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I wish this emblem could talk


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#1 themick

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 03:50 PM

Ok, the emblem isn't much to look at, but the story is kind of fun, for me, anyway. As near as I can tell, it's a pattern 1912-1920 officer dress collar emblem, and in rough condition. The back of the anchor crown is marked "GEMSCO". Back about 1970 I was in our backyard with my dad digging a trench for some pipe. Low and behold, this came up with a shovel full of dirt. Even in those days I collected Marine gear, so I showed it to my dad and asked if it was one of his. (He was a Warrant Officer in WWII). He said that it wasn't, and that he never had officer dress enblems. (He still had his officer service ones). He had no idea where this one had come from.

The puzzle is that my parents had our house built in the orange groves of Santa Ana, California, in 1947. There had not been any houses there before. The only other people who lived in that house were there for a few years when my family went overseas, and they were not military people. Sooo, I've always wondered how that old of an emblem came to find its way buried in our backyard. I actually didn't realize it was that old until recently when I came across it and compared it to the ones in Moran's book. As you can see, even in 1970 it had been in the ground a long time given how all the silver is worn off.

Anyway, just thought I'd share.

Steve

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Edited by themick, 21 July 2008 - 03:54 PM.


#2 AndrewA74

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:03 PM

Wow, very neat story. Did you dig anymore to see if there were anything else?
Andrew

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:33 AM.
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#3 themick

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:10 PM

Hi Andrew,
I just kept digging the trench, as my dad "supervised." Actually, as a kid, I probably dug up a good part of that yard playing, and never found anything else connected with the emblem, nor really anything else for that matter, which further suggests that there had never been another house there. However, if any of the subsequent owners of that house ever dug up the yard, they would have found an old helmet liner and a Viet Nam era Marine green blouse that I buried there. Don't even ask.... :rolleyes:

Steve

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:33 AM.
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#4 ADMIN

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:17 PM

Interesting find! I bet some of the EGA folks can help you with any questions you would have about the insignia.

#5 AndrewA74

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:20 PM

HAHAHAHA. Why did you bury those?
Andrew

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:34 AM.
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#6 Teamski

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:22 PM

Great story! Thanks for sharing. Those kind of items usually mean a bit more. A childhood is an important thing. That's why I kept my original cigarbox patch box. I reminds me why I collect everyday.

-Ski

#7 Bob Hudson

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:59 PM

It may be that there was a dump in that area for old Naval Air Station Santa Ana (the blimp base that later became Marine Corps Air Station Tustin). Or perhaps a Marine pilot out of El Toro lost it or tossed when flying over the area with the canopy open. A third option is that the officer was in the orange grove late one night, using it as lover's lane when he lost an EGA in the excitement.

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:34 AM.
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#8 themick

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 05:39 PM

Interesting theories. The first one doesn't work well, as the orange grove would have predated the construction of the two air bases you mentioned, plus the house was located a bit far from them to be used as a dump. Also, I'm sure there would have been other stuff from the dump in the soil, but there wasn't .

Theory two - possible, but why would the pilot be wearing a dress uniform while flying?

Theory three -- I like it!! I am visualizing the Marine's female companion excitedly clawing at his high button collar late one night, causing the emblem, perhaps with the nut already loose, to pop off. Yeah, I like that one... :)

Steve

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:35 AM.
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#9 Bob Hudson

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 06:00 PM

The third option came to mind because years ago when I was a young political aide, I lost a favorite organizational lapel pin that way :)

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:35 AM.
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#10 Brig

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Posted 22 July 2008 - 04:17 AM

great emblem and great story!!!

#11 IMPERIAL QUEST

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Posted 22 July 2008 - 05:23 AM

Wow...I could really build a story around that one... http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/naughty.gif

As much as I like the above explanation, It is entirely possible that the area around your house was once leveled or backfilled with soil from another location. We tend to think that the ground we are walking on is the same surface that folks 50 or 100 years ago tread upon - but not so. My house for example, is 107 years old, and I know that it was leveled and the yard backfilled about 30 years ago.

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:36 AM.
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#12 Bob Hudson

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Posted 22 July 2008 - 07:03 AM

As much as I like the above explanation, It is entirely possible that the area around your house was once leveled or backfilled with soil from another location. We tend to think that the ground we are walking on is the same surface that folks 50 or 100 years ago tread upon - but not so. My house for example, is 107 years old, and I know that it was leveled and the yard backfilled about 30 years ago.[/quote]

All of Southern California is built on fill (:

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:36 AM.
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#13 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 22 July 2008 - 07:47 AM

Well in looking at the battered condition of the emblem, it must have been one hell of scene :blush:

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:36 AM.
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#14 Jeremiah

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Posted 23 July 2008 - 05:11 AM

She must have really liked marines! Great piece Steve, I love hearing the stories you have from collecting things when you were a kid. They help keep me motivated to collect!

Edited by teufelhunde.ret, 09 December 2008 - 08:37 AM.
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#15 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 08:31 AM

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