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US Navy Victory Model Shoulder Holster Variant

Started by hink441 , May 02 2013 03:24 PM

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#1 hink441

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Posted 02 May 2013 - 03:24 PM

Just found this modified US Navy shoulder holster. The straps are long gone and the toe has been cut off. The holster has the name "LT. K W Caffey " on the front and back.  The back is stamped MFG by A & R Dept. NAS Norfolk.  Have seen these online before but not in person, so I was happy to be able to get one. Thanks for looking.

 

Navy holster 1.jpg

 

Navy holster 2.jpg

 

Navy holster 3.jpg


Edited by Charlie Flick, 25 February 2017 - 06:03 PM.
Reinsert photos from dead link


#2 Big Al

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Posted 02 May 2013 - 03:57 PM

Cool! Looks like it was modified for carry under the arm. Great piece.



#3 Charlie Flick

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:23 AM

Hi Chris:

 

These are interesting holsters for the Victory Model.  Most collectors are not aware of them as they are fairly scarce.  They were manufactured post-WW2.  The very few contemporary photos of them in use show them being worn by Naval Aviators in the Korean War era.  They come in several versions with minor differences in the markings.  They are seen in both russet and black leather. 

 

Your example was manufactured by the Assembly and Repair Department at the Naval Air Station at Norfolk, VA.  One wonders why a government facility would undertake to make these holsters so soon after WW2 when there must have still been large quantities of M3 style shoulder holsters available for the Victory.  However, there must have been a demand as we know that M3 style holsters were also manufactured during the KW.  Your example is missing the shoulder and the chest straps, the ammunition slide that fit over one of the straps, and the safety strap and snap.

 

I don't have any photos of a complete example of this holster handy to me right now.  If I can find the time I'll try to post one or two this weekend.

 

Regards,

Charlie Flick



#4 hink441

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 10:04 AM

Charlie,

I thank you for the reply and the great detailed info.

 

I have one question about the time frame of this holster. My holster is named to a "LT K W Caffey ". I did some research on him and found out there was a LCDR K W Caffey that was the CO of VB-95 in Feb of 1945. If my info is correct, and the LT and the LCDR are the same person, then this holster would have to be from the WW2 era.

 

Is it possible these holsters were made during WW2 ??

 

Chris


Edited by hink441, 03 May 2013 - 10:05 AM.


#5 digi-shots

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Posted 04 May 2013 - 10:15 AM

Chris,

 

Very cool looking!   Glad to see a VICTORY here on this site, they're one of my favorites!

 

Here's a pic of a complete rig with shoulder strap, etc... (and no, unfortunately it's not mine)

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  • Holster, Victory, NAS, 1 (Large).jpg

Edited by digi-shots, 04 May 2013 - 10:17 AM.


#6 hink441

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Posted 04 May 2013 - 05:45 PM

Linda,

 

Great looking holster. Nice to see a complete one ! :D  

 

I would really like to find a picture of one of these holsters used during WW2. Maybe someday I will find one. B)

 

Chris



#7 Charlie Flick

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 04:24 PM



 

Is it possible these holsters were made during WW2 ??

 

Chris

 

Hi Chris:

 

Well, I suppose anything is possible. 

 

However, I base my opinion on when this model of holster came into use on my observations of contemporary photos over many years.  I am not aware of a single photo of this holster in use during WW2, and I've spent a lot of time searching for and collecting photos of USGI holsters.    The very few pics that I have seen of this holster in use have all been KW era.  My view on this would change if reliable evidence, such as contemporary photos, were found. 

 

Scott Meadows in his US Military Holsters book shows two examples, one an incomplete Navy marked example which he simply says is "unidentified".  The second example is essentially identical but is marked Enger-Kress on the reverse with no Navy marking.  The caption indicates that the latter example is part of the USMC Museum collection and it bears a Marine Captain's name inked on the back side.  I have never observed another example of this holster made by Enger-Kress, a Wisconsin company well known for making US holsters during both WW2 and the Korean War.  Meadows went on to say that he had not found any drawings or documentation pertaining to this holster.

 

I can't explain the differences in rank of aviator Caffey, other than to speculate that perhaps the LCMDR rank may have been wartime rank, and that he reverted to the LT rank during peacetime.

 

I have several of these holsters in my collection.   Here is one that is slightly different from your example.  It, too, was made by the Assembly & Repair Dept. at Norfolk NAS.  However, it bears a USN within an oval impressed into the front side.  The ammunition slide is seen mounted on the chest strap.  Here are a couple of pics I took today.

 

Regards,

Charlie Flick

 

NAS A&R Norfolk VA shoulder holster front.jpg

 

NAS A&R Norfolk VA shoulder holster back.jpg

 


Edited by Charlie Flick, 25 February 2017 - 05:50 PM.
Reinserted pics from dead link


#8 Charlie Flick

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 04:42 PM

One of the other oddities of these Victory holsters are the minor differences in the markings.  Here is one version of the A&R Dept. marking found on the back side.

 

NAS Norfolk AR Dept Shoulder Holster alternate marking.jpg

 

A second version is seen here, and appears to be identical to Chris' example.  Note that these markings are found in different locations on the back side and, occasionally, in a vertical rather than horizontal orientation.

