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Русский, француз и англичан в немецком плену


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Сегодня в клубе в развалах старой бумаги обнаружил такое вот фото. Оборот чистый.

Из всех троих я могу что-то конкретное сказать лишь о французском санитаре справа – судя по номеру «324» на воротнике и кепи он из 324e Régiment d'Infanterie.

У моряка справа на бескозырке лента с надписью. Прочитать сложно, но по- видимому, в начале идут буквы на большом расстоянии, а потом надпись( с названием корабля?). По форме вроде британский моряк? И на ленточке в Роял Нэви писали типа «H. M. S. и потом название корабля». В моём случаи первые буквы похоже названия LONS(?) … или LOND(?). Был у англичан линкор додредноутного типа Formidable «HMS London», 1899 г. выпуска. Но в плен его моряки врядли попадали…

А вот центральный персонаж – фуражка русская, по-моему, погон нет, на воротнике цифры – что-то двойное, на 6 заканчивается. Что за он? Мундирчик чужой надел?

Буду признателен за любые соображения по поводу фото.

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Hi sulejm34,

 

The sailor is indeed British, and is a Rating of the ‘Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve’ (R.N.V.R.); his black-silk cap ribbon (known as a ‘cap tally’) bears, in gold-wire lettering, the designation ‘R.N.V.R LONDON.’, bisected by a crowned anchor. ‘London’, in this context, indicates that this man was attached to the 'London Division’ of the R.N.V.R.; its use on his cap tally, plus his wearing of ‘Square Rig’, points to this volunteer reservist being one of those men of the ‘Royal Naval Division’ (R.N.D.) who were captured during the Siege of Antwerp in October, 1914.

 

The ‘Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve’ was raised under the Naval Forces Act of 1903, and was formed to create an auxiliary naval force of ‘citizen sailors’ i.e. from men with land-based civilian occupations, and hitherto no connection to, or experience of the sea. The R.N.V.R. was designed to be an adjunct to both the Royal Fleet Reserve (R.F.R.) - which consisted of sailors who had completed active service with the Royal Navy and were now liable for reserve service – and the Royal Naval Reserve (R.N.R.), which had been established in 1859 as a reserve of professional seamen from the British Mercantile Marine and fishing fleets, who could be called up in times of crisis to serve alongside the regular Royal Navy.

 

The R.N.V.R. was split into the Clyde, Tyne, Mersey, Sussex, London, and Bristol ‘Divisions’ (‘Division’ in this context merely indicative of these units being the component elements of the R.N.V.R., and not referring to a military formation). As their geographic names suggest, these six ‘Divisions’ were spread across Great Britain, and were regional coastal training depôts to which each volunteer reservist was attached for training, and for pay and administrative purposes: as seen here, each ‘Division’ wore its own cap tally.

 

Once established, the ‘London Division’ quickly recruited over 1,000 volunteers, who mostly lived and worked in and around the County of London and the City. Training facilities were made available on the River Thames with the release of two former warships of the Royal Navy for use by its volunteer reservists (a two-week training course at sea forming part of the annual training for all R.N.V.R. personnel). In addition, the ‘London Division’, from its members own pockets, purchased an old warehouse in Commercial Road, Lambeth, to use as a Drill Hall. This facility proved invaluable in providing a venue where all personnel in the Division could muster together when required.

 

The Royal Navy and its reserve forces mobilised on 1st August 1914. However, it was quickly realised that the numbers generated by the call out of the R.F.R., R.N.R., and R.N.V.R. would overwhelm the training facilities available, and in addition, it was calculated that the Fleet could never find enough places for all the available reservists.

 

It was at this point that the First Lord of the Admiralty, Mr Winston Churchill, M.P., announced that all categories of naval reservists not required for sea duty would be trained for service on land, as naval infantry, thereby relieving the hard pressed Infantry of the Line.

 

Thus was born - and here the term was used in the usual sense of higher military formation - the ‘Royal Naval Division’ (R.N.D.). The plan was not universally popular; neither at the Admiralty nor amongst the reservists themselves. There were, however, several points in the detail of the plan that would make it a little more acceptable to the bitterly disappointed citizen sailors of the R.N.V.R. whose aspirations of joining the His Majesty’s Fleet in the country's hour of need had been dashed overnight.

