Six: Egypt and Sudan 1882-89, dated reverse, no clasp (T. Stapleton, A.B. H.M.S. “Northumberland”); China 1900, no clasp (Boatsn. T. Stapleton, R.N., H.M.S. Aurora); 1914-15 Star Trio (Lieut., R.N.); Khedive’s Star 1882, the first a little bruised and pitted, nearly very fine, otherwise good very fine and better (6)
Thomas Stapleton was born in St Budeaux, Devon on 3 October 1860 and first entered as a Boy 2nd Class aboard H.M.S. IMPREGNABLE on 6 January 1876. After being advanced to Able Seaman on 1 August 1880, he served his first full commission aboard H.M.S. NORTHUMBERLAND commencing 10 September 1881, where he was advanced to Leading Seaman on 1 May 1883 prior to being paid off in November that year. Subsequently served as a Petty Officer 2nd Class aboard H.M.S. CAMBRIDGE (1883-84) and H.M.S. LILY (1884-88). Made a Petty Officer 1st Class on 4 March 1889, and was promoted to Acting Boatswain R.N. and discharged from BELLEROPHON on 31 October 1889. On 5 May 1890 he was appointed to H.M.S. PYLADES as a Boatswain R.N. for a three year commission, subsequently serving similar periods aboard H.M. Ships VIVID (1893-96), MAJESTIC (1896-99) and AURORA (1899-1902). In September 1902 he was appointed to standby EURYALUS whilst she was built, and saw her out to Australia (1902-05). Whilst aboard LEVIATHAN (1908-10) he was promoted to Chief Boatswain on 16 August 1909 and to Lieutenant R.N. on 11 March 1914. During August 1914 he was appointed to H.M.S. MONMOUTH and took part in the Battle of Coronel. He was killed in action when MONMOUTH was sunk on 1st November 1914. The lot is sold with 18 ship’s photographs, both those that he served aboard and others that were present at Coronel.