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Paradummy

Article about: Gentlemen, I was aware when I posted the Paradummy there were was going to be a lot of questions and conjecture, which is why I left out the words 'Rupert', British and WW2! I do not believe

  1. #11

    Default Re: Paradummy

    Gentlemen, I was aware when I posted the Paradummy there were was going to be a lot of questions and conjecture, which is why I left out the words 'Rupert', British and WW2!
    I do not believe that he is a 'Rupert' in the D-Day sense, however, I do believe that he is an original Paradummy, WW2 or post WW2 I don't know. I have it in hand so obviously it is easier for me to have an opinion, the pictures make him look more white than he is. It has (in my collecting experience) considerably age to it and has not been produced recently.
    My reasons for believing that it is an original Paradummy (again, remember I am not saying a 'Rupert' or D-Day related) and not a recent reproduction is not only the age,feel, smell and construction but the questions that it raises:

    If it is a reproduction why does it not look like any of the original 'Ruperts' out there? I believe that the majority of original Paradummies constructed from hessian/burlap which survive were found in a hanger/warehouse unissued post war. These original 'Ruperts' were quickly and easily constructed and I expect that I could knock up something that looks more like one of those that this Paradummy. (As an aside the one on the WD militaria website mentioned by Danny looks, from the limited pictures, to be more than likely a reproduction)

    Why go to the effort of making a (poor) reproduction Paradummy and then cover it in plaster? I have not found any references to them being painted or covered in plaster. Was it, as Danny said, to make them more visible to search lights? was it to make it look like snow or sand camouflage? was it to give the body a bit more ridgity and all over weight?

    I believe the original 'Ruperts' were stuffed with straw, why stuff it with horse hair/coconut hair? The stuffing in the body cavity is loose, I believe that it has been put in there to fill out the body as the parachute would have gone in their originally (He's about 44'' tall by the way).

    From the research that I have done there appear to be a few hessian/burlap Paradummies that purport to be original, some with flat backs, some with a line stitched up the back, some with parachutes attached to the body, some with parachutes attached to the shoulders, some (as in this case) with parachutes attached to the head, some with 'hands' and some without.

    Remember, Paradummies were used during WW2 in North Africa, Italy, Norway not just France on D-Day. They have also been used by various countries in various forms for numerous years. I believe, with the informtion and collecting experience that I have at this time that this is an original Paradummy. I am not saying that this paradummy is the last 'Rupert' from Operation Titanic, but a burlap dummy parachutist which was originally constructed for deception (against and enemy not militaria collectors!!!), when and where it was originally used I don't know.

    Most importantly I have no intention of selling it, I'm happy with it and it's staying in my collection.

  2. #12

    Default Re: Paradummy

    If you are happy with it!! That's what counts!

    Regards,

    Sam

  3. #13

    Default Re: Paradummy

    Quote by Grimebox View Post
    Most importantly I have no intention of selling it, I'm happy with it and it's staying in my collection.
    Thats what matters the most I did a little reading up online about them and where they were used, and they were more widespread in their use than I'd previously thought so it could be from any country and any conflict that involved using them. It would be difficult to prove whether this is original or not, but its always interesting to have such a discussion about such things though

    Thanks

    Danny

  4. #14

    Default Re: Paradummy

    'but its always interesting to have such a discussion about such things though'

    Indeed Danny! And if it brings attention as to what these brave 'soldiers' did then I am happy!

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