A website about Lee-Enfield rifles and the men who carried them
Codes & Marks: Goveernment Marks
One of the most interesting things about Lee-Enfield rifles (and British Empire military gear in general) is that the entire rifle is tattooed with mysterious letters, numbers, unknown symbols, cartouches and hieroglyphics. Each of those runes tells a story. Taken together, they will tell you where the rifle was made, when, and by whom. They will tell you who worked on the rifle, and what they did. They might also tell you where the rifle saw service, with who, and when.
Formally inaugurated as a self-governing dominion of the British Empire in 1901. Australians were organized solely for home defence prior to 1914. The tiny army (2,862 in 1914) was backed by a part-time volunteer militia (CMF~45,000 men in 1914). Royal Australian Navy founded in 1909; Australian Flying Corps founded in 1914. Many Australian marks are a combination of National and State government marks.
The Dominion of Canada was formed in 1867 by confederation of the provinces of Canada (Ontario and Quebec), Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Manitoba added 1870; British Columbia 1871, Prince Edward Island 1873, Saskatchewan and Alberta 1905. The Red Ensign with a shield emblazed with each provincial coat-of-arms was Canada's flag 1907 - 1965.
At the outbreak of WWI Canadian Regular Forces totaled 3,312 and 341 men in the Officer Training Corps. While it was true that Canada had 178 Militia regiments, nearly all of these were under strength and poorly equipped, totaling about 65,000 men. Nonetheless, before the Great War ended more than 620,000 Canadians had volunteered for service, of which 418,000 served overseas. More than 200,000 were casualties, including 66,651 killed in action or died of wounds. The Blue Jack Ensign was flown by Canada's Navy from 1910 until the adoption of the Maple Leaf flag in 1965.
Regarded as Britain's colonial jewel, the territory once known as the Indian Empire is now divided into the independent republics of India, Burma, Pakistan and Bangladesh. The army of British India was made up of all volunteer Indian troops commanded by British officers and trained and equipped on the British pattern. Often overlooked, Indian Army units served with distinction on the Western Front in WWI and carried the main burden of fighting against Turkey in Mesopotamia (modern Iraq) as well as the world's last and greatest calvary army in Palestine. By the end of the Great War India had sent more than 1,300,000 volunteer soldiers overseas. The Union Jack flew over the Indian Empire until 1947.
India gained independence from Great Britain on 15th August 1947 following endorsement of a plan by the Muslim League and the All-India Congress to partition the sub-continent into two countries, India and Pakistan. The Tiranga was raised over the Red Fort as the the national flag of India on Independence Day, 1947.
Sinn Fein was formed in 1905 with the aim of nothing less than full independence from Britain. Talks between the Republican leadership and the British government led to the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1921, with the Irish delegation eventually agreeing to self-governing dominion status for the twenty-six counties in the Irish Free State. The Irish tri-color flag had been around in various forms since the 1800's; the flag currently in use was adopted in 1937.
A colony in 1841, New Zealand and the outlying dependent islands were granted status as an autonomous Dominion of the British Empire in 1907. All able-bodied males received some military training from age 12 in peacetime. The Territorial Army, formed in 1911, was a part-time national militia with about 25,000 men, which became the backbone of the new volunteer regiments established for imperial service overseas after 1914. The first New Zealand troops left almost immediately, occupying the German Pacific islands of Western Samoa without meeting resistance. The Blue Ensign flag was adopted in June 1902.
Pakistan gained independence from Great Britain on 15th August 1947 following endorsement of a plan by the Muslim League and the All-India Congress to partition the sub-continent into two countries, India and Pakistan. The flag was officially adopted on August 14, 1947.
The Union of South Africa was created on May 31, 1910 as a new dominion of the British Empire when the Cape Colony and Natal Colony were combined with the former Boer Republics of the Orange Free State (Orange Colony) and the South African Republic (Crown Colony of Transvaal). T. The Red Ensign was adopted in 1910, although the Union Jack remained the official flag. The South African troops fighting in East Africa, the Middle East and in the trenches in France during the First World War did so under the Union Jack.
In 1925 a Bill was introduced in parliament to make provision for a national flag for the Union of South Africa which resulted in the adoption of a flag for the Union late in 1927 and which was first hoisted on 31 May 1928. A part of the compromise was that the British Union Jack would continue to fly alongside the Union national flag everywhere over official buildings. South Africa was thus the only country in the world that flew two national flags simultaneously. This situation continued until 1957 when the Union Jack was finally dispensed with by an Act of Parliament.