Militaria and History

Very nice!

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Nice Daggers!!
Herr, Luftwaffe, and SS.
Jugend Arm Band as well.
Great Stuff,

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Something you don’t see much of.
Chinese Daggers
This item is actually real (Despite its crude construction) and has an interesting history.
The blade was polished to remove the decades of corrosion accumulated on it and is still under the crossgaurd by someone prior to my acquiring it.

Presented by Chiang Chung-cheng to members of the Huangpu Military Academy (now known as Whampoa Military Academy) between 1924 and 1927 when Chiang Chung-cheng was the commandant of the academy.

Chiang Chung-cheng served as Chairman of the National Military Council of the Nationalist Government of the Republic of China from 1928 to 1948. He was sometimes referred to simply as “the Generalissimo”. When Sun Yat-sen died in 1925, Chiang took control of the Kuomintang (KMT). To end the Warlord era and unify China, Chiang led nationalist troops in the Northern Expedition. He became the overall leader of the ROC in 1928. Chiang led China in the Second Sino-Japanese War, during which the Nationalist Government’s power severely weakened, but his prominence grew. During the civil war after the Japanese surrender in 1945, he attempted to eradicate the Chinese Communists but ultimately failed, forcing his KMT government to retreat to Taiwan, where he continued the struggle against the communist regime. Serving as the President of the Republic of China and Director-General of the KMT, Chiang died in 1975.

Inscriptions on the sheath, blade, and handle read as follows:
Translated by a former associates Grandmother who immigrated from China in the early 20’s.

Sheath = Given by Chiang Chung-cheng

Handle = Huangpu Military Academy (Side 1)

Fraternity, Dexterity, Sincerity (Side 2)

Blade = Military Soldier Soul

Blade = You will become the best

It is of crude construction and has a brass covered wooden sheath and handle.
Blade and sheath also contain the symbol of the Republic of China.
Now exiled to Taiwan.
Manufacturing was a cottage industry in the times and these were made by poor peoples attempting to make a very crude living. The markings are hand etched on the blade.
There are examples of these type bayonets in China and Taiwan Museums today.
Very few survived due to the mostly at hand materials used were of poor quality.

Now you may say “I never heard of Chiang Chung-cheng” and you would be right.
He is better known to western societies as Chiang Kai-shek.

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Thompson SMG drum and original 30 carbine mags in wrappers. got a few of them.

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Can you tell who or when they were made?
I guess the next question is…
Ya got the Thompson?

Kewl items!

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Oh yeah.

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Next item up.
This is a very rare item because of what it is for and who it represents.

The STASI was one of the most hated and active covert agencies of the cold war.
It not only was Big Brother in East Germany, but exported its mayhem to other countries around the world.
It is even given credit for infiltrating the United States and placing agents in the Anti Vietnam War movements to incite and guide the activists in their anti war activities.
Essentially the STASI was known as the KGB of Eastern Germany and Puppet of the KGB.
If the USSR didn’t want to be connected to an activity it would send in the STASI.
After the wall fell and Germany was re-united the STASI’s agents were hunted down and retribution handed out by the German Peoples but also other countries as well.
Since the East German government only existed from 1949 to 1990 (41 years) and the STASI from 1950 to 1990 (48 years); somebody serving in the STASI was for 25 years was rare.
And you did not Enlist or Join the STASI you were recruited.
So after the fall STASI agents destroyed any connection to the STASI they could and went into hiding.

So here is the item.
The only known example in the United States.
I just wish I had the decoration paperwork to go with it.

NVA honor gift for 25 Years Faithful Service for Officers in the Stasi (Ministry for State Security)

Honor gift of the Minister for National Defense of the GDR for 25 years of service in the National People’s Army (NVA) of the GDR.
Golden miniature of a Honor Dagger and a branch of laurel with 5 synthetic white stones. Length of the dagger approx.: 18cm, size of ribbon on case 22cm x 16 cm with inscription:
“25 Years Faithful Service”
Army (NVA) of the GDR with inscription:
"For the Protection of Worker and Farmer Power "

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Well how bad ass is that, very cool, and fortunate :grin:

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Something from the past that tells just how naive we were.

Atomic Energy and Radiological Defense
AF Manual 52-6
Restricted
1951
From the Days of “The Bomb” a guide to Atomic Energy and how to So-Called Defend against it.
This is where Duck and Cover type actions started.
Very interesting to read; however information is mostly inaccurate.

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You think the Nazis were the only people propagating false propaganda?
Try Life Magazine.

