Eaglemoss Military Watches Collection.

MWC 53 - French Soldier 1940s

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After the declaration of War by Britain and France against Germany on 3rd September 1939 there was a relatively quiet period when it was believed that open war could still be avoided. Germany was in fact using the time to build up a massive stockpile of arms and ammunition that it would need in the coming battle, German troops also had time to rest following the attack on Poland.
The French Army considered its greatest strength was its infantry and settled in along the Maginot Line defences, a carefully selected line of defence deemed impenetrable. Unfortunately they had overlooked the Ardennes region on the Belgian Border as they had wrongly assumed it was impossible to move armoured divisions through the terrain there.
On 10th May the German forces completely outflanked the French Army and using well practiced tactics and superior communications, few French units had full Radio capability, quickly overcame the Allied defences, pushed them back to the costal ports along the English Chanel and in a little over 6 weeks, forced the surrender of France.
French troops had been reasonably equipped, the watches they used included the Cupillard ‘Etanche’ (waterproof) watch, the french watch industry was commandeered by German forces who used French factories and labour to produce watches for German troops which were marked “DH” Deutches Heer, or German Army.

Polished 29.8mm case, 32mm with the crown, 8.3mm deep.
36.1mm lug to lug. 16mm wide
Interior aperture 26.8mm across, 5.7mm deep. 4mm Crown, 26mm flat glass
26.5mm black dial. White printed minutes scale.
Hours indicated with white Arabic numerals from 1 through 12 inclusive in a concentric ring marking
Polished Spade style hours hand, sword shaped minutes hand and a seconds hand with arrow tip, all with luminous infill.
Grey Nylon strap 16mm wide with polished buckle. approx. fitting 175-210mm

In this close up detail of the dial and hands you can see the ’stepped’ effect on the printing due to the use of inkjet type printing methods .
Tags: 1940s, french, soldier Add / Edit Tags


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