Archive for the Rare Medals Category

A Birchall Valour Group from the Hundred Days Offensive

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, 1939-1945 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles, Rare Medals, Valour Medals with tags , , , , , on December 9, 2015 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomHere’s a great group coming from my never-ending search for medals impressed to my surname. In this case its a WW1 Military Medal group combined with a WW2 service medal group, named to J.E.Birchall 91004, The Kings (Liverpool) Regt.

It came with a little certificate from his commanding General commending his “…skilful use of his Lewis Gun section during operations against Evillers and Mory Copse on the 23rd and 24th of August 1918”.

The village of Evillers was completely destroyed during this offensive. John Eric Birchall later served in WW2, as evidenced by his Defence Medal and War Medal. This service was as a Lieutenant in the Home Guard. Given his age, it was probably his MM that got him that rank.

The Kings Medal for Courage in the Cause of Freedom

Posted in Rare Medals, Valour Medals with tags , , on August 1, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomThe Kings Medal for Courage in the Cause of Freedom. This medal was issued to foreigners who put themselves in harms way assisting the Allied cause. Examples would be helping run one of the escape and evasion networks getting Allied airmen out of Occupied Europe. Approximately 3200 of these medals were awarded from 1947. I have two of them, the other one here has its case.

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The Kings Medal for Service in the Cause of Freedom

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals, Rare Medals with tags , on August 1, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomThis, along with the companion for courage, is one of my favourite WW2 medals.

From Wikipedia, “The King’s Medal for Service in the Cause of Freedom is a British medal instituted by the The Sovereign, on 23 August 1945. Its was to recognize civilian foreign nationals, mainly of allied countries, who had given meritorious service to further the interests of the British Commonwealth or the Allied cause during World War II. The medal was awarded 2,539 times. Those who helped British military personnel to escape the enemy and escape from occupied areas or for other dangerous work for the British or Allied cause during the war were eligible for the King’s Medal for Courage in the Cause of Freedom.”

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Air Crew Europe Star

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals, Rare Medals with tags , , on August 1, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomThe Air Crew Europe Star is one of the rarest of the Commonwealth WW2 Service Stars. As a consequence it is valuable and heavily faked.

I have two here, one original and one reproduction. In this case the only way to really tell one from the other is that the cypher of King George in the center is slightly rotated in the fake so that the bottom of the V is lined up with the center of the W in crew instead of with the left hand leg of the W. If you look at the right hand foot of the W on the repro, you can see that it doesn’t align with the spine of the lower star point as it should.

And finally, repros usually age to a mid brown colour. The originals retain some colour and age to a red-brown patina, rather like a penny.

Original at left, Repro at right

Original at left, Repro at right

Reproduction

Reproduction

Original

Original

The Transjordan WW2 Victory Medal

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals, Rare Medals with tags , , on April 30, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_JordanThis medal, from the Principality of Transjordan, was issued to all citizens of the mandate who served in WW2. Trans-Jordan later became the Kingdom of Jordan. It’s Arabic name is “Midalat al-Zarari al-Herb al-Iradani Lasanat 1939-1945“.

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The Merchant Marine Commemorative Medal 1939-1945

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals, Rare Medals with tags , , on April 28, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_PortugalThis medal was created by Portugal in 1951 to recognise the crews of the ships of its merchant navy who sailed into war zones during WW2. Portugal was neutral throughout WW2.

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Newfoundland Volunteer Service Medal

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals, Rare Medals with tags , , on April 20, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomIn 1949 Newfoundland joined the Confederation of Canada. In 1981 the Government decided to create and award this medal to the servicemen of Newfoundland who served overseas and did not receive a service medal from any other country. They were not eligible for the Canadian medal since they were not a part of Canada during WW2. This is mine, one of 800 issued. I have one original and one reproduction.

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