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Thread: Here is a photo of my grandfater, 4th battalion BW, WW1 :-

  1. #1
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    Here is a photo of my grandfater, 4th battalion BW, WW1 :-

    My grandfather was in the 4th 'City of Dundee', and then
    the 4/5 battalion.
    He was in the 4th territorials before the war started.
    The 4th arrived in France, Le Havre, on the 26th Feb 1915.
    The 4th and 5th were amalgamated on the 15th March 1916,
    to form the 4/5.
    He was then discharged on the 8th May 1916.
    Discharged due to ' end of period of engagement, because he was a territorial !
    This loophole was closed shortly after with the introduction of general conscription.

    My grandfather is seated on the left, would anybody be able
    to help me identify the person standing on the right ?
    Why have they got different hats on their heads ?

    BlackWatchPhoto.jpg

  2. #2
    Senior Member mike4279's Avatar
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    Your grandfather is is wearing a simplified service dress jacket which were issued beginning late 1914 and into 1915 before production of the standard service dress jacket could keep up with demand. This likely dates your photo to sometime in 1915. He is wearing a Balmoral bonnet while his friend has on a glengarry. The Balmoral was issued in the Spring and Summer of 1915 affording better protection in the trenches from the the weather than the glengarry. The Balmoral was displaced later on in 1915 by the larger diameter Tam O'Shanter although some Balmorals continued to be worn throughout the war. The soldier in the glengarry probably had yet to receive his Balmoral bonnet. This further suggests that the photo is likely mid-1915.

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    Mike thanks a million for that, it was very interesting !
    Attached below is a photo of the 4th when they were
    leaving Dundee station on the 23rd Feb 1915 :-
    And you can see they were all wearing Glengarrys :-

    D138-Black-Watch-at-Tay-Bridge-Station-CDCT.jpg
    Last edited by ROBY; 8th June 2018 at 14:02.

  4. #4
    Senior Member mike4279's Avatar
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    Roby,

    The photo you have posted is highly likely to be the 4th Battalion leaving for summer camp at Monzie in early August 1914. Notice that all the men are in spats. By late 1914 all the Highland battalions had switched to ankle boots and short puttees. Further, no winter clothing is actually being worn with greatcoats being carried.

    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBY View Post
    My grandfather was in the 4th 'City of Dundee', and then
    the 4/5 battalion.
    He was in the 4th territorials before the war started.
    The 4th arrived in France, Le Havre, on the 26th Feb 1915.
    The 4th and 5th were amalgamated on the 15th March 1916,
    to form the 4/5.
    He was then discharged on the 8th May 1916.
    Discharged due to ' end of period of engagement, because he was a territorial !
    This loophole was closed shortly after with the introduction of general conscription.

    My grandfather is seated on the left, would anybody be able
    to help me identify the person standing on the right ?
    Why have they got different hats on their heads ?

    BlackWatchPhoto.jpg
    Your Grandfather is wearing a Tam OS Shanter (TOS) and the other person is wearing a Glengarry both head dress of the Black Watch

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    Armagh, i appreciate your comment.
    But I think he is wearing a Balmoral, the reason being
    Tam o'shanters diameter is about twice the width of somebodys head.
    That hat he is wearing is much less than twice the width of his head.

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    Roby it was called a Tam o Shanter (TOS) when I wore one in the Black Watch 1960 to 1972

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    Senior Member mike4279's Avatar
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    Research into Army Orders (done by others) indicates that there were two distinct patterns of headdress issued beginning in 1915 to replace the glengarry which provided insufficient protection against the weather: 1)the Balmoral with blue version pattern sealed Feb 1915 and drab version pattern sealed in May 1915; and 2) the Tam O'Shanter pattern sealed in May 1915.

    The key differences between these two bonnets are in the structure and manufacturing. Below are two photos of Great War bonnets, the first is an Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders Balmoral and the second a Black Watch Tam O'Shanter. The body (crown and sidewalls) of the Balmoral is a single piece. This required each copy to be separately knit, wet shaped, and then integrated with the other pieces. This was a fairly complicated manufacturing process. In contrast, the body of the Tam consists of two separate pieces, the crown and the sidewalls. This allowed these two pieces to be cut in bulk from pre-fabricated wool cloth and then sewn together to construct each copy. The seam binding the crown with the sidewall is quite evident in the second picture. This was a considerably simpler (and cheaper) manufacturing process thus explaining why the Tam displaced the Balmoral as the primary headdress for the Scottish line infantry during the Great War.

    During the Great War the Tam O'Shanter had a larger diameter crown than the Balmoral. This is not an especially significant aspect inasmuch as Tams were later manufactured with smaller crowns, and contemporarily these two names seem to be used interchangeably even though the structural differences still exist.

    20180506_111839.jpg.d7302dea296d160a0aaa04407b066181.jpg 20180506_112408.jpg.2cf3a6de1d001ae8f013e6152600159d.jpg
    Last edited by mike4279; 10th June 2018 at 21:05.

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    Mike and Armagh, thanks for your info.
    I have just been reading A G Wauchopes history og the BW in WW1.
    ( Vol 2, page 10 )
    He states that it was after the battle of Neuve Chapelle 10-13th March 1915,
    and before the beginning of May, when the 4th were guarding a section
    of the front line in and around Neuve Chapelle :-
    ' During one of these periods of rest, khaki bonnets were served out to
    all ranks in place of the Glengarry '

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBY View Post
    Mike and Armagh, thanks for your info.
    I have just been reading A G Wauchopes history og the BW in WW1.
    ( Vol 2, page 10 )
    He states that it was after the battle of Neuve Chapelle 10-13th March 1915,
    and before the beginning of May, when the 4th were guarding a section
    of the front line in and around Neuve Chapelle :-
    ' During one of these periods of rest, khaki bonnets were served out to
    all ranks in place of the Glengarry '
    I read that it was April 8th that Khaki Tam O’Shanters were issued to 1st/4th replacing the Khaki Balmoral so as to achieve uniformity with 1st/5th.

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