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An unusual Jump Wing on eBay


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#1 Patchcollector

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 05:44 AM

Happy Sunday all:

While on eBay I came across this :

 

http://www.ebay.com/...sd=281453392555

 

I've never seen one of these.I'm guessing a "Sweetheart" piece?

 

Sellers description:

 

This Is So RARE And COOL I Could Just Keep It!!! A Vintage GEMSCO United States U.S.  World War II 2 Airborne Paratrooper Military Soldier Sterling Silver Jump Wings Pinback Style Insignia Pin  Badge With A Cross On Top & Skull With Crossbones On The Bottom. Comes Unused On Original Gemsco Card In Plastic Case,Has Original Patina And Measures 1 1/2" Wide.Is In Excellent Preowned Condition With No Problems.

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Edited by Patchcollector, 19 October 2014 - 05:45 AM.


#2 pfrost

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 05:51 AM

First, I suspect the box is anything but WWII vintage (note the small type on the bottom that says A.G.O G-2).  I The G-2 is (I believe) the alpha-numeric code for Gemsco, thus this box more than likely dates into the 60's.

 

The wing itself... I have equal number of problems with it.



#3 Wake1941

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 06:01 AM

The skull on this is so bazar and sloppy I doubt these are very old



#4 skypilot6670

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 06:20 AM

Heaven and hell wing supposedly made for an WW 2 Airborne Unit the exact unit I don't recall.This is the second one of these I've seen recently.The first one was much more attractive and jeweler made.These enhanced wings really need a provenance , they may real but without convincing evidence it's just another novelty. Mike.

#5 Patchcollector

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 06:58 AM

Thanks for the comments and info guys.Interesting Mike,I had never heard about a "heaven and hell" Wing before.Here are some rear view pics of the piece.

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Edited by Patchcollector, 19 October 2014 - 07:06 AM.


#6 skypilot6670

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 08:12 AM

Hey Patch, I had never heard of it either till a show here ( Central Fla.) and a dealer with 30 plus years of buying and selling militaria had one.Like I said it was custom made and he gave a specific unit number and called it a "Heaven and Hell wing". Hopefully one of the more knowledgable Para Wing guys can better identify it or label it real or fantasy. Anyhow it looks and sounds cool. Mike

#7 Patchcollector

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 08:25 AM

Hey Patch, I had never heard of it either till a show here ( Central Fla.) and a dealer with 30 plus years of buying and selling militaria had one.Like I said it was custom made and he gave a specific unit number and called it a "Heaven and Hell wing". Hopefully one of the more knowledgable Para Wing guys can better identify it or label it real or fantasy. Anyhow it looks and sounds cool. Mike

 

 

Hey Mike,

Thanks for that info.I was doing some online searches and I believe that these are attributed to the 11th.I found a few sites that sell newly made ones,but they did'nt look like the ones I posted here.I'm certainly not very knowledgeable about the jump Wings,but from what you've stated and my limited research I'm thinking if there are any "real" ones they were probably custom made and/or altered by individuals,and not mass produced by the big companies,like Gemsco.Just my guess.



#8 firefighter

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Posted 19 October 2014 - 02:45 PM

I am not a big wing collector.But is it just me or does the pin look wrong.Looks like a later add on and a goldfish color, from the pic.



#9 Jay Seay

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 12:06 PM

Indiana anyone?  : )



#10 Patchcollector

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 04:13 PM

Looks like two bidders are slugging it out,it's in the "minute zone" and right now it's just under 200 :o



#11 pfrost

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 04:31 PM

There is one offered by Mr. Mac (AKA JoeW) on his site.  But this doesn't look like the same as the one offered on ebay (his is an obvious casting, this one isn't).

I believe the pin has been replaced.  Still, I wouldn't go with Ebay auction numbers as an indication of vintage. 

On the other hand, some of the more experienced AB collectors didn't weigh in on this one....



#12 pfrost

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 04:35 PM

Also, if you look at the bid history, you have a couple of knuckle-heads nibbling away at each other with bids and counter bids.  That will run up the price as well.



#13 Patchcollector

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 04:48 PM

Just checked and just as I thought,a bidder swooped in at the last second and won the auction.It went for 313 bucks.
I too was wondering about the lack of comments from the experienced AB collectors as well.
Perhaps they were refraining from commenting until the auction was over.
My take on this piece is that it may be an original Gemsco Wing that someone modified with the cross and skull,and also replaced the pin.All pretty obvious.
The important question in my mind is;when did all the "modifications" take place?



#14 pfrost

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 05:02 PM

They could be ok, but they aren't WWII.

