These civilian made Galilean ‘type’ binoculars belonged to Alfred John Shout VC in the Anglo Boer War. The binoculars were used on Active Service by Private Shout (a New Zealander from Wellington) whilst serving with the Border Horse when he was just 19 years of age. It is understood that the ‘binos’ were damaged when Pte Shout was wounded and fell off his horse, and the horse reared up and trod on them.
In World War I, Alfred Shout joined the 1st Infantry Battalion, Australian Imperial Force (AIF) and became a captain. He died of wounds received at the battle of Lone Pine, Gallipoli on 11 August 1915. He was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his brave actions on 9 August 1915.
These are currently on display in the Harnessed: New Zealand’s War Horses exhibition in the Freyberg Gallery.