 

Although the general structure of the R.N.D. would be the same as the British Army, it would remain under the control of the Admiralty. The terminology, rank structure and uniform would remain that of the ‘Senior Service’.

 

Although later in the war many aspects of the R.N.D. would change, initially it comprised two naval brigades (manned by R.F.R., R.N.R. and R.N.V.R. Ratings, commanded by R.N.V.R. officers, with a sprinkling of retired Royal Navy and Foot Guards officers), and a third brigade made up of both regulars and reservists from the Royal Marine Light Infantry (R.M.L.I.). Each Brigade had a strength of four battalions. Each battalion of the naval brigades was numbered but also named after famous British Admirals: in the 1st Brigade these were the 1st ‘Drake’ Battalion, 2nd ‘Benbow’ Bn, 3rd ‘Hawke’ Bn, and the 4th ‘Collingwood’ Bn. In the 2nd Brigade, these were the 5th ‘Nelson’ Battalion, 6th ‘Howe’ Bn, 7th ‘Hood’ Bn, and the 8th ‘Anson’ Bn. The hurriedly raised R.M.L.I. battalions which comprised the 3rd Brigade were also numbered, and named after the R.M.L.I.s depôts from where formed; thus the 9th ‘Chatham’ Battalion, 10th ‘Portsmouth’ Bn, 11th ‘Plymouth’ Bn, and the 12th ‘Deal’ Bn.

 

Initially, the men from the R.N.V.R. ‘London Division’ were spread across the companies of each battalion. However, the R.N.D. could not reach its required establishment with existing reservists alone, and recruiting offices for the R.N.V.R. were set up throughout the country, including at the ‘London Division’ Drill Hall at Lambeth.

 

After only six weeks training and preparation for their role as soldiers, the sailors of the 1st and 2nd Brigades were hastily sent to support the Royal Marines of the 3rd Brigade (which had arrived in Belgium earlier) and the Belgian Army in the defence of the strategically important port facility at Antwerp, which had been attacked by the Germans on the 2nd October. The R.N.D. at this stage was woefully unprepared in terms of matériel, being purely infantry, with absolutely no ‘Divisional’ assets, such as artillery, engineers, or field ambulances. However, such was the crisis that by 6th October the R.N.D. were manning trenches in front of Antwerp, and awaiting the onslaught of a German Army over 60,000 strong; from then on they were dogged with misfortune.

 

Poor communications and a retreating Belgian Army forced a withdrawal. The two naval brigades lost 60 men killed and 138 wounded; 436 including 5 Officers were captured, and 1,500 who had crossed the border into the Netherlands were interned for the duration of the war. When the losses were known there was a public outcry.

 

On return to the United Kingdom, the R.N.D. were assembled at Blandford Camp, Dorset for re-fitting and training. During this period the Royal Navy’s blue ‘Square Rig’ was exchanged for the British Army’s khaki Service-Dress, though some distinctive elements remained, namely, that naval ranks and insignia were retained, as was the seaman’s blue serge cap and cap tally.

 

On the 28th February, 1915, the R.N.D. sailed for Gallipoli, where they suffered heavy casualties. In May, 1916, the R.N.D. went to France, and was finally transferred to Army control, being renamed the ‘63rd (Royal Naval) Division’.

 

In the Royal Navy, uniform for men below commissioned rank consisted of:

 

Class I Dress: the uniform worn by Chief Petty Officers, known as ‘fore-and-aft rig’.

 

Class II Dress: the uniform worn by Petty Officers and Men ‘dressed as Seamen’, known as ‘Square Rig’.

 

Class III Dress: the uniform worn by Petty Officers and Men ‘not dressed as Seamen’, known as ‘fore and aft rig’.

 

The sailor is wearing ‘Class II Dress, No. 3’, which was normal ‘working-rig’ (or ‘service’ uniform), for seamen, and which was the uniform worn ashore by naval landing parties (and thus was that worn by the R.N.D.s naval brigades). It comprised the ‘Jumper, Serge, Working’ seen here, which had red badges (the ‘Jumper, Serge, with Cuffs’, which was worn for ceremonial, had gold badges), worn over the ‘Flannel, Wool’ i.e. the white, blue-trimmed, square-necked shirt worn in spring and summer (with a blue woollen jersey being worn in its place during winter). His ‘Silk’, i.e. the black silk handkerchief worn under the blue jean collar, is secured by a tape tied in a bow, and a white lanyard would, normally, also have been worn (with a clasp-knife attached when in 'working-rig'). He wears regulation bell-bottom trousers. His regulation blue serge cap would have been worn with a white cotton-duck cover in European waters from the start of May to the end of September each year, and on all tropical stations.

