A Collection from Port Arthur


 


These items are all part of a group collected by a young Russian girl in Port Arthur in the years before the Russo-Japanese War (1904-05). They have now passed into the hands of a private collector. Amongst the mainly Russian collection are items from German and other navies that would have been in the China Seas in the first years of the twentieth Century.

All the images on this page are the sole copyright of the private collector. Please respect his generosity in sharing these photographs with us by not reproducing them without prior permission.

(Click on the pictures below to enlarge)
 

 

 

   
An other ranks German Naval cap from the SMS Iltis. The cap is in white for summer wear with an Imperial Cockade and black cap tally with the ship's name in silver letters. The gunboat SMS Iltis was launched in 1898 and participated in the Boxer Rebellion where it shelled the Taku forts and suffered heavy casualties in return. In 1914 it was at the siege of Tsingtao where it was scuttled.   The inside of the German Naval cap from the SMS Iltis. The owner has noticed the very faint remains of an issue stamp ("BA...") though it is not clear in this photo.   An other ranks German Naval cap from the SMS Jaguar. The cap is in blue wool for winter wear with an Imperial Cockade and black cap tally with the ship's name in gold letters. The gunboat SMS Jaguar was launched in 1898 and participated in the Boxer Rebellion. In 1914 it was at the siege of Tsingtao where it was scuttled after shelling Japanese postions. 
   
An other ranks Austro-Hungarian Naval cap from the SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth. The cap is in blue wool for winter wear with an Imperial Badge with the letters FJI (for Franz Josef I) in gold on black and a  faded cap tally with the ship's name in gold letters. The protected cruiser SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth was launched in 1890 and scuttled in Tsingtao harbour after shelling Japanese positions. Her crew and guns then joined the besieged German garrison and fought on land.    An other ranks Russian Naval cap from the gunboat, Koreets. The cap is in black wool for winter wear, piped in white with an oval cockade in Romanov colours (silver/ orange/ black/ orange/ black). The cap tally has КОРЕЕЦЪ (or Koreets in English) in cyrillic letters in gold. Also note the gold anchors at the ends of the cap tally. The Koreets was part of the allied fleet that bombarded the Taku forts in the Boxer Rebellion. It was sunk at the Battle of Chemulpo at the start of the Russo-Japanese War in February 1904.    An other ranks French Naval cap from the French torpedo boat, D'Iberville. The cap is in blue wool for winter wear with a red wool pom-pom, gold naval anchor and black cap tally edged in red with the ship's name in gold. Note the white chinstrap worn in typically French style over the top of the naval cap. The D'Iberville was launched in 1894 and saw active service until 1922. 
   
An Austro-Hungarian naval officer's cap badge. It shows an Imperial crown above an anchor with "FJI" surrounded by laurel leaves all in faded gold embroidery on black. This badge would have been worn on the peaked naval cap and also on the kepi worn by Austro-Hungarian naval officers.   

A Chinese Dragon Belt Buckle. The Chinese Dragon belt buckle was a source of some debate until the mystery was finally solved in an article entitled "China-Waffen" at Traditionsverband. They were in fact made in in the 19th Century in Germany for export to the Chinese Army along with similarly decorated swords. German forces found Chinese prisoners at the Taku Forts in 1900 bearing such items. So it seems that they were not intended for use by Chinese troops in German service as myself and others had previously thought. It is nonetheless a very interesting and collectable item.

The buckle is made from two metal pieces: a brass back plate and a nickel front plate bearing the Dragon design, although some other Dragon buckles were made from one piece of stamped brass.

  The back of the Dragon Belt buckle.
 

 

An other ranks German naval belt buckle It is made from two metal pieces: a brass back plate and a nickel front plate bearing the Imperial crown and the motto "GOTT MIT UNS" - God (is) with us.   The back of the German naval belt buckle.   A close up view of the German naval belt buckle, showing the stamp on the underneath of the  buckle. It is in the shape of an Imperial crown above the letter "M".
         
   

 

 

 

         


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All photos on this page 2006

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