Life Magazine 21 October 1940
Here is the infamous Life magazine that contains the “Hitler Dances”.
Although later proven to be total a falsehood; it shows American Propaganda at its finest.
The initial publication of this really stirred up the public thinking he had actually danced to the surrender of France.

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Only one survivor remains of the Famous Doolittles Raiders.
Lt. Col. Dick Cole turned 103 on September 7 2018.
I was fortunate enough to get this book signed by the survivors in 2000 when they held their 58th Aniversary here at Hill AFB Utah.

Destination Tokyo
(30 Seconds over Tokyo)
The Raid that brought the War to Mainland Japan
58th Anniversary Hill AFB Utah
Although a new book it is signed by the surviving members of Doolittles Raiders and the Author of the Book.
True American Heroes All!!!
15 April 2000

Fact Sheet Doolittle’s Raid

In the beginning of 1942, gloom was descending over the United States like a winter twilight.

On all fronts, the United States and its allies were reeling from the blows of the Axis powers.

In the Pacific, Japan had taken Malaya, Singapore, Java, Guam and Wake Island and was threatening the lifeline with Australia.
On April 9, 1942, the “Battling Bastards of Bataan” in the Philippines finally laid down their arms.

In the Atlantic, German U-boats were sinking American ships within sight of the U.S. coast. Britain was being strangled, and the German Wehrmacht was in the suburbs of Moscow.

The Axis powers looked invincible.

In the midst of these dark days burst the light of the Doolittle Raid on Japan.

The U.S. Navy conceived the raid as a way to raise morale. It entailed launching Army twin-engine bombers from the deck of an aircraft carrier to bomb selected cities in Japan. It was a way to strike back. It was a way to demonstrate that no matter how bleak the future looked, the United States would not give up.

Leading the attack was Army Lt. Col. James H. Doolittle. Jimmie Doolittle was an aviation pioneer and daredevil racer. He pioneered instrument flying. He won the Schneider Race for the Army in 1925. He pushed for higher octane gasoline for aircraft in the 1930s.

Doolittle trained the volunteer crews to take off their B-25B Mitchell bombers in only 450 feet instead of the usual 1,200. The planes were loaded aboard the USS Hornet in March 1942.

The plan was to launch the bombers within 400 miles of the Japanese coast. They would then bomb their targets and continue to airfields in China.

But Japanese picket boats discovered the task force about 800 miles off the coast, and the Army planes were launched immediately.

The 16 bombers struck Tokyo, Kobe, Nagoya and Yokohama. Because of the added distance, no plane was able to make the Chinese airfields. Most of the planes crash landed in China with one plane landing in the Soviet Union. Of the 75 fliers who landed in China three died in accidents and eight were captured by the Japanese. The rest returned to the United States.

The raid inflicted little physical damage to Japan, but it gave a needed lift to morale in the United States. In Japan, the psychological damage of the attack was more important. The Doolittle Raid convinced Adm. Isoruku Yamamoto, chief of the Japanese Combined Fleet, that he had to extend Japan’s defensive perimeter. He aimed the extension at Midway Island.
If Japan held that strategic mid-Pacific atoll, no carrier task force could approach. The battle of Midway in June 1942, was a decisive victory for the United States. Many called Midway the turning point of the war in the Pacific.

For his leadership of the raid, Jimmy Doolittle received the Medal of Honor.
(Courtesy, American Forces Information Service)

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UPDATE

Last survivor passes away at 103.

The world was a better place when you were here Colonel.
We have all lost a Great American Hero!!!

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A book that made history and changed it forever.
Many today have never heard of Alexander De Seversky.
But if it wasn’t for this man there may have never been strategic bombing in WW2.

First a short description of the man from the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.
by: Kathleen Hanser Office of Communications.

With all the activities going on lately about World War II aircraft, I’d like to tell the story of Russian naval pilot Alexander de Seversky, that country’s top naval ace in World War I, who later became one of the most influential proponents of the use of strategic air power in warfare — and Disney film star — in the United States. De Seversky was born in Triflis, Russia on June 7, 1894, to an aristocratic family. He learned how to fly by age 14 from his father who owned one of the first airplanes in Russia. De Seversky earned a degree in aeronautical engineering from the Imperial Russian Naval Academy in 1914 — at the outbreak of World War I — and became a second lieutenant in the Imperial Naval Air Service the following year.

