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M20 EGA's for Enlisted Dress Blues


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#1 usmcaviator

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 09:45 PM

Gents,

I have been after one of these hat devices for quite some time and finally had one come my way with what I believe to be a matched set of collars. I am interested in hearing what other collectors have to say as to whether or not these belong together and their possible date. The collars are often dated as early as 1920. I say, this version, although similar in characteristics to the 1920's Meyer Metal variety (and probably patterned after them), was used probably as late as post WW2. They may very well even be the same pattern but of a later construction. These are clutch back, relatively thin, and void of maker marks. In my opinion the construction resembles that of the mid to late 1940's.

The hat device is an anomally. It bears resemblance to the WW1 era enlisted hat emblem in regards to the oversize feet, the anchor appearance, fouling and eagle wings. It differs however in that the wing does not touch the anchor cross guard, the feet are excessively long, ithas no isogonic/rhumb line, and the anchor flukes are oversized with a rounded appearance. The eagle's head is also quite large.

I have another collar set, although in dress, that are carded on a Wolf Brown backing. They are dead stock and have their original WW2 era patented clutch backed frogs on them. They came on the card and from the same source as the service enlisted hat and collar set. Date is up in the air really, but I believe these to be a later version of the Meyer Metal variety from the 1920's, maybe perhaps made by a different firm. What do you all think?

In my opinion, what solidifies that these are a matched set is in the fact that the hat device and collars both have the same odd shaped retaining pins, with a ridge just prior to the tip. I think these are just another odd variation (perhaps short production) of the type that buck the normal "patterns" and dont fit into a typical category in regards to method of construction and attachment and overall appearance.

Please post your variety of this thin stamped emblem if there are any others out there. Screw post maybe? Please keep in mind that these are different than the commonly seen 1920's version (of which I have posted a dress example). The 20's ones are heavy and solid and tended to always be marked by Meyer.

Mike

In my opinion late 1930's to 1940's...


Although similiar, I think they should not to be confused with these 1920's to 1930's versions.
clutch1.jpg
clutch2.jpg
clutch3.jpg

Edited by Forum Support, 12 September 2008 - 11:16 AM.


#2 GLM *Deceased*

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 07:09 PM

I think we're on the same page with our beliefs leaning towards WWII on these. I hope you can see in my scans, but the screw posts (and lengths), plus the rollers on my variations are identical to the screw posts and rollers found on many of the WWII "econo-lead" emblems. Screw posts are rather thin and overly long and nothing even close to the fat, short screw posts of the 1920ish Meyer Metal emblems. Your clutch studs also appear to be the same type found on insignia, like aviation wings, during WWII. I truely believe these are nothing more than hideously ugly "private purchase" emblems sold as an alternative to the even more ugly econo-leads of the period. Whoever conceived and manufactured these "bat-birds" must most certainly have had a grudge against the Marine Corps. They have no equal as to ugliness, except for maybe the econo-leads.

I also believe you're correct and the cover emblems do go with the collar emblems. Perfect match all around, with materials and design. They all have the same 3-tier wing pattern, and if you notice on your cover and collar emblems, the globes probably only have a 3/4 full half globe when viewing sideways, instead of the full half globe on pre-'37 EM cover and collar emblems. This would suggest to me that they were made after 1937. This is all guesswork on my part, but I think we're close! The Wolf-Brown connection is a good lead. W-B was known for its rather inexpensive insignia. The only thing that leads me away from W-B is the fact that my screw post set were found in an almost defunct Naval clothing store in Brooklyn, NY back in the late 1970's by my mentor and fellow EGA collector, Robert Ensley. Did Los Angeles based W-B insignia make the migration to the East Coast during WWII? I don't know?

EDIT NOTE: Forgot to mention that the cover emblem roller is identical to the collar emblem rollers. All three are interchangeable, so a definite connection, I would think? The cover emblem came from a completely different source.

s/f, Gary

My screw post set.

