Archive for Australia

British SMLE Enfield No1 Mk3*

Posted in Firearms with tags , , , , , on July 20, 2019 by The Dude

I have always had a wee hard-on for the Enfield No1 Mk3. It was the first rifle I owned as a child and I have always wanted to own one again. A friend of mine is a nut for Enfields and owns far too many. I asked him to sell me a no-issues wartime rifle to go with the No4 & No5 I already had. He came up with this one. Battle issued, made in 1941/42 by Lithgow in Australia. Sighted for high velocity MkVII ammun ition, this rifle went into New Guinea with the Australian Forces. It was returned to Lithgow in June 1945.

Australian Pattern 1907 Enfield Bayonet

Posted in Bayonets with tags , , , , on July 20, 2019 by The Dude

Two things are driving me nuts lately. One, the lack of German guns falling into my lap. Two, my need to complete sets. I had a No4 Mk 1* Enfield and a No5 Mk 1. So since no Jerry guns were showing up I decided to get a No1 Mk3 SMLE Enfield. I like to put bayonet with rifle so here is a Lithgow made P1907 Enfield bayonet. MA stamped for Lithgow Small Arms Factory. The broad arrow for military acceptance. An X for a hardness test mark and a couple of inspector stamps.

Burma Death Railway Spike

Posted in Odds & Ends with tags , , , , , , on November 18, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_ThailandFlag_of_Japan.svgFlag_of_AustraliaFlag_of_the_United_KingdomA couple of cool and evocative finds here from a contact in Thailand. These are Thai 1940 dated railway spikes from the ruined railway line that ran over 415 km from Thanbyuzayat in Burma to Ban Pong in Thailand. Many people know it only from it’s depiction in the movie “The Bridge on the River Kwai” where it crosses the Mae Klong river. I visited the site and Hellfire Pass in 2014 and I cannot believe the misery under which the slave laborers, both civilian and Allied POW, must have worked and died. A digger over there walked sections of the rail line that were never reused after the war and retrieved these spikes.

WW1 Canadian Hate Belt

Posted in For Sale with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomFlag_of_AustraliaFlag_of_New_ZealandFlag_of_CanadaFlag_of_the_United_StatesFlag_of_FranceFlag_of_the_German_EmpireNice simple pickup last weekend at the local antique fair. This is a souvenir belt put together from a Prussian infantry belt and the tunic buttons from a wide range of Allied and German units. This example has a predominance of Canadian buttons so I am guessing that it was Canadian in origin. The rest are French, Australian, New Zealand, German and one single U.S. General Service button. You see these in all sorts of configurations, some on Allied belts, some with cap badges and other oddments. The legend is that these were put together from souvenirs taken from dead bodies but that sounds overly complex to me and likely nonsense. More likely most of the buttons were swapped at rear area camps between bored soldiers making up a souvenir. The U.S. button suggests a late war job, 1917-19. The Empire buttons make sense as often these units found themselves together in the line. The Canadian Regiments are from different divisions so that’s why I think this is a rear area put together. Still, a great belt, in fine condition and worth it just for the buttons and belt IMHO.

Japanese Surrender Documents

Posted in Paper with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 1, 2016 by The Dude

Flag_of_Japan.svgThis booklet, dating from 1946, is a facsimile of the surrender documents signed on the USS Missouri, in Tokyo Bay, on the 2nd September 1945. These were produced by the National Archives in the US for distribution to institutions and individuals in education. I have the German ones here.


Australian 1939-1945 War Service Medal

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

Flag_of_AustraliaThe Australia Service Medal 1939–45 recognises service by Australia’s armed forces, Mercantile Marine and Volunteer Defence Corps during World War II.
Initially, the qualifying period was those members who served overseas for at least 18 months full-time service or three years’ part-time service between 3 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. On 16 August 1996, the qualifying period was reduced to 30 days for full-time service and 90 days for part-time service.

My one is named to Q191735 E.E.G. Finlay. Staff Sergeant Eric Edward George Finlay died on the 15th of March, 1942, aged 29, while serving in the Australian Army, 4 Supply Company AASC. His place of death is recorded as Australia, but a bit more googling reveals more. Eric was the son of Albert Edward and Elizabeth Marie Finlay, of Bardon, Queensland; Husband of Barbara Mary Finlay, of Bardon, Queensland. His grave is in Adelaide River War Cemetery in the Northern Territory. In this cemetery are buried the men who died building the “track” to Darwin during WW2. His death notices, placed by his wife and other family in the Brisbane Courier Mail on the 15th of March 1942, describe him dying in a “burning accident” at Mount Isa. How awful.


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International Force East Timor Medal

Posted in 1945 + Medals with tags , , on May 19, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_AustraliaThe International Force East Timor (INTERFET) Medal recognises members of the Australian Defence Force who served for 30 days (or 30 sorties) in East Timor during the INTERFET campaign (16 September 1999 – 10 April 2000). The qualifying area comprises East Timor and the sea adjacent to East Timor out to a distance of 12 nautical miles (22 km) from the low water mark.

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Civilian Service Medal 1939-1945

Posted in 1939-1945 Service Medals with tags , , on May 14, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_AustraliaThe Civilian Service Medal 1939–1945 is awarded to civilians in Australia during World War II who served in arduous circumstances in support of the war effort as part of organisations with military-like arrangements and conditions of service. The medal was introduced in 1994, following a recommendation of the Committee of Inquiry into Defence and Defence Related Awards.

The Committee intended to extend recognition only to those whose war service in Australia was more arduous than the norm, and was performed under military-like conditions. Hence, Women’s Land Army members, whose work was very physical, required them to live in rural areas away from their homes for lengthy periods, and was subject to military-like discipline, are generally eligible. On the other hand, members of the industrial workforce involved in munitions production are not eligible, as they overwhelmingly lived at home and were subject to standard civilian working conditions. The medal is therefore recognition of those not in the armed services, but who experienced wartime working conditions similar to the armed services.

Recipients must have served for at least 180 days in any one or a combination of the 38 eligible groups between 3 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. Recipients of the Civilian Service Medal 1939–1945 do not earn an entitlement to use post-nominal letters. As at 30 June 2006, 6,711 awards of the Civilian Service Medal 1939–1945 had been made.

This particular example is blank on the reverse and therefore unissued stock.

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Commemorative Medal for 50 Years Since the Victory in 1945

Posted in 1939-1945 Jubilee Medals with tags , , on May 14, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_AustraliaThis medal is one of many of the same pattern that were created and distributed by organizations ranging from the State Government of Queensland to, in this case, the local RSL’s. This one is unnamed but is stamped Maryborough RSL on the reverse.

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Commemorative Medallion for the Victory in WW2

Posted in Medallions & Badges with tags , , , on May 12, 2013 by The Dude

Flag_of_AustraliaHere is a cheap and cheesy medallion knocked out locally in Australia around VE Day 1945. A unique piece of Australian history, this vintage token was handed out to Australian school children at the end of World War 2. Made of silvered copper by Stokes of Melbourne

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