Very Rare Japanese Army Burma - Thailand Railway Completion Commemoration Railroad Spike
This is a post-war commemorative item made to commemorate veterans of the 9th Railroad Regiment who came home after the war. The item itself is a railroad spike made of what looks to be copper. The words on the spike itself as "Thailand-Burma Connection Railway Completion Commemoration" "Showa 18th Year (1943) October 25th". This is the infamous "Death Railway" that is featured in the fictional movie and book "The Bridge on the River Kwai". The campaign to build this railroad involved two railroad regiments, the 5th and the 9th. It also used a very large number of forced labour in the hundreds of thousands, and many deaths ensued in the terrible conditions due to disease and malnutrition.
The lid of the box says "9th Railroad Regiment 40th Return Anniversary". This would probably date the item at 1985 - some kind of reunion of the remaining soldiers of the regiment who made it out alive at the time and survived till then.
Condition: Excellent - a couple small spots of what looks to be a little oxidation. Please see pictures
Size: The spike is 5.5" long and quite heavy (around 400g)