Attached Images

  • 3_TIER_WINGS_COLL_FR.jpg
  • 3_TIER_WINGS_COLL_REV.jpg
  • 3_TIER_WINGS__COLL_SCREWS.jpg
  • 3_TIER_WINGS_COVER_FR.jpg
  • 3_TIER_WINGS_COVER_REV.jpg
  • 3_TIER_WINGS_COVER_SCREW.jpg

Edited by GLM, 27 December 2007 - 07:21 PM.


#3 usmcaviator

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 11:38 AM

Gary,
Outstanding thoughts, yes you are right, the globe is more flat in appearance and I agree these fall under an "econo" construction and material category. I will get posts of the Wolf Brown carded dress set I have. I actually obtained these from an East Coast source. Where he obtained them I will have to ask, but they definately came together. I am glad I am not alone in my thoughts as to the date. I am glad to see the screw post set, it puts one more item on the list of things to acquire. The thrill is in the hunt!

Mike

#4 usmcaviator

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Posted 29 December 2007 - 04:05 PM

Here is the dress set, the card looks to be a west coast card and looks to have had only this insignia ever on it. The brass frogs were WW2 vintage.

Mike
dress1.jpg
dress2.jpg
dress3.jpg
dress4.jpg
dress5.jpg

#5 GLM *Deceased*

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 08:03 PM

Mike,

I agree! Looks like the emblems have been on that card since day one. A very strong case for Wolf-Brown being the makers of these emblems. The imprints of the anchors on the front of the card are very visible. The imprints on the reverse of the card are what has me curious, though. It looks like the clutch fasteners left an imprint as well and they look like the post-WWII type with eight bumps per fastener. Am I seeing the imprints correctly? Are the fasteners flat or bumped? It wouldn't really surprise me to learn that these dress emblems were made after WWII, or at the same time the Corps switched over to clutch fastened emblems in 1949 or thereabouts. I've been able to track down patents on Wolf-Brown plastic ribbon bars and now am wondering if W-B bothered to patent these emblems as a design of their own. I think I'll start searching patent records for W-B and see if I can find anything. A really super pair of dress emblems, and just one more pair I need to find now. Thanks for showing them!

Gary

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 12 September 2008 - 10:11 AM.


#6 bobgee

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 07:47 AM

Mike & Gary....Most interseting. Re: Mike's c/b dress set on the W-B card-----On what uniform would they have been worn? The clutches do not lend themselves for wear on a Dress Blue EM collar. I personally would not want them sticking into my neck.....Thoughts?
Semper Fi....Bob

#7 usmcaviator

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 10:55 AM

Bob,
Both the service set and dress set that I posted are clutchback and would be worn in the same manner on the service and dress uniform. The frogs on the end are comfortable to wear, I have no more than 12 that I wear on my uniform (on the chest). I can honestly say I have never felt anything uncomfortable. As well, the clutchback pins are generally shorter than most post/screw back devices. I would think there would be no comfort issue. I wore a pair of old Gemsco dress devices (screw/post back) to the Birthday Ball this year and they were uncomfortable as hell. The post back is extremely long on those. Those were digging into my neck!

Mike

#8 Brig

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 02:52 PM

with rollers on...I believe all the rollers are correct period. the bird on the left...that's as far as the roller rolls down, I believe it's stripped

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  • M20_Rolled.JPG


#9 Jeremiah

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 03:32 PM

Interesting pieces Brig. That is the first I have seen of the thin wing 20 pattern having a screw post like that. The middle is in fact an unmarked NS Meyer piece and one of my favorite designs. I too am a little sketchy on if it's a 20 pattern bird, alternative 26 pattern or just a private purchase piece. As for the one on the right I'm leaning more towards it being a high quality private purchase version of the '37 enlisted bird. Really a very nice looking piece....believe Gary has a set of them.

BTW, I'm willing to bet the dark spot on that thin wing is oxidization. Nice pick ups brother.

Jeremiah

#10 Brig

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 03:39 PM

I wish we could find some photo evidence to better period date the two pieces on the right

on the far right bird, the roller would be an early type roller, not the typical flat brass with early war pieces, it's curved more

Edited by Brig, 02 February 2008 - 03:40 PM.


