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Uniform Buttons, French or British

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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby Andrew » August 17th, 2016, 9:26 pm

I have a small collection of French buttons. These certainly look French to me; identical to my own. The extravagance of the 'fronds' varies in my examples. Funnily enough, I was recently reading French memoirs from after Waterloo in which one at least mentions not wanting to fall into British hands to avoid being sent to 'Botany Bay.' Perhaps these came from French PoWs?

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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby jf42 » August 17th, 2016, 10:32 pm

1812 wrote:jf42.

Poor sentence on my part. I intended to identify three common designs:
fronds
wreath
wreath and crown.

Mike


So, they're not meant to be oak leaves? They will now always be oak leaves to me!

Andrew wrote:I have a small collection of French buttons. These certainly look French to me; identical to my own. The extravagance of the 'fronds' varies in my examples. Funnily enough, I was recently reading French memoirs from after Waterloo in which one at least mentions not wanting to fall into British hands to avoid being sent to 'Botany Bay.' Perhaps these came from French PoWs?

Andrew



That would certainly explain the mystery.
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby Monique » August 18th, 2016, 3:12 am

Thanks for all the information!
It's interesting that the metal used was different, that may help give me a clue if they are British or French. I'll get them all out and compare colour differences.

Do you think it's possible that they come out on 'slops clothing' for the convicts?
The other possibility is that former soldiers transported and they brought their jackets with them.
Did Canadians use them at all? There was a contingent of Canadian soldiers who were transported here, but they didn't live in The Rocks, they lived further inland, still on Sydney Harbour and Canada Bay is now named after them.
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby DaveH » August 22nd, 2016, 5:58 pm

Austria's my thing (although it does get confused with Monique's land!) , but I would just say that the "ligne" is a reference to the infantry regiment - they were either 'de ligne' (line infantry, standard troops) and 'legere' (light, technically different and supposed to undertake more irregular tasks as well as Line duties), so it is possible to have 9e de ligne and 9e legere.

Anyway, they look like French buttons to me, given this one http://www.ebay.com/itm/France-French-N ... 1087392592

Given that we had recently mislaid our original penal colony out on the eastern seaboard of North America, we opened Botany Bay to replace it, so I suppose French troops may have been sent there especially after Waterloo. Many of the UK prisons, like Norman Cross, were mostly for naval personnel.
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby Monique » August 25th, 2016, 4:20 am

Thank you gentlemen for all the information.
The buttons are being conserved at the Australian National University in Canberra, and if the conservators have the time they may look at them under a machine that can analyze metal content in artefacts like these, sorry I can't remember the name of the machine. I'm hoping to have an answer on Monday next week
Hopefully this will clear up whether they are British, French or both.
I suspect that they came out with ex-soldiers after the Napoleonic Wars, either as convicts or free settlers. Their former uniform jackets may have been the most sturdy and warm piece of clothing they owned.
As far as I have been able to find, French prisoners of war weren't transported, to Sydney, at least, they may have gone to Tasmania though.
In any case, the buttons are going on display at the Rocks Discovery Museum in The Rocks, Sydney from 2nd Sept 2016 until 6 Feb 2017, as part of an exhibition on Colonial Military and WW1.
If you are in Sydney, please drop in, the exhibition is free
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby Monique » August 29th, 2016, 2:59 am

The numbered buttons are all British.
Another diagnostic clue is that the shanks on the back of the British buttons are smaller and less robust than those on the French.
Thanks to everyone who participated in trying to help me identify these artefacts, I really appreciate your time and knowledge.
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby TienAmb » June 9th, 2017, 9:55 am

It's funny that the French and British buttons looks so similar. But I think your buttons are British.
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby FBC-Elvas, Portugal » June 9th, 2017, 10:02 am

A warm welcome to the Forum Tien Amb.

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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby Michael Tyne » June 9th, 2017, 11:07 am

Monique wrote:Thank you gentlemen for all the information.
The buttons are being conserved at the Australian National University in Canberra, and if the conservators have the time they may look at them under a machine that can analyze metal content in artefacts like these, sorry I can't remember the name of the machine. I'm hoping to have an answer on Monday next week
Hopefully this will clear up whether they are British, French or both.
I suspect that they came out with ex-soldiers after the Napoleonic Wars, either as convicts or free settlers. Their former uniform jackets may have been the most sturdy and warm piece of clothing they owned.
As far as I have been able to find, French prisoners of war weren't transported, to Sydney, at least, they may have gone to Tasmania though.
In any case, the buttons are going on display at the Rocks Discovery Museum in The Rocks, Sydney from 2nd Sept 2016 until 6 Feb 2017, as part of an exhibition on Colonial Military and WW1.
If you are in Sydney, please drop in, the exhibition is free

Hi Monique,
There were too French prisoners from the early Napoleonic wars sent out to grow grapes for Governor King at Government House Parramatta in 1800. My ancestor Anne Harris who had a pub at 2 Clarence St Sydney near the Rocks was married one of the men Antoine L"andre. Regards Michael T, Sydney , Australia
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Re: Uniform Buttons, French or British

Postby jf42 » June 9th, 2017, 12:46 pm

Gentlemen, I think that Monique and her colleagues having made their decisions and opened their exhibition in Sept 2016, which then ran until 6 Feb 2017, your recent posts may well fall on rocky ground.
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