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Hi all,

As I am new here I thought I would introduce myself and post my collection for all to see. Some of you may recognize me from another forum but I thought I'd try things out here for awhile.

My collection mainly consists of WWII Polish 2nd Corps with a smattering of Polish Airborne and some Canadian Armoured Corps. Unfortunately I don't have the room to display it all at the home I'm at now but as I have bought a new house I will finally have a room all of my own. This will allow me to display most of my collection.

I will try to describe the photos as I go along. If you see any items that you would need additional photos of please feel free to ask. Feel free to comment (positive or negative..I don't mind).

Thanks,

Greg

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General shot of the left side of my collecting area. Apologies for the clutter but as I said room is limited for now. The Perth Reg't BD is ID'd. I will detail later. You can see a bunch of stuff under the mannequin. That's mainly my spare British pattern 37 web and such.

RoomL.jpg

The "busy area". I do a lot of work here so sometimes it's hard to keep things tidy. You can see a tonne of photos that have to be mounted. Also a WWII period Canadian Ensign that is due to be framed when I get the time.

RoomC.jpg

The right side. My display case housing much of my badge collection. The mannequin to the right is a Polish 2nd Corps Zandarm (MP). It is also ID'd.

RoomR.jpg

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Shelf full of Polish berets. All but one of them is ID'd and those came directly from vets or their families (as most of my collection has). All are Italian Campaign (my speciality).

Berets.jpg

The Perth Regiment BD. Original weare was a man by the name of Malven Mack. He was a stretcher bearer. I also got all of his paperwork as well as his SB and Medic's Armbands. He served in Italy and NW Europe. Wounded twice (as noted by the wound stripes on the sleeve).

Perth.jpg

Edited by GregK

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Top shelf of the display case. This is my Polish Airborne shelf.In the background there are a couple of modern additions. You can see a bottle of Airborne Wine and a bottle of Airborne Beer. Both souveniers of a trip to Arnhem. The beret belonged to a para named Aleksander Sudolf. He was a veteran of Market Garden and took part in the failed jump on Arnhem. The photo is of an unknown Polish para. It's actually two photos that are backto back. I rotate them from time to time to chage it up a bit. The Army Book 64 is also to a Polish para. The little box in front of it is the British War Medal that was awarded to the man with the Paybook. Mixed in are a few little odds and ends that are related.

Shelf1.jpg

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The second shelf. It's a mix of original medals and badges to the Polish 2nd Corps. This shelf is primarily 3 Carpathian Rifles Div. and 5th Kresowa Infantry Div. There are some very RARE badges in this lot.

Shelf2_1.jpg

Another angle of the same shelf to show the badges a little more clearly.

Shelf2_2.jpg

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The third shelf. Another mix of original medals and badges. The rack at the back is my latest. This shelf focuses on the 2nd Armoured Div. and misc. 2nd Corps badges. Some more rarities on this shelf.

Shelf3_1.jpg

Another angle to show more badge detail.

Shelf3_2.jpg

Edited by GregK

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Bottom shelf. Mainly WWII Canadian Cavalry/Armoured. As I am associated with The Fort Garry Horse my allegiance lies there (as you can see). There are some other WWII Armoured badges in there as well. This shelf is a work in progress with many additions coming regularly.

Shelf4.jpg

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A very RARE BD and GS Cap to a Polish Zandarm (MP) in the Polish 2nd Corps. Canvas titles to the shoulders and scarce plastic insignia to both sleeves. This tunic was worn by Stefan Boczek who had some service with the Polish army at the time of the invasion in September '39. I have all of his paperwork as well as a copy of his service record.

Zandarm.jpg

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The last of the misc. bits on display.

A one of a kind shield for te 3rd Carpathian Rifles Div. I don't know the exact story on this one but from what I have been able to gather there was one of these made for every Commonwealth and Allied unit and they were hung in a mess hall somewhere in the UK. They were then sold off several years ago. This is the only one like it anywhere on Earth.

DSK.jpg

Original flyer issued by the Allies and pasted all over Poland during German occupation. It's basically a "Wanted" poster for Hans Frank for attrocities against the Poles.

