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WWII POW LEAD WINGS

Started by KASTAUFFER , Jan 25 2007 09:55 PM

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#1 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 25 January 2007 - 09:55 PM

Here are some examples of original POW camp made wings. Since they are made of lead , making a fake is probably easier than it might be with other insignia, but all the ones I have are part of attributed POW groupings. I would love to see any other POW wings other forum members may have!

The top pair are from 2nd Lt Donald B. Beers of the 303rd BG 8th AF who was held in Stalag Luft I.
The bottom pair are from S/Sgt Donald C. Armstrong of the 390th BG who was held in Stalag 17B .

POW_Wings_front.JPG
POW_Wings_back.JPG

#2 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 25 January 2007 - 10:06 PM

POW wings from Stalag Luft 6 belonging to S/Sgt Francis A. Svehla of the 379th BG, 8th AAF . He was repatriated back to the USA in 1944 due to the loss of his arm. He brought these home with him.

POW_wing_A.JPG

#3 Brig

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Posted 26 January 2007 - 01:27 AM

very interesting pieces! I've never seen these before

#4 MILRAIL2

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 02:34 AM

Quite a few years ago I had put an ad in the paper and had an answer from a guy named Hart, that was a USAAF B-17 pilot who was shot down and in in a German POW camp. He had about a dozen lead pilot's wings cast in lead. The story he told me was that the Germans took all of the insignia when they were captured but some guys had them hid out and got to camp with them. They made wings like the ones with the holes in them them.
I asked about how they were made and he said that there were candy bars and cigerette packages from the Red Cross that had wrappers made of lead foil. They would save them, make a mold and melt the foil and make casts for the ones that got their wings ripped off by the Germans.
I put a couple on Manion's Auction and they sold well. The next 2 that I sent in were returned because they thought they may of been fakes. You cant get much better than a POW pilot telling you this story in in 1983 when this kind of repoing didnt happen..... end of story....Dave

Edited by Allan H., 09 February 2007 - 04:56 AM.


#5 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 04:16 PM

Hey Dave

They also scraped lead from the seams of canned items ( especially Klim cans ) that came in the Red Cross boxes.

If you still have any of the wings left, Id love to see a post of them!

Kurt

#6 MILRAIL2

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 08:48 PM

Quite a few years ago I had put an ad in the paper and had an answer from a guy named Hart, that was a USAAF B-17 pilot who was shot down and in in a German POW camp. He had about a dozen lead pilot's wings cast in lead. The story he told me was that the Germans took all of the insignia when they were captured but some guys had them hid out and got to camp with them. They made wings like the ones with the holes in them them.
I asked about how they were made and he said that there were candy bars and cigerette packages from the Red Cross that had wrappers made of lead foil. They would save them, make a mold and melt the foil and make casts for the ones that got their wings ripped off by the Germans.
I put a couple on Manion's Auction and they sold well. The next 2 that I sent in were returned because they thought they may of been fakes. You cant get much better than a POW pilot telling you this story in in 1983 when this kind of repoing didnt happen..... end of story....Dave



#7 MILRAIL2

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 08:50 PM

Sorry, but after Manions refused to sell I gave them away to my collector friends. ( A.H. did I spell everything ok...HA )

#8 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 05:33 PM

Here is another pair of lead POW wings I just acquired affixed to a POW diary that belonged to a 445th BG crewman held in Stalag Luft I ! Once I have the diary I will post more pics.



untitled2.JPG

#9 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 29 October 2008 - 06:42 PM

I am resurrecting this thread in case anyone has POW wings to post! Lets see them!!!!

Here is the thread with the diary that goes with the wings :

http://www.usmilitar...showtopic=18450

Kurt

Edited by KASTAUFFER, 29 October 2008 - 06:45 PM.


#10 cabbell2006

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Posted 30 October 2008 - 04:05 PM

I am resurrecting this thread in case anyone has POW wings to post! Lets see them!!!!

Here is the thread with the diary that goes with the wings :

http://www.usmilitar...showtopic=18450

Kurt

I saw some a few days ago at the wright patterson air force museum made from canteens.

