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Remembered Today:

THE LOST TOMMIES


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Ross Coulthart's massive book is a must if you are an avid follower of the Postcards thread.

The images of soldiers are simply stunning, and the format and reproduction excellent. Truly "worth it for the illustrations"

There is a "but", although it may not matter to most readers.

The author might with advantage have floated his text past a few experts in the field of uniform. Whereas some of the errors are obvious, some are a little more misleading.

Examples of the obvious:

Wales' for a regimental title, rather than the mandatory Wales's.

Army Services Corps ....... not a typo, it appears time after time.

MCG for MGC [easy mistake if one is a cricket fan!]

Less obvious.

RAMC men referred to as Stretcher Bearers [although he does have SBs as well]

A Royal Artillery Lance-Corporal [sic]

A drum major miscast as a man with four good conduct badges

Reference to two good conduct badges inferring six years of such [instead of five].

Shaky around the staff-sergeant/ WO II identification area.

And an error of omission ............... there is a magnificent group of bombers, all wearing the grenade badge on lower left sleeve [skill-at-arms position] instead of upper right [appointment]. This is not a single man's variation, just about everyone has the badge in that position. Fascinating for the badge spotter.

Don't let my minor criticisms stop purchase ............. this superb book belongs on your shelf along with Chambers's "Uniforms and Equipment.

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He is an Australian TV journalist and obviously thought he was past the need for a proof reader and sub-editor!

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Steven Broomfield

MCG for MGC [easy mistake if one is a cricket fan!]

Well, to be fair, an Australian cricket fan mostly.

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Today's Times Magazine carries a well illustrated feature on Ross Coulthart's book by Ben Macintyre.

Mike.

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I will echo Grumpy's comments simply an essential book for uniform and insignia buffs as well as having some extremely evocative and though provoking images.

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  • 2 weeks later...

This truly is a superb publication - loads of insight into the uniforms of the period and bags of atmosphere. A very high quality production for a book of this price as well. I am now tempted to seek out the companion volume: "The Lost Diggers".

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I can only echo the praise for this fine book. Absolutely excellent.

I didn't realise just what a weighty publication it was - I don't know whether to reinforce the bookshelf or the coffee table.

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I got myself a copy of the 'Lost Diggers' when it was released in Australia. If this volume is half as good it will be worth it.

Cheers Andy.

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Does the book's blurb give any indication of where the money is going? I do hope the original photographer's family or whoever his normal beneficiaries were stand to gain at least something from this publication.

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Does the book's blurb give any indication of where the money is going? I do hope the original photographer's family or whoever his normal beneficiaries were stand to gain at least something from this publication.

If it is under UK Copyright law the copyright expires 70 years after first publication or 70 after the author/creator's death, whichever is the later. Assuming everything was created before the end of 1918, this means unless the author/creator died after 1988, copyright would have expired.

MG

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trenchtrotter

Super book. Credit to family acknowledged.

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Now that these pictures have been "found", is there a plan to allow further "joined -up" research?

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trenchtrotter

I hope there is a third volume covering Canadians, South Africans plus other nationalities and perhaps a fourth for France?

TT

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This is wonderful news - I purchased a copy moments after reading about the sequel on this thread. The Lost Diggers is superb - one of the best books I own. And yes TT hopefully there will be a few more volumes!

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'Lost Diggers' is a superb book and I took it to Vignacourt on a battlefield trip last year in the hope of being able to do 'then and now' comparisons... only to discover that a number of photographs have been located on the relevant buildings in the village!

If 'Lost Tommies' is anywhere near as good (and it surely must be given that it is in essence a collection of excellent very detailed photographs) then it will be on my 'list to purchase'.

Andrew

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keithmroberts

The Guardian review first addresses the book, then develops into an ill informed rant that ignores all the historical evidence and analysis of the last 30-40 years. Seemingly nothing to do with the book, just the emotions of an ill informed journalist.

Keith

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Excellent writing in particular this bit:

What Coulthart describes is a slaughter as systematic as the Nazi genocide, perpetrated by generals such as Haig and Kitchener who deployed their own country’s miners, navvies and labourers as cannon fodder and dismissed casualties as “acceptable losses”.

Just about sums up the rest of this trash.

Norman :devilgrin:

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Do they not have sub-editors or an editor at this "newspaper", or anyone who actually knows the history of WW1?

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