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Spurred on by Coldstream and Stuart Bates , I will post photos of my collection , which is a mix of infantry officers' home service helmets and cavalry helmets. Starting with two which I bought recently, and have good photos for - taken by the seller and much better than mine will be! First is a QVC King's Royal Rifle Corps home service helmet, a type which I think was only worn by the regiment for a few years. Immaculate condition. Second is a QVC South Staffs home service helmet. Re-gilded in the 1990s and looks very good -not as shiny as the picture suggests. Body very good and liner immaculate. Trying to work out how to add photos, so forgive any glitches.

Patrick

KRRC1-1.jpg

SouthStaffs1-1.jpg

SouthStaffs5.jpg

Edited by pjac

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Patrick - we must welcome you to GMIC - we need more helmet and headgear collectors. These are both lovely examples and even though re-gilded the South Staffs is a very impressive piece. I am always amazed thet even after 130 odd years , pieces can still come-up in this condition. Thankyou for posting.

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Well done and congratulations on two superb helmets. Please persevere and keep trying with the rest of your collection. :cheers:

Simon

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Pat these examples are excellent.

If these are an indication of the standard of the rest of the collection i look forwards to seeing it!

:cheers: Dan

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Thanks for the kind comments. I've had a go at photographing the rest of the collection - 9 others. Three shown here

1. 2nd West Yorkshire Yeomanry officer's helmet . Note that the central rose , which should be silver (for the white rose of Yorkshire) is in fact gilt. Expert advice (David Rowe and Stuart Bates) is that this could well be original , depending on the whim of the C.O. Second photo shows the distinctive lion head rosettes , like those of lance caps. Gilt is a bit darker than on photos- too much light!

2. Fife Light Horse trooper's helmet. Not in top condition, but still pretty good.I bought it in very sleepy condition i.e. covered in years of tarnish. Unfortunately this hid some rubbing to the skull and some surface marks. However, these helmets are few and far between, so I'm still happy with it. It has a very long plume. Any views on plume lengths?

3.5th Dragoon Guards trooper's helmet. I bought it, knowing it had the wrong(black) plume on it, but was fortunate to find an original correct, white over red plume, a few weeks later. Stitching on chinstrap is completely shot , and the skull shows signs of having been around a long time, but it has loads of character

Patrick

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Patrick.

Another three excellent examples from your collection, I'm away from my books at the moment re the Fife helmet plume. I'll take a look when I return home.

Looking forward to the rest of your collection :cheers:

Simon

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Hello Patrick (and Simon)!

There's a couple of photos of a Fife Light Horse helmet in W.Y. Carman's "Light Horse And Mounted Rifle Volunteers 1860-1901" where the plume reaches to the lower part of the rose mount of the chinstrap, if that is of any assistance. In the same book there's also a drawing of a trooper whose plume is an inch or two longer, just to confuse matters!

/Jonas

Edited by GRA

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Patrick,

the KRRC helmet is superb. They wore it until about 1890 when it was replaced by the Rifles' Busby. Even the 1891 Dress Regulations have the Busby as the specified headdress and in black Persian lambskin (the War Office was not normally so quick to respond to reality).

I note the corded chin chain which I could not find any reference to. Perhaps another CO's whim?

The furniture, apart from the plate, is white metal, yes?

This is one helmet I would kill for.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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As to plumes, in the regular cavalry the mens' were normally shorter and less fullsome than the officers' or senior NCOs, but you will always find exceptions. Yeomanry were, once again, to a large extent at the whim of the C.O.

Patrick, a beautiful collection so keep them coming.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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Patrick,

the KRRC helmet is superb. They wore it until about 1890 when it was replaced by the Rifles' Busby. Even the 1891 Dress Regulations have the Busby as the specified headdress and in black Persian lambskin (the War Office was not normally so quick to respond to reality).

I note the corded chin chain which I could not find any reference to. Perhaps another CO's whim?

The furniture, apart from the plate, is white metal, yes?

This is one helmet I would kill for.

Stuart

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Stuart

The furniture is actually the same colour as the plate i.e. grey/black.Would gun-metal be the right description? I don't know how it's done, presumably over white-metal, as the you can see white metal highlights around the rim of the spike cruciform and it also shows on the edge of the peak and on the raised areas on the rosettes. It's essentially the same as on the plate where the edges of the cross and the lettering look white against the grey. A very classy helmet.

Patrick

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I think my favourite would be the Fife example - obviously rare. Will be interesting to see some further details of the unit - numbers etc..

Within GMIC we seem to be building up a full set of Dragoons - Stuart has some lovely ones and I have the 1st and 7th. Who else has Dragoons?

