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Africa General Service Medal, with bars for N. Nigeria & Aro 1901-1902, awarded to Pvt. Sule, in 1901 or 1902

Africa General Service Medal, 1901-02

Obverse, a bust of King Edward VII

Africa General Service Medal, 1901-02

Reverse, Britannia with lion gesturing right to sun on horizon

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Africa General Service Medal, 1902-1910

Numerous actions in the British-controlled parts of Africa were felt to merit the award of a medal, but not a distinct one for every action. The Africa General Service Medal replaced the East and West Africa Medal which had previously been awarded for service in this theatre. Bars were awarded for a variety of small campaigns, sometimes only one expedition and sometimes rather more complex operations.
This medal bears bars which were awarded, in the case of the N. Nigeria bar, for service in any of three operations against Bida and Kontagora in Nigeria from 1900 to 1901, the Chief of Tawari in 1900 and the Emir of Yola in 1901, all of which resulted in the addition of these principalities to British Northern Nigeria. The bar for Aro 1901-1902 relates to the suppression of the Aro Confederacy, which had attacked British settlements (and which the British decried for slave-trading and human sacrifice), and the addition of its territory to Eastern Nigeria.
The medal was awarded to Private Sule of the Northern Nigerian Regiment. Lester Watson purchased it at some point before 1928.