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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 17:41 pm 
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Group: Tay/5 & 1st American Sqdn., Home Guard
I know some units didn't get BD till 41 early 42 and there was one London unit that got BD, in Barathea cloth to boot, long before anyone else got a wiff of BD.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 22:26 pm 
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I dont know how accurate this is, but it gives an idea of a uniform timeline I think ...

On 22 May 1940, eight days after the formation of the LDV, it was announced by the War Office that 250,000 field service caps were to be distributed as the first part of the uniform of the new force and that khaki brassards or "armlets" were being manufactured, each carrying the letters "LDV" in black. In the meantime, LDV units improvised their own brassards with whatever materials were available. Local Women's Voluntary Service branches were often asked to produce these, sometimes using old puttees donated by veterans. The British Army used loose-fitting work clothes called "Overalls, Denim" which were made of khaki-coloured cotton twill fabric and consisted of a short jacket or "blouse" and trousers. They were cut to the same style as, and designed to be worn over, the 1938 pattern Battle Dress. It was announced that 90,000 sets of denim overalls would be released from military stores at once and that more would be issued as soon as they could be manufactured.

On 25 June, Anthony Eden announced in the House of Commons that LDV uniform was intended "to consist of one suit of overalls of design similar to that of battle dress, a field service cap, and an armlet bearing the letters 'L.D.V.'".[32] On 30 July 1940, Eden further announced that the Home Guard (as the LDV had been renamed) would be issued with military boots as supplies became available.

The issue of uniforms proceeded slowly owing to shortages and the need to re-equip and enlarge the army following the fall of France. On 14 August, Eden announced that the supply of material to make the denim overalls was insufficient and that regular battle dress would be released to the Home Guard as an interim measure. By the end of 1940, the Cabinet had approved the expenditure of £1 million for the supply of battle dress to the whole force. On 20 August 1940, it was further announced that blankets were being issued and that the intention was to provide the Home Guard with greatcoats.

As winter approached there were many complaints from Home Guardsmen who had to patrol or stand sentry without the benefit of a uniform overcoat. Therefore, a large cape made of heavy serge fabric was hastily designed and issued in the interim. There was no prospect of being able to provide sufficient sets of the 1937 Pattern Web Equipment (including belt, ammunition pouches and a haversack) to the Home Guard, so a simplified equipment set made from leather and canvas was produced. Particularly unpopular were the awkward leather "anklets" which were issued in place of the webbing gaiters worn by the army. The lack of provision of steel helmets was keenly felt, especially by those Home Guardsmen required to be on guard duty during the Blitz when the risk of being hit by a shell splinter was high. This situation was only gradually rectified


The denim uniform it seems was early on the standard and it is possible the 1st AMS initially had that kit .. ??

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... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:14 pm 
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The one thing to consider is that the 1st Am. were on there own hook, so to speak, in regards to uniforms and equipment. They may have followed HG regs., but the very earliest photos I've found, from August 1940, show them in civvy clothing, coveralls etc., drilling on the M1895 machineguns as well as working on vehicles. All known later photos show them wearing BD, P03 belts, P39 gaiters, tin bowlers. Sometimes you see all ranks wearing their collars open rather like officers, showing uniform shirts and ties. They do follow HG rank orders. Late 1940, early '41 photos show officers wear the blue wool rank bars as per regulation. I think that until Feb. 1941 HG rank was "Provisional" so blue wool bars were sewn onto the shoulder straps to indicate rank, one London unit made theirs from the red ribbons that came on a box of chocolates. one bar was a "Platoon Commander", 2 bars indicated a "Company Commander", 3 bars a "Battalion Commander", 4 was a "Zone Commander" (I think). I just had a quick shuftee at the photo of Winant inspecting the 1st Ams. and it looks as if they are wear web gaiters by '42.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 13:15 pm 
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Weren't the rank bars only pertinent to LDV, ?? when it became HG proper, they switched to traditional army rank insignia ... in the Churchill movie, and the film of them on manuevers as well as that of Wade Hayes, speaking, (all early 1941) they have the rank bars on then, but by the time of Winants inspection (and that would have to be post July 1941 when the LDV was renamed Home Guard) they had normal Army insignia .. look at the Lt to the left of the picture, he has normal Army pips on. .. I'm not sure on the gaiters, they could be canvas, I know the Brit HG hated the leather ones.. actually I have just seen a pic of the inspection where the by-line says they do have leather ones on .. ??