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Edited by cmf
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Hi guys!

 

Thanks for that! :JC_doubleup:

 

Here are some more photographs of the evolution of the uniform worn by the naval brigades of the R.N.D.

 

The first photo shows Ratings of the R.N.V.R ‘London Division’ on the front line which circled Antwerp during October 1914. They show how ‘working-rig’, or properly ‘Class II Dress, No. 3’ appeared on campaign: worn with laced, brown canvas gaiters, plus field equipment, this uniform became ‘Landing Party Order’. All are wearing the canvas gaiters, and most have discarded the blue jean collars from their serge jumpers, and, given the time of year, are wearing woollen jerseys underneath. The second photo details the ‘R.N.V.R London’ cap tally worn by men of that ‘Division’ posted to the various battalions of the naval brigades.

 

The sailors of the naval brigades were issued, from naval armouries, the 10-round, .303-inch ‘Rifle, Magazine, Lee-Enfield, Mark 1’ (known as the ‘Long Lee’, by this date the British Army had relegated its use to second-line troops, having adopted the ‘Short’ Lee-Enfield in 1903). The issue of personal equipment was chaotic: few had complete equipment sets, most had only basic elements, and some had no equipment whatsoever! Only 120 rounds of ammunition had been issued to each sailor, and many had to carry this in their pockets, or in the small number of children’s school satchels that had been rapidly purchased from retailers prior to leaving England (!).

 

The sailors in the photo have been issued with the obsolete ‘Sea Service Accoutrements’, which had been worn by the Royal Navy between 1880 and 1901. Made of brown leather, we see it here in its basics: waist-belt; braces; 40-round pouch; bayonet; and two cartridge carriers buckled together to form a bandolier (the third photograph illustrating how normally one carrier was fastened across the front of the belt, and the other worn fastened across the chest). Other sailors received the Royal Navy’s then current field equipment, the ‘Accoutrements, Naval, Pattern 1901’. Despite being mockingly called ‘Churchill’s private army’ or ‘Churchill’s little army’, the naval reservists of the R.N.D. had a strong ‘esprit de corps’, retaining their sea-going slang, growing beards, having better pay, and generally annoying the Army with their individuality.

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Edited by cmf
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During the period around December, 1914, the various cap ribbons being worn by the men of the R.N.D. were replaced by a universal tally, bearing the designation ‘ROYAL NAVAL DIVISION’ (first and second photographs). The British Army’s 1902 pattern khaki Service Dress was soon adopted by the naval brigades (the R.M.L.I. brigade had already been issued khaki just before Antwerp), and initially the cap ribbon was worn on the peaked 1905 pattern khaki Service Dress cap (third photo, being worn by a pair of Machine-Gunners), though soon this was replaced by a khaki version of the seaman’s cap.

 

We see this new cap in the fourth photograph, together with a new cap ribbon bearing the battalion designation: the numbering of the battalions within the R.N.D. had been abandoned after the return from Antwerp, leaving their titles as the only differentiation. Thus we see this sailor is a Rating from the ‘Nelson’ Battalion of the 2nd Brigade. We can also see that he is wearing the Royal Navy’s regulation field equipment for service shore, the ‘Accoutrements, Naval, Pattern 1901’, albeit in a reduced configuration for ‘Guard Duty’: this comprises the brown leather waist-belt with tongued buckle; an ammunition pouch containing 60-rounds (for parades, manoeuvres or active service two pouches would be worn the other side of the waist-belt, along with supporting braces would have also been worn); bayonet, and a 60-round bandolier.

 

The fifth photograph is of a Rating of the ‘Benbow’ Battalion of the 1st Brigade, wearing the Army’s standard ‘Web Equipment, Pattern 1908’ (in ‘Field Service Marching Order’), with which the naval brigades were issued prior to their embarkation for Gallipoli, in February, 1915. Puttees were also issued to replace gaiters. The rifle remains the ‘Rifle, Magazine, Lee-Enfield, Mark 1’.

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