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Title Forfar Militia commission document, Ensign John Pouns
Nationality Scottish
Period 1811

Signed by Archibald, Lord Douglas, HM's Lieutenant of the county of Forfar, this document has his red wax seal thereon. Militia commissions were no sinecure, unlike commissions in the volunteers, inasmuch as they were treated as reserve cannon fodder for the war in Spain, where both officers and ranks might wind up serving in regular units.

Ensign is an old-fashioned word for a 2nd Lieutenant, called this because the youngest ensign in the regiment traditionally carried the regimental colour (or ensign).

The document (14.5 x 8.25 inches) is made of parchment and, to photograph it, I had to flatten it under a piece of glass, which has resulted in some distortion. There is old-age damage to the left hand side of the document, but it is still largely legible.

If you want to comment on this item—re quality, age, etc—please email me.

[Ephemera : Documents : Scottish : 19th Century]


[From a vendor, rather than a buyer]

I'm delighted that you are happy with the badge and I hope you can sell it to someone who will value owning it.

I tried to sell it on eBay but they won't accept Nazi items. I then contacted several dealers via a Google search who mostly offered me 40-50 after some haggling. Most of the other dealers tried to conceal its true value in their replies and also lacked manners which doesn't inspire confidence.

Ultimately it's about trust. I should think that most prospective sellers have done their own research and therefore know roughly what their item is worth. You were the only dealer who had the integrity to concede that my valuation was approximately correct and I respect your comment that you can't offer this as you need to make a profit. Your honest approach is greatly appreciated and I felt comfortable taking the risk in sending it to you.

Thank you for a smooth transaction

C D, UK, 01.07.2015

Dear Chris, truncheon arrived safe and sound yesterday... what a beauty! I look forward to our next transaction.

C C, Australia, 18.09.2012