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peter monahan

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Posts posted by peter monahan

  1. The bottom one seems to be based on the 'A A' badge of the US 82nd Airborne Division.  One of the support units to that formation?


    The top one is the WW2 [until 1995] badge of the British 4th Infantry Division, but should be rotated so that the cut out 'fourth' is in the 9:00t0 12:00 position.

  2. 'Awarded by non-European uniformed SERVANTS of the Municipality.'  Emphasis added by me.  Interesting peek into the apartheid era official mind or just a poor translation from Afrikaans?

  3. Very nice!  The double LSGC is interesting but not unheard of - clerical error, likely.  Are they both named in the same way?  The other thing that happens from time to time is that what are called 'tailor's copies' - private purchase versions - get mounted, either as replacements, in error or 'just because we can'.  Any prospect of researching any of the groups?

    It's a shame, though, that India has followed the lead of so many countries in using cheap metal for awards.  The ribbons are quite attractive and something which would actually take and keep a shine would make for a far nicer group. :(  

  4. My first reaction was 'War of 1812 era', about what you said.  At that time officers wore pretty much what they chose, with cavalry and gunners and even infantry wearing curved blades.  The eagle's head, in about 4 variants, was very popular.  Apparently standardized patterns came in about 1820 and lasted till 1840.  Of course, if it ism private purchase, as many were, or a presentation piece,  all bets are off as to 'correct pattern'.

    This site shows two types which look very similar to yours, both 'Artillery', though listed in the 'Cavalry' section of the page.  http://arms2armor.com/Swords/usswords.htm#CAVALRY.  Well worth reading the info. there. 

    This site suggest that most swords with 'langets' on the hilt were German made at this period.  The blued blade and etching suggests perhaps a presentation sword to me and very  probably European  made, though I'm no expert and the Americans were making some of their own swords by then.  But '1820' seems a safe guess barring a more exact ID.


  5. Sorry you haven't got a response, Raven.  I'm a Canuck, so no help here. 

    I assume you know about the National Archives.  It now, I see, has a 'Live Chat' section. Perhaps someone there can give you a link to others who can comment on whether or not the Memroy Project is a good investment.  Or even tell you themselves what it's worth.  https://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/help-with-your-research/research-guides/british-army-soldiers-of-the-first-world-war/

    Good luck!


  6. Interesting.  I looked up this medal and there were a number of US 'military' web sites - unofficial, run by vets and so on - which mention that the medal was created in 2011 but has not yet been supplied by the Iraqi gov't to the US gov't for issue.  Wikipedia says this, which is an interesting twist on the issue:

    "To this day, the award has still not been approved for wear for United States Iraq War Veterans. In 2013, the Department of Defense made a statement that it is still waiting for the initial group of medals to be received from the Government of Iraq.[3] A single award was presented to Vice President Joe Biden on Dec 1st, 2011" [emphasis added by me]

    So, the gent selling them is either performing a useful service for Gulf War veterans or profiting from the failure of the Iraqi government to follow up on it's plans.  Or both.  I say this only because there is now a minor industry of private companies creating and selling medals and awards which various governments chose not to issue or never got around to.  I'm thinking of the D-Day Medal in particular.  No slight at all on the brave men and women who would have earned it if the Commonwealth had created one, but it seems to me that creating awards devalues the official ones. 

    This is a different case, obviously, as this was created by an official government and an ally of those countries whose service personnel qualify but a bit odd nonetheless.


  7. I don't want to stick my neck out here - neither artillery nor the Victorian periods are things I know much about - but I do know in the Napoleonic era, an earlier period, folks like Commissariat inspectors and some of the other 'technical' departments [my term, noty theirs] wore dark blue tunics. 

    I think to suggest that the were what today would be HQ/staff appointments and ranks, not strictly combat arms but I may be wrong.  As I recall, the Commissariat chap in 'Zulu' wears a blue tunic in the period.  Not suggesting for a minute that Gunners are/were non-combatant, but the old British Army and it's affiliates had some very odd customs, IMHO.  On a related note, can you tell from the photos whether the two other Inspectors' tunics are in fact red?  Or could they be blue as well? 