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I just had a quick shuftee at the photo of Winant inspecting the 1st Ams. and it looks as if they are wear web gaiters by '42.


Are you sure the Winant inspection is '42, I thought it was later in '41 ..??

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United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 0:02 am 
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When the LDV was first created the War Office saw it as a cilvilian militia and they did not want the "militia" in a position to order regular army troops. LDV ranks were "appointments" not commissions, thus the business with the coloured strips for officers. It was in early 1941 that the HG were allowed to use regular officers distinctions, but the backing of the pips were to be khaki, not arm of service colours. In March of 1941 HG NCOs were authorised to wear chevrons on both arms since the armbands were being withdrawn. When the armbands were in use HG NCOs only wore chevrons on the left arm since the armband was on the right arm where the other chevrons would go.
See pages 15-18 in Jon Mills' book IN THE SPACE OF A SINGLE DAY

As to the Winant photo the blurb with the photo. states July 4th, 1942 and they were celebrating their 2nd anniversary.

Jul. 04, 1942 - ''ILLEGIBLE'' WITH AMERICAN HOME GUARD: THE AMERICAN SQUADRON OF THE HOME GUARD ''ILLEGIBLE'' 1940 BY THE AMERICANS LIVING IN ''ILLEGIBLE,''ILLEGIBLE THEIR 2ND BIRTHDAY, IT ''ILLEGIBLE'' ''ILLEGIBLE'' THIS MORNING BY MR. J. G. WINANT, THE AMERICAN AMBASSADOR, AND HE WAS ACCOMPANIED BY ''ILLEGIBLE'' GEN. SIR. ARTHUR SMITH, G. ~. C. LONDON DISTRICT. KEYSTONE PHOTO SHOWS:- MR. WINANT WITH BRIG. GEN. WADE H. HAYES, INSPECTING THE AMERICAN HOME GUARD THIS MORNING. - Image ID: E0KP1W

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 10:06 am 
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Thanks for the fine detail on uniforms and rank insignia ... like I say, I'm not actually into the HG, it was a one off thing and its curiosity more than anything trying to find out more about the 1st AMS.

Re; the Winant pic, Im kicking myself a little, I saw that blurb recently but was blindsided I think by all the '"illegible" comments and didn't actually see the date. !!

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War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 11:38 am 
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Going back a little to the post about the original 13 copies of Yankee Yahoo, it is these pages perhaps that would give us all the information we need ... as, and I quote

Quote:
Nos. 7 to 13 contain 'It happened this way', an 'account of the origin and development of the 1st American Squadron, Home Guard' by 'Sergeant T. E. Downes' (with a couple of additions by Tubbs), amounting to 39pp.


.. erm... anyone got £2500 to spare ... :roll: :wink: :)

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War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 13:01 pm 
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Another question if I may, anyone got info on the group pic, date etc .... not very clear I know but looking at the two guys, 6th and 7th from right on the back row, they appear to have the shoulder flash on and one seems to have stripes, would make it post 1941 I think ..??


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_________________
War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 16:24 pm 
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It looks like the front left sgt. is wearing chevrons on both arms so that would post March '41, in theory at least. Do my ears deceive me or are they wearing web gaiters?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 16:44 pm 
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Its hard to say ... unfortunately the copy is just that, a copy of a newspaper picture by the look of it , would love to see the original, must be out there somewhere ??

_________________
War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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