|His name - Fred Piggin - was inscribed on the album page that originally held this cabinet photograph. Unfortunately no
other information was written down which could have helped to determine to which regiment this very young looking
soldier belonged. He is fully outfitted for the field and one can assume the photo was taken prior to his departure for
South Africa during the Anglo-Boer War. This photo was once part of a pair of almost identical images. Both by the
same photographer the other image showed a H. Piggin in the same outdoor location and in the same type of uniform.
H. Piggin looked to be of very similar age and one can only assume that the two young men were brothers.
Frederic(k) W. Piggin was born around 1877 in Long Eaton, Derbyshire, the son of Richard S. and Mary A. Piggin. The
elder Piggin was a butcher and farmer of some 60 acres in and around Long Eaton. The above mentioned H. Piggin was
his younger brother Henry A. Piggin who was born about 1880 also in Long Eaton.
Both brothers served in South Africa during the Anglo-Boer War. I have found a ship's manifest for the R.M.S.
Kildonan Castle that lists Mr. F.W. Piggin age 24 and Mr. H. Piggin age 21 returning to England from South Africa in
1902. Both men are listed as members of the "Col. Defce. Force". Examining the medal rolls for both the Queen's and
King's South Africa Medal reveals that both Frederic and Henry served together in 1/Kitchener's Fighting Scouts and
2/Branbant's Horse. Frederic Piggin served as Quartermaster Sergeant in 2/Barabant's Horse and Quartermaster
Sergeant and Squadron Sergeant Major in 2/Kitchener's Fighting Scouts. The Queen's South Africa Medal roll shows
him as being entitled to the clasps: "Wepener", "Belfast", "Wittebergen", "Cape Colony", "Orange Free State" and
"Transvaal". He was also entitled to King's South Africa Medal with its two clasps: "1901" and "1902". His brother's
medal entitlement's were exactly the same so one can assume that they remained together during their entire service
in South Africa.
Frederic William Piggin is mentioned in the as being a butcher by trade in the September 13, 1910 edition of the
London Gazette with his business being located at 24 High Street in Long Eaton while living in Hall Croft, Beeston,
The two Piggin brothers seem to show up again during World War I as members of Notts Yeomanry, T.F. (South Notts
Hussars). Henry Arthur Piggin is shown as a 2nd lieutenant of the Nott's Yeomanry, then a Lieutenant in the 1st North
Midland Field Ambulance and finally as a captain in the Army Remount Service. His theater of operations is shown as
France on his medal index card.
The above pictured Frederic William Piggin stayed in the 1/1st South Nottinghamshire Hussars (Yeomanry) during his
entire World War I service. Serving in Salonica, Egypt and Palestine he rose to the rank of captain and was awarded
the Military Cross for actions mentioned in the 5 July, 1918 edition of the London Gazette:
"Lt. [acting captain] Frederick William Piggin, Yeo. For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He was in
command of the leading squadron in an action, and led his men with great skill. He advanced rapidly over very
difficult country, driving back a superior force of the enemy. He cut the enemy's line of retreat, capturing two field
guns and some prisoners"
Frederic Piggin remained on active service in Egypt (his unit was transferred there from Salonika in June of 1917 and
remained there as part of the Desert Mounted Corps until April 1918.
Additional information regarding Frederic Piggin and his death during World War I has been kindly provided by Mr.
Jean-Baptiste Piggin of Hamburg. Frederic Piggin was drowned when the troop transport ship Leasowe Castle was
torpedoed off Alexandria, Egypt on 27 May, 1918 with a loss of 83 men, officers and other ranks. His name is listed on
the Chatby Memorial which is located in Chatby War Memorial Cemetery, Alexnadria. Based on this it is probable
that Piggin's body was lost at sea during the sinking.
A wealth of information on the extended Piggin family can be found at Mr. Mr. Jean-Baptiste's website:
Squadron-Sergeant-Major, South Nottinghamshire Hussars - 1914
Second Lieutenant - 27 November, 1914
Temporary Lieutenant - 12 November 1915
Temporary Captain - 1 August, 1916
Lieutenant & Temporary Captain - 24th July, 1917
Acting Captain (commanding Yeo. Squadron) - 15 December, 1917
Lieutenant - 4th February, 1918
Gazetted for the Military Cross - 4th February, 1918
Drowned - 27 May, 1918
Berl Storer - Photographer
Long Eaton, Derbyshire, England