Alexander Nikolaievich Prokofiev de Seversky at the controls of an early aircraft. NASM 2003-18715

The first time de Seversky saw combat, he was shot down, losing his lower right leg in the process, but due to his grit and determination he was flying once again a year later, assigned to the Baltic fleet. His luck greatly improved, and during 57 missions de Seversky downed 13 German fighters, making him Russia’s top naval ace. He was awarded the highest honors his country could confer. In 1918, de Seversky went to the United States as an assistant naval attaché to the Russian Embassy. This was a fortuitous assignment, as it gave him the chance to escape the Bolshevik Revolution by remaining in the U.S. Soon, he was working at the War Department as an aeronautical engineer and test pilot, acting for a time as a special consultant to the famed general, Billy Mitchell, with whom he agreed that supremacy in wartime could be achieved with aerial bombing, not battleships. This was de Seversky’s credo for his entire life. After becoming a U.S. citizen in 1927, de Seversky received a commission in the Army Air Corps as a major. De Seversky made numerous contributions to aviation. He filed a patent for aerial refueling in 1921 and developed the first bombsight stabilized with a gyroscope, and invented many other aeronautical instruments. He started an aircraft company and helped design and test his aircraft himself. De Seversky and his design team, headed by Alexander Kartveli, were responsible for the following innovative aircraft:

  • An advanced design amphibian in which he set world speed records from 1933 to 1935
  • The BT-8, the U.S. Army Air Corps’ first monoplane basic trainer developed for that purpose
  • An all metal monoplane that set speed records in the 1933-39 National Air Races and a transcontinental record in 1938
  • The P-35 fighter, predecessor to the P-47 Thunderbolt, one of the great WWII fighters

Alexander de Seversky waves from the cockpit of the Seversky SEV-3M WW. NASM 00174627

Although de Seversky was a design visionary and his company’s greatest salesman, his management skills were lacking and he was forced out when the company was reorganized as Republic Aviation Corporation in 1939. De Seversky then turned to writing, lecturing, and advising, becoming a leading expert on the strategy of aerial warfare. A flamboyant character, he was well-suited to public appearances and often acted as an expert commentator on television and in documentaries. One of his most conspicuous achievements was the 1942 publication of his first book, Victory Through Air Power , which became a bestseller and a movie. Coming on the heels of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the book’s theme caught the eye of Walt Disney, who believed so strongly in it he financed a movie also called Victory Through Air Power . The two shared a common goal — to awaken the allies to the need for the greater use of strategic air power to combat Germany’s and Japan’s advances. While the first half of the movie is animated, de Seversky appears during the latter half and explains his theory in a multimedia presentation. You can watch the entire film, Victory Through Air Power , with an informative introduction by film critic and historian Leonard Maltin, on YouTube. For his efforts and commitment to the issue of the superiority of aerial bombardment, President Harry Truman presented de Seversky with the Medal of Merit. De Seversky received many other honors in his adopted country, adding to his long list of Russian awards the Sports Pilots Association Trophy in 1933, the International Harmon Trophy in 1939 and 1947, the General William E. Mitchell Memorial Award in 1962, and the Exceptional Service Award from the United States Air Force in 1969.

In a June 24, 1947 ceremony on the White House lawn, President Harry S. Truman awarded the International Harmon Trophy to Major Alexander P. de Seversky. The Ligue Internationale des Aviateurs awarded the trophy to de Seversky for “outstanding leadership, patriotism, and unselfish devotion to the security and aeronautical progress of the United States.” From left to right: Mrs. Evelyn de Seversky, Major Alexander de Seversky, Secretary of War Robert Patterson, and President Harry S. Truman.

He was inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame in 1970 for “his achievements as a pilot, aeronautical engineer, inventor, industrialist, author, strategist, consultant, and scientific advances in aircraft design and aerospace technology.” De Seversky was married to New Orleans socialite Evelyn Olliphant, who was also well-known as a pilot. She, in fact, learned to fly as a surprise for her husband, and the two of them flew on many trips together. De Seversky died on August 24, 1974.
END

The American Public and Military establishment was against Strategic Bombing as a viable way to win the war until de Seversky’s book and subsequent movie with Disney.
Everything changed after that and Mitchell had won the political war over bombing being a viable strategy.

And here is the book that started it all and a treasured item in my collection.

Victory Through Air Power
Major Alexander P.de Seversky
1942
First edition with dust cover

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Ever wonder just how far a government can get involved in it;s citizens lives?
Do you think that when we give a little the government wont go farther?
Appeasement does not work and only lets the government chip away at our rights.
Agendas of those in power drives them farther and farther with every tidbit we give to them.

So here is an example of just how involved in peoples everyday life and activities can get.

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So what are they?

These are Rabbit Registration Cards
Under Control of the Realm Specialized Group

Makes you think.

