Lance Corporal Hodgkins was part of the volunteers attached to the 1st Battalion of the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry. He served in Second Boer War in South Africa from 1901-1902, and later served in WWI.
Although we do not hold much information on Hodgkins in our soldier database; his objects reveal some interesting insights into his life. The first image shows a collection of objects owned by Hodgkins: a pocket watch, South African 1 shilling coin, South African 2 shilling coin, a ‘Steward’ medal for the Royal Masonic Institution for Girls dated 1891, an OBLI cap badge and two buttons.
If the medal did belong to Hodgkins, it would have been presented to him for his donation at a charitable festival held by a Masonic institution. We do not know if Hodgkins was a Freemason himself, but if so he would have been able to wear his badge for a maximum of one year from the issue date as part of his uniform. The shield denotes the area in which the festival took place.
The letters were written by Hodgkins to his wife and daughter whilst he was away during WWI. In one letter to his daughter in 1915, he describes his plans for an upcoming bank holiday and how he wishes to see her new doll’s house.