The original cricket noise maker was a child’s toy made by ACME Whistle Company in England. But for D-Day, paratroopers were issued much more serious brass versions. With soldiers scattered willy-nilly behind enemy lines, the troops needed some type of stealth audio signal to identify each other in the dark of night.
(Made in UK) used by US WW2 101st Airborne Cricket
Brass & steel with hole and 'ACME' markings on end
Free Box and certificate of authenticity
Certificate says: GUARANTEE The Acme cricket is manufactured by J. Hudson & co. Ltd. Birmingham, England
The reproduction cricket has been made by the same company, in the same building, on the same machines, and using the same dies that made the original crickets supplied to the troops of the US 101st Airborne Division to jump into Normandy with on D-Day 6th June 1944.
signed by Simon Topman MD
Length: 2 1/4 inches
Width: 1 inch
Height: 5/8 inch
Please note: The brass polished whistles naturally oxidize and might tarnish in time. Cleaning from time to time would be helpful.
A number of articles regarding the Clicker gadget that kept Allied troops safe - D Day Clicker for Paratroopers.
Ingenious clicker gadget that kept Allied troops safe in Normandy and was immortalised in The Longest Day is found a stone's throw from factory where it was made 75 years ago - Daily Mail
Lost 'lifeline' clicker given to D-Day soldier tracked down after desperate search - Evening Standard
FINGER CLICKING GOOD Rare life-saving clicker to stop D-Day paratroopers landing in trouble is finally found - The Sun
D-Day clicker tracked down 'stone's throw' from factory - BBC News
Gadget to stop D-Day paratroopers landing themselves in it discovered - The Times
Lost 'lifeline' clicker given to D-Day soldier tracked down after desperate search - MSN News
For reasons now lost in the mists of antiquity, whistles were Joseph Hudson's passion. Throughout the 1870s he made numerous types and designs. But it was in 1883, as he played his violin and mused upon the idea he had conceived for a police whistle that fate took its hand. The London Police were looking for an idea to replace the hand rattle, so cumbersome and heavy, and no-one had ever thought of using a whistle. As Joseph Hudson put down his violin, he dropped it. As his violin hit the floor it murmured a dying note as the bridge and strings broke. On hearing that curious sound, Joseph Hudson knew at once that he had discovered the perfect sound for his police whistle. It's slightly jarring, discordant trill was unique and would, he knew, be far-carrying. He was right! When tested by the Metropolitan Police in London, in 1883, the whistle was heard over a mile away and immediately adopted as the official whistle of the London Bobby. It can still be seen on duty in the streets of London, and occasionally even heard.