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Captured Details From Yard Longs


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Panoramic photographs (also called “yard longs”) often hide fascinating details about the unit, uniforms, and equipment.

 

Let’s post captures from panoramics that show interesting details.

 

 

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Here is a capture from a panoramic of 67th Company 1st Battalion 5th Marines Coblenz in Spring 1919. The Lieutenant on the left is the only Marine in the whole photo wearing ribbons. You can see the company mascot, a small monkey on the arm of the kneeling Corporal. All are wearing a 2ID SSI (red square for 1/5.)

 

 

 

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GREAT Idea for a topic. I love yardlongs...so much to discover in each one!

 

Pappy Boyington in the 1938-39 TBS class yardlong...I don't own this one, unfortunately

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-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

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Late 1918 shot of the Philly QM Depot...scarce capture of some WM's in WWI

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-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

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same QM Depot photo...a Marine in a sweatshirt, hadn't seen it of the period until this shot...

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-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

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donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

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Same image...believe to be General Cyrus Radford on the far right

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-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

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donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

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Here's a capture from a panoramic of 51st Company 5th Marines also at Coblenz in the Spring of 1919. This company had a couple of German Shepherds for mascots. Also note the Marine in the back row right of center with the trench knife.

 

 

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Here's a capture from a panoramic of 51st Company 5th Marines also at Coblenz in the Spring of 1919. This company had a couple of German Shepherds for mascots. Also note the Marine in the back row right of center with the trench knife.

 

 

 

It almost looks like a couple of the guys in that yard long (both pics) have shotguns.

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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This is a great topic. I also love yardlong photos, especially the early ones. I have shared this one a whole back. It is a photgraph of the USMC 6th Machine Gun Battalion taken on the Capitol steps on August 12th, 1919 after the victory parade in Washington. They mustered out the next day. Just looking at the faces of men who fought so galaantly in WWI gives me chills. Many of these men saw action the whole war, starting at Belleauwood right up to the end. I have spent hours looking at this picture through a glass and have marvelled at so many of the details. I will start with a photo on the right side of the picture which shows the band. All the men are wearing star/Indianhead painted helmets and patches. Intrestingly, they are all also equipped with 1918 pattern suspenders, pistol belts, and a .45 holster regardless of rank. All of them.

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I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

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In looking through the whole photo, I have found two or three of the enlisted men who may be wearing collar discs, but for the most part, the collars are void of discs. Of course the officers have their ega's. I have also found just a couple of men wearing the Marine pattern rounded corner first aid pouches. If you look closely, you will see this man in the front row wears one. (sorry for the re-post of the first pic, tried to delete it but wasn't able to. I am referring to the first photo below on the first aid kit).Most of the men, the vast majority, are wearing the straight edge army style first aid pouch. Another interesting factoid is that all of these men are wearing ega's on their helmet. I find this important as if you were in the market for a 6th MGB helmet with painted insignia, this suggests you would want one with at least evidence of the ega once being on it.

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I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

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The last photo sure didnt turn out as clear as I thought. The man fourth from left though with the little mustache has the USMC pattern pouch. The other thing I have been fascinated with are the small unintended details in the photo. Being August in Washington, with no air conditioning, most of the windows in the Capitol are open. Additionally, there are some neat vehicles in the background on both sides of the photo. One looks to be a bus of some sort. Another has the hood up with a couple men working on the engine. Love this stuff. Kevin

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I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

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Great photos! here's a few observations ...

 

12A54, in post number 2, it's interesting that the officer seems to be the only man wearing a USMC pattern uniform. All of the enlisted men are wearing Army olive drab. Also, the officer is wearing a "Sam Beige belt" comprised of a web pistol belt and either a Mills web equipment strap or one web 1918 Equipment Suspender.

 

The twice wounded (two vertical stripes on the lower left cuff) Canadian officer in Shrapeldude's post number 7 was likely that companies foreign training officer.

 

In 12A54'S post number 10, the seated officer also wears a "Sam Beige belt", as do the officers in Warguy's posts number 12 and 13. This seems to have been something that only the officers of the USMC did. I don't recall ever seeing an Army officer wearing a "Sam Beige belt".

 

Also, in the AEF, bandsmen were not authorized to carry rifles so they were issued sidearms instead ... hence all the pistols.

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Thanks nerd, in the 6mgb photo, all of the men, bandsmen, enlisted and officers are wearing the same rig, khaki canvas suspenders, pistol belts, and .45 holsters. Not a single rifle belt in the whole picture. Must have done this of course for the parade to give a uniform appearance. Interesting still about bandsmen though. Kevin

I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

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I love seeing USMC yardlong photos! I have not yet acquired any myself but after seeing Brig's photo wall in his museum, I definitely want to pick up some panoramics and portraits sometime! Hope to see more from you guys!

Semper Fidelis, to all Marines past, present and future..

