Archive for WW1

WW1 Canadian Hate Belt

Posted in Belts & Belt Buckles, Insignia with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomFlag_of_AustraliaFlag_of_New_ZealandFlag_of_CanadaFlag_of_the_United_StatesFlag_of_FranceFlag_of_the_German_EmpireNice simple pickup last weekend at the local antique fair. This is a souvenir belt put together from a Prussian infantry belt and the tunic buttons from a wide range of Allied and German units. This example has a predominance of Canadian buttons so I am guessing that it was Canadian in origin. The rest are French, Australian, New Zealand, German and one single U.S. General Service button. You see these in all sorts of configurations, some on Allied belts, some with cap badges and other oddments. The legend is that these were put together from souvenirs taken from dead bodies but that sounds overly complex to me and likely nonsense. More likely most of the buttons were swapped at rear area camps between bored soldiers making up a souvenir. The U.S. button suggests a late war job, 1917-19. The Empire buttons make sense as often these units found themselves together in the line. The Canadian Regiments are from different divisions so that’s why I think this is a rear area put together. Still, a great belt, in fine condition and worth it just for the buttons and belt IMHO.

A Birchall Driver in the ASC

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles with tags , , on August 4, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomThis lonely little Victory medal was awarded to Thomas Birchall, 2529, a Driver in the Army Service Corps in WW1. I can’t find much on him but I can see by his entitlement card that he was awarded the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal in 1920. Both this and his British War medal are lost to time unfortunately.

Western Front Group to a Birchall

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles with tags , , on May 13, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomA pretty common trio to a English soldier on the Western Front. The group is named variously to PTE. or L/CPL J.BURCHELL 3553 R.LANC.R. John Burchell entered France on the 6th of October 1915 and is therefore entitled to the 1914-15 Star. He doesn’t show up on the CWGC website so it appears he made it through alive.

British 1917 Number 23 Mills Bomb

Posted in Grenades with tags , , on December 21, 2016 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomNo, I don’t collect Allied ordnance, but this is such a perfect example of an iconic weapon from both WW1 and WW2, well I guess I needed one. This particular example is a Number 23 Mark II, which places it somewhere between late 1917 and early 1918. The base plug is marked to Moorwood, the manufacturer and indicates its model number.

A Birchall with Talent in WW1

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles with tags , , , on October 16, 2016 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomInteresting partial group here. These two medals are part of a group belonging to Arthur H. Birchall, 2596. He was enlisted in 1915 as a Lance Corporal in the Durham Light Infantry and ended the war as a Lieutenant Colonel in the same regiment. His BWM and MC are lost to time. Something that is also interesting here is that another partial group of his, sans MC, recently went through the DNW auction house before being snapped up and relisted on EBay at an exorbitant markup.

Ottoman Turkish Enlisted Man’s Buckle

Posted in Belts & Belt Buckles with tags , , , on September 3, 2016 by The Dude

Ottoman_flagBeing a Kiwi I have an attachment to the Gallipoli campaign of 1915. When I visited Turkey in 2012 I made sure that I got to Anzac Cove and Chunik Bair. I scooped a little bit of soil from there into a container and dragged that home. Elsewhere here I have an Ottoman award and have been looking for an Ottoman era belt buckle for a while. This one has the toghra (personal cypher) of Mehmet V, the penultimate Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, under the national emblem. Notice how similar this buckle is in design to the Jerry ones. The Germans had both feet in the Turkish Army prior to the Great War, providing technical advice and equipment designs.

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Turkish soldiers at Sedd el Barr in 1915, prior to the invasion

British WW1 Trench Whistle

Posted in Field Gear, Musical Instruments with tags , , on July 20, 2016 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomA simple, yet evocative item. This is a 1916 dated British officer’s trench whistle. I deliberately looked for a 1916 date because the centenary of the Battle of the Somme passed this month. The whistle was manufactured by D’Courcy & Co from Birmingham.

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Lancashire Fusiliers go “over the top”, first day of the Somme, July 1st 1916.