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Jacket, Field, Olive Drab ( aka "Parsons Jacket)


Sabrejet

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Here's another of those official QM studio shots, this time illustrating the then new OD Field Jacket...which in collector-speak has subsequently become variously known as the "M1941" or "Parsons Jacket". Revolutionary in its day, this first pattern jacket it is immediately recognizable by it buttoned pocket flaps, bigger collar and lack of shoulder straps..

post-8022-0-01844500-1405085026.jpg

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That photo looks like it was taken yesterday... Great image! I believe this to be an M-1938 Field Jacket, which was nicknamed the Parson's field jacket. The difference between it and the M41 being the pocket flaps.

 

Kyle

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That photo looks like it was taken yesterday... Great image! I believe this to be an M-1938 Field Jacket, which was nicknamed the Parson's field jacket. The difference between it and the M41 being the pocket flaps.

Kyle

The correct nomenclature for this and subsequent field jackets is "Jacket, Field, Olive Drab". M38 / M41 are simply convenient labels used by collectors to differentiate between them.

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What was this uniform combination called with a field jacket, tie, dress shoes, and garrison cap? Or is it just the standard garrison uniform with field jacket?

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What was this uniform combination called with a field jacket, tie, dress shoes, and garrison cap? Or is it just the standard garrison uniform with field jacket?

 

Yes...I believe so.

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The correct nomenclature for this and subsequent field jackets is "Jacket, Field, Olive Drab". M38 / M41 are simply convenient labels used by collectors to differentiate between them.

interesting that they started putting the model designation on the M1943, but evidently not earlier. Thanks!
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I guess due to the growing array of different types of clothing in the 1941-43 years they decided to be more specific in their designations with the "M19__" prefixes. I've always noticed that the other earlier Jackets, Parkas and Coats (Arctics, Mackinaws, etc.) don't have the "M19" designations either.

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The Quartermaster Corps, which was responsible for most clothing items, did not, in general, use the model number system to designate clothing. The model number system was something the Ordnance Department developed and used. The very few times that QM did use it, was when they felt that some type of specific differentiation needed to be made between an existing item and a newly adopted item. The M-1943 Field Jacket is the best example. It was a big departure from the previous OD Field Jackets and the QM felt it needed to be set apart from the older Jackets to impress upon soldiers that it was an improvement.

 

Collectors like to put things in boxes so they can say "I've got one of those" and check the item off the want list. Now people assign all kinds of nonsensical model numbers to thing that never had them and that really don't need them. The craziest one is "M-1938" for the first model of the OD Field Jacket, like the one in the posted photo. That jacket was standardized and adopted in 1940, two full years after collectors would like you to believe.

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  • 6 years later...
On 7/14/2014 at 11:27 AM, B229 said:

The Quartermaster Corps, which was responsible for most clothing items, did not, in general, use the model number system to designate clothing. The model number system was something the Ordnance Department developed and used. The very few times that QM did use it, was when they felt that some type of specific differentiation needed to be made between an existing item and a newly adopted item. The M-1943 Field Jacket is the best example. It was a big departure from the previous OD Field Jackets and the QM felt it needed to be set apart from the older Jackets to impress upon soldiers that it was an improvement.

 

Collectors like to put things in boxes so they can say "I've got one of those" and check the item off the want list. Now people assign all kinds of nonsensical model numbers to thing that never had them and that really don't need them. The craziest one is "M-1938" for the first model of the OD Field Jacket, like the one in the posted photo. That jacket was standardized and adopted in 1940, two full years after collectors would like you to believe.

 

Not commonly known and rarely stated as succinctly, you nailed it dead on - nice job!
 

Also not commonly known, the first of the Parson’s Jackets, those in the first production from 1940 and before they even had an assigned spec. number (20), were designated Windbreaker, not Field Jacket.  

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'Flage Guy

I remember years ago before there was such an abundance of good reference books, seeing Arctic Field Jackets for sale at shows being labeled as "M1938"s. 😄

On 1/6/2021 at 9:08 PM, PQD said:

Also not commonly known, the first of the Parson’s Jackets, those in the first production from 1940 and before they even had an assigned spec. number (20), were designated Windbreaker, not Field Jacket.  

 Would the Windbreaker be the Jacket made of that tight-knit drill (?) like the early Tankers, rather than the poplin used on the Spec. 20s?
 

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12 minutes ago, 'Flage Guy said:

I remember years ago before there was such an abundance of good reference books, seeing Arctic Field Jackets for sale at shows being labeled as "M1938"s. 😄

 Would the Windbreaker be the Jacket made of that tight-knit drill (?) like the early Tankers, rather than the poplin used on the Spec. 20s?
 

 

Precisely, Jim!  It was designated a 5-ounce twill, but this proved too difficult to manufacture for production, so the 8.2-ounce twill of the suits for armored forces, Arctic troops, and parachutists was used.

 

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'Flage Guy
5 hours ago, PQD said:

 

Precisely, Jim!  It was designated a 5-ounce twill, but this proved too difficult to manufacture for production, so the 8.2-ounce twill of the suits for armored forces, Arctic troops, and parachutists was used.

 

Ah, so it's a twill variant; thanks for the "straighten-out". I've only seen 2 of those in my whole life- IIRC, one of 'em is yours!!

