Paul C

Question pn prices

36 posts in this topic

Hello All. Many of you have probably seen my posts in the Imperial section. I have sold off all of my collection, but I still have the collecting itch. I am considering getting into collection British medals. I see that many of the campaign medals are reasonable prices under $200. I have two questions:

1. If I want to start collecting the campaign and victory medals what should I do first to educate myself?

2. What is a reasonable price for a WWI Victory medal?

Thanks.

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Hi, in terms of reading material I would recommend that you look at getting the following books as a start:

1. "Medals Year Book 2017" - published by Token. this will also help with the pricing question.

2. "British Battles and Medals", I think that the Naval and Military Press may still have a few copies available.

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Thanks.

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Does anyone in the US have a Medals Yearbook from 2015 or 16 they would like to sell?

I see victory medals for sale under $25. on ebay USA. Is that a good price? 

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17 hours ago, Paul C said:

Does anyone in the US have a Medals Yearbook from 2015 or 16 they would like to sell?

I see victory medals for sale under $25. on ebay USA. Is that a good price? 

It depends on the Unit and the man..... there is a huge room for variation in British prices....

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Paul

I would very much agree with Chris. Basically Victory Medals to non-casualty corps members such as ASC, RE and RA tend to be the cheapest, followed by Line Regiments, then Militia, then unusual colonial units. $25 would be expensive for an other rank ASC, however double that would not be bad for some of the militia units. Again casualties will be higher, A first day of the Somme KIA would be well over $100. If you are seriously interested in WWI medals it would be well worth investing in Gordon Williamson "The Great War Medal Collector's Companion" . Should be easy enough to find one basically gives you all the info you ever needed to Know on WWI campaign medals and would probably more than pay for itself over a couple of years. You must not however show any interest in Indian Army medals to unusual trades , ranks or units, they are all reserved for me.

Paul

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Thanks guys.

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My only helpful advice was going to be 'Buy British Battles and Medals', even in an older edition.  I have two ancient versions but both give good 'potted' histories of Britain's military exploits over the last three centuries.  If you want to concentrate on the Great War - recent, currently in the news and relatively cheap, Paul Wood's advice is sound as well.  But, as Chris notes, enormous variations based on the perceived value of units and service.

 When I began collecting medals 40 years ago, nobody would touch Indian Army issues because they were 'unresearchable' [false] and everybody wanted medals to casualties because there was a little more info. available.   Today, nothing is unresearchable and value often depends on the personal bias of the seller and whether or not a given unit is seen as especially gallant or some other equally immeasurable quality.   The acid test, of course, is whether, 24 hours or six months later, you still fell it was money well spent!  Good luck!

Peter 

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Interesting. Three more questions:

If a British soldier was KIA in WWI was his family issued a named Victory Medal?

Is there a online list of British WWI KIA?

I have seen that award cards. Where and how are they accessed?

Thanks again.

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Paul,

Yes, named medals were issued to the next of kin.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (www.cwgc.org) has a searchable data base.

Medal Index Cards can be acquired through the British National Archives:http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/help-with-your-research/research-guides/british-army-medal-index-cards-1914-1920/

Ancestry.com worldwide services also provides access to MICs.

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ID: 11   Posted (edited)

Researchability varies.

I think about 80% of First War British Army records were destroyed or damaged during the Blitz.  Navy and RAF records do not seem to have suffered.

Canadian records are currently being digitized and posted online on the Library and Archives of Canada website (the enlistment papers are already all up).  Canadian casualties also have separate "Circumstances of Death" cards, which can give more information on how they died (although "KiA" does occur).

A possible plus is that there were a lot of Americans in the CEF.  Here's an example: "BWM 3031044 Pte. H. Dixon 75-Can. Inf. Papers here:  http://www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/discover/military-heritage/first-world-war/personnel-records/Pages/item.aspx?IdNumber=356288  Born in Liverpool in 1888, living in Chicago when he enlisted in the CEF.  Still in Chicago in 1942 when he registered for the draft. Wounded 1918, losing top joints of left index finger and invalided. Entitled to a pair." 

