Sunday, June 30, 2013


This bonus post is for my buddy PAPA and will focus on one of the most sought after USMC item :the USMC utility cover aka"the lid "
Here's another photo essay for you to enjoy....

From the duffel bag of private 1st class J.F Wheeler  aka Wheel
4th marine div,this nice salty example of a classic p44 utility cover

Faded EGA stenciled on the crown 

Side/side the Army issued cap and the USMC p44.the Marines cover  had a longer bill  and higher crown.

Eyelets position comparison 

Typical example of an USMC use of an army hat 

Although both hats retained the 8 pleats on the crown ,they were rotated on the p44 model to accommodate the  EGA stencil.  variations exist on the pleats such as :open or not open pleats ,as seen on engineer's hat but ,to my knowledge, just a manufacturer's variations ....

The common mistake among young collectors is to believe that the sort bill HBT cap was part of the P41 Marine utilities ,as in fact ,it was an army issued item that was widely used by the Marine Corps in the early days of war in the PTO and often associated withe the "raiders look".This Army issued cap was sometimes worn with a screw on brass EGA on the crown or the bill . It's only in 1944 along with the newly designed set of utilities ,that the Marine Corps introduced its own cap the P44. You hardly seen them on period pictures worn before Iwo Jima campaign. The HBT utility cover was issued ,with some variations ,from 1944 to 1959, when the material changed to cotton sateen...

GI sporting his issued hbt cover

Marines on Iwo Jima playing cards

Marines from the 5th div on Iwo Jima

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


This final chapter of the hbt USMC ww2 utilities saga,takes us to a P41/P47 model comparison. After the war,even if stocks of the former models were plentiful,the marines decided to go back to their most popular design:the iconic p41.It is believed that it was around 1947 that the newly manufactured  hbt jackets were issued . Since then ,they have been mistaken ,or pasted for ,their ww2 are some pictures,that i hope will be helpful to new collectors.....

Two P47 jackets side by side

OD green stitching,rounder pocket and crude EGA,are a clear giveaway  

On the left :ww2 P41 with its khaki thread and square pockets .on the right :P47 with OD green thread and round pockets

Not a rule here, but most of the early ww2 EGA stenciled i've seen over the years,are clearly more detailed

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


The part2 of the WW2 USMC sage green utilities  saga ,showcases today the P44 jacket/shirt . Even if first introduced in 1944 ,it's really by the summer of 45 that these utilities can be seen on the Pacific's battle fields.Rarely seen on period photograph,that might explain why few collectors are into them...

P44 jacket with cap

large chest pocket stenciled with the iconic  EGA  logo

Rare example with factory riveted "econo" steel buttons instead of the usual USMC marked ones .Was done by only one manufacturer to finish off a contract .....[sorry forgot his name] 

Often removed anti gas flap

One of two cargo pockets originally intended to accommodate large inflatable flotation bladders  for amphibious operations 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


typical P41 pocket with stenciled EGA...

the ww2 P41 pockets are squared compared to the post war/Korean war issued aka P47

another easy way to spot a P41 from afar is its Khaki colored thread

on the right, the early war brass button . the painted black steel buttons ,on the left,are commonly seen  on later models and also on the P44 model...

Today's post will feature the iconic USMC HBT sage green jacket/shirt .I won't spend too much time telling you the history of the item,as numerous forums and blogs have already done the job,i'll just do a 3 parts kinda "photo essay" just to display the fundamental differences between the models .

In 1941 ,before the US officially entered the war, the U.S. Marine Corps introduced their HBT uniform,initially intended as a fatigue uniform to be worn on work and training duties,it quickly became their main combat uniform. during the early Pacific battles,like Guadalcanal and on early Marine Raiders,it's not uncommon to see pictures of Marines wearing Army HBT even khakis. It's really by 43 that the sage green utilities became such an unmistakable signature look for the Marines. In 1944, along a newly designed set of utilities, a fatigue cap was introduced. By summer 1945, both patterns could be seen on the Pacific's battle fields....