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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Brass Button Stick


stephen p nunn
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Dear all,

I have a Brass Button Stick with the usual slide, holes and cut outs. It has the Patent Number 116972/17. Do I assume from that that the Patent Date is 1917? On the other side someone has stamped a service number - 935270. There is only one soldier with that number from the Great War according to the medal cards - Driver Stanley Ellis (RFA). Is it too far fetched to think it was his or could it just as easily be post-Great War?

Many thanks.

SPN

Maldon

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I don't think it too far fetched, that six digit number was part of the block 935001 - 940000 allocated to the 3rd County of London Bde RFA (TF) on 22nd November 1916 and effective from 1st January 1917. The 3rd London Bde consisted of the 7th, 8th and 9th County of London Btys based in Finsbury.

Jon

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Great - thanks Jon and Joe - what a lot and just from one Button Stick!

Best wishes.

SPN

Maldon

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jay,

Reading this post led me to checking out my father's button stick, it was on the shelf in front of me as I read the post. It has the same patent number No. My father enlisted in the RFA. in 1923 and his number is marked on the button stick. However on the other side another number has clearly been overstamped. With some difficulty I have made out the number as 843195. I would presume that the button stick remained with the field gunners, is it possible that dad's stick was used by a fellow gunner during the great war? Dad went on to serve in WW2 and left the RA. in 1951 a WO1. A link with WW1 would enhance the history and adventures of the said button stick.

Tony P

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Jay,

Reading this post led me to checking out my father's button stick, it was on the shelf in front of me as I read the post. It has the same patent number No. My father enlisted in the RFA. in 1923 and his number is marked on the button stick. However on the other side another number has clearly been overstamped. With some difficulty I have made out the number as 843195. I would presume that the button stick remained with the field gunners, is it possible that dad's stick was used by a fellow gunner during the great war? Dad went on to serve in WW2 and left the RA. in 1951 a WO1. A link with WW1 would enhance the history and adventures of the said button stick.

Tony P

Great stuff Tony. Have had a quick look at the Medal Cards but can't see a GW soldier with the number 843195. Perhaps it was added post-GW? Great thing to have, especially with that family link.

Thanks for your post.

Best regards.

SPN

Maldon

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Maldon,

Thanks for the check. The number may not be quite as i have listed but it's pretty close. The over stamping has been completed with a figure 4. I'll try forensics might get an answer, thanks anyway.

Tony P

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  Part of an article I have written on the subject:

It was patented by Joseph R Parker and L/Cpl Thomas Cooke, both of whom gave addresses in Birmingham (an accommodation address in Cooke's case, doubtless because he was liable to be ordered to move around). They filed an application in Aug. 1917 and were eventually granted British Patent No. 116972 in July 1918. There could not have been much time to get this pattern into production before the war ended. It continued to be produced until the 1970s, in spite of the webbing equipment which many of the cut-outs match being long obsolete.

A firm called Bodill Parker, brass founders, is noted at the same address, 33 & 36 Gt. Hampton Row Birmingham, and they appear to be the original makers (they still exist, at a different address). Others include WHB which is probably W.H. Briscoe of Birmingham

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A great addition to the thread Mk VII.

Tony,

843195 was part of the 840001 - 845000 block allocated to the 4th South Midland Bde RFA (TF) with howitzer batteries from Coventry and Rugby. No MIC would suggest that the holder of this number didn't serve in a theatre of war.

cheers, Jon

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Jay'

Thanks for that, it appears that such items were returned to Woolwich for re issue. Dad enlisted in 1923 and got a 2nd hand button stick. even then there were 'cuts'.

Tony P

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  • 8 years later...

I have a button stick that is of the pattern mentioned above  It has a Regtl number 506206 I can only find a Canadian with that number in the First World War lives IWM.  However, in front of the number is the letter J, does anyone know what a Regtl number with a J in front would identify.  Many thanks

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