1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

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    Battalion Colours
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    1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Battalion Colours on Sun Aug 22, 2010 10:14 pm

    For those of you who collect WW II insignia, there is an absolutely gorgeous FSSF parachute oval on ebay:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&Item=140442689410&Category=4725&_trkparms=algo%3DLVI%26its%3DI%26otn%3D2#ht_500wt_1154

    Battalion Colours
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    Re: 1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Battalion Colours on Sun Aug 22, 2010 10:16 pm


    Battalion Colours
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    Re: 1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Battalion Colours on Sat Aug 28, 2010 5:10 am

    Are original FSSF parachute ovals really worth $1700? I wonder if the winner of this auction is a WW II Airborne collector or a FSSF collector? This oval came from the Mark Bando collection (noted author on the 101st Airborne in WW II) and that might have had some affect on the bidding.

    Bill
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    Re: 1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Bill on Sat Aug 28, 2010 6:22 am

    Hi Adam, I was also watching the oval auction. It is an extremely difficult piece to find. As you note, there is a cross over of collecting interests that drove the bidding, and the fact that it is an authenticated original in a sea of repros added to the value. Special Forces insignia command premium prices, and a rare original piece of FSSF insignia is seldom offered on the open market.
    Just a note, Ken Joyce's new book Crimson Spearhead has a chapter detailing the history and issue of the parachute oval. I would recommend the book for anyone's reference library.

    Tankermike
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    FSSF Canadian capbadge now on ebay

    Post by Tankermike on Wed Sep 22, 2010 2:29 pm

    The matching cap badge is now on ebay #320592297709, at the low cost of only $1,300.00. I have the US version with clutch back which is marked MEYER NY but the Canadian version with lugs I think was never marked, were they made in Canada by Scully? Hard to cough up that $$$ for an unmarked capbadge.

    Mike

    Bill
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    Re: 1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Bill on Fri Sep 24, 2010 1:04 pm

    Hi Mike, The original use for the cross arrows was as a branch insignia on the collars of the uniforms. They were not cap badges at that time. When the FSSF was disbanded, and the Canadian personnel were dispersed, two groups were formed. One was sent back to the UK to become reinforcements for the Canadian Parachute Battalion, and the others who were not para qualified were put into the reinforcement pool in Italy.
    The Canadians were granted permission to wear their formation sign (the spearhead patch) and former cap badge. AS there was no former cap badge, the Canadians improvised and wore the cross arrows, the Canada disc or in some cases the US airborne qualification wings as cap badges. The cross arrows with lugs were likely acquired in the UK, as there is no official record of an order of the arrows from Scully or any other Canadian maker. The UK made pattern had the four lugs.
    There is a lengthier description in Ken Joyce's book, Crimson Spearhead, and he has an in-depth analysis of the insignia. If I am reading it correctly, the Meyer made arrows are 1960's issue. (The ones that are maker marked Meyer are post war. No maker mark are according to the research, the wartime issue.)

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    Re: 1st Special Service Force Parachute Oval

    Post by Battalion Colours on Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:09 am

    Mike:

    I posted this photograph on another thread and thought I would add it here to go along with Bill's comments.





    Officers awaiting repatriation to Canada, No.17 Canadian General Hospital, Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps (R.C.A.M.C.), Crowthorne, England, 1 February 1945. (L-R): Lieutenant Fred Carey, Governor General's Foot Guards; Lieutenant David Johnson, First Special Service Force; Captain B.J. Kruger, a Canloan officer serving with the Royal Army Ordnance Corps (R.A.O.C.).

    Location: Crowthorne, England
    Date: February 1, 1945
    Photographer: Smith, Jack H.
    Mikan Number: 3574089

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