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General Militaria Archive - Page 2

These are some of the SOLD items that have been listed on our website

There are a maximum of 20 items on each page - our most recent sale is listed first - this is now quite a large reference record. If you have a specific interest, use our keyword search to search the entire stock database.

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Reference Stock Item   Description
US M 41 Field Jacket Replica - Click for the bigger picture SoldUS M 41 Field Jacket Replica - Whilst outside of our normal area of interest this jacket came in with a small private collection we have just bought. Whist clearly second hand it seems in excellent condition and has that lived in look you never get with off the peg replicas. This design originates back in 1935, and several variations were offered up until 1941, when it was finally standardised under the description of JACKET FIELD OD. It is perhaps the most recognizable and most worn jacket of WWII and used by both U.S Army and Navy personnel.

Manufactured from beige cotton it is fitted with a quality Talon zip that is marked USA on the reverse. In addition to the zip the jacket features button closures to the front, waist and sleeve adjustments and two slash pockets.

Inside it has an olive green blanket lining and a manufacturers label showing designation' M41 Jacket Field' and is dated for authenticity 6/3/41. In addition to other details it states the manufacturer as being 'Doursoux' so we assume it is of French origin. No size is marked but we estimate this great replica would be suitable for a chest size of 39"-42" or 100 cm -107 cm. A practical and stylish summer jacket on offer at a modest price. All you now need is the Jeep to complete the look!

WWI Verner's Mk VII Marching Compass - Click for the bigger picture SoldWWI Verner's Mk VII Marching Compass - A fine original example of the classic British Army WWI Mk VII model. Colonel William Willoughby Cole Verner (1852-1922) was commissioned into The Rifle Brigade in 1874 and retired in 1904. He served on the staff in the Egyptian campaign of 1884-85 and during the Boer War. Whilst the basic prismatic compass design has its origins in Schmalcalder's patent of 1812, Verners Pattern was a significant move forward. Around 1905 the term 'Verners Pattern' was first used with a Mk V model. Generally the compass card is the main area of change in the early models whilst the same basic features are displayed from the Mk V through to the Mk VIII and the Mk IX of WWII, with minor details changing depending on the manufacturer. The Mk VII is a prismatic dry card compass with a both a momentary bearing and transit lock fitted. This model is lighter than the WWII pattern that superseded it and is generally considered easier to use.

This example is in excellent issued condition. It is engrave 'B-L Made in Switzerland' on the base with serial number 27599 and a further nos 22637 stamped inside the lid. The base also carries a War department property mark arrow and the instrument is dated 1915 and it also retains its original anti slip ring which is often now missing from these compasses. It has a magnifying prism fitted for precise angle calculation for accurate target engagement. Whilst we can't guarantee the accuracy of the instrument it appears to be in good working order despite the 102 years since leaving the B-L factory and serving through at least one world war!

The leather case that comes with it is again in excellent condition with just a little wear to the carrying strap. This is clearly stamped L.F. & Co, is dated 1916 and is also broad arrow property marked. It also carries a hand written letter D on the case and D.A. on the shoulder strap possibly to identify the original ownership although details of that owner have long since been lost. The instrument measures 2.25" diameter or 5.4 cm. We believe it would be hard to find a crisper original example of this classic compass from the Great War.

Mk III '42 Pattern' Marching Compass converted to 'Mils Mk I' Spec - Click for the bigger picture SoldMk III '42 Pattern' Marching Compass converted to 'Mils Mk I' Spec - A small but beautifully formed compass that clearly has a story to tell. The Mk III Marching Compass first appeared in 1932 and was issued to British and Commonwealth military personnel and was renowned for its durability and extreme accuracy. This example is clearly marked on the base with the makers details T.G. Co Ltd, London and below the serial number 178990. It is also broad arrow property marked showing its military origins and dated 1942. Interestingly the designation Mk III has been crossed through and it has been re stamped Mils Mk I and it also carries a later NATO reissue code stamp 6605-99-960-0789, added when the conversion was carried out. The '99' indicates the instrument to be of UK origin.

