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U.S. Army Brassards & Armbands 1898 to 1918 Part 2


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world war I nerd

Photo No. 166: Close up of a Cincinnati, Ohio Home Guard badge, a Cincinnati Home Guard Service Medal, and an Akron, Ohio Home guard badge.

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  • 3 months later...
world war I nerd

A few more examples of WW I era brassards ...

 

Photo No. 167: An unusual machine embroidered whit on blue MP brassard next to a WW I era MP nightstick.

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Photo No. 168: Another red Orderlies or Runner's Armband (see post no. 157 on page 07) next to a YMCA Girls Reserve Brassard.

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Photo No. 169: Two more 'Unit Specific' or 'Unit Identification' brassards whose exact purpose remains unknown. One possibly belonging to the 20th Infantry Division (left), the other to the 102nd Field Artillery Regiment of the 26th Infantry Division (right). Other examples of this type of brassard can be seen on post no. 77, page 3.

 

102nd F.A. brassard courtesy of the rustbucket collection

 

Does anybody have a period photo of a unit specific brassard in use or know what they were used for?

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Photo No. 170: A pair of Transportation Department (an arm of the Motor Transport Corps) brassards. One bearing the initials 'TD' for Transportation Department, the other with the initials 'TS'. At this point I presume the 'T' is for "Transportation" and the 'S' possibly for Security - Service??? Other examples of Transportation Department can be seen on posts 172 -174 on page 07.

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Photo No. 171: This brassard was labeled as an "Acting Corporal's Brassard". To the right is another period example of the white on green photographer's brassard being worn.

 

Period photo courtesy of the John Adam-Graf collection

 

Does anyone have any additional information on this type of brassard?

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Photo No. 172: 89th Division General Staff officers wearing the red division general staff brassard with the General Staff insignia embroidered in the center.

 

Photo courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No. 173: 89th Division General Staff officers wearing the red division General Staff brassard without the General Staff insignia.

 

Photos courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No 174: MP officer wearing a white on blue European made MP Brassard. I believe that the MP Brassards whose letters have serifs were European made, while U.S. made MP Brassards were generally sans serifs.

 

Photo courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No 175: The operator of this Signal Corps projector station is wearing a special duties armband. It is blue in color which signifies that he is a member of the Signal Corps detached for special duties.

 

Right hand photo courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No. 176: The right hand Doughboy is wearing a brassard that I've never seen before. Its colors are unknown and it appears to feature the Signal Corps emblem of crossed signal flags.

 

Photo courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No. 177: An example of an unknown unit specific brassard being worn ... possibly 1st - Minnesota - Maine - Missouri - Montana - Mississippi - Maryland - Michigan - Massachusetts Infantry???

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Photo No. 178: A couple more Army Recruiting Service brassards.

 

Right hand photo courtesy of the John Adam-Graf collection

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Photo No. 179: More 'Hello Girls' or AEF, Signal Corps switchboard operator brassards.

 

Photos courtesy of the National World War I Museum

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Photo No. 180: A Hello Girl service coat and two variations of the Hello Girls Brassard - the lower being the most common

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Here is a photo I came across in a souvenir scrapbook I have for Battery B 68th CAC. I never noticed it until I started scanning all of the images, but it is a decent shot of a couple of MP's, one with an armband and one without. The MP on the left seems to be sporting a homemade billy club he fashioned from what appears to be a shovel handle. What else is interesting is that he is using a bit of cord that he has made into a carrier of sorts. This rig seems to be held to the belt by the flap on the belt and the LTD fastener. The other MP on the right appears to of taken a more personal approach with his club by whittling one out of a branch. Either way, I would not want to be on the receiving end of either one of these. So continuing on topic, the MP on the right is wearing the armband as is evident by the visible M. Unfortunately the roster in the back of the book does not indicate who either of these gentlemen could be, so no such luck in researching it from there. The only 2 in the photo that can be ID'd with about a 50% chance are the two buglers.

 

-Mike

 

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Photo No. 177: An example of an unknown unit specific brassard being worn ... possibly 1st - Minnesota - Maine - Missouri - Montana - Mississippi - Maryland - Michigan - Massachusetts Infantry???

 

I'm pretty sure the "M" stood for 'Minnesota', if that's indeed what the letter represents. This was one of a handful of images I acquired a while back, and on the reverse of one of them, there was a Minnesota photo studio stamp (I forget which city).

Doubt this helps any but these guys were Signal Corps...

 

I've really been enjoying your research. Keep those posts coming!

 

-Chuck

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  • 4 weeks later...

It's really great to be out of touch for a few weeks then to return to some great photo updates and descriptions!! Thanks for all the effort this represents! Also, it's great to think that the on-line records like this may last for many generations, whereas our best articles and pictures may exist only in one of our files to be lost to obscurity when we die !! Thanks again for such an enjoyable presentation!!

 

David

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Cobra 6 Actual

World War I Nerd, thanks for all of this great info! You've solved quite a few mysteries for me. Here are just two examples:

 

Post #33, French Army General Staff Brassards: Now I know what that "Drivers and Requisitioned Employees" brassard is.

 

Post #52, US Army Firefighters: I have that same Camp Taylor Badge, but until your post wasn't sure of the era of use.

 

Most of the brassards and armbands I have are from WWII forward, many from the Vietnam era; so I really appreciated being educated about these earlier ones. In a similar vein, Col. William K. Emerson's book and his articles in ASMIC have also clarified a great deal about brassards and armbands. Agsin thank you ... and, please keep the info coming!

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Thanks Tennessee & Cobra 6 Actual. It's good to know that some are finding the post useful!

 

 

Here's a color photo of the Gold Star brassard shown earlier in the post.

 

Photos courtesy of the John Adam-Graf collection

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A black mourning brassard with a gold star worn by a soldier in the 83rd Division flanked by a plain black mourning brassard mounted on a service coat bearing a District of Paris SSI.

 

Center photo courtesy of the John Adam-Graf collection

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This brassard, adorning a WW I patch blanket is thought to represent the 'Embarkation Staff'. If this is true, it would have been worn by embarkation officials who inspected all troops, their clothing & equipment, and all of the unit's records at the ports of embarkation or on the actual troopships just before they sailed for France.

 

If anybody can positively identify what this brassard was used for, please post that information for the rest of us.

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This photo taken just before the Battle of St. Mihiel shows war correspondents, from center left to right: R. Carroll of the Philadelphia Ledger, A. Delaney, Napoleon H. Hall of the London Times, F. Light, D. Martin of the New York Herald, T. Johnson and A. Hartzell of the New York Sun.

 

Note that H.Hall is the only correspondent wearing the red on green accredited correspondent's brassard.

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Opps, I got the order of the men in the above photo wrong. They should begin at second from left and end at third from right. Therefore, it is D. Martin of the New York Herald who is wearing the accredited correspondent's brassard ... my apologies.

 

Two views of the red on green accredited correspondent's brassard. One is a higher resolution of Floyd Gibbons, the correspondent for the Chicago Tribune who was wounded at Belleau Wood. The other is a close up of Mr. Martin's brassard from the above photo.

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On the right, the gentleman holding the camera is wearing the red on white visiting correspondent's brassard.

 

To his left is Ralph Waldo Tyler, the AEF's only African American war correspondent. Here he is wearing a white brassard whose purpose is unknown. It's possible that it could be a makeshift white visiting correspondent's brassard without the letter 'C' in red. It's also possible that it could be for something entirely different. Does anybody know?

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