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peter monahan

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About peter monahan

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    Britain & Canada Moderator

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    Canada
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    British and Indian Military History and Militaria

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  1. I can't give you specifics, but I do know from reading [mostly military fiction] that, especially at the lower levels, promotion was often for 'time in grade'. As W.E.B. Griffin put it in a book on WWII Marines, if you could 'hear thunder and see lightning' [and had two years in] the jump from 2nd Lt to 1st Lt was just about automatic. I think that would have been especially true in peace time - as a way of retaining officers who might otherwise resign. The Canadian Armed Forces are very 'NCO heavy' for that reason: to hold onto skilled soldiers such as mechanics, riggers are anybody whose job has a civilian equivalent, you have to promote them regularly.
  2. I was going to recommend both Gordon and Abbott and Tamplin but my expertise on books is 20 years out of date. Both still hold pride of place on my bookshelf but I wasn't certain whether newer, better books were out there. I still treasure both a 6th edition and a 7th of Gordon, for the detailed information on which units earned which bars. In fact a friend was responsible, 30 plus years ago now, for adding to and correcting some of the units of the Indian Army mentioned in the campaign medals for that part of the Empire.
  3. That makes more sense! Sorry, I'm more used to Canadian medal [pairs] which were not issued until after 1918, so the idea that he might have been issued his Star before he demobbed is a bit odd to me.
  4. Chaco Interesting question! Many collectors and ALL military quartermasters have an iron clad rule: Never through ANYTHING away! Even if you don't know what it is. The bandolier have gone through a half dozen official and semi-official hands - Singapore militia? Hong Kong defence force? - before being finally marked off the books. Or, it may have gone straight from SA to Japan in the possession of a veteran of that war. Either would make a great tale but, sadly, almost impossible to know.
  5. I'm afraid I can't help with info. Perhaps some UK member will have access to what you need. I couldn't help commenting on the, I assume self-awarded, 'C P L' rank on the Star. I see that his card indicates that we WAS a Corporal at some point but had lost the rate, presumably, before the medal was awarded.
  6. The only connection I can find, in an admittedly brief search, is that the current [I think] Somali Ministry of Defence has a coat of arms supported by two spotted cats - heraldic leopards. Possibly a complete coincidence.
  7. If you hold it up to your ear can you hear the ocean? [I was thinking of the other kind of shell! ]
  8. It looks as if the manufacturer is "North' something - a commercial label by the look of it, which is odd to my mind. Any way to find out if this company DID make gear for the Scouts? Here's the only image I found searching 'Selous Scouts gear made by 'North''. Similar, I think, but not the same. But the source is a Pintrest page, so no useful source for the shot.
  9. Thank you, Gunner! I looked that up but clearly not in the correct place. My [very limited] expertise is with Canadian Great War records, when officers did not have numbers at all, and the 19th century British system [ditto]. I suspected British officers must have gotten the serials between the wars but didn't double check my source. My bad. Peter
  10. It is a lovely looking piece indeed. I'm afraid I can't comment on age or authenticity but I noticed that the sash seems to have a lighter blue section at the top. Trick of the light or has it been added in to the darker ribbon?
  11. The bar to the MC - double winner - may narrow it down a bit. The second rosette simply indicates that the ribbon it is on is for the 1914 Star, not the 1914-15. The Territorial Medal suggests that he 'stayed involved' between the Wars, so a secondment to a staff position for en elderly officer who may not have finished the Second War [ hence no WWII Victory?] seems reasonable. BTW, officers were not given service numbers before 1920. And I think an officer's serial should be 6 digits, not 5 [and 8 for ORs].
  12. The 'fancy silver buckles' are actually not uncommon for medals of that period: Crimea and Mutiny in particular. Issuing campaign medals was a relatively new thing and regulations hadn't caught up. Some soldiers sewed them directly to their tunics - with the obvious disadvantages that brought - but others, and not all officers, bought the buckles and wore the medals pinned on, often in clusters, as rules of precedence and so on were a thing of the future in 1860. No opinion on the naming except to echo the cautions: 30 years ago somebody made a killing when they figured out how to 'officially impress' blank Crimea to members of the Light Brigade whose medals had not, till that point, come on the market. Sadly, it is impossible to date engraving except by style and some fakers are that clever.
  13. Many years ago I spent far too much time on weekends hanging about a store which sold medals and militaria. I even worked there one summer and an occasional customer, in Toronto, Canada in the 1980s, was a Lutheran minister who needed to renew the ribbons on his WWII German medals, which he wore on Remembrance Day [November 11th] and possibly on other occasions.
  14. The qualifications for the 1939-45 War Medal are listed in Major Gordon's invaluable work as 'awarded to all full-time personnel of the armed forces wherever their service during the war was rendered. Operational and non-operational service counted, providing that it was twenty-eight days service or more.' OTOH, yes, the 1939-45 Star requires him to have served outside the UK. Very interesting!
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