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Heidelberg Historical Society

Eye Spy: Boer War Ribbon

Posted on Friday, 13th October 2023 by Janine Rizzetti

October 11th marks the 114th anniversary of Britain’s declaration of war on the Boers in South Africa in October 1899. This was the first international war in which Australians were significantly involved, even though the declaration of the “Commonwealth of Australia” was still more than a year off. The declaration of war sparked enthusiastic volunteering throughout Australia. Each separate Australian colony quickly established a patriotic fund to support its own state-based contingent. Victoria’s first contingent of volunteers for the Boer War left on October 28, 1899.

This fundraiser lapel bow from the Heidelberg Historical society collection features the Colony of Victoria red ensign and the national flag of the United Kingdom. People were proud to show that they had contributed for “Queen and Empire” through their purchase of a Contingent Souvenir.

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