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What is it?????


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#1 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:13 AM

The absolute best thing about this forum is the depth and breadth of experience on here. Y'all have been able to ferret out information that is absolutely astounding.

But here is one that has me completely stumped.

This appears to be a WW1 era woman's uniform. It is similar in many respects to an Army Nurse's uniform--but not identical. It also is similar to the WW1 era "Hello Girl/Reconstruction Aide/Quartermaster Clerk" uniforms but again not identical.

Unknown1.jpg


It is made of the exact same dark blue worsted wool that many WW1 Nurse uniforms are made from. It once had a dark blue silk lining (similar to the Nurses uniforms) but the lining must have shattered because it is completely gone. It has a stand and fall convertible collar, plain dark blue buttons, and three pockets.

More...

Edited by cwnorma, 22 January 2011 - 09:48 AM.


#2 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:17 AM

Here is a view of this uniform with the collar up:

Unknown2.jpg



#3 Bob Hudson

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:18 AM

In the post-WWI era there were some women who "accidently" became military personnel, according to this item I stumbled upon last night while researching a General.

"Oddly enough, during a decade when neither a military corps nor a civilian advisory group could receive approval, a few women somewhat accidentally fell heir to the full blessings of Army status. When, in a more or less routine order, the supposedly all-male category of Army field clerks was blanketed into military service, it was found to include a handful of women employees. While this occurrence was scarcely noted on the planning level and was never considered a precedent for an organized women's corps, the few individuals concerned were later held by the Comptroller General to have been full-fledged members of the military service, with the same status as the Navy yeomanettes. Later, Congress amended the armed forces' legislation to place the word male before persons, thus effectually guaranteeing that neither the yeomanette nor the field clerk episode would be repeated without its sanction."

Could this uniform have been for one of them?

#4 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:20 AM

Here is the back:

Unknown3.jpg



#5 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:23 AM

Close up of cuff buttons:

Unknown4.jpg



#6 Bob Hudson

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:32 AM

"In 1926, the first two female field clerks became the first female Warrants. They were Jen Doble, on duty at IX Area in San Francisco and Olive Hoskins, on duty at the VII Corps Area headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska. Both women then had about 20 years service and there were no more female warrants after they retired. Not until WWII did the Army again appoint women as warrants. [Source: "Encyclopedia of US Army Insignia and Uniforms" (Univ. of Oklahoma Press, 1996) by Bill Emerson]."

#7 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:33 AM

I have searched through Jill Smith's books and can see a lot of similarities, but I can not find anything identical. There are some Red Cross uniforms that have the two button pockets. There is a National Catholic Woman's Service uniform that has a similar "no button" front. One of Smith's illustrations of a USMC (F) shows a jacket with only three pockets.

Some more thoughts. The very plain dark blue worsted wool, plain buttons, and the fact that it is completely devoid of any fancy embellishment or stitching; leads me to believe it is some kind of uniform, and not merely a woman's "walking suit" of the WW1 period. Even if it isn't military, I think it could be from some kind of non-military or quasi-military organization that decided to wear a uniform to do "War Work". Perhaps it is a girls uniform for a HS ROTC Program?

Unfortunately, as the lining is gone, so are any tags that went along with it. It might not even be American?

This thing has me stumped!

Any and all thoughts you might have are appreciated.

Chirs

#8 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:43 AM

Could this uniform have been for one of them?


FS,

Maybe??? :dunno:

From Smith, and the one that I have in my collection, female quartermaster clerks wore a blue uniform very similar to the "Hello Girls" Their uniform had; two lower pockets, none on the bodice, and 5 buttons (plain or Army type) up the front. But is otherwise pretty similar to this one.

Maybe it is an early uniform, that one of them had made prior to standardization (not that there was much standardization among WW1 era women's uniforms anyway).


Chris

#9 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 09:54 AM

Even if it isn't military, I think it could be from some kind of non-military or quasi-military organization that decided to wear a uniform to do "War Work". Perhaps it is a girls uniform for a HS ROTC Program?

Chris, frankly what has me stumped - the absence of shoulder tabs, epaulet, piping or military buttons. The cut / style does show some military characteristics, Absent those I mention, there is little else to go on. If WW1 it could be a working uniform for Coast Guard Navy and thousands of other women volunteered to work overseas with the Red Cross, Salvation Army, YMCA and YWCA.... all just guesses. s/f Darrell

#10 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 10:09 AM

Darrell,

Me too. This one has me stumped.

Here is a photo of a WW1 Army Nurse for comparison:

nursenw7.jpg


And here is an Army Nurse's uniform that sold on ebay some time ago:

dd5.JPG


Early on, many WW1 era women's uniforms had plain black buttons, and not much in the way of epaulets.

Edited by cwnorma, 22 January 2011 - 10:13 AM.


