Jump to content
Salvage Sailor

"It's a Gemsco" USN & USCG Patch Manufacturers

Recommended Posts

Aloha Everyone,

 

This is a USN reference topic for patches manufactured by Gemsco, Inc. New York, NY for ships and stations of the United States Navy (and Coast Guard too!)

 

Please post any examples you may have in the original packaging (carded) along with a loose patch if you have one.

 

Dating a patch by the card color

There were three (3) different cards used by Gemsco for USN patches (and a fourth lighter blue color for civilian patches). The oldest cards are off-white and have a Gold Border frame. These were used until 1961/1962.

The second generation cards are white with a Red Border frame circa 1963-1966 with the later cards having a 10001 NYC zip code.

The third generation cards are Dark Blue with a Gold Border frame which were used from 1966 to about 1980 when they ceased USN production orders (as did Hilborn-Hamburger, the slack being taken up by the Leonard Company's Swiss-Tex brand).

 

First up, these examples are in the pre-1962 Gold border Gemsco packaging.

 

USS SPRINGFIELD CLG-7 in service 1944 to 1974. She was redesignated from CL-66 to CLG-7 (1957 to 1975). In 1975 she became CG-7

 

This example: Gemsco manufactured between 1957 and 1962

CLG 7 USS SPRINGFIELD Gemsco 001.jpg

CLG 7 USS SPRINGFIELD Gemsco 002.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

......and a bonus

 

Written instructions from the Executive Officer to the crewmen purchasing these at the ships store on how to/not to wear them

. Interesting. I wonder what the difference is (was) between a "Dungaree Jacket" and a "Blue Working Jacket"? I always read that the insignia of the ship your on goes on the left breadt, and any other acceptable patch o the tight breast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the second and third card used by Gemsco. The white with red border card is 1963-1966 and the blue with gold border card is 1967 (when ARL changed the name to NARL)

Also of note is the plastic packaging. This is the earlier white card without the zip code. The off-white and white cards were tucked into unsealed plastic bags with the flap pulled over. Rarely was there tape on the bag. When the white card with the 10001 zip code came out, it was in a completely sealed bag, as were the following blue 1966 cards such as the NARL below. Also notice that the NARL patch in wider than the card. The blue cards are 1/2 narrower than either of the older cards.

ARL NARL Gemsco 001.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Commissary Store US NAVAL SUB BASE, New London, CT

 

This is an example of the later White with Red border 1963-1966 card

Notice that it has zip code 10001 and that the bag is completely sealed

to meet the new Post Office shipping regulations of the time.

 

(yes folks, we lived in a world without area or zip codes before the sixties)

Commisary Store US Naval Sub Base New London CT Gemsco 001.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

....and the easiest one to date on the older card. USS VALLEY FORGE was initially to be an 'long hull' Essex (Ticonderoga) class aircraft carrier, CV-45. Built too late for WWII, she was commissioned in 1946 and then converted first to CVA-45 (Korean War - Attack), then CVS-45 (Cold War - Antisubmarine) and was finally converted to be one of the first dedicated helicopter carriers, LPH-8 on July 1st, 1961

 

USS VALLEY FORGE LPH-8 Amphibious Assault Ship (Helicopter)

Patch made in 1961

LPH 8 USS VALLEY FORGE Gemsco 001.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

USS OBSERVATION ISLAND EAG-154, an "experimental miscellaneous auxiliary", i.e. secret testing platform for the then new fleet ballistic missile submarines being developed for the MAD Triad of the Cold War.

 

She was EAG-154 from 1958 to 1968. This patch made between 1963-1966

EAG 154 USS OBSERVATION ISLAND Gemsco 001.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.