Category Archives: Uncategorized

10th May 2019

New finds: Buckles

Beutron and Beauclaire buckles, early 1950s.

Fire Brigade Commission uniform button by Stokes & Sons

These buttons may have been from the Tasmania Fire Brigade Commission (1946-1977)  which was tasked with establishing and maintaining an efficient fire brigade in that state.


Adelaide College of Music: maker unknown

Button dates 1883-1898. It could have been made by S.Schlank and Co, or imported.

This privately run college was established in Wakefield Street East , Adelaide, in 1883 by Herr Immanuel Gotthold Reimann. In 1898 it merged with the University of Adelaide’s school of Music to become the Elder Conservatorium of Music (named after Sir Thomas Elder, benefactor)

9th May 2019


The large buckle and buttons are celluloid, the smallest glass and the middle MOP.

Just to show the scale.

If you love dog buttons, see also the posts  from  26th April, 6th May 2018, 28th June 2018 and 14th April 2019.

Why are Scotty dogs so popular? An article from a pet website has some information:

 An British artist who moved to America, Marguerite Kirmse, was very successful drawing animals,  dogs in particular, including Scotties, in the 1920s.

One early example in pop-culture were “Ric and Rac”, a Wire Fox terrier and his Scottish terrier buddy in the 1930s. They were carton characters created by Paul Abraham (professional name Pol Rab) that featured in a French newspaper. They were so popular that their images were used for brooches, housewares and ornaments. As scotch terrier/fox terrier style buttons date from the late 1930s, they may have been an inspiration.

The famous pet of Franklin Roosevelt, Fala, further cemented these iconic dogs into our consciousness.


8th May 2019

New finds:

Carol does it again! I’m jealous…

Uniform button of South Australian Contingents to South Africa 1899-1902.


Seen online: New Zealand Volunteers 1870: Ross & Glendining, Dunedin.


And a strange KKK. Did the makers not realsie that if worn the koala would be sideways?


7th May 2019

I stumbled upon some Pintrest pages for vintage button advertising. Who knew there were so many advertising nerds out there! I would like to share some relating to 1930s novelty buttons, one of my favourite topics.

For more on this theme, check out my posts dated  6th May 2018, 28th June 2018, 12th January 2019 as well as the vintage advertising pages.



6th May 2019

“Slouch Hat” button/badge:

The slouch hat rests on a disk, with the ‘rising sun’ badge visible. On the back is a shank with a pin through it. Perhaps it could be used as a badge or as a button with the pin removed.

I have been asked about the origin of this slouch hat button/badge. I’m afraid it’s a mystery. However, it may be a modern version of the “tin hat” badges sold by the RSL (Returned Soldiers League) as a fund raiser from 1929 through to 1970.


This image is from

I have seen them in several colours, but do not know who made them. Charity button/badges are collectable, but I am not sure of their value, perhaps around $5-10. Please correct me if you know more about them.

5th May 2019

Commonwealth Police:

King’s crown : button dates 1925-1952
The King’s Crown indicates pre-1953, but the most recent Commonwealth Police were from 1957. Presumably these were from the original 1917-1919 force, although they were described in Wikipedia as a ‘plain clothed’ force.

I am revisiting these buttons that have been shared as I had not checked out the history on the Commonwealth Police which is quite fascinating!

Post Federation initially there was no Commonwealth policing agency. In 1917 the pro-Conscription Prime Minister, Billy Hughes, became so fed up and distrusting of the state of Queensland (led by anti-conscription Premier T. J. Ryan) that he created a plain-clothed Commonwealth Police Force to ensure that Commonwealth law was adhered to in that “rogue” state and to report on “subversive” activities (i.e. those of groups that disagreed with his views!)

This force was disbanded post WW1. A new agency was formed from officers of this force as well as from military intelligence: the Commonwealth Investigations Branch (CIB). This in turn was merged post WW2 with the Commonwealth Security Service to become the Commonwealth Investigation Service(CIS)  The Commonwealth Peace Officer Guard (POG), established in 1925 to provide physical security at government locations across the nation, came under administration of the CIS. Are you keeping up?

In 1949, at the insistence of British and US authorities, the Australian Government established the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) to perform counter-espionage. Was the CIS doing such a poor job of this to make our Allies frustrated?

In 1957 the POG and CIS were merged into the Commonwealth Police. They now investigate crimes such as damage and theft from Commonwealth properties and money laundering. They assist state and overseas police, protect politicians and administer policing on Norfolk and Christmas Islands. In 1979 the regional ACT police were merged with it to form the current Australian Federal Police. Whew!


4th May 2019

I must apologies to anyone who hasn’t been able to leave comments to posts over the last month. It seems the security settings had been upgraded in a way that I didn’t realise. Sorry; I’m not a digital native! Go crazy and contact me now!!

New find:

Royal Navy button , Chorley & Co Sydney.

Backmark: ‘Made in England for Chorley & Co Sydney’. The combination of the King’s Crown and the ‘Lazy Anchor’ (i.e. tilted) dates this button 1902-1928.

For your viewing pleasure: cards of American pearl buttons c.1940s-50s

Sewing motifs, stylish ladies, and neatly pressed shirts.
Apple Blossom. How very wholesome and American.
The handsome guy on the left seems to be holding a pipe. Very suave. The card on the right has raised silver high lights.

It is not always easy to date buttons, but the cards help. You might notice that the buttons above are attached by staples, or in the case of the shanked buttons, a fine strand of wire threaded through the shanks behind the card. By looking at many cards of many eras, I think this occurred from the 1940s in America, with cards from the 1930s and earlier having sewn on buttons. In Australia staples were not used until the mid 1960s, and even until the 1980s many buttons were sewn onto cards. Did the US have better/earlier automisation?

Cards of pearl buttons “Made in Occupied Japan” (i.e. 1945-1952) show that during that era the style number, size in lignes and sometime quantity of buttons per card (in case you couldn’t count?) were printed on the card. This was also the era that prices started to be printed (around 10-15cents per card.)

I’m researching some of the companies that existed in the boom era of Iowa pearl button manufacture, and the style and graphics of cards they used. It’s “un- Australian”, but let me know if you’d like me to share the information.

30th April 2019

New finds:

This Koala button came from USA and appears to be enameled aluminium.

A lovely condition Woolworths ‘Boilproof’ card from the 1950s.

Seen online: Royal Victorian Volunteers  Artillery Regiment

This button by Stokes and Martin was too expensive for me; so sad.

Volunteer corps in Victoria were allowed to be raised from 1854 . They were replaced in 1884 by Militia units in which men enrolled for a fixed period and were paid.

Stokes & Martin Makers Melbourne: Button dates around 1867-1883.

27th April 2019

I was inspired to re-look at pearl-shell button history because I am quite smitten by the variety and design of quaint store cards that were produced for the sale of these buttons. Flowers, elegant ladies, handsome professional men, doctors and nurses, babies and children, palm trees, birds, mermaids and more  were depicted on cards of MOP buttons. Some of the most pedestrian shirt button had the fanciest graphics. Love it!

Whilst I am awaiting the arrival of a variety of American cards I thought I would revisit the Australian cards in my collection. Some are plain, some fancy.


partial G. Herring cards: 1940s. Love the diver in his suit.