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Viet Nam era Navy dog tag layout arrangement


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#1 tthen

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 09:50 AM

Good morning all where it's still morning,

I'm building a shadow box for my brother-in-law who was in the Navy during the Vietnam war. He enlisted in 1967 got off of active duty in 1970. Went into the reserves on 7 Jan. 1971 and got out of the service 9 Nov. 1972. I want to reproduce his dog tags but am unsure of arrangement. I looked at websites that just further confused me. I have his DD214 and it shows he had a service number that starts with B31 then a space then two more numbers a space and two more numbers. Was this # on his tags or was it his social security #. I have his blood type with RH factor and his religious preference was Episcopalian.  I think there was suppose to be 5 lines but what arrangement.

Thank you for any help in this matter.

 

Tom



#2 Salvage Sailor

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 11:30 AM

From the Naval History and Heritage Command

 

Post-World War II tags were worn on a bead chain, with attached short loop for the second tag.

They bore name (surname, followed by initials) - Line 1;

service number; service; blood type - Line 2;

and religion, if desired by the individual - Line 3.

 

Example below of a sailor who had both a USN and USNR dog tag.  The "A" is his blood type and the "P" is for Protestant (mine said "NO PREF")

Attached Images

  • 1960s vietnam era usn dog tags.jpg

Edited by Salvage Sailor, 26 July 2019 - 11:34 AM.


#3 tthen

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 03:37 PM

Salvage Sailor, Thank you so much for the information. Just out of curiosity were the notched blanks used until used up?



#4 Salvage Sailor

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 03:59 PM

In a word, yes,

 

I have both unnotched (received in boot camp) and a notched set received in Japan (made aboard USS MIDWAY CV-41) so I'd say it was really dependent upon what type of stamping machine made them and the blanks available.  We weren't really picky about when or where the stock came from, just whatever worked and was available at the time.  You have to remember that during the Vietnam era most of our gear was made during WWII (including my first two ships and most everything in or on them).  New stock was rare in the fleet units and was more prevalent at shore installations.

 

For the shadow box you're assembling, I would suggest an unnotched set.


Edited by Salvage Sailor, 26 July 2019 - 04:15 PM.


#5 tthen

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 04:21 PM

Once again thank you!



#6 ON PATROL

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Posted 27 July 2019 - 06:36 PM

Not to further confuse the issue .  .  . But as for dog tags, there was a standard and yet not a standard. For example, My dog tags (yes I still have my originals, from Navy boot camp - 1975) are arranged differently.

 

1st line         Surname

2nd line        First name and Middle Initial

3rd line         Service no. or SSN and Service

4th line         Blood type and Rh Factor

5th line         Religious Preference



#7 tthen

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Posted 28 July 2019 - 06:03 PM

On Patrol, thank you for your response. My Brother-in-law enlisted in 1967, different layout than 1975? Yes?



#8 ON PATROL

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Posted 28 July 2019 - 06:11 PM

As I said, there was a standard .  .  .  but that doesn't mean it was followed. I was "volunteered" by my company commander to make a good part of the tags for my boot camp company. I was given a cardboard "example" and everybody's info, set down at the machine. At that time I was told to do the five line style, but that don't mean it was by the book. I just did what I was told.




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