Michael Johnson

Old Contemptible
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About Michael Johnson

  • Rank
    Old Contemptible
  • Birthday 13/12/51

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  • Location
    Oakville, Canada West
  • Interests
    The Great War 1914-18
    Royal Garrison Artillery

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  1. Perhaps a Drummer or Musician? More likely to have carried a short sword. Michael
  2. 1, could be Platelayer, but that is more a railway occupation than an Artillery one. Not one I've run across in my Indian collecting years.
  3. Time Left: 19 days and 20 hours

    • FOR SALE

    In Medallic Art Co. box, dated 1/26/45 Named to James M. Truscello, with lapel pin and tatty box. Obituary here: http://www.legacy.com/guestbooks/newsday/james-m-truscello-condolences/102363269?cid=gbsrchres A high school music teacher in New York State. Lots of high school yearbook entries on Ancestry. Truscello apparently showed Benny Goodman how to play one of Goodman's own songs! His unit served in the Pacific.


  4. The Lincolnshire Regiment was in Bermuda in 1914, so could be older. I think by 1943 the helmet flash would have been obsolete.
  5. Miraculously, given that he was Militia, my father's service record exists. I don't blame the MO - my father's eyesight was 20/200. Michael
  6. I was spared that - two boys - who still have had their challenges. I grew up at the ROM (we were about four blocks away) - I remember when I wan't tall enough to see into those table displays, and had to stop for a rest before the next set of galleries. I also remember studying Classics at the University of Toronto - and all the classical galleries were closed. I'm coming to terms, barely, with the fact that I'm now a senior - albeit a working one.
  7. Sam, I suspect it was his pension that allowed him to send my father to university (granddad started work before he was 14). Dad became a very successful corporate lawyer. I followed in his footsteps, but chose an alternative to practice. This year my son graduates from law school, to make the third generation. A long way from Bells Close Newcastle! Michael
  8. Sam, you must be very proud of your grandfather. My paternal grandfather enlisted in the Canadian Army Service Corps in 1916, got pneumonia on a field day in Toronto, and according to family history, lost an eye when they were attempting to anaethetize him and ether got spilled on his face. Medical discharge on pension with a Class C discharge pin. My maternal grandfather was French, and was recalled to duty from Canada in 1914. He was attached to the British Army as an interpreter - until his company, then engaged in the war effort, realized that he was the only one who knew the processes. After many letters and diplomatic notes the French Army let him go back to Canada.
  9. The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic had a dedicated Halifax Explosion room when i was there some years ago. Michael
  10. Sam, Not a mad idea at all. Sadly I suspect that the CWM is more interested in the Centenary of Vimy. I wonder if the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic http://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/ in Halifax could get more traction? Lots of information there: http://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/search/node/halifax explosion I have a small collection of single medals to men who were on ships at or near Halifax that day. Still missing HMS Highflyer and HMS Changuinola. I have two to HMCS Niobe - an R.N.C.V.R. clerk and an R.N. Regulating Petty Officer. I was able to find a photograph of the latter. He's the one sitting on the right end of the bench. Previous service in China in 1900.
  11. Lots of good books on the Halifax Explosion, which is a topic that fascinates me. See here: for a post that illustrates how one family was affected. Michael
  12. Back in the day when the wife and I had time to do things, we go downtown. When we meet up, Terry says, "The antique store has a badge you might be interested in." So, with no great hope I go to have a look. A Canadian Militia helmet, with Pattern 1908 Star Plate to the 31st Regiment. Traces of gold paper (amateur theatricals?). Sadly missing the screw attachment for the spike/button, but 100% authentic ("au jus" for our French friends). And how much? $35!
  13. 25 cents per week Grade 1 to 8; $5.00 grade 9 to 12; $10.00 grade 13. No allowance in Uni. Northumberland and Cumberland, Sir! Not a Yorkie! And sadly my shako for R.N.R. Scout Brigade of Fort George is Belgic. If it were stovepipe, I'd put on my nice brass one, bought at Jack Shepherd's some 40 years or more ago.
  14. Quite rightly. "Type" collectors who split groups for one medal were/are the bane of our hobby. It's bad enough when groups are split within families ("One silver for you, one silver for me; one bronze for you, one bronze for me."), but that is understandable. The sad fact is that many groups will never be re-assembled. But that Victory holds the key to the man's story. And in some cases the story continues. I bought a 1914-15 Star and Victory to a man in the Royal Naval Reserve. His service record showed that he had been discharged with tuberculosis and died very soon after. I got his death certificate, and put the case forward to the Commonwealth War Graves through the "In From the Cold Project". It was accepted and now a CWGC headstone is being erected: http://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/75451073/MURPHY, JAMES Michael
  15. Many do feel that way. However many British War Medals were sold for their silver value and smelted. If you are collecting to a theme, Victory Medals are the least expensive way to collect First War British medals. Michael