Further research indicates this original WWII British compass has been modified and re issued, probably to French forces, in Mk I specification and was used by them from the 1970's to the 1990's. The main difference from the Mk III variant is the original 360 degree rotating bezel has been replaced by a 6,400 mils example with 17.78 mils equal to 1 degree. This allowed the experienced user the ability to plot very accurately using the aiming posts and prism that were attached to the compass and was particularly useful in artillery, tank, and mortar gunnery.

The compass shows signs of wear with paint rubbed from the brass case but with the proliferation of fakes now being offered this adds to the authenticity of this example. The mother of pearl compass card moves freely and while we can no longer guarantee the accuracy of the instrument it appears to all be in good working order.

In summary a fine original instrument and despite being 75 years old and serving with the British and French military forces remains in fine display condition so grab a little bit of history whilst you can, at a modest price. As with all our stock additional detail photographs are available on request. Measures 2.25"diameter (6.0 cm)

Women's Voluntary Service 'Aero-Pak' Travel Case - Click for the bigger picture SoldWomen's Voluntary Service 'Aero-Pak' Travel Case - Another charming example that clearly has a story to tell. Like the other suitcase we have just listed it bears witness to its travels of long ago and rather like a passport it carries clues to its earlier working life in far flung locations. Some vintage luggage, like this example, enables it to tell a story a story from its applied labels and shipping marks and here we have a wealth of clues to work on.

The case is of modest dimensions at 18" x 18" x 9" (46 cm x 46 cm x 23 cm) and appears to have been the property of a lady serving with the W.V.S. Originally founded in 1938 as the Women's Voluntary Services the W.V.S. was initially formed to help recruit women into the Air Raid Precautions (ARP) movement in WWII, assisting civilians during and after air raids by providing emergency rest centres, sustenance, first aid, and perhaps most famously assisting with the evacuation and billeting of children. By 1943 the organisation had over one million volunteers and was involved in almost every aspect of wartime life. In 1966 the WVS was granted the honour of adding 'Royal' to its name and so became the W.R.V.S.

Our case carries a stencil name 'B.K.B. Jones WVS/UK' and below 'K/IE' and is also marked 'Cabin' so would have ben wanted on a sea voyage. It also carries a Cunard White Star Line 'Cabin Class J' label to the side panel and on the lid another reading 'Roma Abergo Anglo Americano'. The front panel of the case has owners initials B.K.B.J. (Bridget Jones perhaps?) as well as a metal manufactures tag reading 'Aero-Pak' and 'Deluxe Modern Luggage'. Aero Pak operated out of Petersburg, Virginia, U.S.A. and our research indicates they were formed in early 1900 and were manufacturers of 'wardrobe trunks and suitcases'.

This quality case features classic yellow stripes on the exterior with a leather covered handle again incorporating the same striped fabric. The edges of the case are covered in leather strips that show significant wear, commensurate with use. The fitted interior, which again shows signs of wear features elasticated pockets to the sides and a further larger pocket within the lid as well as tie down straps to secure items of lose clothing. We are unsure of the actual date of manufacture but at a guess say it is from the 1940's, endorsed by the Cunard White Star line sticker, as the company only operated under this name until between 1934 to 1949. This case would make a fine addition to either a W.V.S., White Star or vintage case collection and with its 'shabby chic' look and with its wealth of external makings it would also make a perfect film or stage prop for those looking for the ultimate in authenticity.

Military Leather Suitcase - Click for the bigger picture SoldMilitary Leather Suitcase - Named to Major C.H.Townsend this was clearly a very high quality case and is made of fine leather hide and solid brass fittings. What really brings it to life is the painted address and various other shipping marks; clearly Major Townsend did not want to be parted from his luggage whilst serving overseas! The case is marked to the top with the Major's name and we assume his home address which was 'Rosemount, Wellington, Shropshire, UK.Interestingly we can just make out below and now over painted 'C.H.Townsend, Gloucestershire Regiment'. The lid and front are also marked with a stylised 'M' against a red roundel which we assume to be a shipping mark for easy identification. The front and one end are also painted with 'Cabin W.O.V' indicating this was cabin baggage and 'Wanted on Voyage' so we assume this would have contained the Major personal effects.

