Reginald Graham VC. Istabulat 22nd April 1917.


Available on backorder



This sales page is for a pre-order – you will not receive your purchase immediately. It is expected September.  See below for more info.

This account is previously unpublished and includes the original diary and watercolours of (then) Lieutenant John Reginald Noble Graham, Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders attached to 136 Company of the Machine Gun Corps in the 7th (Meerut) Division, Indian Army in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq).

With an introductory part covering his life before going overseas in 1916, the main part of the book is his original diary that details the period up to the Istabulat battle in April 1917 when he is wounded five times during the action that would result in him being awarded the Victoria Cross – the first one gazetted to a member of the MGC.

His citation (London Gazette 14 September 1917) read:

For most conspicuous bravery, coolness and resource in command of a machine gun section.

Lt. Graham accompanied his guns across open ground, under very heavy rifle and machine gun fire, and when his men became casualties, he assisted in carrying the ammunition.

Although twice wounded he continued during the advance to control his guns and was able, with one gun, to open an accurate fire on the enemy, who were massing for a counter-attack. This gun was put out of action by the enemy’s rifle fire, and he was again wounded. The advancing enemy forced him to retire, but before doing so he further disabled his gun, rendering it useless.

He then brought a Lewis gun into action with excellent effect till all the ammunition was expended. He was again severely wounded, and forced through loss of blood to retire.

His valour and skilful handling of his guns held up a strong counter-attack which threatened to roll up the left flank of the Brigade, and thus averted what might have been a very critical situation.

After a period of recovery in India (during which time he received lots of congratulatory letters and took many photographs during a machine gun course at Mhow) he continues the diary on his return to Palestine, albeit more sporadic. We have then included some of the post-war photographs, letters and other related material.

This is published in the same style as the History and Memoir of the 33rd Battalion Machine Gun Corps  and A CANLOAN Officer with Wibalin-bound hardcover and gold-foil embossing (see the artist’s impression product image). The difference is it will be bound in crimson to represent the Victoria Cross.

A preview of the material on which this book is based can be found on our YouTube channel:


Additional info on pre-order:

Original intended delivery was July but due to our events for MGC 2022 we have been delayed and it is now expected to be delivered to the printers in September with a three week turnaround for printed.

If you add this to a larger order, your whole order will be delayed until this is available.

Additional information

Weight 1.2 kg
Dimensions 26 × 20 × 4 cm


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