S.A.P.A.W. Manufactured 1937 Pattern Haversack

Many years ago we looked at a South African made 1937 pattern haversack here. That example was manufactured by DI Fram, today we are looking at another example, this time made by South African Proofing and Weaving. In the UK a change of manufacturer would not have an impact on the design of a piece of webbing, but in South Africa each company making webbing produced its own unique version of the webbing components and there are many detail differences between the products of the two companies. This haversack then is the SAPAW variation:

In design the SAPAW variant is closer to those manufactured elsewhere in the Empire and does not have the edge binding that can be seen on the DI Framm example, however as can be seen above the straps and buckles used to secure the top flap are positioned wider apart than they are on other manufacturer’s examples. The buckles themselves are made of iron rather than brass and so have suffered badly over the years leading to the corrosion that can be seen here:

The back of the haversack has the usual two tabs for attaching the L-Straps:

These tabs have metal tips, again made of iron rather than brass and then painted gold to give some protection. In this case they have actually survived quite well:

The interior of the haversack has the usual dividers made in a heavy duty tan cotton drill fabric (the DI Framm examples used brown fabric):

The pack is very nicely marked and my suspicion is that it has never been issued or used. The manufacturer’s initials are printed in purple ink, with the letters JHS, short for Johannesburg, underneath with a date of 1944. A /|\ within a ‘U’ acceptance mark is stamped on in red:

All South African 37 pattern webbing is scarce, so it is particularly pleasing to now have examples of both manufacturers in my collection. If you would like to learn more about 1937 pattern webbing, my book is now available to purchase from Ceres Press here.

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