This is an extremely heavy case, weighing in at 18 lbs (8 kilos) empty and we would imagine with its heavy brass fitting and copper riveting it would have been an expensive item in its day. We are unsure of the maker, although both locks are embossed 'British Made'. We can only guess it's date at late 19th or early 20th century. With time it may well be possible to research Major Townsend which would add further to the interest in (and value) of this piece. Whilst the case has clearly been well used and shows wear commensurate with age it exudes period charm. It would add a 'shabby chic' look to a military or Victoriana collection, whilst it would also make a perfect film or stage prop for those looking for the ultimate in authenticity. It would also be ideal for shop window display dressing.

The case measures 30" x 6"x 8" (77 cm x 40 cm x 20 cm.) In view of its size and weight please ask for a shipping quote before making any purchase decision and we of course have more detailed pictures here which are available on request.

Heavy Oak Instrument or Storage Box - Click for the bigger picture SoldHeavy Oak Instrument or Storage Box - On offer is a very fine and strongly constructed solid oak box. We were advised when purchased it probably originally contained a marine instrument but on reflection feel it is more likely it was designed to hold important documents. The box features what appear to be over specified solid cast brass fittings with strap hinges to the rear, a twist clasp to the front that would also have taken a padlock and a heavy brass fold away handle to either end. In addition the box has a brass aperture framed mount to the top of the lid that may well have held the business card of the owner or perhaps information relating to the contents, so if retrieved from a vault the contents would be known.

Sadly we have no provenance with it but the design and style is reminiscent of campaign furniture so it may well have military origins ; certainly with the carrying handles it was designed to be moved so would seem to endorse this theory. It could however also be chancery related and designed to hold important legal documents or perhaps even a family bible box ? Suffice to say whilst its origins are unknown it is a fine piece of furniture and beautifully constructed with dovetail joints. The oak, after a light waxing, exudes patina and as well as a decorative piece in a period house it would serve equally well today as a secure storage box as was probably originally intended. As you might imagine it is a heavy item weighing in unpacked at just over 13 lbs or 6 kilos so please check delivery charges before ordering this one. As with all our stock additional detailed photographs ware available here on request.