*Remembering CWO3 James Warren Maddox, USMC 1957-2018*

LOOKING FOR EARLY USMC CHEVRONS & RANK INSIGNIA, COMPETITIVE MARKSMANSHIP AWARDS, RECRUITING MATERIALS AND POSTERS, PHOTOGRAPHS, PENNANTS, SIGNATURES, EARLY NUMBERED CAMPAIGN MEDALS, PRE-1900 USMC GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL, USMC ENGRAVED NAVY MARKSMANSHIP MEDAL, ANY MATERIALS RELATED TO 1ST BATTALION 9TH MARINES OR ANY OF THE THREE SHIPS BEARING THE NAME "USS MADDOX".


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Kevin,

 

Another interesting thing about bandsmen was that early in the war, during combat the musicians were detailed as stretcher bearers.

 

At some point down the line, GHQ realized that too many experienced musicians were being wounded and they were having difficulty locating enough qualified men with which to replace them.

 

Shortly after that the practice of using bandsmen as stretcher bearers was abandoned and line infantrymen from each company were detailed for that duty instead. Their rifles were taken away and replaced with a stretcher.

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Shortly after that the practice of using bandsmen as stretcher bearers was abandoned and line infantrymen from each company were detailed for that duty instead. Their rifles were taken away and replaced with a stretcher.

!!!

 

If someone took away my rifle and gave me a stretcher INSTEAD rather than in addition, I'd tell them to pound sand!

-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

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donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

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Yeah, what happened to every Marine is a rifleman first?

I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

donation2015.gifdonation2016.gifdonation2019.gif

 

 

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A few notes on the 67th Compamy 1/5th Marines panoramic. This was my grandfather's company, but he does not appear in it. In the spring of 1919 he was detached to Third Army for two months. This photo was taken at that time as evidenced by his absence, blooming trees, and open windows in the farmhouse behind them. Way in the background is a large tent encampment, flaps open.

 

Of the 184 or so Marines in this photo, all wear the red square 2ID SSI. Only one or two wear ribbons; the Lt. shown (with three), and another Lt. that I think has one. Only three wear a marksmanship badge, all sharpshooter. There are four Lieutenants and several NCOs. There are Marines wearing 4, 3, 2, and 1 overseas service stripes. One Marine seems to be wearing a British style overseas cap (two buttons on the front). [Wonder if those are USMC buttons?] None appear to be wearing French-style caps. There are about four BAR gunners. The placard in front reads, Coblenz Bridgehead 67th Co 5th Marines

 

I found images from the 51st Company panoramic online (think it was an auction item or someone shared them with me). This was a different battalion (2/5) but was taken in the exact same location. The placard in front must have been a chalk board used by each company rotating there from the tent encampment for their unit photo. The same farmhouse, trees, etc. Interestingly, only one Marine in 51st Company wears a British-style cap making me wonder why it was allowed and why only one appears in each of these two companies (could it be on purpose to ID a specific duty or reward?).

 

 

I'd love to find that location some day (with a metal detector)!

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Yeah, what happened to every Marine is a rifleman first?

That wasn't true until Korea...look how many Marines in those WWI photos lack marksmanship badges!

 

It wasn't REALLY true until the 80s (85 if memory serves, maybe you old salts can confirm), when females began to qualify on the range

-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
Sgt Jesse 'Jeff Nasty' Balthaser
Sgt John P Huling
Cpl Carlos 'Gilo Monster' Gilorozco
Cpl Stephen C 'Socks' Sockalosky
LCpl Joshua A 'Scottie' Scott
LCpl Jason Lee 'Birdman' Frye
LCpl Nicolas B Morrison
LCpl Jon T Hicks
LCpl Osbrany 'Oz' Montes De Oca
Pvt Lewis T D Calapini
'The SOI 5'

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif
donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

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I do find it interesting that those WWI Marines trained for about a year before entering combat and the legend of their effectiveness was attributed to superior marksmanship. Yet less than 2% in the photo wear (sharpshooter) badges. Perhaps there was no supply of them.

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I would suspect the lack of ribbons in your photo, 12A54 is due to the fact they were still "over there". Additionally, I don't think the Victory medal had been awarded yet, and many if not most yet to be awarded the GCM. I know Valor awards were being presented in the early Spring of 1919 so DSC ribbons would have started making an appearance, but of course those weren't super prevalent. There were no ribbons of course for the purple heart or silver star at that time. Marines who had seen service overseas prior to WWI would have campaign ribbons or an expeditionary ribbon, but again probably not the majority. The 1,2 and 3 overseas stripes illustrates the constant arrival through the summer of 1918 of replacements. I have enjoyed looking through my photo for the right sleeve stripes denoting wounds in action. There are several I can make out. I am familiar with your photo and the background. Someday I would love to acquire one of the Germany yardlongs. Kevin

I am eagerly collecting Pre-WWII USMC material. Any Marine Corps Span Am era, WWI, Banana Wars, or China Marine related material is especially sought after.

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