Indian General Service Medal 1908-1935, with bar for Waziristan 1921-24, awarded to Pvt. E. C. Smith, 1925
Obverse, a portrait of King George V in robes
Reverse, Jamrud fort overlooking Khyber Pass with mountains behind
Indian General Service Medal, 1925
The India Medal of 1895 having needed alteration for its last issues due to the death of Queen Victoria, in 1908 it was decided to replace it entirely with a new medal of Edward VII, which was first issued in 1909. When the first issue was made under King George V, in 1911, Richard Garbe designed a new obverse but the medal was otherwise unaltered.
The ignominious defeat of Afghan forces in the Third Anglo-Afghan War left considerable dissatisfaction among the border tribesmen, resulting in persistent raiding that various British punitive expeditions were sent to quell. Even after peace had more or less been achieved, considerable garrison forces were required for some years in the areas of Waziristan (technically an independent state at the time, and as of 2006 independent again in defiance of Pakistani claims to the territory) and various other districts around the River Indus. The forces in the area were heavily engaged in a road-building programme and the establishment of cantons to make further tribal revolts less likely.
This medal was awarded to Private E. C. Smith of the 1st Border Regiment. It was one of the last pieces acquired by Lester Watson, purchased from the London dealers Baldwin in 1936.