Schweiger's Hand Held Perimeter - Click for the bigger picture SoldSchweiger's Hand Held Perimeter - And now for something completely different! We purchased this instrument at a specialist marine auction and it was catalogued as 'a Royal Navy gun sighting device'. Liking scientific instruments we secured the lot and with further online research we discovered auctioneers don't always know it all after all! We have now been able to identify it as not marine related at all but an early optometrists instrument invented in 1888 by Schweigger. It is a hand-held instrument and was pioneered for use at the patient's bedside as it was quite small, in contrast to the heavy clinical instruments that often filled huge crates. The instrument was set up with the vertical rod with the slanted plate placed against the lower rim of the eye socket of the eye being examined. The arc perimeter was then used to measure the angle of extent of the patient's visual field by moving targets along the arc until they can no longer be seen and the results recorded. The targets were coloured discs on the end of hand-held wands that the optometrists holds against the arc in various places. The arc revolves so that the field can be assessed across any meridian. The instrument can also be used to identify the characteristics of the visual field such as scotoma of which the physiological blind spot is an example that we all exhibit. These instruments continued to be used well into the twentieth century and assigning a date to this examples is very difficult, particularly as it carries has no makers marks or patent numbers, so we can only guess at its age. It appears to be in good used condition and would make a great addition to a specialist vintage optometrists collection or a brilliant entry in a 'guess its use' quiz! The arc measures 16" (40 cm).
German WWII Vehicle Field and Vehicle Identification Flag - Click for the bigger picture SoldGerman WWII Vehicle Field and Vehicle Identification Flag - In German known as a 'Feld und Fahrzeug Erkennungsflagge' these were first introduced 1st September 1939 to identify German tanks, vehicles and trains to prevent 'friendly fire' incidents. Initially white Balkan Crosses were used against a red background but it was found these provided good aiming points so in October 1939 the white cross was changed to black with a white outline. However with the invasion of the low countries the OKH, Oberkommando des Heeres, (the High Command of the Army)changed the speciation again on March 8th 1940 by replacing the Balkan Cross with a swastika. This specification only lasted until April 1941 when the swastika was abandoned and the flag reverted to the Balkan Cross. Whilst the Luftwaffe retained air superiority, these type of flags were widely used by forward troops but later in the war they were seen less and less frequently as they simply represented a 'calling card' for the allied air forces! Our flag came from a defunct museum and we have no provenance with it but with the swastika design it would appear to date from between April 1940 to April 1941 so a scarce surviving example. It is a good display size at 74" x 37" (188 cm x 94 cm). The red background is still very fresh with a central white disc of 28" diameter (71 cm) featuring a black swastika machine stitched to the centre. As always with these ID flags it is single sided. To each corner is a plated sheet metal grommet to enable the flag to be tied down securely ;these show some age corrosion. The fabric is generally very sound with a small hole beside one eyelet and a further what could be a period stitched repair but generally it is in very good display condition and of a specification that was only current for 13 months.
WWII Royal Tank Regiment Illustrated Love Poem - Click for the bigger picture SoldWWII Royal Tank Regiment Illustrated Love Poem - This item is a little outside our normal area of expertise but when recently we were offered the chance to buy it we could not decline! The poem and pictures appear to have been fairly recently framed and glazed. The top of the picture contains a hand written love poem : There's never a hill so high, that love can not ascend, There's never a song so sweet, as sung from the heart of a friend, There's never a stormy sea, without its tranquil shore So may joys sweet content for you, flow on for ever more.. Sadly the poem is not addressed to anyone and it is not signed. Below are a series of naive style scenes, drawn in ink, showing Africa in 1943, Italy in 1944, Austria in 1945 and finally good old 'Blighty'! Within each montage a small tank is shown - we believe this could be based on a British Churchill Mk IV which was used by British and Commonwealth forces in North Africa, Italy and North-West Europe so in line with the areas depicted. In the African scene the caption has been added 'through dust' and in Italy 'blood' in Austria 'mud' and in England 'to the green fields beyond! It is our assumption the creator of this artwork was a member of this tank's crew and the illustration depicts his war and happily it appears he got home safely. Whilst this Tank Regiment man remains anonymous his artwork and poem of 70 years ago survives. It is in excellent condition and not faded. It would appear to have been folded at some stage and was perhaps included in a letter. We suppose it is possible something may be written on the reverse side but we have left the piece exactly as it came in. Certainly a one off and emotive souvenir of WWII. Minor marks to frame and non breakable glass fitted. More detailed pictures available on request. Frame measures 17.00" x 13.25" (43 cm x 33 cm)
'Bull Shit Creek' Trench Art Ashtray - Click for the bigger picture Sold'Bull Shit Creek' Trench Art Ashtray - I am currently thinning out my own collection and this one has to go! On offer here is a super chunk of trench art in need of a new home! It is made from a German shell case base which is dated dated 1936 and carries a clear Waffan amp stamp together with various other manufacturing marks. The shell casing has been mainly removed and the remaining base has been converted into an ashtray and features a match box holder in the centre. Whilst the history of this piece has been lost down the years it has punched into the side the words "Bull Shit Creek" and it would clearly have a story to tell if it could only talk! It measures 5" across the base (128mm) and strands 2.5" high (64 mm).
