Welcome to the end of summer edition of Sierra Toy Soldier News. It always amazes me that on the September 1. The weather in the Bay Area changes, the days get a lot cooler and you feel fall season rapidly coming in. The good news is the official fire season only has a month to go, I so hope this is the case, with the colder weather, we have a chance.
This week we start the Chicago packing, a task that can drive anyone a little crazy. Thank you to those that have requested items, it makes the event so much easier. There is still time for special requests, but will be shipping by the 13thm so please let us know soon.
We still have space available for our customer appreciation dinner on Friday, September 21. This year we have Andy Neilson of King & Country as our guest speaker. This is a really fun and unique event. Do not miss out!
Are you coming to the Chicago Show? One of the fun event's is the Annual John Jenkins Treasure Hunt. Stop by and pick up an entry form and Happy Hunting.
We have a great set of announcements including King and Country, John Jenkins, Collectors Showcase, First Legion, Thomas Gunn, Corgi and Thomas Gunn Wings of War.
Hope you enjoy!
Learn To Paint A Toy Soldier - Saturday
September 8, 2018 - Los Gatos, CA - 10.00 – 4.00pm
Come and have some fun learning how to paint a Toy Soldier. Designed for Little and Big Kids, Mums most welcome.
Chicago Toy Soldier Show September
20 - 23, 2018.
be room trading on Thursday the 20th. The room trading which is a ton of fun lasts until the Saturday night. Then we move down to the main ballroom, for the main event on Sunday. If you would like details, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org - subject Chicago Show.
We welcome volunteers for a unique and crazy experience.
Chicago Customer Appreciation Dinner
(14th Anniversary Year) -
Friday, September 21 - Reserve Your Seat Today!
Every year we at the Sierra Toy Soldier Company, team up with Treefrog Treasures & Troops of Time at the Chicago Show to honor our customers with a fun-filled evening of toy soldiers and great food at our Customer Appreciation Dinner. If you will be attending the OTSN Chicago Show we want to make sure you know you are invited to attend this dinner.
Since this is a customer appreciation event, of course it is meant specifically for our customers and is not open to the general collecting public. If you have ordered from us in the past year, you are definitely our customer and we hope you will be able to attend!
Andy Neilson of King & Country will be our guest of honor and the evening's speaker.
Tickets are $40 per person, same as last year, and can be purchased by phone or email. We do not make tickets available online since the event is only for our customers. Please provide the name of each guest you wish to bring as well as the ages & gender of any children in attendance.
Customer Appreciation Dinner @ The Chicago OTSN toy soldier
Children/young collectors are very welcome to attend.
Please reserve your seats early so you do not miss out.
We hope you can join us.
September Super Sale
This month we are
having a very limited sale on a few overstock items from Thomas Gunn, Frontline and a few others. We have reduced the price on these items but only until the end of April, so do not miss out.
We are open Monday - Saturday 10.00 - 6.00pm. Sundays 12.00 - 5.00pm
Just a reminder for those of you living in Northern California, or perhaps just
visiting, that our retail store dedicated to toy soldiers is now open 7 days a
week. The store is located at 29 North Santa Cruz Avenue, Los Gatos, California
95030. (408) 395 3000
Check out all the latest announcements. This is updated as soon as there is a new announcement.
Sierra Toy Soldier Blog
Occasionally we get a rare opportunity to acquire individual items and complete collections for collectors that are thinning out their collection or from other dealers. These pieces are items that we do not normally stock. All are in mint condition or and in their original boxes, unless specified in the description. Please note these may have been on display.
So these are ideal pages to view if you are looking for that missing piece in your collection or just looking to find some very unique pieces that are not normally available.
Sierra Toy Soldier Exclusive
Romans and Gauls
In warfare ‘ferocity’ is nothing new... Back in the 1st. Century AD the Romans had their hands full dealing with rebellious tribes all over their empire.
Some of their fiercest enemies could be found in the warlike tribes that inhabited Britannia and Gaul...
RnB013 No Mercy - A Roman Legionary pleads for his life to be spared as a tattooed Briton stands over him dagger in hand...
- RnB014 Mounted Chieftain with The Draco Standard - The ‘Draco Standard’ was originally developed by the mounted nomads of the Steppes. It may have originally been used to determine the wind-direction for horse-archers.
Roman cavalry units adopted the ‘Draco’ for their own use and here we see one that has fallen into enemy hands and is proudly displayed as a battle trophy by this mounted chief.
