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82nd AB Bring Back

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Good Evening,

 

I hope everyone enjoyed their Turkey Day! A dealer has offered me this flag the other day but I have my reservations about it. In the corner it is marked "SAINTE MERE EGLISE, CARENTAN, 2ND BATT 505TH 82ND" I've never seen this type of marking on a flag bring back before. On the white part of the flag has quite a number of signatures from the soldiers that brought the flag back. I don't doubt the authenticity of the flag and the signatures all look old but the marking in the corner makes me a little uneasy. The dealer wants $750, in my opinion, is a little steep. Regardless, I look forward to getting some opinions on this piece as it is a really cool one! Please feel free to comment and I look forward to hearing your opinion. - Nick K

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I would start off by researching the names to see if they lineup with the 505th. I agree that it seems too good to be true. Good luck!


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Pretty sure they're are some kind of rosters available online for the 505th too. It's been a while though...


Looking for the following:

452nd and 447th Bomb Group items

Anything 12th Armored- especially uniforms

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WWII US Navy Uniforms from the Battle Off Samar: USS Johnston DD-557, USS Hoel DD-553, USS Samuel B. Roberts DE-413, USS Heermann DD-532, USS Dennis DE-405, USS John C. Butler DE-339, USS Raymond DE-341, USS Fanshaw Bay St. Lo, White Plains, Kalinin Bay, Kitkun Bay and Gambier Bay...


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Pretty sure they're are some kind of rosters available online for the 505th too. It's been a while though...

 

I have the 505RCT roster and you have another one on the website 505rct.org

 

Domi

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The names on the flag appear to be members of the first Parachute Test Platoon, the first men to "stand in the door" in 1940. Swilley, Wade, Borom, William "Red" King {Paratrooper #1} are among those I can decipher from your picture.


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Does anyone own a bringback flag, with provenance, with a stamped location (vs hand written)? Not passing judgment on this flag. Just a question.

 

Tim


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Thank you for everyone's response. Based on Jeffrey's finding this could very well be original. TLHSS, honestly, I didn't even think to ask him where he picked it up. I'll reach out to him and see what he says. - Nick K


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It's real easy for someone desiring to fake-up such an item to find a correct roster and include some of those names on it. That's just basic faker/con artist 101. The printed info looks like it was done more to appeal to a potential collector than something done during WW2.

I wouldn't touch this thing unless I personally pulled it out of the vet's attic or someone I trust did.

I was curious about the abbreviation "BATT." Was that used instead of "BN" back then?


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As a comparison to other examples, I have not seen stenciling, only hand writing. I've been seeing some stenciled examples on Ebay, but it seems too easy to fade by applying less ink to the stamp. Also I don't just see names, but many times nicknames and hometowns. All different writing instruments. Mix of print and cursive.

 

Again not passing judgement. For the cost I would like to see some provenance. But I'm not a risk taker unless it's a $30 item.

 

Tim


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Thanks for all the help! KurtA, I'm not sure about the abbreviation. Everyone brings up valid points but at the end of the day I don't think I could have this piece in my collection because I would toss and turn over the authenticity of it. - Nick K


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I've looked at a fair number of unit-signed 'capture flags' - from both theatres - and have never seen one with stenciling on it. Does it mean it was never done? No, but they had tour stamps ready for towns they might be liberating? Where would you even get a Ste Mere Eglise and Carentan stamp - especially one that matched your unit designation stamps. Also, whenever GIs refer to their unit, I very seldom see / hear them refer to division. It's usually more localized, as most everyone at a post is in the same division. As such, it's typically company and battalion - MAYBE regiment, as the Marines do. And the "44" just seems odd. It makes me wonder who it was made for. I generally think unit-signed flags are signed by buddies to bring home. They know the unit they're in, where they fought, and when they were there. On occasion I've seen them annotated as to where the flag was captured (and date).

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Was the 505th PIR even at Carentan? I thought it was an all 101st Airborne Division battle until reinforced by an armor unit.


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That might clinch it - LOL. I'm more of a PTO guy, but did a quick order-of-battle search, and it looks like you might be right. What I read mentioned 501, 502, and 506 PIRs, along with 327GIR. Combat Command "A" of the 2nd Armored Division was in reserve. Will certainly defer to the Airborne gurus though, as that was a quick web search.

 

Was the 505th PIR even at Carentan? I thought it was an all 101st Airborne Division battle until reinforced by an armor unit.

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Was the 505th PIR even at Carentan? I thought it was an all 101st Airborne Division battle until reinforced by an armor unit.

The 505PIR never been in Carentan or around ...

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If the flag, regardless of its origins, bears the authentic signatures of the first American soldiers to jump as paratroopers, the question becomes what's the value as an autographed piece?


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Im not sticking up for the piece but its possible the vet stamped the info on the flag later after the war and its also possible the wartime unit sign maker etc could have had a stamp set for whatever reason...ive seen wartime stencil sets with individual letters and maybe they had stamp sets too with individual letters....and as someone pointed out if those autographs of the test platoon guys are original then its definitely worth something...$750 does seem very high though even if it checks out to be real...mike


Always looking for and buying 50's era 11th Airborne/ 187th ARCT/ 82nd Airborne tac mark painted jump helmets!



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My first question would be "Why would Red King be signing a 505th PIR souvenir flag?" Red, the first enlisted paratrooper in the army served with the 101st Airborne's 506th PIR during WWII. Here is a link to Red's obit taken from the LA Times:

 

 

COLUMBUS, Ga. — William N. (Red) King, the nation's first enlisted paratrooper, has died 48 years after making that initial jump.
King, who died here Saturday at age 71 of unreported causes, was the first enlisted man out of a converted bomber on Aug. 16, 1940, when the U.S. Army's embryonic parachute test platoon made its first jump over Ft. Benning, Ga.
He was supposed to have been the second platoon member out of the plane, but he told an interviewer in 1982, "The guy ahead of me--I won't say his name--wouldn't jump."
So after the other trooper was pulled from the door, King stepped out of the plane circling above Ft. Benning's Lawson Field.

http://articles.latimes.com/1988-08-25/news/mn-1135_1_paratrooper


Allan

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Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

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I am wondering if this was taken by a collector (or another vet) to reunions for signatures?

 

I can't blow up the photo of Red King's autograph enough to get clear details, but if you would like to compare it to one that I have that was done in 1987, please go to http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/88780-the-airborne-walk/


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" We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm. "

View my website honoring the men and women of Indiana: http://indianavets.wix.com/indiana-at-war and follow my updates on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/IndianaModernAgeofWar/
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