 

NAS Norfolk AR Dept Shoulder Holster marking.jpg

 

As seen above the Navy markings on the front side come in two flavors, one in block letters in gold, and the second USN within the oval impressed into the leather.

 

Regards,

Charlie


Edited by Charlie Flick, 25 February 2017 - 05:53 PM.
Reinserted pics from dead link


#9 hink441

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 04:50 PM

Wow,

That is a great looking holster Charlie !!  I would like to find one in similar condition.

 

Thank you once again for the detailed explanation. I guess until a clear picture from WW2 is located, this will continue to be an unknown.

 

Thanks Charlie,

 

Chris



#10 pararaftanr2

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 05:19 PM

Gentlemen,
I have no definitive information to add, but I believe I have found a WWII vintage photo of one in use you may find of interest:

A&R holster.jpg

The photo is dated 1943 and the subject, a TBF gunner in VT-22, was honorably discharged in 1944.
The configuration of shoulder and keeper straps appears to match this example in my collection, which is marked the same as your cut-down example:

P0015511.JPG

I would agree that the similar style, with bullet loops and a different keeper strap, is probably of Korean War vintage. Hope this helps.

Best regards, Paul

#11 hink441

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 05:40 PM

Paul,

Great picture. That holster is definitely the same style as the one I pictured. The keeper strap, and the added chest strap, are totally different than the M3 shoulder holster. I think this picture is very compelling. Thank you for sharing. :D 

Chris



#12 Charlie Flick

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 06:04 PM

Hi Paul:

 

Thanks for posting that very interesting pic.  I have to agree that if that is not the same model of holster it appears to be very close. 

 

The safety straps on your example and the one appearing in your 1943 pic are in different positions coming over the revolver between the grip and the trigger guard, as opposed to the other type where it comes behind the hammer.  However, the overall shape of the holster body appears to be the same along with the configuration of the chest and shoulder straps.

 

Regards,

Charlie



#13 pararaftanr2

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 06:55 PM

Chris, Charlie & All,
Here is a cropped version of a photo from the National Museum of Naval Aviation, showing a Corsair pilot during the Korean War, using the version of this holster with the keeper "behind the hammer" as Charlie pointed out:

Copy of webmediaCA1WYL0T.jpg

Best regards, Paul

#14 hink441

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 02:27 PM

I was out and about today and I found another holster made by A&R Norfolk. This one is made for a .45 M1911 and has a swivel like the old cavalry mounted holsters. Sorry for the bad pictures, had to use my phone cam. Never seen one of these before.

image.jpg

#15 hink441

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 02:28 PM

Here is the flap and is USN marked.

image.jpg

#16 hink441

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 02:30 PM

Another pic;

image.jpg

#17 kwill

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 09:44 AM

I hope it is OK to revive an old thread for a recent acquisition.  This one does not have ammo loops on the straps but appears to be complete and original.

Navy A&R Holster (1) (Small).JPG

Navy A&R Holster (3) (Small).JPG

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  • Navy A&R Holster (2) (Small).JPG


#18 dustin

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:40 AM

​That's a righteous example and it shouldn't have ammunition loops. Loops for securing rounds came later. This model is the only confirmed WWII variant. Distinctive detail being the gold inlayed embossed US NAVY. I've unearthed some information and images about the holster and will be featured in Volume-Two in my small arms chapter along with many other wonderful things. 



#19 pararaftanr2

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 11:32 AM

Here is a recent addition and the first example I've seen with the Navy "anchor US" inspection stamp. I don't know if the keeper strap was intentionally removed, or if verdigris got the best of the rivet that was holding it in place. It is named to LT(jg) William E. Gehoe, a Hellcat pilot who flew with VF-9 during their cruise aboard USS Essex in 1943-44.

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#20 pararaftanr2

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 11:32 AM

Name:

 

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#21 pararaftanr2

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 11:33 AM

Rear markings:

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#22 kwill

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 02:04 PM

​That's a righteous example and it shouldn't have ammunition loops. Loops for securing rounds came later. This model is the only confirmed WWII variant. Distinctive detail being the gold inlayed embossed US NAVY. I've unearthed some information and images about the holster and will be featured in Volume-Two in my small arms chapter along with many other wonderful things. 

Dustin,

Can you share any of the photos and/or documents here?  When will Vol 2 be published?  Where might one buy Vol 1?

Thanks,

Kevin



#23 dustin

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 04:30 PM

​Kevin, if I shared them here then that will kill all the enjoyment and spoil the enrichment. Seeing the chapter in its entirety will be much more enjoyable. I've got new unpublished info of holsters, ammunition and firearms. However, namely related to BuAer and USAAF. 

​Volume-I should be out soon, to be realistic Volume-II (with the Small Arms chapter) probably won't be out till early next year.



#24 jerry_k

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 02:35 AM

Paul very nice example...

 

 

Here is my old one (more from post war) with rigger made ammo loops.

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  • .38 holster 059cc.jpg


#25 collector

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 02:45 PM

Very interesting thread, should be pinned or put in the reference section.




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