V.C. London Gazette 6.2.1863 'For volunteering, while under the east gate of the city of Fungwha, to carry alone to a joss-house, a 150 yards distant, under a heavy and continuous fire of musketry, gingal and stinkpots, Mr. Coker, Master's Assistant of the Sphinx, who had been wounded in the advance to the gate; in which object Hinckley succeeded. On his return to the gate, under a similar fire, he again volunteered, and succeeded in carrying to the joss-house, Mr. Bremer, an Officer of Ward's force, who had been wounded in the advance on the gate; and he again returned to his post under the gate'.
Able Seaman George Hinckley, V.C., was born in Liverpool in June 1819, the son of a butcher. Comtemporary Naval documents record him as joining the Convict Ship Tortoise, at Hobart, Tasmania for a passage home in February 1842, although it is quite probable his Naval career extends back earlier than this date. He held several seagoing appointments prior to joining H.M.S. Sphinx in May 1860, and had a spell in Hong Kong Prison just before she sailed for China. The deeds that won him the V.C. were unusual in that one of them involved the rescue of an American, Mr. Bremer (a.k.a. 'Captain Bruman'), whom was a member of the force led by the colourful American, General Ward. The latter Officer had commanded a force of some 3000 men from the Imperial Chinese Army before being mortally wounded during the march to Shanghai.
Hinckley was advanced to Quarter-Master in July 1863 and was dishcharged to shore as a pensioner in June 1867. Interestingly, given the existence of the above described Cross, and the 'official replacement' recorded as having been sold at Sotheby's in November 1988, he is known to have lost his original V.C. at a funeral ceremony and 'replaced it at the cost of twenty-four shillings' (M.J. Crook's The Evolution of the Victoria Cross refers). After marrying a farmer's daughter, he settled in Devonport and remained there for the rest of his life, dying at North Street, Plymouth in December 1904 at the age of 85 years. He was buried at Ford Park Cemetery.