Victorian British Army Veterinary Department
Officer's Sword, sold
In good condition, a rare Boer War Era British Army Veterinary
Department Officer's Presentation Sword.
Etched "J STEWART WOOD A.V.D. FROM COLONEL GRAY BUCHANAN.
JUNE 1897", this Wilkinson made sword has the serial number
34971 which is correct for 1897. Most likely presented by Colonel
James Ross Gray-Buchanan (rather than his brother Michael Rowand
Gray-Buchanan), Army Veterinary Department officers would have worn
cavalry swords like this one (it is an 1821 Pattern cavalry sword)
as their work was fundamentally with horses / cavalry regiments.
J Stewart Wood appears to be Irish by birth. was born in 1873 and
qualified at the London Veterinary College in March 1896. He served
in the 3rd and 4th Bn of the Scottish Rifles from 1891-1897 and
transferred to the Army Veterinary Department in June 1897. He served
throughout the First World War.
The 35 inch blade is in good but aged / worn condition, with a
steady patina throughout; firm in the hilt. There is some minor
damage to the blade; some very small patches of surface loss in
one small area which may even be battle damage. The hilt good /
sound, it has age / been cleaned. The fishskin grip is quite good
but with wear / some loss; the twisted grip wire bindings good.
The leather field service scabbard is overall good. The sword sheathes
and draws well.
First A.V.D. sword I have ever seen, so a rare beast indeed. On
the basis you are very unlikely to ever find another, plus the fact
this is a presentation sword, the £? (too late, no sold) price
tag equals a sound investment. Please quote item reference AA90
(0073). Further / full sized images available upon request.