Karkee Web: British & Empire Accoutrements and Personal Equipment of the Twentieth Century

Contributors' Collections: A. Gustaf Bryngelson

Gus Bryngelson is an American. A few of his photos are scattered through Karkee Web, but more importantly, Gus has been a friend, supporter and consultant on all things WWI since KW began. His collection encompasses not only accoutrements and equipment, but also weapons and most especially uniforms. All photos this page are © Gus Bryngelson 2009.


First World War Uniforms









This display from Gus's collection is on display in a museum near his home. Left to right:

Ferdinand Holzner:

Shown here is the uniform of Ferdinand Holzner of the Austrian KuK Tiroler Reit Kaisersschützen. The cap is the peakless style common to mounted troops, it has the K rosette for Kaiser Karl and an Edelweiß tinnie dated 1914-1916; the tunic is an M1908 pike grey tunic with grass green collar and cuffs; the marksman's lanyard on the left breast is possibly German post war; the single ammo pouches are the style used by mounted troops with no provision for a knapsack strap; the belt is the style used by mounted troops and later by all troops; the trousers are pike grey with grass green piping; the water bottle slung on the right hip is in the leather carrier for mounted troops; and the soldier is armed with a Steyr M1895 carbine and bayonet.

Austrian impression:

He is wearing the Austrian M1917 helmet similar to the German M1916; the gas mask is the M1916 patterned after the German M1915; the tunic is the M1915 field grey with matching trousers of the same pattern. The ankle boots are topped with puttees (the left is a reproduction);the M1908 ammo pouches are supported by the belt with a M1895 buckle; the haversack is slung on the left hip and supported by the belt, the canteen is carried in the haversack along with iron rations and personal items; on his back is the M1888 back pack with the mess tin strapped to it; the M1910 trench shovel is hanging from the belt on his right hip; he is armed with the M1895 Steyr straight pull rifle with bayonet (the bayonet scabbard is carried on the left hip under the haversack).

German impression:

A German (Bavarian) soldier wears the M1916 Stahlhelm and the M1917 Lederschützmaske, the storage canister for the gas mask is suspended on a paper cloth strap. The Mantel (overcoat) is a Bavarian pattern with out the insignia green collar and the trousers are Swedish, due to the rarity of original trousers; the ID disc is suspended around his neck. The M1910 ammo pouches are on the M1895 belt with a M1915 buckle; a M1917 Stielhandgrenate is hung from the belt on the right; on the belt beside the buckle is a close combat knife; he has a M1895 Tornister on his back with the M1910 mess tin strapped on suspended from the belt on his left is the bayonet scabbard; on the right hip is the M1887 bread bag with the M1915 water bottle suspended from the D ring; the leather boots are similar to German WWI March boots, but can be identified as Czech fireman's boots due to the external reinforcement at the back of the boots; this soldier is armed with the Mauser Kar98 with bayonet.

German soldier:

He wears the M1915 Pickelhaube; the gas mask is a M1915 Gumimaske; the overcoat is the M1915 pattern; his ID disc can be seen around his neck with a bit of cord. The M1909 ammo pouches are on the M1895 belt with a M1915 buckle; on his left hip is his entrenching shovel with the bayonet scabbard; on his right hip is the M1887 breadbag with the M1893 waterbottle attached; he is armed with the Gewehr M1898 with bayonet.

US Army impression:

The U.S. Infantryman wears a M1917 helmet copied from the British Brodie helmet, the gas mask is also a M1917, copied from the British small box respirator; the tunic is the M1917 with infantry and US collar insignias; the cartridge belt is an M1917 and is supported by the shoulder straps of the M1910 haversack; on the right front hip is the M1910 first aid pouch, the dressing was sealed in a brass container and contained nothing more than a gauze bandage; on the left front hip is an M1917 trench knife; the trousers are M1917 and the M1917 boots are topped with puttees; on the back of the knapsack is the mess kit pouch with the M1910 entrenching shovel hooked beneath it; on the left rear hip is the M1910 canteen nested in the cup in the cloth pouch; the soldier is armed with the Eddystone M1917, a redesign of the British P1914 Enfield with the P14/M17 bayonet and the scabbard is carried on the left side of the knapsack.

