b. 04/09/1835 Kilcullen, Ireland. d. 23/01/1900 Moate, Ireland
Abraham Boulger (1835-1900) was born on 4th September 1835 in Kilcullen, County Kildare, Ireland. Very little is known about Boulger’s life except he was born into a Protestant family. As a young man, he enlisted with the 84th Regiment of Foot (later York and Lancaster Regiment) and was posted to India on the outbreak of the Mutiny in 1857.
Boulger served throughout the Mutiny of 1857-58 and was described by Colonel Knollys as “a gallant soldier”. Knollys wrote about Boulger and described how he was one of the party of men who stormed the bridge over the canal on the occasion of Havelock’s Relief of the Residency of Lucknow. He shot a gunner who was in the act of firing a 68 pounder in the face of the British troops. He was also the first man to enter a masked battery. This action was mentioned in General Orders. Boulger’s citation for the Victoria Cross (London Gazette, 18th June 1858) was quite vague on his actions between 12th July and 25th September 1857, stating he showed gallantry in all 12 actions which took place in the Residency of Lucknow. In one of the last actions, Boulger was severely wounded, which ended his participation.
Boulger was presented with his VC by Queen Victoria on 8th June 1859 at Buckingham Palace. Boulger returned to Ireland soon afterwards and he married. The interesting thing about his marriage is that he had to convert to Catholicism in order to marry her. He later became the Quartermaster of his Regiment in 1872, and took part in the storming of Tel-el-Kebir. He then became Honorary Lieutenant Colonel on retirement from the Army, and returned to his native Ireland.
Boulger died at his home, “Moate”, near Athlone, County Westmeath on 23rd January 1900 aged 64. He was laid to rest in Ballymore RC Churchyard, County Westmeath. He is also named on his son’s headstone in Fernyhaigh. His medals were donated to the York and Lancaster Regiment Museum, Rotherham, Yorkshire.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: YORK/LANCASTER RHQ MUSEUM, ROTHERHAM, YORKS.
BURIAL PLACE: BALLYMORE CHURCHYARD, CO WESTMEATH, IRELAND.