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Mike McLellan

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Everything posted by Mike McLellan

  1. Wow! Just keeps getting better! I don’t think I’d clean it just yet. Far fetched, I know, but somebody somewhere will wonder if there’s retrievable DNA evidence on that tunic. Okay, my imagination has gotten the best of me. Mike
  2. Wow! What a terrific find! I’d say that takes care of several birthdays. Beautiful! Whitechapel no less! Maybe you can research just a bit to narrow down the possible owner. Mike
  3. As a student of various police agencies’ histories, I would like to have a look into the history of the Russian Police. I wonder, though, who would have the most direct knowledge to amass such a mammoth undertaking. During certain eras of their past, the police were not known for their transparency. Peter the Great, whose image is portrayed on the medals, was hailed as a champion of the enlightenment. He was not, however, famous for his empathy toward the peasants. Plus, of her many virtues, Catherine the Great’s openness was not the most notable. Anyway, congratulations to the Russian p
  4. Fascinating! I wonder, though, if these medieval treasures could be rebuilt today. Many of the trades-craft are a lost art. Even the materials used such as the timbers are simply non-existent. That’s why the recent undertaking at Norte Dame was such an awe inspiring event. We can’t just keep blowing stuff up and hoping to put it back together. Let’s see more pictures. They’re very inspiring. Mike.
  5. At the very least, he should have been pepper-sprayed, just to be on the safe side. Mike
  6. Great advice. Never thought of that particular scam. I will say, though, that tracking numbers are crucial, whether coming or going, because of where I live. A one month travel time for parcels, to or from Alaska, is not excessive. Mike.
  7. As a footnote: The Moor Lane station (A Division) was bombed out of existence in 1940 during the Blitz. Helmet plates with staybrite numbers and a shiny 'A', like the one currently listed on ebay, are probably less genuine than the vendor might hope to imply. Also, D Division on Cloak Lane was moved to Wood Street in 1946. Mike.
  8. Greetings Kvetch! As to the leaded truncheon debate, I have nothing to add, except that I have seen, posted on various auction sites, truncheons that purportedly fit that description. I've never had a close-up encounter, even though I grew up in a sleepy little hamlet on the Detroit River, where such myths spring to life at night. Gutta percha, when it was introduced to the industrial world, sparked the imagination of many, and was tested in various products. I Know that truncheons, at least in the U.K., had to be within certain parameters concerning length, diameter, as well as wei
  9. I'm just about through. I'm not sure when 'MP' started to appear in the red cartouche. It was probably in the 1860s, but that's just a guess. It seems that the firm, Parker, Field, & Son was having a difficult time in holding onto the lion's share of the rapidly growing market of police related equipment. Alan Cook mentions some active competition in his book, and by the end of the century, they pretty much ceased to exist. Alan also writes that in 1887, instructions were given to cut down the existing truncheons from 17.5 inches long to 15.5 inches. The truncheon in the center
  10. A couple more... In another thread in this forum (Apr. 27, 2015), Mervyn Mitton identified a truncheon like the ones pictured below as 'thje first pattern for Victoria". He also added that nobody is really sure what the WivR truncheons looked like. Hence my plea for information. Note: On the truncheon on the right, most of the gold leaf has been rubbed or worn off, This gives one some idea just how many steps it took to create one of these beauties. Multiply that by several thousand! By the way, both of these show a maker's mark on the butt end of, "Field 233 Holborn", which i
  11. While we're waiting for our brethren to post their pictures of WivR Met truncheons, I have a couple more I'd like to show that are, at least, representative of what one might expect in a truncheon from that early reign (1830-1837). A truncheon from the reign of William IV should either have a monogram of WivR or the proper coat of arms, which is the same one used all through Victoria's reign up until the present time, except for the addition of the Hanover Inescutcheon superimposed upon it. I don't have a stick with that combined coat of arms, and I'm unable to post one off the internet,
  12. Thanks, Nightbreak. The trouble with history, is that there's so damned much of it! Plus, the sources of reliable information seem to be getting more scant as time goes on. Beside the three books mentioned, there's not much information readily available. We have to glean what we can and hope that we're not too far off the mark. I have, what I believe to be, one of the earliest of the Metropolitan Police truncheons. When I first got it (about 30 years ago) I thought it was one of the newer ones from the turn of the last century. However, since then, because of its size, heft, and shape, I
  13. After seemingly endless minutes of research, complimented by hour upon hour of day-dreaming, I have to admit, I still don’t have all the answers. I’m trying to find a photo, drawing, or other accurate description of the earliest truncheons issued by the Metropolitan Police. In his book on truncheons, Alan Clark suggests that the earliest ones were not painted or otherwise adorned. This makes sense to me “due to the volume required” and the timely manner in which they were needed. In another splendid book, “The Policeman’s Lot”, our good friend Mervyn Mitton cites a curious description fo
  14. Beautiful display, Dave! I’m afraid that my collection has become overrun with clutter; like weeds in an unkempt garden. Very nice job. Mike
  15. Very impressive display. Can’t wait to see what eventually lands in that upper right corner! Beautiful collection. Mike
  16. I read, years ago, that for the Metropolitan Police, in the early days, the justification for the low pay for police officers was the expectation that the hardest working officers would be able to supplement their incomes with rewards or gratuities from grateful citizens, for the return of stolen property, extraordinary security, or other crime deterring practices. This was the practice in earlier attempts at policing London, but was also a cause of fairly wide spread corruption among the thief-takers and hireling constables of that era. I have to presume that, under the watchful eye of Richar
  17. Very nice staff. I don’t think you should rule out the possibility that it may have been the staff of a city magistrate or other high ranking official. The beautifully painted urn with lilies suggests that the owner was a man of importance, rather than merely a “ground pounding” constable. Quite beautiful. Mike
  18. Hi Jan. This is a fairly common medal that appears quite regularly on the auction sites. The trick is to find one with P.C. P Mangan S DIV engraved on the rim. Chances are good that it’s out there somewhere. Searching or advertising for the medal on sites like this or with other medal enthusiasts organizations might help you find your family heirloom, but may cause the price to zoom up into the “much sought after” category. It”ll be worth it, though, to return it to the family. Good luck and let us know if you find it. Mike.
  19. Hello Mark. It’s a beautiful piece, but let me add a word of caution. Short of a forensic analysis of the paint, it’s not possible to positively declare a painted truncheon “authentic” or even less than authentic. Most of us have been deceived at one time or another, and it’s often quite embarrassing. Whether a particular piece has been altered, re-painted, touched up, or otherwise enhanced is always food for thought. Even if a truncheon has been “doctored”, it still might be legitimate if the changes were made by the issuing agency or the user/owner. In short, it’s anyone’s guess
  20. What a beautiful old piece! I have to wonder, though, why anyone would cut that notch in such a conspicuous place. Even if it were for carbon dating or other molecular testing, a more discreet chunk of material could be had. The wooden part is as well preserved as could be expected, and together, they make an exciting bit of history, with or without the “story”. Mike
  21. Hello and welcome to the forum. Your truncheons do indeed represent a puzzle. The one on top is fashioned in the style of early 20th century Hiatt truncheons, while the lower one is not as easily recognizable. Both appear too short to be issued to regular coppers, at least until recently, and both have been either newly manufactured or refinished by the same person and, apparently, at the same time. An old truncheon, even if it spent the last 200 years in somenody’s underwear drawer, would show at least some wear on the ends. I may be guessing beyond my expertise level, but I think that
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