US Marine impression:

U.S. Marine Corpsman wears the M1912 campaign hat with eagle, globe and anchor insignia’ M1914 tunic in forest green cloth, M1914 trousers in  forest green cloth, M1910 cartridge belt with M1910 first aid pouch on right hip and M1905 bayonet scabbard on the left hip, he carries the M1917 SBR in the slung position, leggings are M1916 canvas.  The rifle is a M1903 Springfield with a M1905 bayonet attached.

Casper Henscheid:

U.S. Navy uniform of Casper Henscheid, dress blues with the flat hat bearing a US Navy tally.  Seaman Henscheid served on the USS Western Spirit in WWI.

British / Canadian impression:

A soldier of the British Commonwealth, he could be identified as a Canadian by the Canadian pattern overcoat; he is wearing the Brodie steel helmet and the M1917 small box respirator; the web gear is the Mills Patt. 1908 equipment consisting of left and right cartridge carriers on the belt supported by braces that also support the Patt. '08 large pack. On his right hip is the intrenching tool head and water bottle, on his left hip is his bayonet and helve for the entrenching tool as well as the haversack; on the back of the large pack is his mess tin in cover; a pair of wire cutters is stuck in his belt and a Mills #5 bomb is hanging from his belt; he is armed with a SMLE Mk. III rifle and Patt. 1907 bayonet.

Italian impression:

The Italian soldier is wearing the M1916 Adrian helmet; the cape on his left shoulder is the Mantellina, issued in lieu of a greatcoat; the tunic is a M1909 in grigio-verde of war-time manufacture; the M1907 trousers are reproduction; M1912 ankle boots are topped with puttees; M1907 belt equipment (mostly of post war production) two double ammo pouches supported by a strap passing behind the neck, the scabbard for the M1891 Carcano bayonet is on the left hip; slung on the left hip is the M1907 haversack with the M1917 water bottle strapped to it; the rifle he carries is the Carcano N1891 rifle with bayonet.

Poilu - French soldier impression:

He is wearing the Adrian M1915 helmet with infantry badge; The gas mask is the ARS1917; The overcoat is the mounted/artillery model, identified by the split coat tail, under the overcoat is the simplified tunic; the breeches are piped in dark blue indicating mounted troops; the puttees are the M1910 over M1917 boots; the ammo pouches are M1905 supported by belt and M1892 Y straps (braces); the M1886/93 bayonet is carried in the M1888/14 frog; on his back is the M1893 knapsack with shelter half and M1952 mess kit strapped on top;on his left hip, rear, is the M1892 haversack; on the left hip front is the M1877 two liter water bottle; on his right hip is the M1877 one liter water bottle with 1/4 liter cup;a F1 fragmentation grenade is hanging from his haversack strap; the Poilu is armed with the M1886/93 Lebel rifle with the M1886/93 bayonet.

Belgian impression:

A Belgian Soldier Wearing a late war US made tunic with summer weight trousers; he is wearing the M1915 Adrian helmet with the Belgian Lion insignia; the ARS 1917 Gas mask, made in France patterned after the German Ledermaske; Mills pattern 1915 belt, ammo pouches and knapsack made in the UK; Belgian leather leggings with French M1917 boots; Mess tin and water bottle patterned after the German counterparts; early war haversack (I am lacking the Mills haversack, and the belt and ammo pouches shown here are probably Portuguese); The weapon is a Carbine M1889 Mauser made in England during the war. The Belgian Army was a small force, and they were equipped in the later years of the war by materials manufactured in other allied countries due to the fact that Belgium was nearly completely occupied by Germany by the end of 1914.

Russian impression:

The Russian soldier has M1907 field cap with insignia of the Romanov family, M1881 overcoat with hook and eye closure, M1909 aluminum water bottle with felt cover, made in 1910, M1893 ammo pouches, hold 30 rounds each, Brass belt plate adopted in 1904. M1909 copper mess tin, M1891 Mosin Nagant rifle with bayonet, Leather march boots (post war).