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Robert Hawthorne

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Robert Hawthorne
Born12 July 1823
Maghera, County Londonderry
Died2 February 1879 (aged 56)
Manchester, Lancashire
Ardwick Cemetery, Manchester
AllegianceUnited Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
Service/branchBritish Army
Unit52nd Regiment of Foot
Battles/warsIndian Mutiny
AwardsVictoria Cross

Robert Hawthorne VC (12 July 1823 – 2 February 1879) born in Maghera, County Londonderry was an Irish recipient of the Victoria Cross (VC), the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.



He was approximately 35 years old, and a Bugler in the 52nd (Oxfordshire) Regiment of Foot (later the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry), British Army during the Indian Mutiny. On 14 September 1857 he was in a column tasked with forcing an entry into Delhi through the Kashmiri Gate on its northern wall. This had first to be blown up. Hawthorne was awarded the VC on the following commendation:

Bugler Hawthorne, who accompanied the explosion party, not only performed the dangerous duty on which he was employed, but previously attached himself to Lieutenant Salkeld, of the Engineers, when dangerously wounded, bound up his wounds under a heavy musketry fire, and had him removed without further injury". (General Order of Major-General Sir Archdale Wilson, Bart., K.C.B., dated Head Quarters, Delhi City, 21 September 1857.)[1]



He died in Manchester, Lancashire on 2 February 1879. He is buried in Ardwick Cemetery. His grave is unmarked since headstones in this cemetery were removed in the 1950s.

Further information


His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Royal Green Jackets (Rifles) Museum, Winchester, Hampshire, England.


  1. ^ The London Gazette of 27 April 1858, Numb. 22131, p. 2051. https://vcgca.org/our-people/profile/283/Robert--HAWTHORNE

Further reading

  • The Register of the Victoria Cross (1981, 1988 and 1997)
  • Clarke, Brian D. H. (1986). "A register of awards to Irish-born officers and men". The Irish Sword. XVI (64): 185–287.
  • Ireland's VCs ISBN 1-899243-00-3 (Dept of Economic Development, 1995)
  • Monuments to Courage (David Harvey, 1999)
  • Irish Winners of the Victoria Cross (Richard Doherty & David Truesdale, 2000)
  • J.H.L. (1925). [Review of A SHORT HISTORY OF THE OXFORDSHIRE AND BUCKINGHAMSHIRE LIGHT INFANTRY, 1741-1922. For the Young Soldiers of the Regiment, by R. B. Crosse]. Journal of the Society for Army Historical Research, 4(17), 126–127. [1]