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Gunstream
09-21-12, 02:11 PM
I'm holding my grandfather's tags, and I was hoping someone here could help me decipher them. This is what they look like:

GUNSTREAM,
J.B. JR
XXXXXX P
TYPE-O
T . 5/43
USMC


The XXXXXX is a 6 digit number. I'm not sure if that is just a service number, or if it has some other significance. Also, is the "P" for protestant? For burial services? Or is there some other designation it stands for? Finally, I don't know what the T. 5/43 stands for. Month and year he enlisted?

Apache
09-21-12, 03:22 PM
Six digit number certainly a service number
Mine is seven digits ( Vietnam era)
P my best guess is religion
T --I don't know
5/43 sounds like month/year enlisted

DanM
09-21-12, 03:25 PM
T 5/43 is tetanus shot date

m14ed
09-21-12, 04:28 PM
Shot card on the dogtag,,,,???

Who'da thunk it

yanacek
09-21-12, 05:09 PM
"P" does, in fact stand for "Protestant." During WW-II the regulations provided for three religious preference possibilities:

C = Catholic
H = Hebrew
P = Protestant

If a Marine had no religious preference, this area on the tag was simply left blank.

Dan is also correct about the Tetanus shot date. This was either abbreviated as "T" or "TET" followed by the month and year of the last Tetanus shot.

yanacek
09-21-12, 05:23 PM
Gunstream: Here's an article I wrote for a friend who makes authentic WW-II era USMC dog tag reproductions. It details the history and the meanings of each of the lines: http://usmcwwiidogtags.com/about

Old Marine
09-21-12, 06:40 PM
My tags have a "P" for Protestant.

Gunstream
09-21-12, 10:04 PM
Thanks Marines for all the answers. This was exactly what I was looking for, particularly the website about WWII tags. I'll inform my grandmother (his wife) what you've explained to me.

Sgt Leprechaun
09-24-12, 10:09 PM
Does it have a fingerprint on the back? Some did, but by about 43/44 they stopped doing that.

Ancestry.com has the complete muster rolls of ALL Marines on line and searchable, you might want to take a look. Well worth the time.