Friday, 28 March 2014

An oldie but goldie ...

I am old enough to remember when the number of uniform reference books available for wargamers to use was extremely limited ... and then Blandford began publishing their very useful colour series books.

The first one I bought was MILITARY UNIFORMS OF THE WORLD IN COLOUR (Written and illustrated by Preben Kannik, translated from the original Danish by John Hewish, edited by William Y Carman, and published in 1968) ...


... and over the years I bought many more of their books, including:
  • WARRIORS & WEAPONS 3000BC-1700AD
  • INFANTRY UNIFORMS BOOK 2 INCLUDING ARTILLERY AND OTHER SUPPORTING CORPS OF BRITAIN AND THE COMMONWEALTH 1855-1939
  • CAVALRY UNIFORMS OF BRITAIN AND THE COMMONWEALTH INCLUDING OTHER MOUNTED TROOPS
  • UNIFORMS OF THE SEVEN YEARS WAR 1756-63
  • UNIFORMS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
  • UNIFORMS OF THE NAPOLEONIC WARS IN COLOUR 1796-1814
  • UNIFORMS OF THE RETREAT FROM MOSCOW 1812
  • UNIFORMS OF THE PENINSULAR WAR 1807-14
  • UNIFORMS OF WATERLOO IN COLOUR
  • WORLD UNIFORMS AND BATTLES 1815-50
  • UNIFORMS OF THE IMPERIAL RUSSIAN ARMY
  • UNIFORMS OF THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR
  • ARMY UNIFORMS OF WORLD WAR 1
  • GERMAN UNIFORMS OF THE THIRD REICH 1933-1945
  • ARMY UNIFORMS OF WORLD WAR 2
  • NAVAL, MARINE AND AIR FORCE UNIFORMS OF WORLD WAR 2
  • ARMY BADGES AND INSIGNIA OF WORLD WAR 2 (GREAT BRITAIN, POLAND, BELGIUM ITALY, USSR, USA, GERMANY)
  • ARMY BADGES AND INSIGNIA OF WORLD WAR 2 BOOK 2 (CANADA, SOUTH AFRICA, INDIA, BRITISH OVERSEAS TERRITORIES, FINLAND, FRANCE, JAPAN, NETHERLANDS, YUGOSLAVIA, CHINA, DENMARK, CZECHOSLOVAKIA)
  • AIR FORCE BADGES AND INSIGNIA OF WORLD WAR 2
  • ARMY UNIFORMS SINCE 1945
  • UNIFORMS OF THE SOLDIERS OF FORTUNE
  • ARMY BADGES AND INSIGNIA SINCE 1945 BOOK ONE (GREAT BRITAIN, POLAND, USA, ITALY, GERMAN FEDERAL AND DEMOCRATIC REPUBLICS, USSR, BELGIUM)
  • MILITARY FLAGS OF THE WORLD 1618-1900
Of these WORLD UNIFORMS AND BATTLES 1815-50 is proving very helpful at the moment.


It is a source of inspiration with regard to the possible uses to which I can put my expanding collection of Napoleonic wargames figures.

14 comments:

  1. Ah dear old Blandford and Almark books of my early gaming life - all we had prior to Osprey !

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  2. Mosstrooper,

    I had forgotten the Almark books! I have quite a few of them on my bookshelves as well.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  3. Snap! Kannik was the first uniform book I bought. Still have it and it's still surprisingly useful ( who were the combatants in the First Scanian War?)

    Still got a couple of Almark titles, including the now almost mythical Nash title on the Prussian Army of 1808-15.

    I don't thin any of the old books owe me anything :O)

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  4. I still have a copy of Andrew Mollo's Armed Forces of WW2, crammed with colour pictures and information on even the smaller combatant nations of WW2. Thanks for sharing this - always good to have a wander along memory lane now and again.

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  5. Gary Amos,

    I still refer to Kannik's book on a reasonably regular basis ... which goes to prove what a good book it was.

    I think that I have a copy of the Nash's book about the Prussian Army somewhere ... and must try to find it.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  6. Colonel Scipio,

    I have a copy of Mollo's book on my bookshelves, and it is one that I consulted regularly when I was painting my Soviet wargames figures.

    Wandering down memory lane every so often makes one realise how many more reference books are available nowadays compared to the situation wargamers were in when I started in the 1960s.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  7. I ony have about 8 of the Blandfords myself, but over the years I have managed to acquire almost all of the Almark books - including that almost mythical "The Prussian Army, 1808-1815"
    I think my very first uniform books were the old Shire "Discovering the English Civil War" followed by the original Almark "Regiments at Waterloo" by Rene North

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  8. Ian Dury,

    I was lucky. I was working when the books were published and could afford to buy each one as it was published. The same is true for my collection of Almark books.

    Funnily enough I have never owned copies of either of the books you mention.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  9. Amen, many happy hours day dreaming with a Blandford in hand, not to mention the value of the information in them.

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  10. Ross Mac,

    The books were - and still are - very informative, and stand up well in comparison to newer publications.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  11. I inherited a copy of the Blandford "Uniforms of the World", and agree that it is quite useful, even today. I didn't know there were others. I have number of the Almark books, including the Prussian one :-), and the depth of detail in them is outstanding. The illustrations in modern Ospreys are superior, but coverage in the Almark books is far more detailed and comprehensive.

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  12. Gonsalvo,

    The Blandford books were a great set of reference sources because they combined so many colour images with informative text ... and they are still useful today.

    The Almark books were excellent as well, and I agree that the level of information they contained was higher than the average Osprey book by quite some way.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  13. My first uniform book too, although the dust jacket on mine is very tattered now. Again, I still refer to it. A classic!

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  14. Legatus Hedlius,

    The dust jacket on my copy is also very tatty, but I am loath to dispose of it because of the wonderful illustrations it has!

    All the best,

    Bob

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