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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 4 days ago #75293

  • djb
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I have been sent this picture by someone seeking to identify it.

There are no badges that I can see and the arm band dates it to 1901?

The person who sent it says 'On the back row second from right, that individual is wearing a forage cap with letters V I M on the side' but I could not make that out on the image I received.

Dr David Biggins
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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 4 days ago #75296

  • BereniceUK
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A lot of NCO's there. Some of the chevrons look brand new, others worn, and there look to be different styles. That of the man at the front is coming away.


Front, left to right - Lance Corporal, Lance Corporal.
Sitting - Lance Corporal, Sergeant, Sergeant, Officer, Sergeant, Sergeant, Corporal (?)
Middle row - ?, Corporal, Sergeant, Corporal, ?, ?
Back row - ?, Lance Corporal, ?, Lance Corporal (?), ? ,?

Has the officer got a button missing, or not bothered to do up his tunic correctly?


Three men are wearing forage caps, two different styles?



Five of the men, not including the officer, aren't wearing bandoliers.
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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 4 days ago #75299

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Berenice,

That is certainly a thorough analysis to show the diversity in this unit, if indeed everyone is from the same unit.
Dr David Biggins

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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 4 days ago #75300

  • BereniceUK
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What does the dark band around the officer's left arm signify?

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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 4 days ago #75301

  • Rob D
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Berenice, the officer is wearing a mourning band. This could either mean:
- the death of one of his family, for example Lord Roberts wore one for some time when his son, Freddy, died after Colenso.
- respect for the passing of Queen Victoria [22 January 1901]. Many officers wore mourning bands for the Queen; I don't know exactly for how long they wore them.
I think the latter explanation is more likely in this case, as it was commonly done. If so, the photo would be dated to the early part of 1901, which would fit with the men being mounted infantry - their numbers grew and grew during the South African War as it became clear that it was necessary to fight Republican forces in the same manner in which they fought.
It is worth remembering that in theory mounted infantry moved on horseback and fought dismounted, like the Boers, and unlike Cavalry who remained mounted in combat.
The past is not dead. In fact, it's not even past.
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Unidentified picture - can you help? 2 months 3 days ago #75313

  • BereniceUK
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Seven of the men have tunics with breast-pockets, thirteen don't, and one I can't see.

The building looks to be made of corrugated iron.

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