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USN Shore Patrol duty gear


Salvage Sailor
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Salvage Sailor

Aloha Everyone,

 

This is typical USN shipboard gear for whoever was unfortunate to draw duty as 'Shore Patrol'. When a ship would be making a foreign port call, one of the considerations for the duty roster was the assignment of Petty Officers to 'Shore Patrol'. This was only done in liberty ports where it was judged prudent to have a presence among the sailors roaming the waterfront 'recreational facilities'. When there was a shore based installation at the port of call, this was not necessary as there was already an established patrol force. Otherwise, the USN ship making the foreign port call would assign someone to this duty.

 

So, while the rest of your shipmates were carousing, you would have to trail along and be the butt of their humor while keeping an eye out for trouble. Not always an easy thing to do amongst the brothels & watering holes. The good news was, the next night you may very well be wandering the same port without the SP on your arm ;)

 

All of these items came from the USS GRASP (ARS-24) when she was decommissioned in 1978.

Shore_Patrol_008.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

Here are (3) of the yellow lettered wool on blue wool SP armbands (including the fancy high tech safety pins to keep them on your whites or blues.

 

While on duty, you would also wear white leggings and be issued a billy club. This was the same type of club that the messenger of the watch would wear on quarterdeck duty.

Shore_Patrol_004.jpg

Shore_Patrol_003.jpg

Shore_Patrol_006.jpg

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craig_pickrall

Interesting items. It isn't often we get to see known USN gear like this. Are there any markings on the belt, magazine pocket or leggings?

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Salvage Sailor

The .45 holsters were dyed black. This gunbelt is also the same duty belt that the Petty Officer of the Watch would wear on Quarterdeck duty.

Shore_Patrol_008.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

I don't have a fancy mannequin as some of you do, so forgive the sloppy presentation.

 

This is our 'whites' uniform on SP duty

Shore_Patrol_010.jpg

Shore_Patrol_011.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

Sometimes we would wear a white painted helmet cover in place of the dixie cup hat.

 

This was our 'blues' getup on SP duty.

Shore_Patrol_014.jpg

Shore_Patrol_017.jpg

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Salvage Sailor
Interesting items. It isn't often we get to see known USN gear like this. Are there any markings on the belt, magazine pocket or leggings?

 

Sure,

 

The Leggings are navy TYPE II SIZE 3 - difficult to see the whole number as they are worn out inside. I think it says CONT. No. QM(CTM) 6558-E-60

 

Note the fancy white shoelace replacement for the original tie-down cord. This was not at all uncommon as the originals would break or be lost.

Shore_Patrol_019.jpg

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collectsmedals

I had to pull Shore Patrol a few times in Naples back in 1979 and 1980 off the U.S.S. Nimitz.

 

I sort of liked it, kind of interesting wandering the Naples waterfront. We were always paired up with a "profession" Shore Patrol / Master at Arms type from the local NATO base who knew the area.

 

Thanks for sharing those, it brings back memories.

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Salvage Sailor

There are two different makes of leather .45 holsters.

 

One is a Bucheimer (in an oval) 7791466, I'd say Vietnam vintage. I think Bucheimer went out of business in the early 70's

 

The frog attachement says "CARRIER, PISTOL, HOLST. DLA100-63-M-EA?" the number line under this one is worn down but I think it says "8486-0?-?26" LEONARD BAG

 

The white duty belt is marked DSA 100 70-1-U313

Shore_Patrol_020.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

This is the HUNTER CORP. rig, also a 7791466. The hangar is different, not marked and made of leather with rivets instead of canvas. The white duty belt is marked DSA100-3964

 

Here's a side by side comparison: HUNTER CORP. on the left, BUCHEIMER on the right

Shore_Patrol_024.jpg

Shore_Patrol_025.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

The cut & stitching of both holsters is identical, but the riveting is different.

 

The HUNTER CORP. has dimpled rivets, whereas the BUCHEIMER has smooth rivets.

Shore_Patrol_026.jpg

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Neat gear. If I recall correctly the SP brassard actually went over the rating which ment that it didn't matter what rank you held as an SP you pretty much outranked everyone.

 

I pulled SP duty a few times I usually did it the first night out so the next night I knew where to go or not to go.

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Salvage Sailor
Neat gear. If I recall correctly the SP brassard actually went over the rating which ment that it didn't matter what rank you held as an SP you pretty much outranked everyone.

 

I pulled SP duty a few times I usually did it the first night out so the next night I knew where to go or not to go.

 

Perhaps.....but coasties are dyslexic (a little inter-service humor me laddies)

 

In the USN, the SP armband is always worn on the right arm.

 

Here are some nice examples.

 

Photo from USN archives Shore Patrol trainees at Great Lakes (negro unit from WWII wearing the older khaki gear over peacoats)

 

Nice set of photos from 1973 showing the undress white shirt & the white billy club frog on the web belt. Taken in 1973 at Valpariso Chile. Worth reading the comments on the link.

