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Brett Hendey

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Everything posted by Brett Hendey

  1. That is the best POW group that I have ever seen, and it has been matched by an extremely well researched write-up. Congratulations! Regards Brett
  2. This is the first time I have ventured onto a blog. Blogs have hitherto been something of a mystery to me, much as 'Blackberry' and 'Blue Tooth" were until my aged brain worked out their identity and function. (I did not what to ask anyone. The youngsters already think I should be euthanased and I did not want to add to their case.) I was tempted to join in by Michael's comments on the ROM. I grew up in South Africa, a nerdy kid who collected things. As a teenager I even had a 'museum' in my bedroom. It was more or less inevitable that, after university and a brief spell as a field geologist, I should end up working in a museum. Forty years later I retired, a lot older and, hopefully, a little wiser. For the first 20 years of my museum career I was happy with the status quo. I was a palaeontologist content to do fieldwork and research, mainly on a particularly rich and interesting fossil site, which also attracted the interest of palaeontologists from elsewhere in the world. Most of my colleagues then did in fact live in other countries, and, depending on funding, only visited South Africa from time to time. Otherwise we corresponded by what is now known as snail mail. It was my foreign colleagues who first alerted me to the fact that, in a changing world, museums too had to change. One of these colleagues was from the University of Toronto and he arranged a free subscription of the ROM's magazine, Rotunda, for our library. It was an eye-opener for me, and made me realise that our museum was in danger of becoming irrelevant in what was then a rapidly changing South Africa. Although I was still employed as a research scientist, I spent less time in the field and studying fossils back at the museum, and more time with staff of the museum's then antiquated education service. The museum's administration probably disapproved of my interfering in matters not covered in my job description, so, to avoid impending conflict, I moved to another city to become Director of a much smaller museum. Being the boss of the whole operation at last, I could make the changes in museum affairs that I thought were necessary. Fortunately, the Board of Trustees were understanding and helpful. I hope that I did make a positive difference to the museum in the 15 years I spent there. It had certainly changed. Since I retired, I have applied some of the experience I gained over the years to indulge in a childhood interest, the military history of the province where I was born and raised, and to which I returned in my later years. I have been fortunate in my life. Firstly, there were diamond-bearing deposits to explore, then fossils to collect and study, followed by a museum to change, and finally a province with a fairly blood-soaked history to keep my aging brain active.
  3. Dansson & Jim R Thank you for confirming my friend's identification. He will be pleased! Brett
  4. A friend has asked me to post these pictures here for your assessments. Brett
  5. Paul Another great medal and great research. I am very impressed. It is posts like this that inspire me to continue collecting medals! Regards Brett
  6. A German militaria collector in Durban and one-time patron of Mervyn's shop has asked me to post his best buy from Mervyn - a Schinkel EK1.
  7. Paul A great and well researched medal. Thank you for showing it. If I could have my life over, I would collect KGL medals, and those of the Hanoverian army. I recently discovered that my mother's family were from Hanover, hence my current interest in this region.. Regards Brett
  8. A great medal and a great story to go with it! Thank you for sharing with us. Regards Brett
  9. I knew Mervyn as an occasional customer in his shop. He had quality militaria items for sale, many of which were beyond my means. On two occasions that involved 'must have' medals for my collection, he accepted the cash I could afford plus items such as Zulu artefacts in exchange. The 'must haves' are shown below. They are a Zulu War medal to a Trooper in the Buffalo Border Guard, a small local regiment in which a distant relative of mine served, and a six-medal group to a Natal Police officer. Whenever I look at, or think them, I remember Mervyn, and I am grateful for his kindness and consideration. Brett
  10. Good to get a positive identification for the cap! Thanks also for the border photos. They must bring back lots of memories for those who were there. Regards Brett
  11. A very impressive collection! Thank you for sharing it with us. Regards Brett
  12. The regiments of the South African Mounted Rifles were formed in 1913 from the paramilitary elements of the police forces in the four provinces of the Union of South Africa, which came into being in 1910. They were part of the Union Defence Force. The 'conventional' policemen were accommodated in the newly-created South African Police, and were assigned to either mounted police or foot police duties. There was also a section of Water Police. The gaolers of the old police forces were assigned to the new SA Prisons Department. Brett
  13. Rodney A wonderful assemblage and a great story to go with it! Thank you for sharing, Regards Brett
  14. There was recently a slight change in Audrey's e-mail address, but presumably this is reflected on her address here (under 'aud', as I remember). Brett
  15. Further to my comment about shooting medals being melted down, there is a photo below of the medallic record of another Border Mounted Rifles marksman, who served with the regiment during the Boer War and was awarded the Queen's Medal with clasps that include 'Defence of Ladysmith'. In 1902 he was a member of Natal's contingent in London to celebrate the Coronation of King Edward VII. These celebrations included shooting competitions held at Bisley, during which he won several prizes. He was also awarded the relevant Coronation Medal. The latter medal and prize medallions are now missing. While it has been possible to find a replacement for the Coronation Medal, which was issued unnamed, the Bisley prizes, and any others awarded locally, would have carried the man's name and so are irreplaceable. Since the man fell on hard times after 1902, it is likely that they were sold for their gold and silver content.. Brett
  16. mark I would collect marksmanship prizes if I could find them, but they are certainly not common where I live. I suspect that these 'medals' are not as highly prized as war service and other military medals, so they end up in the melting pot. The few that I have for the Border Mounted Rifles are hallmarked gold and silver, so they do have a commercial metal value, if not a collectable one. Below are the other shooting prizes in my BMR collection. They were awarded to a Major and a Sergeant. Brett
  17. Marksmanship competitions were evidently very common in the Imperial and Colonial military of the old British Empire. Shown below is a "Marksman's Badge" and dated clasps awarded to an officer in the Colony of Natal's Border Mounted Rifles. The ribbon of this example was suspended from a broach pin, and there is a second pin on the disc. They would have kept the ribbon and badge firmly attached to the wearer's chest when he lay in a prone position to fire his rifle. The one you have shown may also have been attached to a ribbon. Brett
  18. Stephen Thank you for sharing your collection with us, and good for you for keeping all the items together for so many years. Your neighbour Jack must have seen something in you that led him to put his wartime treasures in your safe hands. You have done him a great service by keeping the memory of him alive. Regards Brett
  19. Pieter Many thanks for your comments. It is always good to have extra information on the medals, even if there is no record of the man who actually wore them as a group. I hope that you will post more from your collection. Regards Brett
  20. Pieter Below is a photo of my made-up Dutch group. The Cross for Justice and Freedom turned up in South Africa, I bought the Dutch UN medal from a dealer in Canada, while the Korean medal came from England. I would much prefer to have a trio awarded to a known Dutch Korean War veteran, but that is not likely to happen! Regards Brett
  21. John I do not remember having previously seen a medal issued by the International Federation of Korean War Veterans. Do you have other examples? I suppose that this Federation must be close to closing down, if it has not already done so. Regards Brett
  22. Pieter Thank you for showing the certificates. In the absence of named medals, having them would be a perfect solution. I forgot to mention that I do have a South Korean medal to go with the two Dutch medals. The Dutch UN medal is on its way to South Africa at the moment and I hope to have it later today. I will post a picture of the made- up group soon. Regards Brett Paul Below is a picture of a British Korea group. Unfortunately, the family member who sold this group to a dealer would not part with the accompanying service record, so I know little about the man, except that at one time he was serving at the Kinaruru Military Correctional Establishment in Malaya. Regards Brett
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