I thought that this guide might be useful because of the many items listed on Ebay that claim to be Salvation Army but in fact are not. Over the past week or so I have seen Church Army, Masonic and military items that sellers claim are connected with the Salvation Army. None of these organizations are connected with the SA in any way, shape or form. The only organization that is connected with the SA is the Volunteers of America which was formed by Ballington Booth, son of the Founder of the SA William Booth.
Brass instruments seem to be another problem area. Any instrument inscribed Salvation Army, Judd Street is not a 19th. century piece. Such istruments are inscribed Salvation Army, Fortress Road. Those inscribed Judd Street can be approximately dated from the serial number. The seller who claimed that an instrument with a serial number in excess of 18,000 was early 20th. century was around 50 years or so wide of the mark.
Please don't get me wrong, I am not suggesting for a moment that these sellers are deliberately misdescribing their items. It is purely a lack of knowledge and information that is the culprit. So where do sellers get reliable information on Salvation Army items? Come to that where do buyers get a reliable opinion on a SA item that they are considering buying.
Well I have had many years experience with all forms of SA memorabilia, and if I don't know the answer I know someone who does. So simply drop me a message through the Ebay system and I'll do my best to assist both buyers and sellers. One thing though, I cannot give valuations as obviously I cannot inspect the actual item.