PM me if you want to know more about Dixon, who I have for sale on another forum.

Michael

Edited by Michael Johnson

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DNW have Kitchener's victory medal on their next sale!!!

 

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Wow!  I wonder what that will fetch!

To expand on what Michael says, for Canadians there is a very helpful 'Canadian Virtual War Memorial' run by our veteran's affairs department, which lists all the WWI and WWII casualties, with links to the CWGC site.  In a good number of cases, at least for the Great War, people have added photos of the men and/or their headstones, obituaries, and so on.  

Sadly, the  Circumstances of Death cards only exist for surnames 'A' to 'R' as the remainder were lost at some point.  The digitization of the WWI records is complete to 'Murray' as of this month and the 'complete' records include pay, medical, usually a list of units served with and the disposition of the medals, most of which were mailed out in 1920-22.  I know all this beacuse I'm on the final edit of a book on 70 men  from my area remembered on 3 local memorials.  In one case, the medals were returned and, to my surprise, re-named and reissued, with the name of the new recitpient actually included in my man's file. [I would have thought name erasing would by more costly than using a new medal per man, but I guess not.]

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Apparently there were several sets of medals named to K of K.

There are also "Veterans Death Cards" (not sure how current, but at least into the 1960s). Cause of death and where buried, also whether death was related to service, which meant a Memorial Cross could be issued to wife/mother.

I would also recommend seller maritimemedals http://www.ebay.com/usr/maritimemedals?_trksid=p2053788.m1543.l2754 on eBay.  I've dealt with Paul for many years, and he has a good selection of First War singles at reasonable prices.

Michael

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On 1/15/2017 at 10:08, Paul C said:

Does anyone in the US have a Medals Yearbook from 2015 or 16 they would like to sell?

I see victory medals for sale under $25. on ebay USA. Is that a good price? 

You can get them for $20, but $25 isn't too bad.

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ID: 16   Posted (edited)

I have been now collecting WW 1 medals for about 5 years and have, mostly British. along with Indian, SA, NZ and Canadian.

Prices are some times reflective on what country and where they come from regardless of the unit

in regards to prices on Victory medals at the end of the day will come down to what you are willing to pay.

Corps such as RAMC, ASC will cost less than a front line infantry regiment. When you start looking at Yeomanry, Hussars, Lancers and Tank corps prices jump

Like most people who collect WW 1 medals your personal price limit will depend on what area you want to concentrate on as and what the market demands

There are certainly bargains out there, but like most medals prices have been slowly increasing

Caz

Edited by cazack

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Thanks all.

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Agreed, Cazk.  My very first medla was a sliver BWM, one of 40-50 in a box on their way to a smelter back in the '80s when two brothers in texas tried to corner the silver market.  'Pte R. Milner, W Yorkshire Reg't'.  $10.00 Cdn, which was a dollar below its bullion value!  It would probably cost me upwards of $100 today, as he was a first day of the Somme casualty, though it took me years to confirm that.  Now even singles to corps are getting up there.

 I'd go with a unit, or a battle or campaign to narrow the field, were it me.  And hold out for something special.   I saw a single BWM to a Captain recently, for $100.00, I think.  Turns out he was a farm boy from the UK who joied the Cdn Expeditionary Force, tried 2 or 3 times to pass exams for officer training, finally got a commission, was commended for bravery and died a month after joining his new unit.  I may grab it yet!

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Alas many BWMs were melted due to the antics of the Bunker-Hunt brothers. I remember one London dealer who remarked with pride that after removing all the BWMS to officers the rest (several thousand) were taken to be melted

Paul

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I suppose living in the UK WW 1 medals are not as high in prices as Canada. I have picked up BWM Canadian Units for around 25 - 35 pounds, but have seen prices constantly pushing up over the last few years.

