A Naval Jacket (c late 19th Century)

A dark navy blue wool serge, double-breasted naval “under dress” uniform with gold braid trim and 8 rows of brass buttons. It was worn by Lieutenant-Commander Rupert Oswald Jones, OBE, RNR (Rd.).

The style is traditional to the late 19th Century Royal Navy uniforms but with a twisted gold braid around the cuffs, characteristic of the Navy Reserve Uniforms of the same period.

Rupert Jones was born in London in 1881. At the age of 29 he gained his Certificate of Competency as Second Mate for Foreign Going Vessels and four years later an upgraded Certificate as First Mate for ships plying international waters.

In 1908 he secured a position as an officer aboard the merchant ship S.S. Iconic, which sailed out of London.

He later settled in Newcastle, NSW where he was attached to the Royal Navy Reserve.  There he met Margaret Johnson of Stockton and they married in 1913.

At the outbreak of war in 1914 he was appointed to take charge of the Port Suez Convoy Office, responsible for the control of shipping through the canal and port areas.

It was for “excellent service” in this role that he was awarded an Order of the British Empire in July 1919.

Jones returned to Newcastle in 1920. However, about 1930, he and his wife moved to their newly purchased home on La Mascotte Avenue, Concord.

In 1942 Commander Jones was appointed for temporary service in the Royal Australian Naval Reserve stationed at Rushcutters Bay.

Jones died at his home in Concord in August 1959, survived by his wife and daughter.

This jacket was donated by his daughter, Sylvia Garrick.

This WWI Naval Uniform was recently restored through a grant from the Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney and is now on display at our museum at 1 Bent Street, Concord.


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