Possibly the rarest collection of military signatures obtainable on a single piece, a Dutch Indies one gulden banknote signed aboard the submarine ferrying the ill-fated British commandos attached to Operation Rimau to their ultimate destination, the Japanese-occupied shipping harbor of Singapore. Nine of the ten officers on the raid signed the bill - eight of the signers would never see their homes again. Operation Rimau was an attack on Japanese shipping in Singapore Harbor on October 10, 1944, carried out by an Allied commando unit Z Special Unit using MKIII folboats (collapsible boats). It was a follow-up to the successful Operation Jaywick which had taken place in September 1943, and was again led by Lieutenant Colonel Ivan Lyon of the Gordon Highlanders, an infantry regiment of the British Army. the aim of Rimau was to sink Japanese shipping by paddling the folboats in the dark and placing limpet mines on ships. After the raiding party's discovery by local Malay authorities, a total of thirteen men (including raid commander Lyon) were killed during battles with the Japanese military at a number of island locations or were captured and died of their wounds in Japanese captivity. A group of ten commandos were transported to Outram Road Jail in Singapore after capture by the Japanese, were tried on charges of perfidy and espionage in a Japanese kangaroo court and executed on July 7, 1945. This exceptional 'short snorter' was actually signed on the British submarine HMS PORPOISE with the commandos aboard and while transiting the Lombok Strait between Lombok and Bali, perhaps a day's sailing from Singapore. It was the first British underwater transit of this strait since the Indies fell in 1944. The note is signed on the face by nine of the ten officers who were selected to lead the raid: Lieut. Colonel IVAN LYON (KIA Oct. 16, 1944 Soreh Island); Major REGINALD INGLETON, RM (Beheaded Singapore, July 7, 1945); Capt. ROBERT PAGE (Beheaded Singapore, July 7, 1945); Lt. Bruno Reymond, RANR (Killed by Chinese sailors, Borneo, Dec. 21, 1944); Lt. WALTER CAREY (Beheaded Singapore, July 7, 1945); Lt. ROBERT ROSS (KIA Oct. 16, 1944 Soreh Island); Lt. ALBERT SARGENT (Beheaded Singapore, July 7, 1945), Sub-Lt. GREGOR RIGGS, RNVR (KIA Merapas Island, Nov. 5, 1944), and Lt. WALTER CHAPMAN (a suicide, May 5, 1964). Very good condition. The Rimau mission fell tragically apart, with every commando landed being either killed in action or as a result thereof, or being beheaded by the Japanese. Amazingly, despite the mission coming apart early on, seven men were able to enter Singapore Harbor and sink three ships with their limpet mines. A tragic yet most important war relic.

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April 25, 2024 10:00 AM EDT
Chesapeake City, MD, US

Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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