Archive for WW1

Imperial German NCO/EM Belt and Buckle

Posted in Belts & Belt Buckles with tags , , , , on July 6, 2019 by The Dude

A simple and iconic add to my accumulation this week. This is an Enlisted man’s or NCO leather belt with the Gott Mit Uns legend on the buckle. Depending on the year of issue this is either an Imperial example or a Prussian one.

Princess Mary Christmas Gift Box

Posted in Odds & Ends with tags , , on May 27, 2019 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomA really common item, which strangely I had never got round to getting one of. These were manufactured by the millions and the last ones weren’t distributed until 1920. There’s a great summary here of their history. These boxes were an idea that was based on the reception to the Queen Victoria ones from the Boer War, example here.

A Birchall Electrician in WW1

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles with tags , , on January 9, 2019 by The Dude

This trio are a 1915 Star, Allied Victory Medal and British War Medal awarded to Private C. Burchell (M2-048414). I haven’t found his first name yet but his army number indicates that he served as an electrician in the Army Service Corps. His record shows he entered France on the 16th of March 1915 and that he was released into the Class Z reserve on the 21st of April 1919. I hope he had a decent war.

New Zealand 1905 Pattern Mounted Rifles Bandolier

Posted in Ammo & Magazine Pouches with tags , , , on November 10, 2018 by The Dude

Flag_of_New_ZealandThis item, produced in 1942, is the 1905 pattern 50 round ammunition bandolier, issued to the New Zealand Mounted Rifles regiments. Unique to New Zealand, it was intended to provide additional ammunition in case of extended reconnaissance patrols and was popular because of the ability to sling these over the necks of the horses.

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NZMR hero 13/129 Corporal Sinclair Chapman Reid – North Auckland Mounted Rifles. Wearing the lightweight desert uniform. First known rank corporal rose to Lieutenant by wars end. During WWII held the rank of Major. Recipient of the Military Cross. Sinclair Reid had the distinction of being a combatant at both the attack on Chunuk Bair on the 8th August 1915 during the Gallipoli Campaign and the attack at Ayun Kara on the 14th November 1917 in Turkish Palestine. These actions were the most deadly engagements experienced by the NZMR during WWI.

WW1 Ridgways Tea Souvenir Tin

Posted in Odds & Ends, Propaganda Items with tags , , , , on May 12, 2018 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomWhen war broke out in August, 1914, many companies rushed to get souvenir premium items onto the market before it was all over by Christmas. Basing their hopes on the bounty that was earned by the chocolate companies during the recent Boer War, Ridgways put out this patriotic tea tin in 1914. Obviously manufactured before the reality of war hit home, the lithographs include a fanciful cavalry charge, a nursing scene, a homage to Baden-Powells Boy Scouts, Sir John French, Admiral John Jellicoe and finally the soon to be famous and then dead Lord Kitchener.

German Ball Shrapnel from the Somme

Posted in Ammunition, Missiles & Projectiles, Odds & Ends with tags , , , , , on December 10, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_German_EmpireFlag_of_the_United_KingdomShrapnel and shell fragments accounted for a large proportion of those killed and wounded in WW1. Those blown into the ether by high explosive to one side, artillery accounted for around 70% of casualties. These six balls were recovered from the Thiepval Redoubt on the Somme and are German in origin. Thiepval was a slaughterhouse on the first day of the attack and, despite early success, took a savage pounding from German counter-fire.

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The Battle of Thiepval. The view looking toward Thiepval on morning of attack and showing German barrage. (IWM)

A Career Navy Birchall in WW1 & WW2

Posted in 1914-1918 Service Medals, Family Groups & Singles with tags , , , , , on November 11, 2017 by The Dude

Flag_of_the_United_KingdomThis orphaned British War Medal is impressed to K6690 F.BURCHELL L.STO R.N. Luckily today is Remembrance Day, so the Ancestry military records are free. He was hard to track down because the naming of the medal is in error. It belonged to George Victor Burchell, born in Preston in 1896. He joined the Royal Navy as a boy of 12. He served in both WW1 and WW2, however, all of his service post WW1 was on shore stations like HMS Defiance and HMS Vivid. He had postings on HMS Eagle both in 1918 as well as the next Eagle in the mid 30’s. His trade was listed as jeweller/watchmaker and since most of his berths were at torpedo training establishments, I think he most likely serviced the mechanisms in torpedoes. His rank on the medal was Leading Stoker, his final rank in 1942 was Leading Petty Officer.