Help with ID of WWI Wing
Posted 30 March 2008 - 10:01 AM
Posted 30 March 2008 - 10:07 AM
Posted 30 March 2008 - 10:31 AM
This is a known pattern, and shows up from time to time. Unfortunately, the maker is probably lost to history.
Most of these solid silver wings were purchased by pilots at the very end of WW1. As Duncan Campbell pointed out; "...many concerns who had never made insignia before got into the wing making business at the tail end of WW1."
Pilots simply did not like the Army-issue embroidered wings, and purchased their own "fancier" wings for wear. The Army Air Service did not actually authorize solid silver wing badges until December 1918. But in light of firm photographic evidence, this change in regulations only served to legitimatize the, by then, common practice of wearing the solid, silver wing badges.
It is my personal opinion, that this pattern of badge was manufactured by a competitor of Shreve and Co of San Francisco. In general style, the two wings (this one and the Shreeve wing) are similar with both exhibiting finely sculpted wings with a squared shoulder and a slight bulge to the lower part of the shield. Both are also slightly over sized.
IMHO, I believe this wing, and the Shreeve and a couple of others with similar features, represent the west coast school of wing design.
Thanks again for sharing this wonderful wing!
As a general rule, the solid silver, one piece badges with the gold US are the last type before all wings were standardized in January 1919.
Posted 30 March 2008 - 02:41 PM
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