Friday, December 2, 2011

Militaria basics

The wide range of collectible military antiques provides would-be collectors with huge scope. You may decide to concentrate on a particular regiment, a type of object, or on a period of military history. Complete early uniforms may be hard to find, but the head-dresses, badges, fastenings, medals, powder flasks, postcards ad prints are readily available and can form fascinating and highly decorative collections.



Badges

Whether made from metal or fabric badges are increasingly popular with collectors. Officer's head-dress badges are larger than most others and particularly sought after. British regimental badges, such as these early 19th century examples are identifiable because they invariably include a crown in the design.  

Victorian era large brass cap badge for the 33rd (or The Duke of Wellington's) Regiment. Very clean large brass badge with both original lugs intact. In 1751 regiments were given numbers, and the regiment was from that time officially known as the 33rd Regiment of Foot. In 1782 the regiment's title was changed to the 33rd (or First Yorkshire West Riding) Regiment.

Price is 80 - 100 USD




Medals

Before buying a medal check the soldier's and regiment's history to make sure he was entitled to it. Medals are awarded for service and conduct, as well as participation in a particular campaign.

Strictly speaking, medals encompass all awards that hang from a ribbon, unless the award is a decoration, which is only awarded for distinction on the battlefield.



Shakos

Shakos, the cylindrical helmets, with peaks and often plumes, were popular during the 19th century. The elaborateness of their decoration can affect value. The word “shako” comes from a Magyar word for peaked cap.

The military shako, was first used by Magyar (Hungarian) troops in Austria. A shako is a tall, cylindrical military cap, usually with a peak (British English) or visor (American English) and sometimes tapered at the top. It is usually adorned with some kind of ornamental plate or badge on the front, metallic or otherwise, and often has a feather, plume, or pompon attached at the top.

In the United States, the Bell Crown Shako Cap, was in use between 1821 and 1832, and is recognizable for its distinctive shape: with the top wider than the base, and distinctly concave sides.

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