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The African Distinguished Conduct Medal

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This article was originally one of a set of memoranda available only on paper in The National Archives' reading rooms. It acted as a signpost to records of interest on a particular historical subject. It may have been compiled many years ago and could be out of date. Please feel free to edit this page to improve the information

This Memorandum was orginally written September 1992

This Medal is sometimes referred to as the King's African Rifles DCM and the West African Field Force DCM.

The Medal was instituted in 1896 and was awarded by the Secretary of State for the Colonies to African NCOs and Men of the above Regiments and to the Somaliland Camel Corps and the Nyasaland Regiment for bravery. It should not be confused with the Imperial DCM which was awarded to soldiers of other colonial units (ie. Whites and possibly Indians).

A Medal Roll used to be held by the Colonial Office but the FCO Library can no longer find it. Awards for the GREAT WAR were supposed to have been gazetted in the East Africa Gazette (CO 542) but these cannot be found at this time. During the First World War, recommendations were periodically submitted to London by the C. in C, East Africa and they may be found in the correspondence of the KAR (CO 534, Registers CO 623). These recommendations are also for the WAFF.

A War Office file about the Medal may be found in WO 32/4977 and there are also several CO minutes in CO 534/19.

NB. Medal rolls for the King West African Rifles were destroyed in a fire at the War Office 1940.