    I hope somebody more knowledgeable than I can chime in here.  I hang out in museums as a volunteer and know how frustrating it is to have incomplete [or wrong!] info. on artifacts.  Good luck!


  8. What the 'we can't fix it' answer says to me is that a) they just don't care, which seems a bit unlikely IMO or b) they had a grant or person who transcribed the information and that person/money is now gone.  You can be sure that you are NOT the only person who has submitted information which then got copied incorrectly, but... :( 

    An honest answer to that effect might be marginally better than what you seem to have gotten.

  9. 21 hours ago, Gunner 1 said:

    I have the medals to an officer who fell asleep on a long march, fell off his horse and was run over by a supply wagon, killing him instantly.

    I work with high school students and do presentations on the CAMC in the Great War.  I begin by asking them 'What did soldiers die of?' and discuss bayonet vs rifle round vs shell fire.  And disease.  When I hand out the 20 'cause of death' cards, one says 'Other' and I tell them that the soldier fell off a wagon and was run over by the next wagon.  They all get that this is "the 1917 version of crossing the road while texting".  The only 'good death' is one that happens to somebody else!


  10. On 23/12/2019 at 14:42, Duncan said:

    I've had some very odd Memorial plaques over the years - kicked in the head by his horse whilst training in England; fell from a 4th floor window in Edinburgh; and accidentally shot at a rest camp in France must be the most unusual. 

    Yes, we tend to forget the percentage of deaths which would have come under 'Other'.  The oddest I've heard of were what the Chindits, in the next 'Great' war referred to irreverently as 'Killed by Flying Fruit': men who, during an aerial  resupply drop in the jungles of Burma, were struck by a case of tinned pineapple or a duffle bag full of boots.  Drooped from 200-300 feet without parachutes! 

    One of our Canadian Prime Ministers, Lester 'Mike' Pearson almost earned such a plaque.  While on leave from the Royal Flying Corps he was crossing the street in a blackout and was run down by a London bus and seriously, though nit fatally injured.

  11. Captain

    Welcome to the GMIC and thank you for posting the ribbon chart.  I notice that at least one post on page 1 of this forum refers to someone - President Mugabe perhaps - wearing his medals in the wrong order, so my guess would be that the chart shows the correct order of precedence and that photos of the medals being worn which show a different order are due to errors by the wearers.  Not an uncommon occurrence in many countries.

    I also notice a reference in a chat between 'RhodesianMilitary' and 'Shauma', also pon page 1, to the 'Zimbabwe Medal Society'.  It was apparently founded by a Keith Holshausen and the late Wing Commander Peter Cooke, founding chairman of the Zimbabwe Medal Society.  Keith is also a member of the OMSA but I suspect that if you contacted either Rhodesian Military or Shauma - click on their names on page 1- they would be happy to tell you how to join that group and perhAPS answer other questions you may have.


  12. Interesting!  In 1967 Canada celebrated its centennial as a country and, among other events, held a series of military 'pageants', for which the government ordered quite a number of 'historical uniforms'.  They looked fine on parade but wouldn't fool a tailor or a soldier familiar with the original issue.

     I also have a friend who makes museum quality copies of 1812 era uniforms, some for Parks Canada and their historical sites, some for European museums and some for private collectors.  More than one of these has shown up for sale, tagged as 'original' although, again, most are not 100% accurate on the inside.


  13. 16 hours ago, WRANGEL said:

     I think this silver badge is quite old (1930-50 ?).There is also the possibility that the badge do not refere to  Africa but perhaps Asia as there are panthers in Asia as well.




    My North American culture interfering here!  I read 'panther' and immediately thought of the non-spotted North and South American cat - also known as 'painter', mountain lion and jaguar.  This animal clearly has spots, so perhaps a search using the term 'leopard' might turn out more clues.  Just a thought.

  14. 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.

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