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Military Cot question

February 4 2009 at 7:53 PM
Anonymous 

Gentlemen,
Can someone identify the era this cot comes from? Thanks.

[linked image]

 
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Michael Reintjes

WW2

February 4 2009, 9:15 PM 

I have 2 of these cots and both were with WW2 battledress groupings to officers.One also had a well unit marked sleeping bag with it as well.I,d say yours is WW2 vintage as well...hope this helps, Cheers,Mike.

 
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Kevin J.

Re: WW2

February 5 2009, 6:13 AM 

Thanks Michael. I don`t actually own it, but the Gentleman that does seems to think it`s MUCH older...like Boer War old! I thought I had seen similar ones being sold as WW2 vintage, which is why I thought I`d ask. Since I posted he has also mentioned it has a marking of " x warofficepattern x ". Would that change your opinion at all?

Thanks

 
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Bob Campbell

Campaign furniture

February 5 2009, 8:11 PM 

Somewhere out there, there is a really nice book on British officer's private purchase campaign furniture. I'm not sure if this is older than WWII, but it could be as old as Boer War. Canvas can be replaced, so it's the wood that will be the tell-tale sign. Private purchase won't be military marked, but there might be other maker's marks.

Maybe someone has the book. It's really nice but very expensive and a limited run when it was published.

Cheers,

Bob

 
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John Maybin

British Campaign Furniture

February 5 2009, 11:48 PM 

The book Bob Campbell is referring to is called "British Campaign Furniture; Elegance Under Canvas, 1740-1914" by Nicholas A. Brawer, ISBN 0-8109-5711-6. I can confirm that it is a very nice book indeed.

 
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Geoff Middleton

Really Exists

February 6 2009, 10:48 AM 

I thought you were putting us on, but it exists on ABEBOOKS from $US224 to $US394.

Now that is a niche market for sure.

 
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John Maybin

Would I Lie?

February 6 2009, 10:59 AM 

I guess $65CDN wasn't that bad afterall. Really quite amazing how they could design an entire bedroom set to fit into a few trunks.

 
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Grant Rombough

I have one ....

February 7 2009, 12:01 PM 

I have a cot which appears to be identical to the one pictured, right down to the greenish fabric and 'flap' which buttons back onto the side shafts to form a sort of open-sided compartment into which clothing or the like can be put to form a pillow. I have used it many a time in the past .... though not in recent years because the canvas has deteriorated to the point that I fear I might end up entangled in the framework about halfway through the night .... (Have it on my "to do" list to replace the canvas .... someday.)

I have no idea of its age - I acquired it when such details were of no interest to me, and have since looked in vain for any sort of Patent Date markings or the like which would assist in determining how old it may be, but it wouldn't surprise me if the 'design' is older than WWII vintage. I just don't know .....

 
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Keith Matthews

At least First World War

February 17 2009, 2:46 AM 

We have two of these beds in the collection at York Castle Museum (UK) both from British Army Officers who served in the First World War. Both differ only in minor details. One is with a matching folding chair and folding frame which can be left high for a canvas wash-basin or low for a bath(!). These are private purchase items not issue. Similar items are listed in Edwardian and Victorian mail order catalogues (such as the Army & Navy Co-operative Stores, London). The head end can be folded up to allow a mosquito net or canvas 'valise' to be draped/fixed away from the face.

Whether these were truly appreciated campaign luxuries or white elephants (of the kind sold to 'Boot' of the 'Daily Beast' in "Scoop") would depend on the circumstances (and baggage allowance) the Officer found himself with. We do also have photos of similar camp equipment (not the beds) being used by local Yeomanry Officers in the Boer War of 1899-1902.

There is a museum theory which has never quite been accurately formulated which equates the chances of survival of an artefact with its inherent impracticality - this leaves us with more patent apple corers than 4" kitchen knives, wedding suits than work overalls, full dress than SD and 'Boots, Wellington' than 'Boots, Ammunition'. It also has a sub-clause that any clothing in a useful size will be long gone leaving only the freak sizes to be preserved.

Keith

 
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