#11 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 10:19 AM

Here is another WW1 Army Nurse uniform that sold on ebay some time ago:

DSCN0033.jpg


...and here is, a French made example of the "Hello Girl" uniform (also an ebay sale):

bc_3.JPG


As you can see, lots of similarities. But not identical... :dunno:

#12 cwnorma

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 10:36 AM

... And finally, here are two more of the "Hello Girl/Reconstruction Aide/Quartermaster Clerk" type uniforms:

The first from an ebay sale:

kcuniform1.jpg


...and from a sale on forum friend Scott Kraska's "Bay State Militaria":

MVC_625S.jpg



#13 Too Much WW1 Militaria

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Posted 22 January 2011 - 05:17 PM

Chris,

It exhibits characteristics of both an Army Nurse and a Hello Girl! Early Nurse? Cuban Nurse that went over with the AEF? I think it is American, just by the style and cut. Having collected Brit WW1 at one time, it also resembles uniforms that the British Nursing Sisters wore. Either way, a head scratcher.

Jack

#14 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 23 January 2011 - 07:52 AM

This appears to be a WW1 era woman's uniform. It is similar in many respects to an Army Nurse's uniform--but not identical. It also is similar to the WW1 era "Hello Girl/Reconstruction Aide/Quartermaster Clerk" uniforms but again not identical.

Unknown1.jpg

Question, were these ladies required to provide their own privately made uniforms?

#15 cwnorma

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Posted 23 January 2011 - 08:04 AM

Question, were these ladies required to provide their own privately made uniforms?


THR,

In many cases yes. So that could be the answer too. It might just be a non-standard Nurse's uniform?

The big problem is that there were literally hundreds of organizations; from small town-level Women's clubs to fairly well organized ambulance corps, and large civilian agencies that adopted "uniforms" for the war years. Towards the end of the war, the "United War Work Campaign" attempted to provide an umbrella organization for many/most of them but the war ended before that effort could take off.

Some I know of:

National League for Women's Service
War Reserve Fleet Corporation
War Work Community Service
Women's Land Army
Motor Corps of America
Red Star Animal Relief
American Library Association

Of course many of the "big" organizations adopted military uniforms for the war years too:

Red Cross
YMCA
YWCA
National Catholic Women's Service
Quaker Relief
Salvation Army

My ultimate hope is that someone, somewhere has a photograph of this uniform being worn and I can identify it to the organization.

Chris

#16 cwnorma

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Posted 27 January 2011 - 05:16 PM

Bump

#17 gunbarrel

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 02:29 PM

I thought I saw a similar uniform in this short film, but I'm wrong. Here is a link, anyway, it's cool. Enjoy!

http://www.criticalp...les_World-War-I

#18 cwnorma

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 06:22 PM

I thought I saw a similar uniform in this short film, but I'm wrong. Here is a link, anyway, it's cool. Enjoy!

http://www.criticalp...les_World-War-I


The girls in that clip are US Navy "Yeomanettes." But you are right that is way cool! Thanks for sharing!

Chris

#19 cwnorma

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 11:09 AM

Monthly bump.

Any more ideas?

Chris

#20 cwnorma

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 07:33 PM

March Bump.

I have had a couple of people theorize that it is either Canadian or British. But so far no photographs of this uniform being worn.

The hunt continues!

#21 TJM

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 06:09 AM

I have two WWI dated woman's uniforms (Army Nurse Cadet & Army Nurse Civilian Worker's travel uniform) that are not pictured in Ms. Smith's books. I missed any reference to both the first few times through, but eventually found a two or three line reference to both in sections I did not originally think to look -- they were only briefly mentioned in passing in the text and could be easily missed.

#22 RustyCanteen

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 10:30 AM

March Bump.

I have had a couple of people theorize that it is either Canadian or British. But so far no photographs of this uniform being worn.

The hunt continues!



I guess you've turned the sleeves inside out to check for areas insignia might have been?

#23 cwnorma

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 05:58 PM

I have two WWI dated woman's uniforms (Army Nurse Cadet & Army Nurse Civilian Worker's travel uniform) that are not pictured in Ms. Smith's books. I missed any reference to both the first few times through, but eventually found a two or three line reference to both in sections I did not originally think to look -- they were only briefly mentioned in passing in the text and could be easily missed.


Those are two very rare uniforms! I would love to see photos of them some time.

Chris

#24 cwnorma

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 06:01 PM

I guess you've turned the sleeves inside out to check for areas insignia might have been?

RustyCanteen.

When I got it, it had been laundered. The silk lining was completely shattered, and I could not see any trace of sewn on insignia.

There appears to be some pin damage on the collar, but it could also be wear.

Chris

#25 trenchbuff

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 08:20 PM

Some really great uniforms! The stories behind them are every bit as interesting as any told about WW1.


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