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Lets see some USMC Good Conduct Medals


DevilDan1900
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Gentlemen,

 

Were stars used on the Good Conduct ribbon bars to indicate subsequent awards? The army used knots on the ribbon bar, so was there a method used by the USMC?

Howdy....USMC used the bars as shown on many of the medals in these posts from the first awards in 1896 through about late 1940s (post war) when bars were discontinued. Engraving the reverse of the bars seems to have stopped prior to the discontinuing of the bars themeselves. Initially a Marine wore a bronze numeral on his ribbon bar signifying the number of awards of the GCM he held. When the bars were discontinued, the numerals ceased as well, in fact the numerals may have ceased earlier, just before the war. Then the "star" devices were used on the medal itself and on the ribbon bar and continue to this day.

Semper Fi......Bob.

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Howdy....USMC used the bars as shown on many of the medals in these posts from the first awards in 1896 through about late 1940s (post war) when bars were discontinued. Engraving the reverse of the bars seems to have stopped prior to the discontinuing of the bars themeselves. Initially a Marine wore a bronze numeral on his ribbon bar signifying the number of awards of the GCM he held. When the bars were discontinued, the numerals ceased as well, in fact the numerals may have ceased earlier, just before the war. Then the "star" devices were used on the medal itself and on the ribbon bar and continue to this day.

Semper Fi......Bob.

 

 

Thanks for the information Bob. The Marine Good Conduct medal metal bars, numbers, stars, etc. time line continues to confuse me... just a bit thick I guess.

 

So, the metal bar on the ribbon bar came first, then the metal numbers, then the stars? Do we know the dates when these changes occurred? For instance, this ribbon bar has a star and the construction appears wartime. The clutch backs are not the round type but are the steel clip type that we see every so often. Could this one be wartime or would it be postwar with the star?

 

USMC_ribbon_bar.JPG

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Thanks for the information Bob. The Marine Good Conduct medal metal bars, numbers, stars, etc. time line continues to confuse me... just a bit thick I guess.

 

So, the metal bar on the ribbon bar came first, then the metal numbers, then the stars? Do we know the dates when these changes occurred? For instance, this ribbon bar has a star and the construction appears wartime. The clutch backs are not the round type but are the steel clip type that we see every so often. Could this one be wartime or would it be postwar with the star?

 

USMC_ribbon_bar.JPG

Strictly guessing.......I'd say this bar looks post war, probably Korean War or even later. The 'clip' fasteners are usually found on WWII ribbon bars but as they are removeable and utilitarian don't guaranty that they were not used later. Only my 2 cents.

Bob

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It is possible to check with the French Government to see if they have a record of his CdG. I did this a few years back. I will see if I can find the address.

 

Thanks Beast, I would really appreciate that! thumbsup.gif

Frank

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Thanks Beast, I would really appreciate that! thumbsup.gif

Frank

FYI - Hubley is not listed in the new book by George B. Clark, "Decorated Marines of the Fourth Brigade in WWI". Has all Marine Croix de Guerre recipients, nor is he credited with a CdG in Frank Lockman's AEF 4th Brigade Roster.

Semper Fi....Bob

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FYI - Hubley is not listed in the new book by George B. Clark, "Decorated Marines of the Fourth Brigade in WWI". Has all Marine Croix de Guerre recipients, nor is he credited with a CdG in Frank Lockman's AEF 4th Brigade Roster.

Semper Fi....Bob

 

Bob,

Thanks for the info on Hubley. Is that lthe final complete list of recipients in Clark's book?

 

S/F

Frank

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Bob,

Thanks for the info on Hubley. Is that lthe final complete list of recipients in Clark's book?

 

S/F

Frank

 

I'd make the assumption that if the man is not listed in this book it is doubtful that he received a personal award of the CdG.

S/F..Bob

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Thanks Gary, your posting on WWI numbered engraved medals has answered a 34 year old mystery for me. When I was 13 I purchased a MC GCM that was left over from an estate sale for a dollar. I always wondered what era it was from. It's numbered 67506 on the rim. Kevin

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  • 1 month later...

The Ancestry website freebie offer really paid off for me. The wealth of information that site has on pre-1940 Marine records is just staggering. It might just be worth the $125 a year they want in subscription fees. Did anyone do a general search for Smedley Butler, Dan Daily, Pete Ellis or any other Marines who retired before 1940? Jeez, what a wealth of information!