Frank.jpg

Medal and badge grouping to Sgt. Piotr Komorowski. He was with the 2nd Sanitation Coy of the 3rd Carpathian Rifles Div. A couple of rarities in this grouping. The plastic 3 DSK "patch" as well as the collar badge for the Sluzba Zdrowia. So far it is only the second badge of it's type that I know of (the other residing in a good friends collection)

Komorowski.jpg

That's about all I have to post for now. There are still many items that will be posted in coming days. I still have many groupings of Polish medals/badges as well as uniforms of the Polish 2nd Corps and Canadian Armoured Corps. Please feel free to comment. Thanks for looking.

Cheers,

Greg

Edited by GregK

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A nice lot of stuff!!!

Can you do more detailed posts of the berets here...

http://gmic.co.uk/index.php?showforum=166

and the badges!

Ever since reading Keegans "Six armies in Normandy" and a bit about Monte Cassino, I have found the Polish units very interesting.

Have no way of collecting it myself (either financially (too much other stuff) or being able to find things here) but would be very keen to see yours.

(I guess you have read the keegan book?)

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Hi Chris,

Thanks for the comment. Hopefully others will follow suit soon.

I will try to make detailed photographs of the berets as time permits. They will be packed up soon for the "big move" so I'll try to get them done before then. Ditto for the badges. Anything in particular that you're wanting to see? I will try to oblige the best I can in a timely fashion.

Will post a couple of additional pics shortly. Hopefully more comments will follow.

Cheers,

Greg

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Tunic and medals/badges/papers to one man.

KD tunic used in North Africa by a man named Adam Rawdo. As you can see he was in the Independant Carpathian Rifles Brigade and fought at Tobruk. He also served in Italt @ Cassino. I have copies of his service records showing that he also took part in the defence of Poland in the September 1939 Campaign. He was one of the few that escaped Russian clutches and made it to Syria to form the Brigade. Unfortunately the tunic is stripped of all the buttons save for the ones on the cuffs. It has been modified in typical Polish fashion of having padding added to the shoulders. No other identifying insignia as is correct for a tunic of this type.

KD.jpg

Mr. Rawdo's badges and paperwork. As you can see there are a couple of them missing. Kind of a pity but the bulk of the items remain.

Rawdo.jpg

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My favourite Canadian BD. Nice wartime example of a XII Manitoba Dragoons uniform. This particular example is special as it has not been tailored to a "best" or "coming home" BD and is exactly as it would have been worn in the field. I also have trousers for it but alas no full mannequin to display the set on.

ManDrag1.jpg

Another angle to show the insignia.

ManDrag2.jpg

More to follow another day.

Thanks for looking. Please feel free to comment away.

Cheers,

Greg

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Hi Laurence,

Thanks for the kind words. It's taken years of hard work and much study to accumulate this collection. That and lots of networking!! Much of my collection is directly from veterans or their families. Being Polish myself and having a granddad that was a Cassino vet helps too though. My granddad passed many years ago but the contacts and relationships that have been made through the family have endured. In fact the house that I currently reside in was built and owned by a Polish 2nd Corps vet who moved to Canada pre-war but answered the call. As you may or may not know Winnipeg had a huge influx of Poles that moved here post-war rather than return to Communist Poland. Mainly to fulfill a 2 year contract with farmers who were losing their German POW labour (my grandad being one of them).

I am not a current serving member of the FGH unfortunately. By the time I came to my senses it was far too late for me to dedicate the kind of time required. I am, however, a member of the regimental association and have many friends that are current serving members. I also volunteer at the regimental museum and get a "hands on" of all the regimental goodies. :cheers:

Will post more as time allows. Have many more documented Polish medal/badge/paper groupings and some uniforms to boot. Look forward to hearing some more comments.

Thanks,

Greg

Edited by GregK

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Hallo Greg :beer::mad:

I must say a really stunning display and very well presented, in the new house take two rooms for display purposes, as you can never have enough space. :P

Kevin in Deva :beer:

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Hi Kevin,

Thanks for the kind words. As far as the presentation is concerned I'm still not totally happy with it (probably never will be) but I have big plans for my room once we get into our new home. As far as being able to get two rooms.....not a chance. The wife to be tolerates my collecting only to a certain level and she's already got plans for the other two bedrooms I'm afraid.

Just one addition for tonight. It will follow shortly.