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Patrick,

Managed to find my copy of 'The Yeomanry Force at the 1911 Coronation' by RJ Smith and RG Harris which describes your Fife Light Horse helmet as 'Helmet of the Fife and Forfar Yeomanry'

Royal Dragoon pattern, white metal with Windsor star plate with brass St Andrews Cross, with the regimental badge. The Thane of Fife in white metal upon it, the letter FLH below the star and in the centre of a scroll carrying the motto 'Pro Aris et Focis'. white horsehair plume.

No length is given for the plume however the photograph in the book showing the Fife and Forfar Yeomanry detachment commander, Lieutenant S Mitchell shows him wearing this helmet with the plume almost touching the collar. The other Officers plumes are more in keeping with Regular Army units and so for me the plume on your helmet is as it should be.

Not sure if a scan of this photo can be posted due to copyright(anyone?)

Look forward to seeing the rest of your collection

Simon

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Simon,

Thanks very much for the info on the plume. I've never been able to find anything about standards/regulations for plume lengths, although the plumes shown in David Rowe's book,which are mainly to officers, generally don't go beyond or much beyond the bottom of the rear visor. Unfortunately, the FLH helmet in his book doesn't have a plume.

Regards

Patrick

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I couldn't find a photo of Lt Mitchell wearing the helmet. What page is it on?

My own example has the horsehair plume extending about two inches below the rear visor.

Simon, there are many photographs on this and other websites which may run foul of copyright. Why not post a scan and attribute it to the book and name the authors and offer to remove it if required?

Stuart

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I have various Dragoon and Dragoon Guards officers helmets of different patterns and was, much earlier on, trying to get a complete set of DGs Other Ranks helmets of the 1871 pattern. I managed to get all but the 1st and then lost interest as they did not come on the market in those earlier times. I have seen a couple lately but have moved on.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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Stuart

Lt Mitchell is shown as the righthand seated figure on page 17 marked out as figure 29.

I'll scan the image in the morning and post it as you suggest. :cheers:

Simon

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Patrick,

the furniture is probably blackened bronze. Photos can be deceptive.

A classy helmet it is.

Stuart

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Stuart

I don't think it's blackened bronze; the base metal is definitely light/white. I have blackened brass Rifle Corps OR cap badges in my collection, presumably blackened bronze would look similar to these? I attach another photo giving another view of the fittings. The lighting makes them look brighter than they really are, but I think the underlying whiteness is still clear..

KRRC2-1.jpg

Interesting to hear about the length of your FLH -plume is it an officer's or a trooper's helmet?

Now that I have the FLH helmet I'd really like a Lothian and Berwickshire Yeomanry Cavalry /Lothians and Border Horse helmet, but I've nevr seen one for sale.

Regards

Patrick

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Patrick,

according to Kipling & King the plate was of blackened white metal (KK196a). I've never heard of that one before.

My FLH is also a trooper's, and, likewise, I have never seen a Lothian and Berwick helmet. I have seen a pillbox cap though and I do have a Lothian & Berwick sergeant's mess uniform with jacket, waistcoat and trousers.

There was a time when I collected interesting uniforms but only have two left now. I might sell the L & B one.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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Patrick

Here is the scan of Lt Mitchell from 'The Yeomanry Force at the 1911 Coronation' by R J Smith and R G Harris. If this breaches any copyright I apologise and will remove the image.

Although the Officer appears to wear his helmet pushed back the plume still appears longer than those worn by other Officers in the photograph.

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Here are two more home service helmets. I will post the last one later, together with a history of its owner, which I was able to research.

1. 3rd Volunteer Batallion, The Bedfordshire Regiment.QVC.

One of my favourite helmets. Fittings are in white metal, not silvered.

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2.Manchester Regiment .KC

Another helmet in excellent condition. This helmet, along with the KRRC and S Staffs, came from the same source, a private collector, who lives not far from me, and has a large and exceptionally high quality collection. Most of his helmets are to Scottish regiments and he had decided to specialise in these, so was prepared to let some of his English regiment helmets go. Fired by his example, I decided to go all British, too, and killed two birds with one stone by financing the purchases by selling two pickelhaubes and an Austrian helmet. As you might imagine, I'm delighted with all three helmets.

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Patrick

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Simon

Thanks very much for posting the photo. This plumecertainly looks longer than usual , but the one on my helmet seems longer still . I wonder if some manufacturers made plumes long, to be cut back to suit unit taste, and this one wasn't cut? Is the book from which the photo comes still available?

Patrick

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