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Posts posted by NavyFCO

  1. Thanks!

    Yes...I'm thinking V. A. Gittins, but it could be a variant of that, depending on how they transliterated it into Cyrillic. The Air Marshal above him was Sanders, who was a pretty famous leader in the RAF during the war. I haven't been able to find Gittins yet though... 

    Also, I think he was a Squadron Leader by rank instead of Major (his equivalent in the Soviet Air Force). So, Squadron Leader V. A. Gittins...

    Well...that was an easy search!

    I wonder if this document was one of the three mentioned in the auction and was misplaced?

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    And from the national library of Australia...

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  2. All:

    As a non-collector of British awards (I stopped collecting them in 1996...) I'm pretty much hopeless when it comes to researching them. Case in point is this Military Medal named to 6850 PTE E. LAKE 25/NORTH'D FUS. From what I've gotten off Ancestry.com, he's entitled to this medal, and the BWM/VM pair (unfortunately the seller didn't have the latter). I'd love to find out what and or how he earned his Military Medal. I tried looking in the London Gazette, but nothing's there about it - or perhaps I missed it. Any help would be MOST appreciated!



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  3. Thanks guys! I truly do appreciate the assistance. I quite literally am clueless when it comes to anything Imperial German related. I collected TR at one time, but that was 30+ years ago, so even with that, I'm very rusty!

    I bought these in a bag of what I believed to be all WW2 to modern US military ribbons from the estate auction of a fellow who bought his militaria at local flea markets for about 50 years. I was quite surprised when I pulled these out of the bag! 

    Luckily, I've been able to break even on my cost by selling the US ribbons in the bag, so these are pretty much "gravy" on top of that. Since there's some question on the bars, I'll post them up on eBay and let the bidders make their own decision(s) on them. If I can get maybe $5-$10 a bar, I'll be a very happy camper!

    Thanks again for your help, it is most appreciated! If you're ever looking for help with US or Soviet militaria, I'd be happy to reciprocate where I can!



  4. All:

    I'm pretty much 100% out of my area of knowledge when it comes to German stuff, particularly Imperial German. I just got these ribbon bars in a batch lot of ribbons. I can ID the WW2 ones for the most part, but the Imperial ones...aside from the Iron Cross (of course) I'm pretty much a loss at. My questions: are any of these ribbon bars "interesting" or unusual ones? Or are they all kind of common? I think the bigger Imperial one is pretty interesting with the devices...but that's just because I'm not familiar with them. 

    Thanks in advance for any help!





  5. Just got this off eBay. I was kind of surprised I was the only bidder, but whatever (not complaining!) I've seen many of these for US recipients, but this is the first to a British recipient I've ever encountered. 

    The date and value of this coupon book matches that of a March 1944 awarding of four Orders of the Red Star to British merchant marine recipients: Captain John Black, Senior Officer (Engineering) John Mammery, Senior Officer John A. S. Cook, and First Officer (Engineering) V. L. L. Laurie (the names are transliterated from Cyrillic...they might actually be different). So this belonged to one of those four men. It would be awesome to find out who it belonged to of the four!

    It appears the coupons were used all the way through 1947 - until the Soviets discontinued the use of the award coupon pension. 

    Thought you might all enjoy this!


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  6. I haven't bought a Soviet medal group in ages. I don't really collect these anymore, even though I owned several hundred over the years (I started collecting Soviet medals in 1992...) Anyway, I saw this one on eBay and ended up being the only bidder (it wasn't bargain priced, but still...) In all the groups I've owned, very few (less than 10) have had the amount of random paper this one has (and that I like!) There are a plethora of ID cards, booklets, and other documents, to include his death certificate, for both he and his wife. They never had children, so I'm assuming she passed on and the group was sold from there. 

    I don't know if this group has been in the collecting world before as it's simply pristine...to include having homemade cardboard washers under the screwback disks on the orders and Guards badge! One of the things I really liked about the group is that the bar he's wearing in the photo is the exact bar in the group and the Red Star has the enamel on the one arm broken in the photo! 

    I just got this group in last night and still have yet to get around to translating it, but it appears he served in the Red Army from 1936 through the end of the war, and was then a Major in the reserves. He was born in 1910 (his wife in 1915) and he passed away in 1988. 

    Just goes to show good stuff is still out there!!!

    There are 27 photos to be posted...so enjoy!





























    Correction...now that I looked at the photos...he joined the Red Army in 1932! 