Thanks,

Greg

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Todays addition. This piece is kind of enigma in my collection. As I mainly collect Polish 2nd Corps, Canadian Armoured Corps, and Canadians in the Italian campaign this one fits nowhere. It's a nearly complete uniform grouping to a man who served with the RCEME with 21st Army Goup in NW Europe. It consists of his BD, trousers, beret, helmet and ID tags. Unfortunately it's a tad too small for any of my mannequins at the moment (hence the photo of it on the floor) but that problem will be rectified soon.

RCEME1.jpg

Here's the most interesting part of this grouping. Not only did he serve with the 21st Army Group in Europe but he was also shipped off to the Pacific and served a short period there as well. A true soldier.

RCEME2.jpg

Edited by GregK

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In honor of the anniversary of the Canadian victory on Vimy ridge I thought I would take a minute to post these items from my collection. They were picked up by myself on a trip to Vimy Ridge a couple of years ago. I must clarify that I didn't actually dig these out of the ground myself (that's illegal). They were digging a new trench for a new bathroom at the visitors centre and these items were among the dirt that came out. These were gathered about 1/2 km from the ridge itself and would have been at the Canadian position looking up at the ridge. They consist of an artillery fuse (presumably German), an unfired British .303 round (heavily corroded and quite safe), and a couple of rocks gathered at the crest of the ridge itself.

Thanks for looking.

Vimy.jpg

Edited by GregK

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Been busy packing of late for the move so little time to post. It's a beautiful daty out here today so I thought I'd take the night off and snap a few photos to add. Please let me know what you guys think.

Firstly a Cpl. BD to a gent from the West Nova Scotia Reg't. Fought in Italy and @ Cassino. This reg't also travelled to Italy on a Polish boat called the Stefan Batory. That's the exact same boat that my parents emigrated to Canada on in 1972!!! Unfortunately the moths got to this one so I "dressed" him up with full P37 web and it only really shows on the sleeve. Comments please.

NNSH1.jpg

His left side showing a moth hole. The MKII helmet is kind of cockeyed as it was a tad out of balance on this particular mannequin.

WNSH2.jpg

Right side showing some more moth bites. Nothing too serious though.

WNSH4.jpg

The least exciting side showing his back. I would have posed him with an Enfield but was afraid the neighbours might get upset.

WNSH3.jpg

Edited by GregK

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One more addition for today. More to follow tomm.

Lt. in the 1st Hussars. Really nice BD overall. Can't really say a heck of a lot for this one so I'll just let the pictures do the talking.

FH1.jpg

Left side.

FH3.jpg

Right side.

FH4.jpg

Lovely patches to one of the sleeves.

FH6.jpg

As I said...more to follow tomm. Thanks for looking. Please feel free to comment.

Edited by GregK

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Thanks Des. Can't wait to get it all setup and have you over for a stay. We'll go hunting in my neck of the woods next time you're out.

Another recent addition. A Polish 2nd Corps Officer's greatcoat. Badged to a Captain. It is identified but the name escapes me at the moment. The Rogatywka is not original but is period. It was a gift from a friend at Warner Bros. Studios and was used in a film called "Desperate Journey" in the 40's. It'll do until I can locate a proper one. I have some other more exciting recent additions that I will post in the upcoming days. Let me know what you guys think.

Cheers,

Greg

GC1.jpg

Right Side:

GC5.jpg

Detail:

GC4.jpg

Left Side:

GC3.jpg

Detail:

GC2.jpg

Edited by GregK

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Another very new addition. So new, in fact, that's it's barely been 48 hrs. since I've become it's custodian. There was a break in the weather so I thought I'd take a chance and photograph it.

As you can see it's an officer's 4 pocket service dress for a Polish pilot in the Airforce in Exile. Unfortunately NOT identified but I am working on it. The eagle is Polish made which means he was a pilot @ the outbreak of war. He most likely would have escaped to France and eventually England. I can only speculate (only because of the timeline) that he would have taken part in some capacity with the Battle of Britain. Please ignore the cap as it's only for effect until an appropriate example can be located. There actually was originally a cap with this tunic but the merchant that had it thinks it may have been stolen as he can no longer locate it (there is hope as it MAY have just been misplaced) :( . Oh well....I've prattled on long enough. Please enjoy and comment if you wish.

Thanks,

Greg

PAF1.jpg

The Left Side:

PAF2.jpg

The Right Side:

PAF3.jpg

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