USS Yorktown SP Duty

 

and then there's my old beat.....Olongopo, PI (Subic Bay)......when you pull SP duty here you get to hang with the LBFM's (the Westpac sailors reading this will KNOW what I mean)

SP_Training.jpg

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Salvage Sailor

and then there's my old beat.....Olongopo, PI (Subic Bay)......when you pull SP duty here you get to hang with the LBFM's (the Westpac sailors reading this will KNOW what I mean)

 

These Petty Officer's are wearing the very unpopular 'ice cream vendor' uniforms which were USN issue between 1975 and 1979

SP_Olongapo.jpg

SP_Olongapo_2.jpg

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Salvage Sailor
The pic of April 1943 taken in Washington, DC at Greyhound bus terminal.

 

I stand corrected - you've posted the exception to the rule.

 

This sailor is a 'right arm rate', which is now obsolete (since 1949). Even so, he's wearing the SP armband opposite of his 'crow', which is never covered.

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I love those Olongapo Pics! LOL. BTDT, my tours were in the 80's, though.

 

Bucheimer leather goods was located in my hometown, Frederick, Md, and produced a huge quantity of leather goods for the military, civilian and law enforcement markets. They sadly went out of business in 1988 or 1989, if I remember correctly.

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Shipboard based shore patrol duty was always E-4 through E-6 on the ships I was stationed on. On larger ships, like Carriers, they sometimes appointed a Chief Petty Officer or junior officer in overall command of the shore patrol party. Sometimes we were assigned with local policemen, this was true in Rio and other South American ports when I made a UNITAS cruise in the early 1960s. In my three cruises we never received firearms.

 

In the Caribbean we were sometimes paired with British MPs if we were in a British protectorate country. In the Mediterranean we were often paired with sailors from other ships or with any local USN land bases, often Naval Air Stations.

 

Like Coastie says above, I too, often lobbied for the first night's shore patrol duty when we pulled into a port, so I could get my duty night out of the way and "learn" the more interesting places to visit on the next night for my liberty. The ships were always on Port and Starboard duty sections on these cruises. One day on duty, one day off duty.

 

Nice items posted. Brings back lots of memories.

-dan

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  • 1 year later...

I was a brig guard and did shore patrol duty during a NATO cruise on the USS Nashville in 1976. This is the only photo I have, but notice the arm band was on my left sleeve. I would like to find and arm band sometime.

 

 

post-8303-1264113606.jpg

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According to regulations, the arm band went on the right sleeve, under the Unit Identification Mark (UIM, Rumble Patch, Rocker, what ever). Prior to 1949, the rule was on the sleeve oppisite the rating badge. Ok, all that being said, in 23 years of standing Shore Patrol, (and three years as a non rate being chased by them), which sleeve the arm band went on was one of those things that was based in mythology. Some people insisted on one sleeve while others went for the other. It was one of those Navy things that nobody really thought was all that important to look up. After I made First Class, I saw a real set of uniform regs for the first time. What amazing things it held, like where the SP band went!. Any way, I did a lot of SP. Was CPOIC of the detail a few times (even while I was stationed on the Nashville from 97-99) and on both coasts.

 

We never wore leggings. Never saw any SP with leggings. Never saw any watch wearing leggings. Only saw them on cerimonial guards for some big deal function like the Prime Minister of Japan visiting the Base in Sasebo in '82. The honor guard and the color guard had them.

 

Never saw SP with side arms. Some times the Station Police would have them, but never ships Shore Patrol. Some ports would not even alow the billy club.

 

The only time side arms were carried was by the Petty Officer of the watch on the ships quarter deck. Salvage Sailor, you are missing a piece of the holster suspension rig, There was a white cover that went over the holster to keep it from rubbing against the whites. It had a solid back, a cup in the bottom to hole the holster and a strap around the front. The hooks of the holster passed through two eyelets in the cover and then in to the hanger like you show.

 

There was also a holder for the billy club that was made of white web. It was a loop that went on the belt and another loop that the club fit into. They were actually made to be too small so you could NOT get the club out and hit some one with it (or more likely have it taken away and get your own a$$ beat with it). These were ofter dispensed with or turned around and worn tucked into the top of the belt so you could get it out. Much of this depended on the Status of Forces Agreements with the host countries, (yeah, as the LCPOIC, you have to read all that crap and then enforce it).

 

Your pictures of SP in Subic are great! that was about the only thing I liked about that uniform was the black pants on SP in Subic. I had worn whites before that uniform came out (and then again after it was dumper). In the Monsoon season, forget about wearing them for anything else but SP, they were trashed by the red mud and the kids wiping their hands on you. Some ports we carried raidos. Since we were always partnered up ( I always had a little guy) one would carry it. Some times we would wear helmet liners with SP on them. Once I wore regular Police style helmets, all of this "other gear" being provided by the station.

 

The arm bands sucked. You had to wrap them around and then saftey pin them to your uniform. They would always slide down during the course of the tour, and with a short sleeve shirt, the wool would rub in the crease of your arm. I took to taking extra pins along and using one in the front to hold it up. If you wrapped it too tight around your arm, the pin would pop if you bent your arm to tight. Pain in the but. I have seen the ones with the snaps on the back, but you know about that one size fits all thing. Also saw some with elastic on the back. Never worked.

 

yeah, Shore Patrol, one of the few things I DON"T miss about the Navy. :thumbdown:

 

Steve Hesson

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