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  #31  
Old 19-03-20, 07:22 PM
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Luke H Luke H is offline
 
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I really donít believe it is a souvenir piece for several reasons.

Firstly if it was a bespoke finished souvenir I would have thought a conversion to a broach would be very likely for non-service wear or display.

Second, the condition and wear. As you can see the badge itself shows what Iíd regard as clear signs of service wear. The loops are battered and the badge itself has been purposely shaped and curved - undoubtedly to fit a cap. I strongly doubt a souvenir piece would exhibit these traits.

Lastly the period photographs Iíve seen of Manchester Pals badges being worn. Some, including one very close up and clear portrait postcard, are literally bright as buttons with not the slightest trace of darker bronzing even in hard to polish areas such as the recesses. Now these soldiers could potentially have been OCD polishers but equally I feel itís possible the bronzing isnít visible as it was never there in the first place.

Over the years I have seen a few of these badges which I donít believe to have ever been bronzed so I think itís entirely possible a batch or run was finished in a different way (mistake, altered requirement etc.) and issued. Certainly photographic evidence doesnít conflict with this and I know where I work you wear what youíre issued even if the person next to you gets a different shade/style etc. of the same kit due to different batches or manufacturers.

Personally Iím convinced this badge and ones like it were worn in service but wholeheartedly accept the Ďstandardí finish should be bronzed brass. That said I completely understand others may disagree with the above or my interpretation. I think this is potentially one of those subjects that ultimately comes down to opinion and individual views on the written record conflicting with whatís found.

Perhaps the owner of the smashing postcard will see this thread and post a picture to add to this interesting subject and debate.
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  #32  
Old 19-03-20, 07:47 PM
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manchesters manchesters is offline
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Luke,

I have a very extensive collection of WW1 and earlier photographs of members of the Manchester Regiment of all Battalions including the Pals.

Careful study of these has led me towards a theory that I have not mentioned before because its just that, a theory, but it would go some way to explaining the badge and what you have said and another member here earlier in the discussion.

There were 8 City Battalions who undoubtedly were issued with bronzed brass cap badges, and the Platoon photographs in the Book of Honour along with my photographic reference library, certainly prove this. I am talking here about 1914 and 1915. As the war progressed no doubt the finish came off and equally many men joining after the Battalions were at the front wore standard bi-metal cap badges.

There was a further Battalion that wore the 'Pals' cap badge, and that was the 24th (Oldham) Bn, who also had their own distinctive shoulder title. As you know the City battalions had there own Bronzed shoulder titles to match the cap badge. However in the 24th the shoulder title is not bronzed and its my believe having studied their Oldham, Battalion of Comrades Book of Honour Platoon photographs and my own photographs that they wore your badge, ie - An un bronzed 'Pals' cap badge.

Its something I had discerned some time ago and forgotton about until today when you wrote about your badge and I have just re checked my notes and looked at the Oldham Platoon Photos and mine and am more convinced that this is the case.

Something for you all to think about.

regards
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  #33  
Old 20-03-20, 11:23 AM
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curiosity killed the cat. I succumbed and unscrewed the back off the frame.
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Last edited by silverwash; 20-03-20 at 11:30 AM. Reason: grammar
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  #34  
Old 20-03-20, 11:37 AM
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Nice original, bronzed brass badges, showing good wear to the finish as expected.

regards
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  #35  
Old 20-03-20, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manchesters View Post
Luke,

There was a further Battalion that wore the 'Pals' cap badge, and that was the 24th (Oldham) Bn, who also had their own distinctive shoulder title. As you know the City battalions had there own Bronzed shoulder titles to match the cap badge. However in the 24th the shoulder title is not bronzed and its my believe having studied their Oldham, Battalion of Comrades Book of Honour Platoon photographs and my own photographs that they wore your badge, ie - An un bronzed 'Pals' cap badge.

Its something I had discerned some time ago and forgotten about until today when you wrote about your badge and I have just re checked my notes and looked at the Oldham Platoon Photos and mine and am more convinced that this is the case.

Something for you all to think about.

regards
My cap badge was almost certainly worn by a member of the 24th Oldham battalion as it came with this shoulder title. Perhaps their cap badges were also issued unbronzed.

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