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Yes, Jim, they are very, very rare, and in NOS condition like mine I can only recall seeing one other.  Used examples will show up, but they are still very scarce.  Something to add to your shopping list for serious c'lecters ;-)

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'Flage Guy
21 minutes ago, PQD said:

Yes, Jim, they are very, very rare, and in NOS condition like mine I can only recall seeing one other.  Used examples will show up, but they are still very scarce.  Something to add to your shopping list for serious c'lecters ;-)

 

:D:D:D Yeah buddy!!!!!!!!!!!

I consider myself very well blessed just have stumbled into that poplin Spec. 20...to me, that was striking it rich, especially a size 42R from the 29th I.D. 😝

Jacket, Field, O.D. A #1 USMFB.JPG

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kammo-man

I really like these jackets
Owen


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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General Apathy
On 7/11/2014 at 3:25 PM, Sabrejet said:

Here's another of those official QM studio shots, this time illustrating the then new OD Field Jacket...which in collector-speak has subsequently become variously known as the "M1941" or "Parsons Jacket". Revolutionary in its day, this first pattern jacket it is immediately recognizable by it buttoned pocket flaps, bigger collar and lack of shoulder straps..

post-8022-0-01844500-1405085026.jpg

.

Hi Ian,  I address the post to you as you started this topic but I know you no longer visit the forum . . . . . . . . . . sadly. :( 

I will screen grab this page and email to you to show you that topics you started in 2014 are still in use . . . . . . . . 

 

So after Saving Private Ryan hit the screens I would get calls enquiring after an  ' M-41 ' ( re-enactor speak  ), very often said was ' I don't want one of those green shade ones ', I want a tan one like on Saving Private Ryan, it was almost impossible to explain that original examples of the jackets started out as an ' olive ' shade and faded with sunlight and laundering to the tan shade everyone thought desirable. 

 

I purposely kept several unissued jackets in the store with labels and dates to show what a factory finished one appeared like, even then the tan jackets on Saving Private Ryan were the desired examples, ' we know we saw it on a Hollywood film ' 

 

lewis

 

.

 

 

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'Flage Guy
3 hours ago, General Apathy said:

I purposely kept several unissued jackets in the store with labels and dates to show what a factory finished one appeared like, even then the tan jackets on Saving Private Ryan were the desired examples, ' we know we saw it on a Hollywood film ' 

 

lewis

 LOL- "Dang it, that's not the way I want it!!!"

I remember being shocked at seeing John Wayne face down with a hole in his back on "Iwo Jima" as a 9-10 year old. At that same point in life, I saw the Life Magazine paintings of men being blasted apart by mortar rounds on the beach at Pelelieu. My young mind just didn't want to accept that: "That's not supposed to happen!!!!"

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This is my poplin Spec. 20 bought probably 15 years ago, which clearly is not true to O. D. 2 (and is definitely not O. D. 3, as believed by some), but does reflect the difficulty among textile fabricators to maintain true color from dye lot to dye lot.

spec20_jacket.jpg

spec20_tag.jpg

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'Flage Guy

Music to my eyes and ears, Mr. Charles 👍 👍 👍👍 👍

 

I suspect they had to check with Government Q.C. about the mismatches in shades as far as uniform items were concerned, except in the case of 'flage garments...and we both have

fine examples of this tolerance, the One-Piece Jungle Suits being a textbook case  😁

 

That's the first time I've ever seen a Jacket's spec tag installed sideways- quite cool! I should've posted my Spec 20 tag earlier.

 

Jacket, Field, O.D. A #7 USMFB.JPG

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29 minutes ago, 'Flage Guy said:

Music to my eyes and ears, Mr. Charles 👍 👍 👍👍 👍

 

I suspect they had to check with Government Q.C. about the mismatches in shades as far as uniform items were concerned, except in the case of 'flage garments...and we both have

fine examples of this tolerance, the One-Piece Jungle Suits being a textbook case  😁

 

That's the first time I've ever seen a Jacket's spec tag installed sideways- quite cool! I should've posted my Spec 20 tag earlier.

 

Jacket, Field, O.D. A #7 USMFB.JPG

Thanks for posting the label.  As you may know, I collect the O. D. Field Jackets, Mountain Jackets, Parachutist Coats, and Winter Combat Jackets by contract, sizes, and zipper types, and currently can account for nearly 1/3 of the spec. 20B contracts in every size made, and featuring all but two zipper styles I know were employed.

 

It is interesting to see this was made by Cooper, which was just a few months away from getting their only (and tiny) A-2 Jacket contract.  I suspect they did not have a big contract for the Spec. 20, as they rarely show up vs. my Philmac and others.

 

The placement in the pocket and sewing style for the labels was left up to the contractor, and this is part of what makes one contractor's jacket slightly different from the others:  every Philmac I have seen does indeed have the side-sewn label, and every Cooper has been sewn from the top.  Your Weicnhel 20A corresponds to all others I have seen from that contractor, too, being sewn on all sides.  

 

Sewing on all sides is a nice touch that speaks of a contractor that very likely made quality products in the civilian market, as Weinchel and others that sewed the labels on all sides must have realized the fragility of these labels and the great potential for unraveling, curling up, and fraying in such a high-use location:  they did not have to this, but they did.  You will also find some contractors that sewed the labels down on two ends, most likely just to keep the label from both unraveling and/or curling up.  And there are those contractors that consistently sewed their labels from the bottom into the pocket-bag junction seam, and sometimes into the welting seam of the pocket.

 

 

 

 

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