View Full Version : Need help in identifying this WWII helmet
05-11-08, 09:32 PM
I bought this WWII Marine helmet and need help in identifying a few peices of it.
From what I can tell I have a very first edition Marine helmet camo cover without the foliage slits. So it's a pretty early one and pretty rare.
The helmet liner, I believe is WWII but I don't know where to look for the makers mark.
The M1 helmet is a front seam, so I believe that means it's an early WWII model.
One thing I don't get is the symbol painted on the back on the M1 metal pot. It's a white diagonal line. Was this a divisional symbol or just a spot that was painted on the back for the Marine to write his name or something. It looks really familiar to me, but I just can't place it.
My pictures were too large to put on the forum. But here is a link to my photobucket website with several pics.
From what I can tell though, this is an all original WWII Marine helmet. Any and all help would be appreciated.
05-12-08, 01:28 AM
Check out my helment. It is from 1952. yours is in much better shape. I don't believe that it is early WWII. They did not have the cover for the helment until very late 40's into Korea. I could be wrong. http://www.leatherneck.com/gallery/browseimages.php?c=1&userid=35066
05-12-08, 10:40 PM
Hey thanks for you post. I researched the camo covers pretty heavily before I bought one. Because they are a lot of fakes out there.
From what I have researched. There are three different versions of the camo cover used in the Marines from 1943 until the late 50's.
The first ones are not marked in anyway. They are brown/green reversible. They do not have foliage slots for camo inserts. Reinforced holes to put grass and stuff in. They came out in the later parts of 1943. These are also the most rare, as not many were made. And also these were modified by the Marine to put camoflauge in.
The second one is the same as above, except it has foliage slots for putting like grass or something to be used for camoflauge. But it is not marked as well. They came out sometime in 1944.
The third is the same as the second, but it is marked. It is usally stamped the maker and then the year it was made. Most of these have dates of the Korean period. Which would explain yours being dated 1952.
Sometime in late Korea or afterwards, Marines started to put the EGA stencil on the front of it. So if you have any of the previous camo covers with the EGA stencil on it. It stayed in service into the late 50's.
But still what is dumbfounding me is that painted block on the back of the M1 helmet. I wonder what it means?
05-13-08, 10:09 PM
Maybe that block was used for training? Maybe a squad symble? Our helments were painted red in engineer school.
06-26-08, 08:20 PM
Here's a link to a reenactors supply site. The cover you have is indeed an early WW2 Marine Helmut cover. I think they began issueing them after Guadalcanal. I remember the cammoflage pattern being issued to us in the 70's, I wish I had stashed one away.
This web site can give you all the info you might want on the liner as well. I seem to remember the liner can be dated according to it's color. And there should be a manufacturer's mark on the crown under the webbing. I got this info from a helmet restoration site. I was amazed at the big business this has become, I've been thinking of sending a german helmet out to be done.
I have an old CG helmet that I was given when they phased the steel pot out in favor of the kevlar and am thinking of buying the repro Cammie cover for it.
The owner seems to be pretty colorful in dealing with all the know it alls who try to tell him about this or that, so I think he must have done his research.
07-13-08, 02:18 PM
I have a book on WW2 collectibles and your helmet is a second pattern Marine camouflage and is worth around $450-$795.
07-13-08, 02:49 PM
I don't frequent flea markets, ebay or swap meets but do watch the antiques road show. Something that always comes to mind and is rarely answered satisfactory: To whom is said item worth the "experts" quoted price?
Is there really at least one enthusiastic person lurking around every corner ready and willing to shell out a huge markup for every item ever made that is old and proclaimed collectible?!
As long as my pickup burns gas and wears out tires i'll never understand buying an old vehicle well above retail to cover up and store in the barn until you die hehe
07-13-08, 05:54 PM
I am an avid collector myself. Your helmet definitely looks period. I don't want to speculate but the liner, from the pictures you posted, almost looked to be repro or an issue from the 1950s. I could most certainly be wrong from just looking at a picture. I believe, but I am not 100% certain, that the horizontal white line you were asking about signifies that the wearer was an NCO. A vertical white line of the same size meant the wearer was an officer. I am pretty sure that's right, but not 100 percent positive.
07-13-08, 06:47 PM
I have been collecting WW2 firearms for years now. I don't get into the helmets and other items because they tend to get very expensive. At least I can shoot the guns! The Russians took everything my grandfather had including his Iron Cross and uniform. They would be worth a lot today!