- RnB015 Carnyx Horn Player - The ‘Carnyx’ was an ancient Celtic war trumpet used between 300 BC and 200 AD. The instrument and its player accompanied warriors into battle.
The mournful sound of this ancient horn was said to both inspire its followers as well as strike fear into its enemies. It was considered a great honour among the warriors to be chosen to both play and carry the richly decorated tribal Carnyx into battle.
MORE JOHN FORD CAVALRY
- TRW135 The Stars 'n' Stripes Forever - A cavalry sergeant carries the National Flag proudly... This is another in this new range of mounted figures that has the ‘moveable’ head feature.
- TRW139 Captain Sam Collingwood - Another of the featured characters from John Ford’s ‘FORT APACHE’ (1948), a brother officer of Capt. Kirby York (John Wayne). Here Captain Collingwood scans the horizon for any sign of hostile Indians.
He also has the ‘moveable’ head.
- TRW146 5th Cavalry Regimental Flagbearer - A companion piece to TRW135... This sergeant has the colourful Regimental Standard of the 5th U.S. Cavalry... with ‘moveable’ head of course.
John Ford's Cavalry
SPOILS OF WAR
From ancient times onward victorious soldiers have always collected ‘souvenirs’ from their less fortunate, defeated opponents. During the First World War ordinary soldiers had access to a first-class postal service that allowed them to collect and ship off home all kinds of battlefield mementoes and ‘trophies’ that they had come across (by whatever ways and means) after the fighting was over.
British and Australian soldiers were no exception and here is one of the most famous of the ‘amateur’ collectors...
FW230 Private John ‘Barney’ Hines - John ‘Barney’ Hines (1878-1958) was a British-born Australian soldier of The Great War, well-known for his skills and prowess at collecting ‘souvenirs’ from captured German Soldiers.
A photo of ‘Barney’ depicting him surrounded by his German acquisitions after the Battle of Polygon Wood in 1917 is among the best-known Australian images of the First World War.
This was the inspiration for our K&C figure which shows ‘Barney’ complete with ‘pickelhaub’ helmet (a much-prized souvenir for WW1 soldiers and collectors) and other bits ‘n’ bobs of German equipment. Our figure also shows ‘Barney’ taking a closer look at some saucy French postcards that he has ‘liberated’ from a German prisoner!
Aussies & Kiwis at War
ARMOUR IN WINTER
WH091 The JagdPanzer Pz. Kpfw. IV L/70
– (Winter Version) - Whenever K&C produce a ‘summer’ version of an armoured vehicle (especially German ones) it does not take long before collectors contact us to request the same vehicle in ‘winter garb’ suitable for either ‘Battle of the Bulge’ or the ‘Eastern Front’.
Well, here is the snow-camouflaged self-propelled gun as requested and there are just 150 of them. So, grab them while you can.
As noted in our original version the metal mesh side-screens are removable so collectors can choose how they wish to portray the vehicle.
JN041 Type 95 'Ha-Go Light Tank (2nd Version) - Our first version had the tank commander perched in the open hatch of the vehicle leading the charge... This time around we’ve closed up the hatch and allowed the commander to take cover inside the turret as the tank moves into action.
This second-version ‘Ha-Go’ is numbered #22 allowing our Japanese opponents to put another armoured vehicle into battle alongside the earlier and now-retired #21.
- JN045 The Japanese Light Howitzer & Crew - Compared to Allied artillerymen the Japanese Army had only a limited number of Light Field pieces. This particular Light Howitzer was ‘crewed’ by just 3x soldiers and could be ‘broken down’ and man-carried in jungle terrain and then hastily reassembled.
- JN047 Dead Japanese Set #1 (2 x figs) - No one could deny the bravery of the ordinary Japanese soldier in WW2. Instilled with the spirit of ‘Bushido’ and willing to die for his emperor his Allied opponents could take no chances when encountering this fierce and often fanatical foe... Few Japanese soldiers even considered surrendering even when faced with imminent death or defeat...
Better to die for the emperor than live as a coward!
- JN048 Dead Japanese Set #2 - Another pair of dead Japanese soldiers... remnants of a failed ‘Banzai’ charge or just in the wrong place at the wrong time...?
- JN049X A Rare Surrender (K&C Xclusive) - Towards the end of WW2 a few Japanese soldiers decided it was better to live with the shame of surrender especially when they could see they were fighting for a lost cause and Japan’s defeat was inevitable.
