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Interesing item, with John McCrae ( In Flanders Fields) Connection

Article about: Here an interesting I picked up a while ago, this is a Canadian Officers Saddle Valise or bag, unit marked to D Battery RCA from the Boer War, the bag is well marked and in very good conditi

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    Default Interesing item, with John McCrae ( In Flanders Fields) Connection

    Here an interesting I picked up a while ago, this is a Canadian Officers Saddle Valise or bag, unit marked to D Battery RCA from the Boer War, the bag is well marked and in very good condition.

    D Battery was with the 2nd Canadian Contingent to go to South Africa, and was made up of Members of the 2 Guelph Ontario Militia Batteries. John McCrea was an Officer with one of them...he went to SA with D Battery and Commanded the "Right" Section of the guns.. D Battery only exsited during the Boer War.

    John McCrea had been a member of the 2nd Battn Queens Own Rifles of Toronto as well as another Militia Unit... plus being an Officer in the RCA, Most just know of him as a Medical Officer in WW1.

    John had some very high Connections and was well liked in both Medical and Gov circles, he was a friend of Robert Service and Stephen Leacock...not the unknown person we may have thought he was...he was an artist, a poet as well as a writer.

    The Famous Poem that we all came to know, was sent in from a Very High Ranking Gov Official in the UK..and not by a Sgt of John himself, also it is thought that this was not the original version as it is thought he had written this sometime before.

    There are a few original hand written copies of In Flanders Fields, as John was asked by many for a copy, I have seen 2 originals and held one...the interesting thing is that many of the originals he wrote had changes, and were not all the same.

    Johns Medals were found some years ago in a dead lawyers safe, the family was not that interested in them, so they were auctioned.
    They sold for over $400,000 and were bought by a Chinese Immigrant who had made his way in Canada and wanted to give something back, he donated them to the McCrae house in Guelph that is now a Museum.. as always, after seeing what they were worth, decendants now what them back..so for a few years they have been tied up in legal actions.
    I think if the family cared..they would let them go to the Place that Remembers Him.

    NOW, I am not ever suggesting this bag was his, however the unit had only 64 Men, and a few Officers..so he has a connection, even if slight to this piece,

    I forgot to mention, there was a single old hand knitted glove in the upper part of the bag..interesting
    Just My Thoughts

    Dean O
    Ajax Canada


    DRCA 002.jpgDRCA 001.jpgDRCA 003.jpgDRCA 004.jpg
    Last edited by Walkwolf; 04-03-2014 at 08:13 PM.

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    That's a very interesting find dude

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    you could well be correct Dean.

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    Nice find Dean a shame that direct providence to this valice can not be tied directly to John but it is a nice find all the same and as the unit was very small with only 64 members there is that slight possibility that it could have been his .
    Thanks for sharing it with us.



    Regards Mark
    Always on the look out for WW II Canadian Helmets and Cam nets to add to my collection.

    Found a Canadian Mk II Medics Helmet and yes I know they are about as rare as hens teeth !!!!!

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    Thanks Mark, as I have mentioned I never suggested it was his... just that he was a Section Commander in this very small unit

    Dean O

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    No I realize that Dean just thinking out loud is all not so far of a stretch with a unit of this size nice piece BTW not much Canadian Boer war memorbilia shown here on the forum if only this valice could talk.

    Regards Mark
    Always on the look out for WW II Canadian Helmets and Cam nets to add to my collection.

    Found a Canadian Mk II Medics Helmet and yes I know they are about as rare as hens teeth !!!!!

  7. #7
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    Well I have 2 Boar War Medical Kits, I think I have shown, I also have what I am told is a Boar War Flare Cartridge pouch, would have been small flares, however the pouch is made the correct way, I also have posted a Boar War Named Canadian stetson Hat..and I think I have a few other items.

    The problem with the Canadian stuff for the 2nd contingent, a lot of the lit is not standard, I have seen 3 different types of Stetsons In the Canadian War Museum, and mine is a bit different than them.

    Dean O

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