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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 14:43 pm 
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Group: That's so 2011...
I think there is still a lot of confusion within reenactment about SOE and the resistance.

SOE were spies, agents....they had to blend in. They were dropped with their kit. A bag containing a change of clothes...everything from the cut and fabric was different...for women even items like sanitary towels had to be french made/in the style of.

They wore the oversmock as issued to paras and sometimes even the para helmet, sometimes the softer type. they did not always/ever wear knee pads (seem to be lots of those kicking about as SOE)

Resistance were locals. French or Belgians who hated the Germans. they worked in helping evaders or escapees. they worked in sabotage (as did SOE agents)

Resistance needed no special clothes, women wore their everyday clothing.
I've seen a few displays this year with 'resistance' themes and they seem to be protraying the end of the war. Pictures like the liberation of Paris with girls in shorts and workwear...
Most resistance were hoping to god that they weren't discovered. Bizarrely enough Secret army has (in the most part) got it right. Young women wore plain skirts, jumpers, simple blouses....why would you want to stand out?
Most resistance until the eve of liberation wouldn't have been armed. Weapons (particularly british or US ones) were just another thing to hide.

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Be very careful about loaning original items...also, please keep an eye out for :
*Still missing* Because some folks are devoid of an ounce of honesty or integrity.
Women's Navy Great Coat
Green floor length 1930s evening dress with sleeves set on net.
Blue and white rayon dress with peplum
Black velvet halter necked dress with silver shot thread skirt (may still have Harrods label in it) I have photos of all of these items and I know where they are in Scunthorpe, but would appreciate a nod if they come up for sale. [/color]


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 19:16 pm 
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commando sniper wrote:
theres a semi-clear picture on the harrington museum website:

http://harringtonmuseum.org.uk/801st492nd.htm


on the 14th pic down you can see the 2 agents in jump suits, the man appears to be wearing boots (look more like mountain climbing boots with the claws on the bottom). the female agents shoes are covered by shadow but look too big to be normal shoes.

Another interesting thing to note. on the 17th picture further down the page of an operational group members in a C47, one of them appears to be carrying an owen smg (right side, 2nd or 3rd back).

cut and finish to continental clothing was different to styles in the uk at the time, but also fabrics were on heavy ration aswell. so anything synthetic was very rare, and often clothing was recycled or made into something else.
yes, ive heard of agents being parachuted in wearing refugees clothing aswell, but not able to confirm it.

Paul


The dorris in the picture I think is wearing canvas and rubber oveboots, I think they were part of the anti-gas kit, they had a rubber sole then a canvas upper that came up to knee level with a closure strap and ankle and knee level, at least that's what I think they are (anyone know what I mean, at work and don't have my books handy) :roll: Both wear the SOE jumpsuit, preusmably as intended over their appropriate civvy clothing. Saw a few seconds on footage the other day of what seemed to be an oversuit laid out on a table and one chap showing another the loading of all the internal pockets etc., might have been the same group, wasn't on long enough to see properly, really are quite Gucci bits of kit, had good fun working out what all the pockets are for.

Regarding resistance clothing, I'm sure I read something a while ago about the allies eventually dropping in uniform items when the resistance groups started to get more organised and undertake regular overt actions more like conventional military units, so they had some form of 'uniform' as well as getting paid a basic wage. Off-course from a practical point of view that many had been living in some forrest or other for however long without access to appropriate clothing and they couldn't always take the risk of popping off to the shops '150 pairs of action-slacks please, nothing too brightly coloured, big pockets though for carrying...um....nothing suspicious at all in'.

French style sanitary towels, I'm genuinely speechless at that one!

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For I am allyer than thou.
Montys Men: http://www.living-history.org.uk/mm/index.htm
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 19:22 pm 
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Group: That's so 2011...
It's true! They differed from ours, obviously in wrapping etc...

Perhaps they came 'avec ailes et un 'two-way dry weave top sheet'

ha ha

_________________
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Memorial ... 1996034455
https://www.facebook.com/edwardsshed

Be very careful about loaning original items...also, please keep an eye out for :
*Still missing* Because some folks are devoid of an ounce of honesty or integrity.
Women's Navy Great Coat
Green floor length 1930s evening dress with sleeves set on net.
Blue and white rayon dress with peplum
Black velvet halter necked dress with silver shot thread skirt (may still have Harrods label in it) I have photos of all of these items and I know where they are in Scunthorpe, but would appreciate a nod if they come up for sale. [/color]


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 19:23 pm 
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Quote:
Regarding resistance clothing, I'm sure I read something a while ago about the allies eventually dropping in uniform items when the resistance groups started to get more organised and undertake regular overt actions more like conventional military units, so they had some form of 'uniform' as well as getting paid a basic wage. Off-course from a practical point of view that many had been living in some forrest or other for however long without access to appropriate clothing and they couldn't always take the risk of popping off to the shops '150 pairs of action-slacks please, nothing too brightly coloured, big pockets though for carrying...um....nothing suspicious at all in'.