Ale House Tankard - Click for the bigger picture SoldAle House Tankard - Original tankard finely engraved to the front "Falcon Inne." Manufactured in brass, the tankard would have been used in a public house and the engraving would effectively be an early form of property mark to ensure the tankard remained on the premises! It features a hinged lid and is generally in great used condition showing just minor age wear as you would expect, but overall has great patina and probably dates from the late 19th century. Capacity looks to be a pint. It measures 6.5" (16 cm.) high. Whilst not fitting into either our normal Nautical and Aeronautical theme it just exudes character and we had to buy it!
British Army Despatch Riders Gloves - Click for the bigger picture SoldBritish Army Despatch Riders Gloves - A pair of WD issue gloves by D.Power & Sons Ltd. This pattern was also used by the women in the ATS Motorised Transport Section, for driving duties. Power & Sons Ltd operated out of their Long Street, Walsall factory. Walsall's gloving industry developed after the First World War, as a deliberate policy of diversification to combat the decline in the local saddlery and harness trade and they were the first specialist glove manufacturer in the town. This set are fully marked and as well as the makers details they are dated 1946 and carry the WD stamp, crows foot and the number 267. The marked size is 7 and we speculate this pair were ladies ATS drivers gloves. They are in excellent original condition and show just minor storage marks and appear to be unissued.
Middle East Cigarette Case - Click for the bigger picture SoldMiddle East Cigarette Case - This example came in with the small collection of military related cigarette cases we have listed today. Whilst the others date to circa WWII we believe this one to be of post war manufacture. The front carries a detailed map of Iraq and the outline of the surrounding countries of Turkey, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Trans Jordan and Syria. The wording 'Trans Jordan' may give a clue to the age of the case as the State of Trans Jordan became the the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in 1948 so we assume this case dates from around this early post WWII period. The inside is stamped Sylva chrome Made in England and Patent number 592750. It is also marked Emu brand. The spring catch and hinge are in perfect condition although the elastic to hold the cigarettes in place is missing from this example. Measures 5" x 3.5" (13 cm x 9 cm)
Presentation Gavel named to Woolwich Arsenal - Click for the bigger picture SoldPresentation Gavel named to Woolwich Arsenal - A fine polished hardwood example with an engraved plaque reading "Woolwich Arsenal 1914-1918 R.S.F. No. I.C.P. Presented to G.A.Sheppard." Unfortunately, we have no history with this item, but if any visitors to the site can enlighten us, we would be glad to hear from them! Length from head to tip of handle 8.5" (22 cm)
Swastika Motif Hat Pin - Click for the bigger picture SoldSwastika Motif Hat Pin - We believe this fine example probably dates from the 1020's when the swastika device was considered a symbol of well being and predates its adoption as a symbol of the Nazi Party in the 1930's. This hat pin has an arts & crafts feel to it and features inset clear and emerald coloured stones. It carries no makers marks and we'll leave it to the experts to decide on its age and origins. Pin measures 9" (23 cm)
British Graham Land Expedition 1934 - 1937 Full Field Goggles - Click for the bigger picture SoldBritish Graham Land Expedition 1934 - 1937 Full Field Goggles - These come complete with original fitted case indicating manufactured by Theodore Hamblin Ltd. of Wigmore Street, London. The BGLE was organised so as to map the west coast of Graham Land to explore alternative passages through the Stefenson Strait rather than through the eastern approach that proved so disastrous to Shackleton. The goggles are fitted with salvog yellow lenses which were used on the Everest expeditions and gave maximum protection to ultra violet light. Some fogging to lenses and associated age wear but a possible unique and historical set of expedition goggles.
Trench Art Shell Case Ashtrays - Click for the bigger picture SoldTrench Art Shell Case Ashtrays - A matched pair, each inset with Italian 2 lire coins, one showing the head of King Vittorio Emanuele III, while the other shows the reverse side of an identical coin featuring the fascist eagle and dated 1940. The shell case ends carry no identifiable markings and are finished in chrome. They are extremely heavy, so please check postage with us before ordering. Diameter 6" (15.5 cm)
Trench Art Tankard celebrating the North African Campaign - Click for the bigger picture SoldTrench Art Tankard celebrating the North African Campaign - A wonderful example depicting the North African coastline from Morocco through Tunisia, Libya and Egypt, with cartoons showing soldiers, tanks and palm trees as well as a brief description of events and dates. These commence on the 8th November, 1942 with American landings in Morocco and conclude on 13th May, 1945. The tankard has been manufactured from brass salvaged from the actual battle fields in North Africa and makes a wonderful momento of that critical campaign in WWII. Height 4.75" (12.5 cm)
Field Ambulance Presentation Cigarette Box - Click for the bigger picture SoldField Ambulance Presentation Cigarette Box - Manufactured from sterling silver and engraved to lid 6(U)FD AMB 1942. Below this there are a number of engraved signatures. We believe this item has been presented by members of the 6th Field Ambulance Unit, probably by colleagues of a departing member. The silver plate shows some wear, but overall in excellent original condition with wood lining. 13 cm x 8 cm x 4.5 cm
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