 

Just using the name engraved on the reverses of GCM's in my collection, I had a 100% positive hit rate in the muster rolls for each individual Marine I attempted to locate. These muster rolls not only supply the Marine's unit(s) served in and enlistment dates, but in some cases, even their GCM medal number. I noticed if it was their 1st enlistment, the medal number was listed and if it was a subsequent enlistment, only the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc. BAR award would be listed.

 

Here is a medal awarded to Lee E. Ballman for his 1st Enlistment. The muster roll shows his enlistment date as 4 Sept 20 and his service with Barracks Detachment, Marine Barracks, Navy Yard, Boston, Mass when he was awarded his GC Medal.

 

With just his enlistment date and duty station creates one big shortcut in the records gathering process at NPRC, which I will now attempt on his records there.

 

Anybody else have good luck with Ancestry.com?

 

Gary

post-84-1181544287.jpg

post-84-1181544310.jpg

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The Ancestry website freebie offer really paid off for me. The wealth of information that site has on pre-1940 Marine records is just staggering. It might just be worth the $125 a year they want in subscription fees. Did anyone do a general search for Smedley Butler, Dan Daily, Pete Ellis or any other Marines who retired before 1940? Jeez, what a wealth of information!

 

...Anybody else have good luck with Ancestry.com?

 

Gary

I was sorry to see that freebie end on D-Day. Those USMC muster records are an awesome resource. For those who did not have a chance to see that: these are

 

"U.S. Marine Corps Muster Rolls, 1893-1940

 

This database contains an index to U.S. Marine Corps muster rolls from 1798-1940. Information contained in this database includes: name, rank, enlistment date, muster date, and station."

 

They are part of the military records at ancestry.com, an increasingly worthwhile source for pre-WWII military records: http://www.ancestry.com/search/rectype/def...&o_it=30263

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  • 9 months later...
robert_hyman
Here is an image of then Gunnery Sgt Daly with his medals take from that same approximate time frame, c. 1919 when he was placed on inactive status with the Reserve following the War. He retired officially as a Sgt. Maj. in 1929 and died in 1937. I am currently working on a biography of the Sgt. Maj. (three years and counting) and have also met with one of his few living family members. It appears from this image that he is wearing 3 bars on his good conduct at this point, strange as he had enlisted in 1899.

 

 

When will you have your book completed???? I would love to have a copy of it.

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  • 11 months later...

no idea how in the world I missed this thread...guess I need to pay more attention to pinned topics pinch.gif

 

Here is my favorite. I love pre-WWI named Good Conducts. This one is named to a Vincent A Powers for his second enlistment, 1912-1916

post_22_1190584028.jpg

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here is one to a Mervin L Lane...1917-1920. The interesting thing about this is he would have rated both a numbered GC and this engraved version, an interesting oddity for a medal collector. he was enlisted as a QMSgt in some special program to perform some special tasks in and around New York. He served less than 2 years. This would have qualified him for a rim-numbered 'Duration of War' GCM but apparently around 1921/22 he received a standard fully engraved medal. He made QuarterMaster Sgt in his first enlistment...

post_22_1192724756.jpg

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I'm not going to bother you all with the 3 rim numbered duration of war GCs in my collection, but here is a nice mini that's worth sharing...

WWI_Minis_Fronts.JPG

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oh yes, here is an unnamed GC with a second enlistment bar that, due to wear, I believe was a replacement medal the Marine got and put his bar onto...

2nd_Bar_GC_Front.JPG

2nd_Bar_GC_Bar.JPG

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Naming stopped in 1951, The top bar disappeared around 1959.

 

These medals look like they are from the 1951-59 time frame

 

Bill

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I also believed that official naming of USMC GCMs stopped in 1951 until I obtained this group to WW2 Vet & retired WM Ann M. Kopp, dated 1952. Live & Learn.

Semper Fi.....Bobgee

 

 

Kopp_Medal_bar_Obv.JPGKopp_GCM_Planchet_Rev.JPG

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  • 3 weeks later...

USMC Good conduct medal to Loren Cole.

He was stationed at the USS Chaleston and at the Naval Prison, Mare Island.

 

 

Stephan

 

post-131-1236418292.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...
FrankEaton01

Here's one that's part of a group to a Spanish American War and WWI veteran. His first enlistment was from 1898 - 1903, where he served on board the USS Mohican and at Sitka, Alaska. His second enlistment was from 1917 - 1921, and he served stateside as a recruiter. The dogtag would have been issued during his second enlistment, but shows his first enlistment date. Also, the medal has an engraving error; it should read 2nd Enlistment on the back, not 1st.

 

ec8eb224.jpg

 

553f8e97.jpg

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