#11 FightenIrish35

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Posted 30 October 2008 - 04:18 PM

When I was in Hartford CT for the gunshow begining of the month me and my father stoped and were talking to Art Beltron,reall nice guy on POW Wings that he had there. Come to found out he published a book called "A War Time Log" By Art and Lee Beltrone...I recomend it , its one of the aspects of Collecting many have not brushed upon. Many examples of POW made wings and artwork from POW's. Just a neat book!!!!! http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/thumbsup.gif

#12 doyler

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Posted 30 October 2008 - 07:31 PM

Great wings!!

I had the honor of meeting a 8th AF officer who was a POW in WW2.I was able to purchase his uniform but not his camp made wings.He had both the Bombidier and gunners wings.He stated that he only had these made but others were available.Many of the men had "insignia" boards made up and the boards consisted of both US and English wings as well as other countries if a design was made.He stated that the mold would be carved from a block of scrap wood and then the tubes from tooth paste from the red cross parcels were melted and poured into the molds.

I lost contact with him a few years ago but saw an article in the paper where he had drowned ice fishing on a pond.

RON

#13 Prof

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Posted 01 November 2008 - 04:55 AM

Hi All,

Somewhere (not sure where, I've a big pile of stuff, and they are only small), http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/crying.gif I have a pair of Para wings cast in this way.

from what I remember of them, they are cast from either lead or zinc,. I think that the initial tool impression was made using a GI pair, pressed into clay or plaster. There would only have been one side to the tool, since the rear fixing is a somewhat heavy duty safety pin, one side of which has been sunk into the liquid metal, so that it would be firmly attached when the metal solidified.

I've no doubt that it's real, since it cost me nothing 25 years ago.

If/when I do find it, I'll post it here. I thought I'd mention it whilst the topic is being discussed, and to see if anyone else had a set of these?

Best Regards,

Prof

#14 Tonomachi

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 09:43 AM

I've attached a scan of a small (2" by 7/8") POW wing made of lead that I bought over 20 years ago from an insignia dealer in Morro Bay, California. This was amongst a grouping of crudely cast POW Army Air Corps pieces that were up for sale. I wish I had kept some photographs of the other pieces but I wasn't interested in Army Air Corps related stuff. I was collecting airborne related insignia and this piece was similar to the one illustrated in a book (B&T # 107, Plate 8) titled, "Parachute Badges and Insignia of the World by R.J. Bragg & Roy Turner." The one illustrated in this book was supposedly made out of tin foil at Stalag I, Barth, Germany. I decided to take a chance but afterwords had my doubts as to its authenticity. I remember different versions of the pilots wing with different rear fixings to include what looked like somewhat triangular pieces of metal jutting outward from the back with holes drilled through them. Can anyone tell me if this is an original piece. My doubts has to do with the rear pin which I've seen on post war German made US insignia but would these pins have been available to POWs during the war.

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  • DSCF2221.JPG


#15 Tonomachi

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 09:44 AM

Back of POW wing

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  • DSCF2222.JPG


#16 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 12:04 PM

Interesting wing. I have seen this design before. I like it.

It looks like a POW got a hold of a German tinnie and took the pin off and stuck it on the POW wing.

There are many different pin constructions on these wing. The most common is the " lug with holes" , kinda like on British formation badges. .

Kurt

Edited by KASTAUFFER, 03 November 2008 - 12:06 PM.


#17 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 10:16 AM

I recently acquired a group to a POW who flew on the Ploesti mission and was later captured and held at Stalag Luft 1. Here are Lead POW wings that came in his group.

The small souvenir wing is engraved on the back " 1944 Stalag Luft 1 Germany "

MVC_032aL.JPG
MVC_033L.JPG
MVC_036L.JPG

If you look closely at all the examples I have posted in this thread, notice the great detail on them. Great care and craftmanship was used in making them. I am sure fakes of these wont look as good.

Edited by KASTAUFFER, 19 November 2010 - 07:07 PM.


#18 John Cooper

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 06:34 PM

Nice addition Kurt = please fee free to post more of the related items.

Cheers
John

#19 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 19 November 2010 - 07:07 PM

Nice addition Kurt = please fee free to post more of the related items.

Cheers
John


Thanks John!

I am going to devote an entire thread to the rest of his group.

Kurt

#20 John Cooper

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Posted 20 November 2010 - 10:50 AM

Thanks John!

I am going to devote an entire thread to the rest of his group.

Kurt



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