ID numberREL/18863.001
Collection typeHeraldry
Title1870 Pattern Valise Equipment braces and straps with 1882 Pattern (Mark IV) Valise Equipment ammunition pouches : British and colonial forces
Object typePersonal Equipment
MakerUnknown
Date madec 1877-1884
Physical description
  • Brass
  • Buff leather
DescriptionPair of buff leather braces and straps, 1870 Pattern Valise Equipment (second variant as described in List of Changes 3264 in 1877). Each brace consists of a two-piece shaped strap (1 inch wide and 32 inches in length). The main part of the strap, which widens as it passes over the shoulders to 2 1/2 inches, has a square billet at the front with six holes for adjustment. The other end of the main strap has a pointed billet with six holes. At the front the main strap is buckled to a short strap (5 inches in length and 1 inch wide) which has a brass buckle with roller and leather keeper. This strap is folded on itself around a brace ring (1 3/4 inches in diameter) and is secured with stitching along the longer edges of the strap. Two other leather straps are also sewn around the brace ring: a shorter one (2 1/2 inches in length and 1 inch wide) with a single brass buckle and leather keeper, which was fastened under the arm to the free end of the opposite brace; and a longer strap (14 inches in length and 3/4 inch wide) with billet, single brass buckle and leather keeper, which passes through the brass loop on the front of the waist belt. The braces are joined together at the centre back with a brass stud secured to the underneath brace and threaded though a slit in the top brace. Two angled leather guides, through which the great coat straps were looped and threaded, are sewn to each brace with a double row of stitching. The left brace has the following stamped in ink on the reverse side: 'W D', 'L' (for large size) and '?108' (written twice). The right brace has 'W D' stamped in ink.

Pair of buff leather ammunition pouches, 1882 Pattern Valise Equipment (Mark IV) pattern (described in List of Changes 3994 13 January 1882 and 4545 18 May 1884) designed to carry 40 rounds of Martini Henry rifle ammunition. The pouch is made from five pieces of leather 'front, back, front flap, gusset and inner guard, stitched together. The measurements of the pouch are as per the sealed pattern being 6 inches wide and 5 3/4 inches high. It has no internal compartments. The front flap has a stitched dart in each side to provide shape and is secured with a leather strap with two holes and slits which fit over a brass stud. A leather guard lies along the top front opening of the pouch to prevent loss of ammunition. Two vertical leather loops are stitched and riveted to the back of the pouch enabling it to be carried on the waist belt. A cast brass retractable 'D' loop at the top back of the pouch provides attachment for the braces when worn. A small horizontal stitched loop lies along the lower back to thread the end of the securing strap through when the pouch is empty.
SummaryIn 1865 a committee was appointed to evaluate infantry equipment for the British army. By 1870 a pattern had been approved and was issued from 1871 following acceptance trials of the Martini-Henry rifle. The complete equipment consisted of a waistbelt, two pouches, an ammunition bag, a pair of braces, two great coat straps, a mess-tin strap, two valise supporting straps and a valise. This pair of braces and straps is of the second variant introduced in 1877 in which each brace was made of two parts buckled together. The original 1870 brace was made of one piece of leather. Braces were made in four sizes and marked accordingly: S, MS, M or L. The 1882 Pattern Valise Equipment replaced the 1871 pattern. It served on well into the 1890s and was in service for some years after the introduction of the 1888 Pattern (Slade-Wallace) equipment. The Mark IV differed from the Mark III 1882 Pattern pouch in that an inner guard was sewn along the top edge of the pouch to prevent ammunition from falling out.
1871 Pattern Valise Equipment braces and straps : British and colonial forces