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ralstona

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About ralstona

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    New Jersey
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    British and Indian Medals

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  1. I recently purchased this Scottish 1828 pattern basket hilt sword on ebay here in the US. The BIN price was low so I figured I have a go. It is not in very good shape. No scabbard, no grip, blade is heavily pitted obscuring much etching, basket hilt is pitted and I believed at first spray painted gold. The brass proof mark has also popped out. It does have a few redeeming qualities. 1. The blade is straight and does retain some etching. I can make out the battle honours: Salamanca, Pyrenees, Nivelle (or NIve), Toulouse, Waterloo, Sevastapol, and Egypt 1882. 2. The blade is stamped with a serial number on the spine "1958". 3. There is an etched (possibly) VRI or it could be initials of the owner. I have a couple of questions: 1. What regiment? Cameron or Black Watch? 2. Is that a VRI or intials? 3. Is the gold on the basket original? I assumed not but it will NOT come off. I've tried. It seems gilt on (ormolu?) 4. Does the number 1958 give any information? Its obviously not a year. 5. The sword is what it is. It is never coming back to "new". I would like to put a grip on it though. Anyone have an old beat up one they would sell or know where I could get one? More pics.
  2. I've had a wonderful back and forth with the curator at the HistoryLinks museum in Dornoch, Sutherland. They have confirmed that this is an officer's tunic from the 5th Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders (formerly 1st Sutherland Rifle Volunteers). It seems to be a scarce item. I am still looking for a photo of a officer of the 5th SH in full dress. The museum did not have one which included feather bonnet, doublet, dirk, fly plaid, sash, cross-belt, basket-hilt sword, kilt and sporran. I'm curious if anyone has seen one. The closest I've come is the drawing above from Scottish Volunteer Force 1859-1908. I'd be particularly interested to know what he battalions plaid brooch looked like.
  3. Macron1 - your post got me searching. I think you are right. The tunic you posted is an Other Ranks tunic for the First Sutherland Volunteers held by the Historklinks Museum in Dornoch, Sutherland, Scotland. The First Sutherland Volunteers became the 5th Seaforth Highlanders in 1881 or 1908. This picture I found shows uniforms of the First Sutherland Volunteers. The uniform on the right looks a match for the one at the museum and the third from the right seems to match mine. Red cuffs and seemingly no collar badges.
  4. The one on the right is a 1894 scarlet serge patrol jacket (2 pocket) to a Lieutenant in the Gordon Highlanders. I'll post a better picture later. The one on the left is Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.
  5. I recently purchased this tunic. It seems to be WWI period from the construction. It is a bit of a mystery, not quite matching any of the standard regimental patterns. It has red cuffs, yellow collar with no collar badges. There seem to never have been any as there are no holes in the fabric. It is ranked for a Lieutenant. The buttons seem to be the biggest clue. They are all the same. A wildcat on crown with the motto "Sans Peur" (without fear). This is the motto and emblem are from the Sutherland clan coat of arms. At first I thought it might be from the pre-1881 93rd Sutherland Highlanders. The construction does not seem that early and I don't believe they wore these buttons. A second possibility (and one that seems more likely) is the 5th (Caithness and Sutherland) Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders. While they were part of the Seaforth Highlanders, the were allowed to wear the Sutherland Clan emblems on their uniforms. (A unusual allowance?... Are there other examples of battalions in the British Army that did not wear (at least) a version of their parent units badge?) Still I'm not certain. I've not been able to find anything confirming the red cuffs or no collar badges. I have seen pictures that show both buttons and cap badges with the "Sans Peur" Wildcat. Any help would be appreciated.
  6. I've decided to sell this on. I am a Royal Navy collector and this doesn't fit as interesting as it is. I've put it on ebay (US) if anyone is interested. Art
  7. Many thanks. Austrian uniforms are totally outside my area. (Although the navy piece is on theme). I looked closely at the sleeves. I don't know, maybe there were ranks cuffs at some point. Are there any cases where there wouldn't have been any (i.e. warrant officers)? I assuming its WWI as opposed to, say, 1870s. Is there any way to nail it down?
  8. I had originally posted this over in the British section because I thought it was Royal Navy. Thanks to a forum member for properly id'ing it. I hadn't looked at the back of the buttons. (I'm not sure why, I always do.) There are several types: Some say: "A U" and "Qualitat" Others say: "Bruder Schneider Wein" Still others say: "KUK Hof Lieferanten" So a few questions. 1. What date? Obviously before 1918 but more specific than that? 2. No cuff ranks, would there have been any? 3. It has loops for epaulettes. What would they look like? 4. It has loops for two medals. Any idea what they would have been? Not so much which particular medals. I know that's impossible. There are two overlapping stiff cord medal hangers. Would that be for two medals or a bar with more than two?
  9. Taking that close up of the button, it dawned on me to look at the backs of the buttons. I'm not sure why I didn't do that to begin with. Yes definitely A-H. Button say (there are two types): "Bruder Schneider, Wein" and "KUK Hof Lieferanten" I'm going to put a post in the appropriate thread. Thank you Balazs
  10. Interesting. Here is a close up of one of the buttons. This 19th century Royal Navy frock in the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich has six rows of buttons. https://collections.rmg.co.uk/collections/objects/71609.html I had considered that it might be continental. Austro-Hungarian would be interesting indeed.
  11. Hello, I'm looking for some information about this Navy Frock Coat. It has no rank stripes on the sleeve. Doesn't seem to ever have had any. No markings of any kind inside coat. Has stiff cord on left breast for two medals. Shoulders have loops for epaulettes. What era is it from? Any info would be great, thanks.
  12. Interesting points! I have always liked these Medaille d'Honneur. Especially the large ones for marine and colonies. I've always wanted one with an Africa connection (the search continues). I've managed to find a nice early ribbon for it. Sadly I don't imagine St.PetM was high on anyone's priority list so if it got sent out without a name it probably didn't bother anyone. They probably figured it would be so uncommon in the colony that no one would know the difference.
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