Sea Gallantry Medal Victoria large type for gallantry in bronze, ((James Hogben, Wreck of the “Samaritano” on Margate Sands 13th Feby 1860.) in case of issue EF


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A superb and rare medal to a Coxswain of the R.N.L.I.

Late on the evening of 12 February 1860, the 170 ton Spanish brig Samaritano ran aground on sands near Margate. The two lifeboats in service there (including Friend of All Nations) were launched to her assistance, together with some local luggers. The lifeboats were forced back due to the snowy weather and mountainous seas. A message was then sent to Ramsgate to launch their lifeboat. The Ramsgate lifeboat was towed out by the steam tug Aird. On nearing the wreck, in the early hours of 13 February, the tow was slipped and in violent seas the lifeboat made for the Samaritano. The crew of the Ramsgate lifeboat gallantly managed to save all 11 men of the Samaritano plus six boatmen from Margate and two from Whitstable who had gone aboard to render assistance but who had been unable to get their vessels away. The rescue was conducted with great endurance and bravery in terrible conditions; the lifeboat being handled with great dexterity. All 19 rescued men were landed at Ramsgate at 8 pm.

James Hogben, coxswain of the Ramsgate lifeboat ‘Northumberland’, together with ten members of the crew, were each awarded Board of Trade Bronze Medal for Gallantry with a gratuity of £2. A further two men from the tender Rose were similarly rewarded for the same rescue. James Hogben (listed as ‘Hogbin’ in Lifeboat Gallantry) was awarded the R.N.L.I. Silver Medal on 3 December 1857 for a rescue performed on 26/27 November 1857 and many previous rescues effected as Coxswain of the Northumberland.