Allied troops capturing them would usually make them strip down to their loin cloths to ensure they were not hiding any weapons, knives or grenades on their bodies.
Battle of TARAWA
GOOD MORNING VIETNAM
VN002 USMC Sniper - During the Vietnam conflict the U.S. Marine Corps used 2 x main ‘Sniper’ rifles... the M40 bolt-action rifle and the Winchester Model 70, also a bolt-action weapon based on the sporting rifle made by Winchester.
Our K&C Marine sniper has adopted the seated firing position as he takes aim at a distant enemy figure.
VN009 Corpsman & Wounded Marine - This Kneeling Navy Corpsman has done his best to bandage up a seriously wounded ‘Grunt’... Now, they’re waiting for the transport to get the injured Marine back to the nearest Aid Station to have his wounds properly seen to.
VN012 Marine Lying Prone Firing - While one Marine awaits evacuation from the battlefield another ‘gets down on the deck’ to shoot up some of the opposition!
Vietnam - Tet'68
The National Liberation Front of South Vietnam, commonly known as the Viet Cong were locally recruited South Vietnamese peasants and workers that fought against its own government and the United States during the conflict.
The Viet Cong or ‘VC’ was made up of both part-time militia and regular full-time army units. Many of those militia were farmers by day... guerrillas by night... They often had the advantage of knowing the local countryside and area well compared to both the U.S. and ARVN units sent against them. Although the US and ARVIN forces had the firepower and the wealth of military equipment the V.C., or ‘Victor Charlie’ had the element of surprise and the long-term commitment that ultimately led to the collapse of South Vietnam and the victory of the North.
VN019 Lying Prone Viet Cong Sniper - In the Viet Cong there was a very strong female element who played an active role in all aspects of the fighting. This lying prone female sniper is ample proof of that as she draws a bead on some distant enemy target with her Czech-made, Soviet supplied SKS rifle.
- VN021 VC Kneeling firing AK47n - A male comrade of this little VC ‘sniper’prepares to fire off a burst from his AK47. The Soviet-designed AK47 has long been a favorite weapon (and symbol) of guerrilla groups worldwide... Easy to use, difficult to jam and able to withstand all kinds of weathers and conditions it is, quite simply, described by friends and foes alike, to be a superlative Assault Rifle!
- VN024 Crouching Uncle Ho - Look closely at this older member of the Viet Cong group and you will see that he bears more than a passing resemblance to Ho Chi Minh, the legendary revolutionary leader of North Vietnam.
Looks aside however, it would seem unlikely that the ‘great leader’ would be operating down south with a small guerrilla band. Our ‘doppelganger’ carriers the ubiquitous SKS rifle.
- VN026 Dead Viet Cong - Taking the fight to the enemy also comes with a cost... 2 x dead V.C., one male, one female lie sprawled on the ground, their weapons by their side.
- VN028 Moving Supplies - A female V.C. shoulders a box of supplies while still keeping her rifle close at hand.
Vietnam - Tet'68
Colonial Hong Kong
For 156 years Hong Kong was a British Crown Colony until 30 June, 1997 when it was ceremonially handed back to the People’s Republic of China.
Two years previously, in 1995, a unique military unit held its final parade before being disbanded and ending 143 years of loyal service to the British Crown and the people of, what was originally, a small port city on the southern coast of China – Hong Kong.
THE ROYAL HONG KONG REGIMENT (The Volunteers) was a militia formation founded in 1854 and tasked with the defense of the small Colony alongside the regular British Army garrison stationed there.
For many years it would join with other British Forces in taking part in the Queen’s Birthday Parade held annually in the city.
Taking the official salute on behalf of the Queen would be her representative, His Excellency, The Governor, resplendent in his ‘Tropical Whites’ and saluting as the different units marched past.
Here are some great new additions to our fond memories of a Colonial Hong Kong now long gone...
CE021 British Guard Box - A once familiar sight outside many Army barracks in Hong Kong and around the world wherever the sun never set on the British Empire... Usually painted either black or green, our K&C model comes in a very fetching ‘British Racing Green’ colour. Can also be utilized with our ‘Ceremonial’ Coldstream Guards figures.
- CHK006 RHKR Staff Sergeant Present Arms - This smartly-turned out NCO (Non Commissioned Officer) presents arms with his SLR (Self Loading Rifle) and fixed bayonet.
