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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2016 9:07 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 13:45 pm
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Location: France
Real Name: Pierre
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You're welcome Andy!
As for the white cord, I don't really know, if it's made of cotton it may be quite old but if it's made of nylon/synthetic material then it's probably from the 70s+. But the red & green cord on my picture is probably a private purchase...

Markings on ID bracelets are quite a complex subject! The "Plaque d'identité modèle 1918" was replaced by new models in 1950 for the Army and only in 1980 in the Navy (no info for the Air Forces and Gendarmerie).

Typically, here are some basic rules for the dates stamped on the tags.

- Army, men called for National Service (ORs): the date is the year of their "classe", that is the year of their 20th birthday.
- Army, men enlisted on a voluntary basis (ORs): the date is the year in which they got in the Army. Has the letters "EV" stamped with it ("engagé volontaire").
- Army, officers: the date is their date of birth.

So when you see a wartime date stamped on this pattern of ID tag, it's one of the first 2 possibilities.
It appears from the pictures I posted above that the Gendarmerie used to stamp the date of birth on the tags.

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 19:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 21:01 pm
Posts: 152
Thanks Pierre, great info! Now, how about bikes? cycles that is. is it possible to use a british bike? was there much difference? Also, when in Normandy last June I saw a guy dressed as a French police/gendarme, riding a bike and it had a number plate on the back . What can you tell me about these number plates? was this just for police bikes or did civilian bikes have them too.?
Andy


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 9:14 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 13:45 pm
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Location: France
Real Name: Pierre
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Well, I guess a civilian bike would be ok as long as it's painted black with white stripes on the mudguards. Here is a wartime Gendarmerie bike from the same museum as above:
Image

I couldn't find whether they had number plates or not in the Gendarmerie. However, here are some great websites that you can translate:
http://forum.tontonvelo.com/viewtopic.php?f=33&t=285&hilit=plaque+immatriculation
http://souvenezvous44.blogspot.fr/2012/04/plaques-de-velo-sous-loccupation.html

To sum this up, it appears that civilian bikes, in Paris and its suburbs, were to have a number plate from January 1941 on. This yellow plate's size was 8 x 12 cm.
Some pictures show a plate with the name of the "département" on it. This seems to be for civilians living outside of Paris and its region and coming with their own bikes.
Image

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 18:39 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 21:01 pm
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Thanks Pierre for the great info. it's very interesting. I have tried to upload a picture of a French bicycle which I found and bought at the weekend. I'm thinking that it would be ok if I paint it black?


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 18:41 pm 
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Merde! it's telling me the file is too big. This is frustrating.


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:58 am 
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Hmm... Microsoft Office Picture Manager will let you resize the picture easily (if you have Microsoft Office of course).

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 19:25 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 21:01 pm
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Thanks Pierre but I don't think I have it. I will sort this out so bear with me.


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 16:57 pm 
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Well, I hope you can see this ok? I would be interested to know what you think, Pierre. Also, I watched the film, Female Agents last night and I noticed there were two police/gendarmes, one in the street directing traffic and the other riding a pushbike, well, both were wearing capes. I seem to remember it being said that capes were only worn at night but this was a daytime scene, so I'm wondering if the film makers got it wrong or is it a case of " Never say never" ?


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 14:22 pm 
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From what I can see on the picture, your bike looks good, although I can't enlarge the image. I can maybe send you a PM with my email address so you can send me a larger picture.

I just "got" myself the Female Agents movie and saw one of these policemen (the one directing traffic). He is actually a member of the police, not a Gendarme. This explains why he is wearing this cape (called a "pèlerine"), which is simply part of the winter uniform of all policemen.
Here is a policeman (Gardien de la Paix) of the Parisian Police, wearing a Modèle 1936 winter uniform:
Image
Detail of the pèlerine:
Image

On the first pic you can notice the differences on his kepi - it has the emblem of Paris instead of the gendarme's embroidered grenade.

In the police, kepis were worn by the members of the general service. Cyclists used to wear a peak cap.

In France, the Police takes care of the main cities whereas the Gendarmerie takes care of all the rest (countryside and smaller towns).

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Mon Apr 25, 2016 21:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 31, 2015 21:19 pm
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Real Name: John
Brought a batton as I saw they used white ones as seen in a photo online
http://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/video/1940s-policeman-signaling-traffic-with-stick-other-stock-video-footage/560-129

And dose anyone know what year they started using the jacket I have

Image


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 french police
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:44 am 
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Location: France
Real Name: Pierre
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Hi John,
your jacket is a pattern 1939, so it's all good for wartime use, even if it didn't completely replace the previous 1926 pattern (with closed pointed collar) before the late 40s due to wartime restrictions. You do see wartime pictures of gendarmes wearing your model of jacket (be it an original one or a pattern 1926 modified with tailored collar).

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