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Can anybody tell me if these puttees are British?

Article about: I picked up this set of long puttees recently that were sold as WWI US puttees, but I suspect (and hope) that they are British. They are made of a serge wool in the same shade as a Service D

  1. #1
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    Default Can anybody tell me if these puttees are British?

    I picked up this set of long puttees recently that were sold as WWI US puttees, but I suspect (and hope) that they are British. They are made of a serge wool in the same shade as a Service Dress jacket (i.e. heath color) and lack any markings whatsoever. Additionally, they are about 4 1/2 inches wide and have mustard khaki tie tapes.

    I don't know enough about puttees to say with certainty that these are British and I'm hoping that someone on the forum can tell me the difference between British and the various US styles. Any input would be greatly appreciated!

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  2. #2

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    Hi they look to be British to me but as i have never US made ones maybe someone else will know better

  3. #3
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    Hi mate.

    They look very much like the ones that I was issued in the early 1980's! The whole make-up and construction of them says, to me, British Army 1970's/80's.

    (1) They are made of wool serge.
    (2) The tape appears to be herringbone, cotton twill.

    The problem with puttee's is that they were issued almost continuously, in various lengths, from the mid- 1800's onwards until the early/mid 1980's. They were also used by not only the British Army, but numerous other nations.

    British army ones tend to have a white/cream "stamp" at one end with the date, manufacturers details etc on. Obviously, by the nature of how they are worn, this is, (usually), worn away, or at best, very faint.

    How long is the actual puttee, (the wool part), excluding the tape? (I still have a set somewhere and will try and find them sometime over the next few days so that they can be compared)

    Regards etc

    Ian D

    AKA: Jimpy
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    Last edited by Larry C; 09-01-2014 at 11:36 PM.

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    Hi Kradman & Ian,

    Thank you very much for the responses, I'm glad that they appear to be British in construction!

    They are 10 feet in length, so full length puttees. I knew that the short anklet puttees were used in the British Army until the 1980's, but I had no idea that they continued to issue knee high puttees that late!

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    Hi Jimpy..I added a photo as I have much to learn by many unknown names of items. Never heard of Puttees..but leggings I heard of. Nice find
    It is not the size of a Collection in History that matters......Its the size of your Passion for it!! - Larry C

    One never knows what tree roots push to the surface of what laid buried before the tree was planted - Larry C

    “The farther back you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see.” - Winston Churchill

  6. #6
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    Quote by Larry C View Post
    Hi Jimpy..I added a photo as I have much to learn by many unknown names of items. Never heard of Puttees..but leggings I heard of. Nice find

    No probs Larry.

    Regards etc
    Ian D

    AKA: Jimpy

  7. #7
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    Quote by karkee View Post
    Hi Kradman & Ian,

    Thank you very much for the responses, I'm glad that they appear to be British in construction!

    They are 10 feet in length, so full length puttees. I knew that the short anklet puttees were used in the British Army until the 1980's, but I had no idea that they continued to issue knee high puttees that late!
    Hi Karkee

    Long leg puttee's stopped being issued around early/mid WWII.
    When other services went over to the short web anklets, long leg puttee's tended to be retained by CAVALRY and horse drawn artillery if they weren't wearing normal riding boots.

    As an aside, cavalry and horse artillery tended to put the puttee's on in reverse, so, starting at the knee and working down before finishing off at the ankle, whereas the "conventional" way was to start at the ankle and work UP, tieing off just below the knee.

    So, the upshot, to me anyway, is that you have a nice pair of long leg puttee's of any period from between about the mid 1800's to early/mid WWII, erring more towards the later period.

    Either way, a cracking pick-up mate.

    Hope that this is of some help

    Regards etc
    Ian D

    AKA: Jimpy

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    Thanks for the photo Larry! Puttee is an odd word...I guess that it is an adaptation of the hindi word, patti, for bandage.

    Thanks Ian for the great information! Interesting note about the cavalry fashion of wearing them. I've seen some interwar photos where the central wraps are flipped (similar to the Japanese fashion in WWII) like the ones in the photos below...

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