Scotland: Boer War: Town Council of Rothesay Tribute Medal

Scotland: Boer War: Town Council of Rothesay Tribute MedalScotland: Boer War: Town Council of Rothesay Tribute Medal
Form: Circular with attached loop for a ring. Scalloped edge. Open Fretwork design in pink gold bonded to back plate in yellow gold.
By: William Adams Ltd, Barr Street, Birmingham
Date: 1903
Ref:  Laidlaw: 0943;
35.4 mm9ct Gold9.1 gm$1,800

Edge: Plain.

Obverse: Open fretwork: border containing sword crossed with laurel(?) branch. On the back plate, engraved in the angles across: "NVLLA (left) QVIES (right) SINE / ARMIS (bottom) (no peace without war)".

Reverse: Engraved with ornaments across: "PRESENTED BY THE TOWN COUNCIL (in an arc) / OF / ROTHESAY / TO / TROOPER NEIL KAY. / 108 CoY. / SCOTTISH IMPERIAL YEOMANRY / ON HIS RETURN FROM / SOUTH AFRICA / 1903 (in an arc)". Stamped with the marker's mark: "W.A" and the Birmingham hallmark: "C" (1902-3) for 9ct (.375) gold.

Notes: Rothsay is a town on the Isle of Bute in the Firth of Clyde, Scotland.

Neil McKellar Kay was born in 1880, son of John and Ann "Annie" (nee McKellar) Kay. The family lived at Bellevue House, Barone Road. Kay volunteered for service in South africa and joined the 107th (Lanarkshire) Company with the 6th Battalion Imperial Yeomanry, raised in 1901. He was awarded the Queen's South Africa medal with clasps Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, South Africa 1901 and South Africa 1902. There is a photograph of Kay with members of the 107th Company at www.angloboerwar.com. This tribute medal has Kay serving in the 108th (Royal Glasgow) Company. This Company was also with the 6th Battalion and raised at the same time.

Kay died on 3rd April 1906 at Feira in what was then North Western Rhodesia, now Zambia, on the Zambezi River. It is probable that Kay was in the employ of the British South Africa Company which had recently established British authority in the region.