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rodonisle

Aussie Records Footlocker ID

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rodonisle

This foot locker just found in Melbourne RSL basement belonging to Edward John EJ Howells MC.  He was head of the Australian War Records section in the Middle East just after the war.  Any other info from the group?

howells2.jpg

howells.jpg

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charlie962

Perhaps this man ?

London Gazette reference 1st awardLG:31093/1 Jan 1919

 

Rank Captain

Regiment       'D' Field Troop Australian Engineers

Decorations       MC

MC at Makhadet Hajla, Palestine Mar 1918. Engineer from Melbourne. Born Barrow, Lancashire, 20 May 1882.

 

 

MiD London Gazette 14/6/18

 

 

Edited by charlie962

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rksimpson

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rodonisle

Thanks for the replies.  I have years worth of info on Howells.  The trunk is a new find and I am trying to learn about such footlockers - who issued, other purposes, etc. It is braised metal, pretty beefy for just "records."

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rksimpson

Hi

 

With the trunk, given his position I would suggest it was secret or sensitive documents or communications, stored and kept under lock and key.

What does it say under stationary on the front?

regards

 

Robert

Edited by rksimpson

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Chasemuseum

The "trunk" is fairly typical of a legal documents box of the period. These were stored at solicitor's offices with important papers belonging to clients. Similarly banks used to store the boxes in their vaults. The boxes were the property of the client not the bank. I have a similar box that has been passed through my family for several generations that holds all of the birth, marriage and death certificates going back to the mid c19.

 

The painted note on the front appears to be "STATIONARY WITH CARE", which would suggest that one owner was using it for blank official forms.

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rodonisle

Thanks.  Yes, at the end of the war, Howells was made head of the military records section and traveled around the former Ottoman areas of the Mideast.  His letters refer to some items later displayed in Canberra when the museum was built.

 

You might explain why the box stayed with Howells as private property, it is assumed until his death -  whereupon much of his effects of that sort were given to the RSL.  It has a maker's mark showing it was made by "S. Gregson & Sons, Bury Lanc. 1917." 

 

As I am "next of kin" I am torn by wanting the box for my family military archives, or leaving it in Australia as a tiny bit of history. 

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charlie962
2 hours ago, rodonisle said:

As I am "next of kin" I am torn by wanting the box for my family military archives

Easily the best option!

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rksimpson

I would agree too with the above sentiment.

Here it is just another military item, with you it is a piece of family history with a story to tell.

 

regards

 

Robert

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rodonisle

OK ... the regiment has voted ... (to quote a Highland regimental joke).  I will see if I can get it.  Time to return to Oz anyway.  Thanks.

 

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4thVBGH

I have two of these, one marked to the 35th Battalion also marked Stationary with Care.....though only one marked to a Sydney NSW manufacturer dated 1915

 

Here's a link to a similar trunk in the AWM Collection.

https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/C974783

 

No I've no details of introduction, etc though they seem to have been a popular item to appropriate for personal use.

 

Robert

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museumtom

I have the exact same locker with Q.R.R. on it.

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rodonisle

QRR?  Persons name?

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