Hi Jon,

Yep in some areas/to some groups it was the case. But literally in the lead up to liberation. The resistance in Brittany (in particularly the Morbihan and Cotes-Du-Nord) were supplied with battle dress, boots, etc...whether they wore it not is a different matter, but it was dropped. That being said, it was in the last few weeks of the German occupation whilst 2e RCP were causing trouble and organising the resistance there in a more guerilla/partisan type fashion that that typical of most of the war.

Again as you say, they were by this stage operating as a private army of sorts, being paid wages and living out in various forests/secluded farms.
(more aimed towards any casual readers, I know you're pretty "up" on the Brittany subject ;))

Definitely with you though Kate :)

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 19:32 pm 
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petty officer wrote:
Quote:
Regarding resistance clothing, I'm sure I read something a while ago about the allies eventually dropping in uniform items when the resistance groups started to get more organised and undertake regular overt actions more like conventional military units, so they had some form of 'uniform' as well as getting paid a basic wage. Off-course from a practical point of view that many had been living in some forrest or other for however long without access to appropriate clothing and they couldn't always take the risk of popping off to the shops '150 pairs of action-slacks please, nothing too brightly coloured, big pockets though for carrying...um....nothing suspicious at all in'.


Hi Jon,

Yep in some areas/to some groups it was the case. But literally in the lead up to liberation. The resistance in Brittany (in particularly the Morbihan and Cotes-Du-Nord) were supplied with battle dress, boots, etc...whether they wore it not is a different matter, but it was dropped. That being said, it was in the last few weeks of the German occupation whilst 2e RCP were causing trouble and organising the resistance there in a more guerilla/partisan type fashion that that typical of most of the war.

Again as you say, they were by this stage operating as a private army of sorts, being paid wages and living out in various forests/secluded farms.

Definitely with you though Kate :)


Could well have been Brittany actually, the book I was reading wandered all over the shop as it went chronilogically skipping between areas, not helpful unless you have a strong knowledge on French geography! As you say it was very late on leading up to liberation when the ranks of the FFI/Maquis were increasing (though not as quickly as they increased after liberation, obviously :wink: ) and again as you say whether they actually wore the stuff in any great quantity is open to debate, may well have joined a good part of the arms and equipment dropped to them, rusting and rotting to buggery after it had been badly hidden/stored. Not quite what's being discussed but didn't BD see quite a lot of use by Tito's mob in the Balkans?

_________________
Jon.
For I am allyer than thou.
Montys Men: http://www.living-history.org.uk/mm/index.htm
Korean War reenactment forum: http://www.theforgottenwar.proboards61.com/index.cgi


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2007 19:38 pm 
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Hahaha yes, not Andre Hunter Hue's book by any chance?

Tito's partisans...not really my subject, but it wouldn't suprise me judging from their ethos and organisational structure. Will have a look through my photos on it. You are probably quite right.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2007 20:23 pm 
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Miss Spitfire wrote:
I think there is still a lot of confusion within reenactment about SOE and the resistance.

SOE were spies, agents....they had to blend in. They were dropped with their kit. A bag containing a change of clothes...everything from the cut and fabric was different...for women even items like sanitary towels had to be french made/in the style of.

They wore the oversmock as issued to paras and sometimes even the para helmet, sometimes the softer type. they did not always/ever wear knee pads (seem to be lots of those kicking about as SOE)

Resistance were locals. French or Belgians who hated the Germans. they worked in helping evaders or escapees. they worked in sabotage (as did SOE agents)

Resistance needed no special clothes, women wore their everyday clothing.
I've seen a few displays this year with 'resistance' themes and they seem to be protraying the end of the war. Pictures like the liberation of Paris with girls in shorts and workwear...
Most resistance were hoping to god that they weren't discovered. Bizarrely enough Secret army has (in the most part) got it right. Young women wore plain skirts, jumpers, simple blouses....why would you want to stand out?
Most resistance until the eve of liberation wouldn't have been armed. Weapons (particularly british or US ones) were just another thing to hide.


Still very much a case of confusion in many parts of the US unfortunately. I find myself not only trying to educate the public, but other reenactors who should know already! We have one OSS group finally and I am the only one in my state who is even attempting a go at SOE. I'm finding this section of the forum particulary helpful.

K

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