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Swagger Stick
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Title: Swagger Stick
Identifier: 2006.1.78
Donor: Geoffrey Sayers
Item Date: 1940-1945
Creation Date: 2011
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A cylindrical, leather-covered rod. The leather is coarsely grained, perhaps pigskin, dyed dark brown. The stitching is 7 per inch in a medium brown thread. The handle is indicated by a slight bulge, 23 cm from the top (35 cm from the bottom). Impressed, just below the center, lengthwise is: "Capt. G. H. Sayers", "Capt. G. H. Sayers, Lorne Scots". In black ink at the base of the handle, lengthwise is: "Capt. G.H. Sayers".

Swagger sticks originated in England and were carried by military men when they are walking about. The stick is often twirled around by the officer but it was also placed underneath the arm pit. It was thought the stick depicted the officer as a gentleman as it kept their hands out of their pockets while walking. The first recorded presentation of a swagger stick was in 1569 when Charles IX of France made his brother Henry a 'Generalissimo' (a military rank in its highest degree) and gave him one to signify his appointment. It later came into style in the late 1800s and by post-war period was considered an 'optional item' to carry amongst officers. http://www.diggerhistory.info/pages-equip/pace-stick.htm#swagger

This stick belonged to Geoffrey Harris Sayers and was used by him when he was a Captain with the Lorne Scots Regiment. Geoffrey was born April 23 1907 and was the eldest child of Beverley and Annie Sayers of Clarkson. He joined to become a member of the Canadian Armed Forces and in June of 1938 was appointed 2nd Lieutenant; two years later, he was appointed Lieutenant. In April of 1941 he was appointed the rank of Temporary Captain, and was recommended for appointment to the Lorne Scots (P. D. and H. Regiment) based out of Brampton. According to his military file, Captain Geoffrey Sayers served with the Canadian Forces from 21 April 1941 until 11 October 1945, when he was honourably discharged. From 17 June 1941 until 13 March 1945, he also served with the British Forces (he had British citizenship). He received the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal and Clasp 1939-45.
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