- CHK007 RHKR Corporal Present Arms - Similar to the previous ‘Volunteer’ but a junior NCO this time... with just 2 x stripes.
- CHK008 His Excellency, The Hong Kong Governor - Always a trusted and experienced Civil Servant, appointed by the British Prime Minister, the Governor would put on his white tropical uniform only for special occasions, such as the Queen’s Birthday Parade.
- CHK009 The Governor's RHKP Aide de Camp - Every regular and volunteer military unit in Hong Kong Provided H.E. The Governor with an ADC, however to avoid any inter service rivalry between the Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force the senior ADC was always provided by the Royal Hong Kong Police.
Here we show the Governor’s RHKP Aide de Camp in all his ceremonial finery including the white ‘Solar Topee’ sun helmet adorned with black feathers.
- CHK010 Ceremonial Flag Base & British Crown Colony of Hong Kong Flag - The Colonial Hong Kong flag comprised the British Blue Ensign with the Colony’s ‘Coat of Arms’ in a white circle in the fly of the flag. The shield shows two junks upon blue and white stripes representing the sea topped by a lion holding a pearl, a reference to Hong Kong’s nickname as ‘The Pearl of the Orient.’
The shield as a whole is supported by a British Lion and a Chinese Dragon. The Flag and its staff fit neatly into a sturdy grey stone base.
- CHK011 RHKR Trooper Present Arms - Same parade position as CHK006 and 007
ON THE STREETS OF OLD HONG KONG
Still wandering around Hong Kong in ‘The Good Old Days’ we come across a pair of street vendors... In those faroff days before supermarkets virtually anything and everything was sold on the street... and for cash, no credit allowed!
The Hakka people are Han Chinese who originated from the lands bordering the Yellow River who migrated to China’s southern provinces as well as overseas.
During the late Ming and Qing dynasties a substantial proportion moved to what became Hong Kong and took up farming in the less accessible and more hilly areas of the territory. Most of this agricultural work was done by women as their menfolk often took laboring jobs in the nearby urban areas of Kowloon and Hong Kong.
After cultivating and tending their crops it was the women who would journey into the city areas to sell their produce.
HK281M The Hakka Flower Seller (Matt) - This seated Hakka enjoys a snack of sweet corn as she awaits customers for her flowers.
- HK282M The Hakka Vegetable Seller
(Matt) - Sitting nearby is another Hakka woman selling basket loads of fresh fruit and vegetables.
- HK281G The Hakka Flower Seller (Gloss)
- HK282G The Hakka Vegetable Seller
New John Jenkins September Releases!
Enemies of Rome
For set-piece battles, the heavy infantry were usually drawn up in three lines.
However, the vast majority of the heavy infantry were stationed in the front two lines, the HASTATI and PRINCIPES. Contained in these two lines were the younger recruits who were expected to do all the fighting. The rear line (TRIARII), was a reserve consisting of older men who formed a line of last resort to provide cover for the front lines if they were put to flight (and also to prevent unauthorised retreat by the front ranks).
The three lines of maniples were drawn up in a chessboard pattern (dubbed quincunx by modern historians, after the Latin for the "5" on a dice-cube, whose dots are so arranged). In front of these three lines of heavy infantry, would be stationed the legion's VELITES.
Roman Army of the Late Republic
AZ-017A Aztec Warrior - Soldiers who succeeded in capturing two enemies were awarded a uniform consisting of a body suit called a “tlahuiztli”, a tall conical cap called a “copilli” and a shield marked with black designs described as “hawk scratches”.
The Tlahuiztli was made of sewn cotton. Red, yellow, blue or green feathers were meticulously stitched to the cloth in the workshops of conquered city-states and sent to Tenochtitlan each year as tribute.
- AZ-017B Aztec Warrior - The Huaxtec area held a particular fascination for the Aztecs because it was rich in cotton. The goddess of spinners and weavers was called Tlazolteotl.
For this reason the soldiers thought it appropriate to wear hanks of un-spun cotton through their ear spools, as well as the “Yacameztli” or “nose moon” in gold in honour of her role as a patron of the moon.
Aztec Empire - Conquest of America
From the moment of Christopher Columbus' discovery of lands previously unknown to Europe in 1492, the New World captured the imagination of European adventurers. Thousands of men came to the New World to seek fortune, glory, and land. For two centuries, these men explored the New
World, conquering any native people they came across in the name of the King of Spain (and the hope of gold). They came to be known as the Conquistadors.
