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The First Collector !!

Article about: 32166_10151518960169524_1469053143_n.jpg Barney Hines , 45th Bn AIF , the Souvenir King , notorious on the Western Front of WW1 for his wild soldiering and his even wilder collecting !! John

  1. #1

    Default The First Collector !!


    Barney Hines , 45th Bn AIF , the Souvenir King , notorious on the Western Front of WW1 for his wild soldiering and his even wilder collecting !!

    John Hines (Australian soldier) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    What a legend !!
    The gates of hell were opened and we accepted the invitation to enter" 26/880 Lance Sgt, Edward Dyke. 26th Bn Northumberland Fusiliers , ( 3rd Tyneside Irish )

    1st July 1916

    Thought shall be the harder , heart the keener,
    Courage the greater as our strength faileth.
    Here lies our leader ,in the dust of his greatness.
    Who leaves him now , be damned forever.
    We who are old now shall not leave this Battle,
    But lie at his feet , in the dust with our leader

    House Carles at the Battle of Hastings

  2. #2

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    A legend indeed!
    Always looking for Belgian Congo stuff!

  3. #3

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    All that loot. What did he end up doing with all of it? Surely didn't make him rich.

  4. #4

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    Nice. Directly from the source.........!


  5. #5

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    He would sell and trade his items.....there's quite a large print of this pic in the Australian War memorial

  6. #6

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    Great photo thanks for sharing

  7. #7

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    Here`s the real first collector.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    I live not far from where he lived, might go for a drive, the are is now an industrial estate....but I'll have a look anyway

  9. #9

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    Quote by AMTG View Post
    I live not far from where he lived, might go for a drive, the are is now an industrial estate....but I'll have a look anyway
    That soon like fun.

  10. #10

    Default Re: The First Collector !!

    A well known character in Aussie militaria circles, a digest from many sources.

    from the Australians At War website....

    John "Barney" Hines was a real thorn in the side of the German army during World War I, so much so that the Kaiser put a price on his head "dead or alive".

    Hines had the happy knack of being able to wreck German pill boxes which threatened Australian troops using his favourite Mills bombs (grenades).

    On top of that, he became a master at souveniring, looting all sorts of items from dead and captured Germans and returning triumphant to the Australian lines. So good was he that he became known as the "Souvenir King".

    It was a photograph showing Barney Hines squatting among a pile of souvenirs after the Battle of Polygon Wood in France in 1917 that originally infuriated the Kaiser and brought about his demand to capture the "Australian Barbarian" dead or alive. The photograph was passed among Australians and eventually a copy fell into the hands of the Germans.

    Barney was not at all fazed by his notoriety and continued to collect great supplies of badges, helmets, guns, watches and other jewellery while maintaining his amazing attacks on German troops. He was reputed to have killed more Germans than any other soldier in the AIF.

    On one occasion he reached a German pill box and danced on the roof taunting the occupants to come out. When nothing happened he lobbed a couple of Mills bombs through the gun openings, killing some and forcing the rest, about 63 of them, to come out with raised arms. He duly collected his souvenirs from them and herded them back to the Australian lines.

    Among his more unusual souvenirs were a grand piano, which he managed to keep for several days, a grand father clock which was eventually blown up by his own men because it attracted shell fire from the German lines whenever it chimed, a barrel of Bass ale, which he shared with his comrades, and several suitcases full of banknotes from the bank at Amiens. He was arrested by British military police but caused so much bother he was returned to his unit.

    Hines was born in Liverpool, England, and tried to join the British Army when he was 14. His mother intervened and he was returned to her care. Two years later he joined the navy but lasted a year till he was discharged after a bad bout of malaria.

    He headed for the Klondike gold rush and got caught up in the Boer War where he worked as a guide for British troops, before trying his luck in New Zealand and eventually reaching Australian shores.

    When World War I broke out he tried to enlist in the AIF when already in his 40s. He was rejected on medical grounds. But he persisted and was finally accepted, sent to France as a reinforcement for the 45th Battalion.

    And then began his amazing sequence of daring attacks and enthusiastic souveniring.

    His luck had to run out eventually and he was wounded when at Passchendaele every man in his Lewis gun crew was killed by an exploding shell. Hines was flung 20 yards through the air, had the soles ripped from his boots but still managed to crawl back and keep firing until he fainted from his wounds.

    He was soon back in action but not long afterwards was hit above the eye by a bullet and was hit by a gas attack. He was eventually repatriated to Australia and recovered sufficiently to take up droving, prospecting and timber cutting. When World War II broke out he again tried to enlist in his 60s but for some reason was rejected.
    Hines died in 1958.

    from his commanding officer Colonel Allen DSO.

    "He was a tower of strength to the 45th Battalion while he was in the line.............Out of the line he caused the officers many grey hairs. He was, in the words of another 45th Officer, "Two pains in the neck"
    I remember on one occasion he was brought before me for being A.W.L. for three days when we were out resting. His big black eyes - eyes that could be so wild and fierce - wide open and childishly innocent, staring straight at me, he told me one of the most amazing and original collections of-we'll call them 'excuses'- I have ever heard under similar circumstances. In the face of such wonderful imagination I just couldn't. I let him off.
    Barney was never at a loss for a good excuse, and generally won the day. But not always. His pay book was one of the most lamentable documents I have ever seen."

    Some excerpts from Peter Stanley's article in Wartime No.13:

    "Hines had been a drifter: his various attestation papers record three different occupations within a year - 'seaman', 'engineer' and 'shearer'. He was heavily tattooed, with 'a Coat of Arms, a Crucifiction and a Memorial on his torso, with a Flower pot on his abdomen'."

    "His lack of discipline out of the line negated his bravery in it, however, and he was never formally decorated."

    "He was court-martialled or 'crimed' nine times, mostly for being absent without leave, but also for drunkenness, impeding military police in the execution of their duty and for forging entries in his pay book."

    "Like many former members of the AIF, Barney Hines was traumatised by his war service. For nearly 40 years after the war he lived in a bag humpy outside metropolitan Sydney, near Mount Druitt."

    "He never married. After his return from the war he never held a steady job. Barney Hines was a man whose skills in fighting were needed and whose knack for souveniring was admired, but he had few gifts that a peaceful society valued."
    from DIGGING FOR DIGGERS. The caption reads :

    The final resting place of John Hines, in Rookwood Cemetery, Sydney
    John 'Barney' Hines lies in an unmarked grave, closest to the top grave with the flowerpot. Barney was quite a celebrity in the Colyton area of Sydney and was a popular visitor to the Concord Repatriation Hospital, where he would supply patients with eggs from his farm.The War Graves plaque in Rookwood Cemetery which honours the war service of John Hines, 45th Bn. Age 80

    from the NSW Branch of the RSL.

    We have spent some time speaking to the manager of the Rookwood Cemetery and we have been informed that a name plaque for Private John Hines is on the Wall of Remembrance and this would have been the choice of the family to have it placed there at the time of his service. We are now informed that if a headstone was to be placed on the unmarked grave this would need the permission of the family. We have no contact details for the surviving family and it behoves me to say that we are unable to proceed any further to bring this matter to a conclusion. However, you may wish to follow up this up by searching for the next-of-kin and seeking their permission - if they wish to have a headstone placed on Private John Hines gravesite.

    I fully understand the sensitivities addressed here and have pointed out that we think Hines had no next of kin and was a pauper at the time of his death, which may explain the lack of a headstone.

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