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tax the wabbit tax the wabbit

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This item presents a rather sordid history.
University of Greifswald was founded in 1456 in Greifswald Germany and is one of the oldest universities in Europe.
With the approval of the Holy Roman Empire and the Pope the major areas of study were Theology, Philosophy, Medicine and Law.
In 1648 Greifswald became part of Sweden due to a peace treaty that ended the religious wars in Europe.
Sweden held Greifswald until 1815 when The Kingdom of Prussia was formed (still under Swedish control).
In 1871 the German states united and Prussia was absorbed into the then German Empire.
After WW1 the empire was broken up into republics when a civil war was waged known as the German Revolution (1918-1919) mostly due to civil unrest brought on by the Treaty Of Versailles restrictions . Emperor Wilhelm II advocated the thrown and fled the continent.
The Weimar Republic (unofficially named) was formed and President Hindenburg was elected.
Greifswald now was part of Germany again.
But many states formed their own governments and were no longer part of the Republic.
Poland, Czechoslovakia, Austria to name a few.
The National German Workers Party (NASDAP) won the election with 33.1% of the vote in 1932 and Hitler was sworn in as chancellor as an effort to control the party.
When Hindenburg died Hitler now in control dissolved the Weimar Republic and took total power.

In 1933 Herman Georing renamed the university to Ernst Moritz Arndt University of Greifswald to honor Arndt a famous anti-Semite.

The university under the Nazi Regime taught Nazi ideology and did extensive Anatomical Research using bodies of victims of the new regime from prison camps, POW camps, hospitals for the mentally ill, victims of euthanasia programs and were also supplied by the Gestapo and the SS.
The university also became a POW camp known as Stalag II C for Russian POWs thus further providing a supply for teaching and research purposes.
Greifswald was liberated in April 1945 by the Red Army without a fight.
The university removed Arndt’s name but then re-instated it in 1954 under the German Democratic Republic (East German) government.
It remained Ernst Moritz Arndt University of Greifswald even today although several attempts have been made to drop the name since.

So a sordid history to say the least and a sordid name that remains today.

Here is a breast badge from 1942 marked:
VEREIN EHEM GREIFSWALDS & UMG 42
Translated means Associate Of Greifswald University.
Something I am sure many Germans did their best to hide after the war.

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History can teach us many things.
Good and Bad.
Sometimes from the simplest items the history screams.

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Here is a fairly common bayonet except that it has a history.
Sorry the pictures are not the best.

K98k Bayonet
Puma-Solingen
Brought back from Europe by Army SGT Alfred Thomas Trongo a Medic with the 68th Medical Regiment member of the Normandy Invasion Plus 3 to 5 days

The story behind the Bayonet
ARMY SGT. ALFRED THOMAS TRONGO collected in FRANCE or GERMANY between 1944-45…
Veteran of the 68th Medical Regiment
(Edited from correspondences with his son-in law)

My father in law never shared much about the items with me…
And to be honest I never asked…
Knowing I liked history he gave all his souvenirs to me in 1973 when I
married his daughter…
He was a medic…
He landed at Normandy like D day plus 3-5…
…he went into Germany…saw the death camps…
I say Berlin but really don’t know at what point in Germany his unit stopped…
He was not a military man so to speak…not a collector…all the things of his
were all collected during the war…not after…
How he got them is a good question…as a medic I always assumed he got these
from wounded soldiers who died…maybe that’s why he never talked about them much…
I talked to my wife and her dad told her years ago how he got the items…
As a medic he helped the injured & dying of both sides…
One of the first things they did was to take off gear & clothing to get at the wounds…
After they were done there would be piles of things left behind as the german
troops bodies were exchanged for US bodies…
Since all the items would be left behind he took what he thought was interesting…

My wife said he had a box at one time of Concentration camp photos that we
think he threw away because of their obsceness…
He was that type of person…very gentle…he became a Detroit firefighter after
the war and loved helping people…
I remember in the 70s when he went hunting with his old army buddy he didn’t
shoot the deer…just liked to watch them,…
he was a great guy…

ALFRED THOMAS TRONGO passed away on 26 December 1999
The world will miss him…

It is items as this which I want to point out that by doing your research you can keep history alive.
This has been in my possession many years and will not leave till my death due to the history attached to it.
We must remember these small but personal stories as well.
Not just the big things but also the highly personal things we learn.

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Vintage WW1 U.S. M1917 helmet.
(I’m in the process of replacing the liner.)


From when “doughboy” didn’t mean Pillsbury.

https://www.criticalpast.com/video/65675048436_military-helmets_assembling-helmets_dipping-into-paint-tanks_wooden-crates

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Were you thinking of @ThisOldGun when you bought it?

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Guess I should have been. All I can think now is that humans never seem to learn anything, except how to propagandize and kill more “efficiently.”

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