Untouched WWII M1 Front Seam Swivel Bale Officer’s Combat Helmet with Japanese Camouflage Net
A fascinating and compelling example of an untouched World War II M1 officer’s combat helmet that demonstrates the use of enemy equipment by American troops when circumstances made it necessary. The helmet is an M1 model with approximately 90% of its cork infused olive green exterior paint intact. The helmet exterior remains quite dirty, with a coating of dried mud over much of the top of the helmet, and the appearance of it suggests that the officer who wore the helmet may well have deliberately applied mud to the helmet to further camouflage it. The helmet retains its full web chin strap, still fastened across the rear of the helmet. The liner is a Westinghouse model which shows expected signs of use and wear to the interior. The front of the helmet and the front of the liner both have a vertical white bar painted on them, indicating the owner’s rank of First Lieutenant, with a spot of lacquer having been applied on top of the insignia on the liner (but not the helmet) to keep it from rubbing off as a result of rubbing against the interior of the helmet shell. Additionally, both the liner interior and the helmet interior have the laundry mark of “T 7399” painted on them. The M1 helmet is covered by a Japanese military issue string cord helmet camouflage net. The Japanese helmet net was designed to cover the lower dome of a Japanese combat helmet and so, unlike the camouflage nets made for the American M1 helmet, the Japanese net was not large enough to cover the helmet and also overlap the interior, so that the helmet liner would hold it in place. As a result, the officer who wore this helmet carefully crafted 15 small metal hooks (basically pieces of wire bent into shape) that he then used to secure the bottom edges of the camouflage net to the edges of the helmet. The net, like the helmet, shows signs of use and wear in the field, with one short broken piece, but overall the entire helmet and net set is in exceptional condition for a combat helmet that very obviously saw use in the field of operations. Item 32538.