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eMedals-United Kingdom. A Medal for Zeal, II Class, Silver Grade, to Seaman R. Bassett, HMS Jupiter, RNR

Item: GB6665

United Kingdom. A Medal for Zeal, II Class, Silver Grade, to Seaman R. Bassett, HMS Jupiter, RNR

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United Kingdom. A Medal for Zeal, II Class, Silver Grade, to Seaman R. Bassett, HMS Jupiter, RNR

Type V (Tsar Nicholas II, 1894-1917). In silver, impressed "C.3469. R. BASSETT, SEA. R.N.R. H.M.S. JUPITER." on the edge, measuring 28.2 mm in diameter, dark patina, bruised, edge nicks, contact marks, without ribbon, near very fine.

Footnote: In January 1915, as the ice breaker in the White Sea had broken down, HMS Jupiter under Captain D. St. A. Wake, was sent to keep open the route to Arkhangelsk, which was so important for the supply of munitions to Russia. She sailed within a few hours of the receipt of the orders, without any arrangements having been made for heating, or for any special supplies of clothing, etc. After herculean efforts to force a way through the ice, she eventually proceed to Alexandrovsk, on the west shore of the White Sea, which was ice free and where there was a cable to Peterhead in Scotland. Shortly afterwards, the S.S. Thracia, with aeroplanes and motor cars aboard destined for Arkhangelsk, became lodged in the ice. The HMS Jupiter went in search of S.S. Thracia, ramming her way through the ice. The S.S. Thracia was found and then taken in tow, but in spite of the tow breaking continually and very considerable hardship from the cold, the HMS Jupiter succeeded in towing her to Arkhangelsk. With the aid of a Russian ice pilot, they returned to Alexandrovsk, where for many days the crew were employed in burying the cable to Scotland in the frozen and rocky ground. The ship was able to return in May but was badly damaged. Tsar Nicholas II authorized the striking and issue of medals commemorating the feat to all officers, petty officers and seamen of HMS Jupiter, on November 13, 1915. The Medal for Zeal was first instituted in December 1801 during the reign of Tsar Alexander I. After the death of Tsar Alexander III, the medal was re-designed and issued around 1894 bearing the profile of the new sovereign, Tsar Nicolas II. It was awarded to civilians that had showed exceptional zeal in the trade, production and social fields, as well as to military personnel for zealous service; in two grades: Gold and Silver.

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