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WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

Article about: Hi I'm a very very new to collecting. My interest lies in German WW1 battlefield items. This may be a silly question but: Do partial fabric parts of uniforms ever turn up. There are obviousl

  1. #11

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    Andy that must have taken some effort to get out of the clay. How delicate was it ?
    Sorry to repeat myself ...What happened to this Coat.?? Where did it end up going to?

  2. #12

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    Quote by vegetius View Post
    Andy,

    I am glad you liked what we did at Plug street, it was an excellent few seasons. I also participated on a few TV series in both France and Belgium each of a couple of months apiece, and a single 4 1/2 month series of excavations for the Belgian Government that I directed on 10 battlefield sites.

    On one series we dug at Geluveld near Hooge and I located a British Army Great Coat. It was relatively intact the picture below shows some of the parts. The stitching had rotted away but the fabric remained sound leaving a kit form greatcoat. The First picture shows what we found when we got it to the lab, the stencil is the soldiers unit details for recognition.

    Condition there was down to anaerobic conditions caused by Belgian Blue Clay, combined with a very Low Ph. If you are familiar with the Plug Street book you will know Pte Alan Mather who's identification was down to fantastic preservation again due to the Belgian geology.

    - - ------- - -

    Attachment 1701209
    Yes, I very much enjoyed reading the book and can only imagine how exciting it would be to be involved in making such discoveries! Collecting relic finds is one thing, but to actually discover them would be quite fascinating and very rewarding, particularly if you can give a name to the item. Amazing to see what has survived the ravages of time due to the conditions prevalent in the soil.

  3. #13

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    Quote by Mycall2758 View Post
    Andy that must have taken some effort to get out of the clay. How delicate was it ?
    Sorry to repeat myself ...What happened to this Coat.?? Where did it end up going to?
    I think your reply was meant for @vegetius. Hopefully he will see this and will reply.

  4. #14

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    Sorry Andy.......It's that old age thing creeping up on me again......Your lucky I didn't post it on another forum.......

  5. #15

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    Mycall,

    "...that must have taken some effort to get out of the clay. How delicate was it ?" Not very difficult at all. It was saturated with dilute clay so pretty much came out in one big lump. It was in a support trench CQMS's store. we got a wheelbarrow full of .303 in Ball out as well, (about 2500 or so). One really nice find there was a couple of shovel RE's, (RE=Round Edged). I had placed them by the cut we were digging when another archaeologist picked one up and was going to use it having thought it was one our modern ones. Sometimes preservation is just that good. All the finds went to the Belgian Government Archaeologists for lab work and preservation then either storage or a museum depending on what they are and who wants what.

    If you can get it watch 'Finding the Fallen' there were two series made by a Canadian Firm Yap Films, they were definitely shown not too long ago on Discovery or History or some such channel.

    WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

    A picture of the Shovel RE in situ.

    WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

    The Shovel RE having been excavated

    WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

    A single Officers leather Glove

    WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

    An Issue OR's Sock!

    WW1 German Battlefield Uniform

    A sandbag

    Just to show the level of preservation and what can be recovered if dug archaeologically. All of these items although everyday things tell a little of the picture of the people who fought and died there. Rip it out of the ground, do not record it correctly and the item is lost to history and only of value to the selfish person who has obtained it for themselves or worse still profit.

    Rant over! I do hope you like just a couple of the pics I have from one site, having dug hundreds of sites I have a considerable number of pictures.

    Regards,

    R

  6. #16

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    vegetius
    I have total respect for what you do ....no important site should just be grave robbed ..everything should be recorded by professionals. Now I gonna be controversial here. I'm not sure that every find should end up in a dark storage warehouse. I think there could be some balance in letting finds out onto the open market it would certainly provide funds for future digs.

  7. #17

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    Mycall,

    " Now I gonna be controversial here. I'm not sure that every find should end up in a dark storage warehouse. "

    Actually I agree with you! However they need to be checked, researched where necessary and the museums given a chance if they want them. The important thing is getting the information from them. That may be the item it's self, or where it is or who was in possession of it. As long as they are not for personal gain and the money goes to the maintenance of the museum and Archaeological Repositories and Research Facilities then that is a good thing.

    My local Repository, (about a mile from my house!) is full, they are now lost as to where all the local finds will go, (these range from Pre-historic to Victorian with a whole load of Roman, Anglo-Saxon and Medieval in-between).

    So yes I agree, but only when done correctly.

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