  7. Looking back on the documents, I should have known from the water damage to the order book, the thin, non-standard writing, and the erased signature, that the document was bad. However, I had only been collecting for six years by that time and fakes were not nearly as prolific as they are today. For me, this was the first time I had ever had a chance to hold a Gold Star, let alone add one to my collection...which in retrospect, is a VERY bad way to make a significant purchase like this!


    Lessons you learn!!!

  8. In the end, that group sold for $2,850! That alone should have clued someone in to the fact that it was fake...but at the same time, someone just got burned nearly $3k on a group worth less than the metal content of the fake awards... :(

    As an aside, this is the HSU group I got burned on back in 1998. At that time, you can see they were much more advanced in making copies than this group on eBay! This group was built around his original HSU small document and photos of him and his family. The awards in the order book were completely bad...the Red Star and Lenin were both real, but not awarded to him, and the Gold Star was 100% fake (unfortunately, I can't find photos of it at the moment...) 






  9. I saw this auction on eBay, and while I don't collect Soviet stuff anymore, I thought it was curious so I added it to my watch list. It was at $300 USD when I first saw it, and I felt bad someone was getting taken for $300 on a really rudimentary fake group. As of this morning, it's gone to $1400! Someone's really getting taken for a ride...and this is a group of very bad fakes! 

    Perhaps I'm missing something? Maybe someone can fill me on on what's here of value?

    For reference, I've added images of the awards in the auction, as well as the document. First, the Gold Star is very poorly done and the serial numbers on it are HORRIBLE! I added the image of a 100% real GS from my collection (black background) awarded in the same serial number range and there's no comparison at all. Second, the For Valor medal had it's reverse poorly sandpapered to remove the previous serial number and had a new one added. They didn't even do a good job! Third, the document has horribly fake entries...these are poorly done, even compared to the fake HSU group I bought back in 1998 (yes, I got burned by a well-done bad one...and I learned a very valuable lesson, for certain! That didn't happen with my future HSU groups!)

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    As an aside, here are the documents that my group had. It had both the new order document awarded with the HSU title, and the veteran hand-wrote his additional awards in his WW2 order book. Quite interesting! (Yes, I wish I still owned this group, but I don't any longer...sigh...)

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  10. It is very curious to me that the bullet penetration hole is completely round. Perfectly round. Like something was holding the medal (like a vise) and someone shot directly at it intentionally to cause the hole. 

    In a past life (okay, when I was in the military) I was an NRA marksmanship judge...a hole like this, if it was claimed to have occurred in combat, is almost impossible. It's near impossible for it to have happened even at a range, but in combat where targets (people) are moving, not to mention the medals, not to mention someone wearing their Defense of Moscow in combat (not impossible, but also not really common) makes me think this was done intentionally.

    But I've been wrong before......

  11. Quite fascinating! Sometimes I scratch my head with regard to research, and I've researched a ton of stuff over the years. I would have been very interested in seeing the veteran's documentation of the award. These things are quite strange sometimes...

    This reminds me of a group of awards I researched that had been in the possession of a senior US Army general. He claimed to have been awarded three Orders of the Red Banner (yes, I did say "US Army" general!) He even wore the three separate ribbons on his uniform! A friend of mine purchased his uniforms and medals from the family back in the early 90s. I found out about the uniforms about ten years ago and asked to research the Red Banners. Interestingly, they were all Soviet awards to Soviet officers for the Berlin campaign! The medals had been in the possession of the general and then his family since 1945...or so the claim went...so how in the world did those medals come about? 

    Strange things that sometimes "make you say, hmmmmm" :)

  12. Thanks Paul!

    Now you're talking with the details on the Red Star. It sounds pretty incredible at this point...especially getting it directly from the veteran. That was my dream of dreams when I was collecting Soviet awards! As far as value...geeze...the sky's the limit on this one. Really what someone would be willing to pay, especially with the other medals. Sounds like a real "wow" group!


    P.S. you SHOULD have bid on some of my medals! LOL :)

  13. You're hearing crickets for a couple of reasons:

    First and foremost, who the recipient was is a huge factor in the value. General officer? Private? Truck driver? Artilleryman? Special forces? 

    Second, what's the citation? Is it for direct heroism against the enemy? Or is it a long service award? (Yes, I know they didn't have "official" long service awards at the time, but it was not unknown to "fluff" an award with a citation to award it to someone who had many years of service...) 

    Third, the market for Soviet awards is completely unpredictable right now. I'm watching stuff go unsold on eBay that would have sold for 50-100% more, just a few months ago. What this might have sold for last year is probably not what it will sell for now. 

    Just my thoughts...


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