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WW1 Signal Corps Telephone Operator "Hello Girl"


cwnorma

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This wonderful image recently sold on eBay. It is a fairly important image of a Signal Corps Telephone Operator, sometimes called "Hello Girls."

 

This image shows shows good details of the summer Signal Corps Telephone Operator uniform. The navy-blue version of this uniform was shared with Female Quartermaster Corps Clerks, while Rehabilitation Aides wore the same uniform in "heather-grey".

 

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The distinctive characteristics of this uniform are: "stand and fall" collar with three button closure, lower pockets only, single breasted with 5 tunic size buttons down the front, and a self belt. The summer version was made of cotton "sateen" giving it the distinctive sheen seen in the photo. The winter version was made of melton or worsted wool.

 

Also of note are the Signal Corps insignia visible on her collar and cap, and the brassard showing her rank as "Telephone Operator." The brassard-type rank was done away with some time in 1918 and the Army adopted rank "chevrons" similar to those worn by enlisted men for the Signal Corps Telephone Operators. The various grades were as follows:

 

  • Junior Telephone Opeator -- No insignia
  • Telephone Operator -- A conventional telephone mouthpiece
  • Senior Operator -- A conventional telephone mouthpiece with a wreath below (sometimes the wreath was expressed as a bar or a rocker).
  • Head Operator -- A conventional telephone mouthpiece with a wreath below and star above.

 

Chris

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From the National World War I Musuem in Kansas City:

 

I could not imagine wearing this bulky headset for more than 10 minutes let alone the hours the Hello Girls endured them.

 

The YWCA poster was an appeal to provide services to the women who served in this role.

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Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

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By coincidence, I have these photographs of a photograph that seems to show a similar uniform.

 

These are taken from the display at the entrance to the National World War I museum where video screens page through thousands of photos of the war's participants from various nations.

 

The projected photos are almost life size, and really bring you face to face with the people of that period.

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Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

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donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif
donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif


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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Chris,

I bought that image...but it was a tough, drawn-out bidding battle! The image joins a couple of other "Hello Girl" photos in my collection:

 

post-949-0-10595200-1441747777.jpg

 

Detail:

post-949-0-21398300-1441747816.jpg

 

 

John A-G

 

 

 

 

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

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Image taken in Villiers, France, 1918. Inscription on back talks about "Miss Isabelle"

 

post-949-0-00969200-1441748045.jpg

 

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

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Details of the above image:

 

post-949-0-97246800-1441748137.jpg

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

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Details of the above image:

 

post-949-0-56436300-1441748278.jpg

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

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And finally, a woman with Signal Corps insignia on her cap that I would like to believe is a Hello Girl, but no identification nor any other insignia visible.

post-949-0-52692900-1441748372.jpg

 

 

Detail:

post-949-0-10774900-1441748481.jpg

 

 

John

 

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

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The ladies in the group photo all look a little war weary...none of them are really smiling, and they all look like they expect to be shelled at any moment. There has got to be a great, but most likely long lost story behind this one.

Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

donation2017.gif

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif
donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif


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