Yes agree that looking at a certain unit, battle etc is the best way forward (something i wish I had done years ago) as there are so many options to choose from. End of the day its about the enjoyment of researching the medal and its owners history if you can as often there are great suprises to be had

 

Caz

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3 hours ago, peter monahan said:

Agreed, Cazk.  My very first medla was a sliver BWM, one of 40-50 in a box on their way to a smelter back in the '80s when two brothers in texas tried to corner the silver market.  'Pte R. Milner, W Yorkshire Reg't'.  $10.00 Cdn, which was a dollar below its bullion value!  It would probably cost me upwards of $100 today, as he was a first day of the Somme casualty, though it took me years to confirm that.  Now even singles to corps are getting up there.

 I'd go with a unit, or a battle or campaign to narrow the field, were it me.  And hold out for something special.   I saw a single BWM to a Captain recently, for $100.00, I think.  Turns out he was a farm boy from the UK who joied the Cdn Expeditionary Force, tried 2 or 3 times to pass exams for officer training, finally got a commission, was commended for bravery and died a month after joining his new unit.  I may grab it yet!

Peter, my records are that it was a 1914-15 Star. He was 15th Bn. which took heavy casualties July 1, 1916.

Michael

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Paul Wood wrote: "Basically Victory Medals to non-casualty corps members such as ASC, RE and RA tend to be the cheapest."

Paul:  I hesitate to take issue with a medal expert such as yourself but I find your comment above somewhat interesting as it refers to the Royal Regiment of Artillery as a "non-casualty corps." It is a regiment, not a corps, and it suffered 48,948 dead and 132,000 wounded during the Great War and 28,924 dead during World War II (casualty numbers from the RA Commemoration volumes for the two wars).

Regards, Gunner 1 (a proud American gunner)

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I have given some thought to my focus of which British Victory Medals I would like to collect. Please let me know if this is possible.

I would like to collect Victory medals named to men in the Royal Navy and see if I can get a medal to at least one person who served on every battleship. A few questions:

When I see a medal named to a man in the RN what are the online sources to see what ship he served on?

Does this collecting focus make sense?

I really appreciate all the help and advice from everyone.

Last one... In the above post there is a reference to BWM. What is that?

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BWM = British War Medal.  The other common abreviations are VM for Victory Medal and '14 Star' or '14-'15 Star'.  Sorry!

Others can speak to the availability of info. on which ships a man served on, though off the top of my head I'd guess his medals would indicate that.  RN types, true?  As to whether you can get obe to every ship... Hmm.  I think the RN had 15+ carriers, almost 20 heavy cruisers and over 200 destroyers by the war's end, never mind subs and other classes, so thst should keep you busy for a bit, certainly. 

21 hours ago, Michael Johnson said:

Peter, my records are that it was a 1914-15 Star. He was 15th Bn. which took heavy casualties July 1, 1916.

Michael

I'm clearly conflating two different medals!  Blast this middle-aged brain!

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5 hours ago, Paul C said:

I have given some thought to my focus of which British Victory Medals I would like to collect. Please let me know if this is possible.

I would like to collect Victory medals named to men in the Royal Navy and see if I can get a medal to at least one person who served on every battleship. A few questions:

When I see a medal named to a man in the RN what are the online sources to see what ship he served on?

Does this collecting focus make sense?

I really appreciate all the help and advice from everyone.

Last one... In the above post there is a reference to BWM. What is that?

RN Seamen's papers are available on Ancestry.com, or British National Archives. It would probably be cheaper to take out a monthly subscription with ancestry.co.uk and just get Britain-only rather than a world subscription.  The search page is: http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=60522.  You could purchase credits to search a few medals.  For ships, just Google HMS XXXX, and you will probably find what you're looking for. e.g. https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=HMS+Queen+Mary

This site is great for further information: http://www.naval-history.net/WW1NavyBritishShips-Dittmar3WarshipsA.htm

Some ships log books have been transcribed: http://www.naval-history.net/OWShips-LogBooksWW1.htm

Good luck!  And if you find any sailor who was on HMS Highflyer in December 1917, please tell me! (Not a battleship).

Michael

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