Conquistadors claimed that they were attacking the New World natives in order to spread Christianity and save the natives from damnation. Many of the conquistadors were, indeed, religious men, but history has shown that the conquistadors were far more interested in gold and loot.
Aztec Empire - Conquest of America
War of the Roses
Wars of the Roses 1455-1487
American Revolution - Battle of Saratoga 1777
1st Canadian Regiment
1st Canadian Regiment
2nd Massachusetts Regiment
2nd Massachusetts Regiment
2nd New York Regiment
2nd New York Regiment
Knights Of The Skies
Jagdstaffel 49 was formed on 23rd December 1917, with Ltn. Franz Ray, named as the Commanding Officer, who already had 9 victories. Franz Ray had previously been with Jasta 28.
He was also the first pilot to obtain 5 victories with the new unit, and shot down his 14th victory on the 2nd July 1917.
On the 22nd October Ray was ordered to Berlin to test a new aircraft design, and command of the Staffel went to Ltn. Hermann Habich.
During the time Ltn. Ray was with Jasta 49, which was from the 15th December 1917 untill the 22nd October 1918, he was to shoot down 8 machine, for a total of 17 victories.
** PLEASE NOTE THIS FIGURE CAN BE USED WITH ANY OF THE JJD ALBATROS DIII MODELS.**
Knights Of The Skies - WWI
Second World War Aircraft
The Grumman F4F Wildcat is an American carrier-based fighter aircraft that began service with both the United States Navy and the British Royal Navy in 1940, where it was initially known by the latter as the Martlet.
The F4F was Grumman’s first monoplane fighter design and was to prove to be one of the great naval fighter aircraft of World War 2.
In 1939 Grumman were successful in obtaining a Navy order for 54 F4F-3’s. The RAF also received 81 F4F-3’s which were named the Martlet I.
The initial deliveries to the US navy were in December 1940, with the first of the planes going to the USS Ranger, and USS Wasp.
These were the only carriers which had the F4F-3’s when war broke out.
First used in combat by the British in the North Atlantic, the Wildcat was the only effective fighter available to the United States Navy and Marine Corps in the Pacific Theater during the early part of World War II in 1941 and 1942; the disappointing Brewster Buffalo was withdrawn in favor of the Wildcat and replaced as units became available. With a top speed of 318 mph (512 km/h), the Wildcat was outperformed by the faster 331 mph (533 km/h), more maneuverable, and longer-ranged Mitsubishi A6M Zero. However, the F4F's ruggedness, coupled with tactics such as the Thach Weave, resulted in a claimed air combat kill-to-loss ratio of 5.9:1 in 1942 and 6.9:1 for the entire war.
Lessons learned from the Wildcat were later applied to the faster F6F Hellcat. While the Wildcat had better range and maneuverability at low speed, the Hellcat could rely on superior power and high speed performance to outperform the Zero. The Wildcat continued to be built throughout the remainder of the war to serve on escort carriers, where larger and heavier fighters could not be used.
By late 1941 nearly all of the colourful squadron markings were either gone entirely or existed as quite small examples close by the cockpit area. VF-3’s famous “Felix The Cat” emblem is thus reduced to a 6” diameter circle forward of the cockpit on BuNo 3973.
The first WILDCAT F4F-3’s to be delivered to the USS SARATOGA in late 1941 were painted in overall “non-specular Light gray”. The transition to the Blue Gray/light gray camouflage scheme often came as and when each aircraft reached its major service and over haul point. Thus each Carrier Air Group at this time may have had a mix of overall Light Gray and Blue Gray/Light Gray squadrons aboard.
The Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat BuNo 3982, is based on an U.S. Naval Historical Center photograph, depicting the aircraft on the elevator of USS Saratoga in early October 1941. This aircraft was piloted by ensign Gayle Hermann. The photograph shows that at this time squadrons were operating with aircraft of mixed paint schemes. BuNo 3982 is seen in overall Light gray while other Wildcats on the deck are painted in the Blue Gray/ Light Gray scheme.
JJD Second World War Aircraft Collection
Very best regards from Mike & Myszka Hall and the Sierra Toy Soldier team -
Aidan, Barbara, Christian, Cody, Gary, Howard, and Michael (the Kilted Vampire).
This newsletter is the copyright of Sierra Toy Soldier Company