The important South Africa Boer War City of London Imperial Volunteers 1899-1900 Service In South Africa Commemorative Medallion, awarded to William Waldorf Astor, later from January 1916 Baron Astor of Hever Castle in Kent and from June 1917 the 1st Viscount Astor, these being awards for his contributions to war charities. Astor was a scion of the very wealthy Astor family of New York City, being noted as an American-English attorney, politician, businessman in hotels and newspapers, and a philanthropist.
City of London Imperial Volunteers 1899-1900 Service In South Africa Commemorative Medallion, the rim engraved: ‘WM. WALDORF ASTOR’, and housed in its deluxe gilt embossed, titled, and fitted and hinged presentation case.
Condition: Good Very Fine or better, the box however with some damage, specifically on the edges where it has snapped on its frame.
From: Colonel Sir Edward Ward, Under Secretary of War to the Lord Mayor of London: “My Lord, I am directed by the Secretary of War to aquaint you that on recommendation of Field-Marshal Lord Roberts, Commander-In-Chief, His Majesty the King has graciously pleased to approve of the offer of a South African Medal for the acceptance of the Court of Common Council and each of the City Companies in commemoration of the spontaneous and patriotic liberality shown by the Council and the Companies in assisting to raise and equip the City of London Imperial Volunteers for active service in South Africa."
City of London Imperial Volunteers 1900, bronze medallion, 76mm., A soldier of the C.I.V. proclaimed by a fanfare and welcomed by Londinia seated on a dais, the reverse The Union and C.I.V. flags flying upon a hill surrounded by trees, in gold embossed leatherette and velvet lined presentation case. 550 of these medals were minted in bronze and a very small number in silver.
William Waldorf Astor, 1st Viscount Astor (31st March 1848 – 18th October 1919) was an American-English attorney, politician, businessman (hotels and newspapers), and philanthropist. Astor was a scion of the very wealthy Astor family of New York City. He moved to England in 1891, became a British subject in 1899, and was made a peer as Baron Astor of Hever Castle in Kent on 1st January 1916 and then elevated to Viscount Astor on 3rd June 1917 for his contributions to war charities.
Among the charities he supported were the Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street (to which he gave $250,000 in 1903); University College, London (including a gift of £20,000 in 1902 for professorships); the Cancer Research Fund; Oxford University; Cambridge University; the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children; the British Red Cross Society; Gordon Memorial College Khartoum; the Soldiers and Sailors Families Association; and the Women's Memorial to Queen Victoria. His gifts to war charities included $125,000 to the Prince of Wales's National Relief Fund; a similar amount to Princess Louise's Officers' Families Fund; $200,000 to the British Red Cross; $25,000 to Queen Mary's Employment Committee; and a similar sum to the Lord Mayor's National Bands Fund. He gave $5,000 to King Edward’s Hospital Fund annually starting with its founding in 1897.