https://www.facebook.com/JackTheMusical/ Hear sample song at https://tinyurl.com/y8h4envx.

                            Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conferences, April 2016 and 2018.
                            Hear RipperCon 2016 & 2018 talks at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Great effort Chris,

                              Yes, it most likely had a large influence, I think i have been around every grave yard in Europe as a child; beats Dysney world though.

                              incidentally, on the subject , i have a photo of Donald Sutherland Swanson's grave that I am trying to upload, but it's way too big. I might have to venture into microshaft to reduce the size. tech eh!

                              Comment

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