The Victoria Cross
The Victoria Cross

The Victoria Cross
Awarded to Men of Portsmouth
- Admiral Nowell Salmon -


 
Portrait
Sir Nowell Salmon
 

Nowell Salmon V.C.
Lieutenant
Royal Navy (Naval Brigade)
 
BORN: 20 FEB 1835 The Vicarage, Swarraton, Hants
LIVED: 1894-1897 Admiral and C in C Portsmouth and lived in Admiralty House, Portsmouth Dockyard
Curdridge Grange, near Botley, Hants
DIED: 14 FEB 1912 44 Clarence Parade, Southsea
BURIED: St Peter's Churchyard, Curdridge, Hants
V.C. WON: 16 NOV 1857 Lucknow, India
For conspicuous gallantry at Lucknow, on the 16th November, 1857, in climbing up a tree, touching the angle of the Shah Nujjiff, to reply to the fire of the enemy for which a most dangerous service the late Captain Peel KCB, had called for volunteers.
LONDON GAZETTE: 24 DEC 1858
MEDAL PRESENTED: 08 JUN 1859 Queen Victoria, Buckingham Palace
FINAL RANK: Admiral of the Fleet VC GCB JP RN
 
Naval Career
Nowell Salmon joined the Navy as a Cadet on 10th May 1847. He served aboard HMS Thetis from 1851-1853 and was subsequently promoted to Mate aboard HMS James Watt. He served in the Baltic during the Crimean War (Baltic Medal) and on 5th January 1856 was made Lieutenant. In September that year he joined Captain William Peel and served with the Shannon Naval Brigade during the Indian Mutiny. He was present at the relief of Lucknow, saw action at Kudjwa and was promoted to Commander for gallantry on 22nd March 1858. A year later Salmon was aboard HMS Icarus as Commander on the West Indies and North America Station during which time he captured the Filibuster Walker for which he received a gold medal from the Central American States.
 
On 12th December 1863 he was promoted to Captain on board HMS Defence and HMS Valiant where he remained until 12th December 1874 when he was appointed Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria until 2nd August 1879 when he was promoted to Rear-Admiral. In 1882 he was Commander-in-Chief, Cape of Good Hope and West Coast of Africa and flew his Flag in HMS Boadicea. He became Vice-Admiral in July 1885 and Commander-in-Chief, China Station in 1887. He achieved the rank of Admiral on 10th September 1891 and three years later became Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth, flying his Flag in HMS Victory and living in the Admiralty House in Portsmouth Dockyard. In 1897 he commanded the Fleet at Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee Fleet Review at Spithead in the Solent, flying his Flag in HMS Renown and was thereafter appointed First and Principal Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria. On 11th January 1899 he became Admiral of the Fleet and on 25th February 1905 he retired.
 
Family History
Nowell Salmon was born on the 12th February 1835. His father was Henry Salmon, Rector of Swarraton, near New Arlesford, Hants and his mother was Emily, daughter of Vice-Admiral Nowell of Iffley, Oxford. On 11th January 1866 he married Emily Augusta, daughter of Erasmus R Saunders of Westbrook, Upway, Dorset at the Parish Church of Upway, Dorset. Their son Geoffrey was born on 26th November 1871 and he was followed by a daughter, Eleanor. Emily died in a nursing home on 14th February 1914 and is buried at Curdridge together with her husband who died on 14th February 1912.
 
Headstone at Curdridge

NOWELL SALMON VC CB, ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET
BORN FEBry 20, 1835
PASSED TO HIS REST FEBry 14, 1912
THINE EYES SHALL SEE THE KING IN HIS BEAUTY
THEY SHALL BEHOLD THE LAND THAT IS VERY FAR OFF
EMILY AUGUSTA HIS WIFE
BORN AUGUST 26th 1846
CALLED TO JOIN HIM FEBry 14, 1915
PERFECT LOVE CASTETH OUT FEAR

 

Plaque in St Ann's Church

TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN LOVING MEMORY OF
ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET SIR NOWELL SALMON
V.C., G.C.B.
BORN FEBr. 20th 1835 DIED FEBr. 14TH 1912


 
The Medal
On Thursday, 22nd July 2010, the Victoria Cross, Orders, decorations and campaign medals awarded to Admiral Sir Nowell Salmon, Royal Navy (Naval Brigade) were sold at auction by Spink of London. The VC group achieved a hammer price of 190,000. The identity of the purchaser has so far remained anonymous.

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