 

This is the cast version offered on the internet.  I believe that this is fair use of the image, but if not, then the mods can remove it.

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Edited by pfrost, 20 October 2014 - 05:03 PM.


#15 Patchcollector

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 05:16 PM

They could be ok, but they aren't WWII.

 

This is the cast version offered on the internet.  I believe that this is fair use of the image, but if not, then the mods can remove it.

 

 

Interesting.I saw those when looking online too.

 

While 313 isn't "chump change"(to me anyway :lol: )I thought that an item like this,if authentic,would go for a lot more.

 

I would think that any authentic ones(if there are any such beasts) would be as scarce as hens teeth.



#16 pfrost

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 05:36 PM

I'm only really a WWII vintage collector, but the 11th AB seemed to have all sorts of modified wings that they wore, especially during the occupation. 

 

In comparrison, this is a GEMSCO made wing that I believe is WWII vintage.  GEMSCO seemed to use a variety of dies (or contracted out for a variety of whole sale providers) but they were all along these lines if I remember correctly.  You can see the differences between a WWII and maybe a later GEMSCO wing.

 

The issue has always been telling the stuff that was made back in the day versus stuff made for collectors a few years ago.

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#17 triplecanopy

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 06:12 PM

A question that I would like to know the answer to is did Gemsco actually make the "heaven to hell" wings or were they modified in Japan by some local jeweler? Perhaps Allan could offer some insight.

#18 Patchcollector

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 06:53 PM

I may be speaking out of inexperience,but my gut is that this Wing started life as a "regular" Gemsco piece,then at some point in time,was modified,and then,later on down the road, someone put it on a Gemsco card.

This has been known to happen.I have a WW2 era patch that was sold to me in an "Ace Novelty" package.At first,I could'nt figure out what was going on as Ace Novelty was a postwar patch producing Company,and the patch design was clearly WW2 era.It turned out that someone,for whatever reason, had placed the patch in an "Ace Novelty" package.



#19 doyler

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 07:00 PM

The wing posted is a bad fake.As stated its cast and done poorly.Lacks the details seen in Japanes wings

 

Many of the 11th wings both glider and parachutist were Japanese made.Some a re even marked Sendai on the reverse.



#20 Allan H.

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 07:16 PM

The wing is supposed to be one of the wings worn by the 674th Parachute Field Artillery. Mine is in HIOM Vol 1. Interestingly enough, mine is a Gemsco with a single screw post fastener on the back.

 

Sorry I didn't respond earlier. I had a pretty busy weekend and didn't spend much time on line.

 

I agree with the overall assessment. I don't think this one is WWII vintage. I will bet the buyer was checking a box for the HIOM examples. There are other maker marked wings that didn't go into the book- no idea why.

 

Allan 



#21 pfrost

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Posted 20 October 2014 - 08:21 PM

Pardon my ignorance, but what does HIOM stand for?



#22 firefighter

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Posted 21 October 2014 - 02:23 AM

Pardon my ignorance, but what does HIOM stand for?

I think it's suppose to be IMHO, In My Honest Opinion.



#23 triplecanopy

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Posted 21 October 2014 - 02:26 AM

HIOM = Heros in our Midst, Great book by John Angolia. The Heaven to Hell wings are featured on page 157 and as Allan stated, it is marked GEMSCO. I am still wondering if Gemsco actually made up these modified basic wings or was there a local Jeweler who did the work?



#24 Patchcollector

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Posted 21 October 2014 - 04:28 AM

Thanks for all the info and comments everyone.I was unsure as to whether or not the "Heaven and Hell" Wing I posted was a real Gemsco piece.I thought that the "Gemsco" stamp on the back looked kind of odd,so that had me wondering.

 

BTW,here is a Gemsco Wing I found from a previous post.Note the different back markings and the hollowed out chute on the back,which is like the one I originally posted.

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#25 JBCannon

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Posted 21 October 2014 - 07:27 AM

Well I'm going to stick my neck out here and say that I am fairly certain that the wing on Ebay is a legit early Occupation piece for the 674th PFA Bn. I can't speak for the card it's on or the plastic box though, which are obviously much later. This is a local piece, I believe part of a estate that was broken up here about ten years ago. It was scattered to several antique dealers who had no idea of its value or significance. I have heard stories of a medal group, patches and other stuff popping up at flea markets and antique stores. I was able to find an identical pair of wings that may have been used and a very crude belt buckle that had a pair of these wings glued on it. While I have the vet's name, I haven't been able to track down any info besides enlistment date and such. I think that someone got a very good deal on Ebay.

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