#11 Brig

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 04:01 PM

Interesting pieces Brig. That is the first I have seen of the thin wing 20 pattern having a screw post like that. The middle is in fact an unmarked NS Meyer piece and one of my favorite designs. I too am a little sketchy on if it's a 20 pattern bird, alternative 26 pattern or just a private purchase piece. As for the one on the right I'm leaning more towards it being a high quality private purchase version of the '37 enlisted bird. Really a very nice looking piece....believe Gary has a set of them.

BTW, I'm willing to bet the dark spot on that thin wing is oxidization. Nice pick ups brother.

Jeremiah

dark spot on the wing looks to be oxidation, but what about the brown on the anchor?

#12 Jeremiah

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 04:15 PM

dark spot on the wing looks to be oxidation, but what about the brown on the anchor?



I think your best bet on that is to look at it under a magnifying lense. Paint with have a very distinct edge to it when you look at it close up.

#13 Brig

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 04:26 PM

I think your best bet on that is to look at it under a magnifying lense. Paint with have a very distinct edge to it when you look at it close up.

I could find no edge nor feel one, feels like it's the metal itself, so my fuess is it's a dress blue emblem with a lighter color of oxidation on the anchor than the bird

#14 Brig

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 05:57 PM

however, the W-B card doesn't explain the similar Meyers marked versions of this emblem http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/think.gif

we've also discussed the possibility that the screwback was a Meyers private-purchase alternate to the gooney bird M-26, and the clutchback version was one rereleased around WWII for private purchase, perhaps for economical reasons

Edited by Brig, 04 February 2008 - 06:24 PM.


#15 Brig

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Posted 20 March 2008 - 06:48 PM

side by side comparrison of the two...all details alike, even the continents

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  • compare.jpg

Edited by Brig, 20 March 2008 - 06:49 PM.


#16 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 23 March 2008 - 08:58 AM

Tim, it is a unique emblem that defies period dating... here is a thread on the topic of these designs

http://www.usmilitar...?showtopic=4586

s/f Darrell

#17 Brig

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Posted 23 March 2008 - 11:18 AM

I was hoping maybe the sterling content would help date it, as sterling of such was quite popular just prior to WWII with the officer pieces 


Edited by Brig, 16 May 2014 - 04:53 AM.


#18 Mark M

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Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:05 PM

This week I was able to help keep a WW2 grouping together that was being split to the winds on eBay. I received the grouping today and also received an unusual surprise. The grouping included an enlisted tan shirt, to which the sellers photos showed a set of dress collar egas attached. The photos were bad but showed them being a dress version. I was quite surprised to see that they were actually a set of unmarked, Meters Metal M20 dress collar egas! I was even more surprised when I flipped the collar to see they were clutch back!!! No one will know for sure why he wore them there or how he got them (the vet enlisted in 1942 and was discharged in 1946 , but I am curious if anyone has ever seen a set of M20's in clutch back?

Shirt.JPG

#19 Mark M

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Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:06 PM

Fronts:


Obverse.JPG

#20 Mark M

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Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:06 PM

Reverse:

Reverse.JPG

#21 Brig

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Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:38 PM

the clutchback versions, we believe, are WWII private purchase examples of an emblem we're not sure if was originally M20, or an M26 alternate to the droop wings
http://www.usmilitar...showtopic=13712

Edited by Brig, 10 April 2008 - 04:39 PM.


#22 bobgee

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Posted 10 April 2008 - 06:12 PM

As evidenced by the Forum Post referenced by Brig they're WWII/Korean war vintage dress birds made by Wolfe-Brown. Normally you would find them on Blues not Khaki shirts. Nice set of insignia.
Bobgee

#23 Brig

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Posted 31 May 2008 - 11:37 AM

Mystery solved on the center bird, the one we couldn't tell if it was M20 or M26. I saw a pair at the Raleigh show today on a blouse dated 1922-23. So I guess that means M20!

#24 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 01 June 2008 - 08:40 AM

I felt sooner or later these would be ID'ed to a uniform of that period... here's an example:

meyers_ega_009.jpg

and its hallmark...

meyers_ega_001.jpg

#25 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 01 June 2008 - 08:41 AM

another example...

meyers_ega_015.jpg

and unique hallmark...

meyers_ega_006.jpg

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 01 June 2008 - 08:44 AM.



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