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For a while I've liked this ribbon, the ubiquitous American Campaign ribbon. I don't know why; I suppose because it's a ribbon that was often earned while actively defending our shores or patrolling close to home, or in backwaters such as South America.

 

The top ribbon bar has four stars on it, which isn't "rare" but it's a distinction nonetheless. I'd imagine that it was related to an Atlantic convoy or task force.

 

The bar below it has two stars.

 

Does anyone have any similarly decorated American Campaign ribbons? I know that numerals were also used occasionally on that ribbon as well as the EAME ribbon.

 

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I have never heard of using numbers on any of the campaign medals except the Marine Corps Expeditionary medal, of course that does not mean that it was not done.

 

The American Campaign Medal was authorized one star for each of the following nine campaigns.

 

Convoy ON-67, February 21 - 26, 1942

Convoy SC-107, November 3 - 8, 1942

Task Group 21.12, July 12 - August 23, 1942

Task Group 21.14, July 27 - September 10, 1943

Task Group 21.15, March 24 - May 11, 1944

Convoy TAG 18, November 1 - 6, 1942

U.S.S. Frederick C. Davis, April 24, 1945

U.S.S. Atik, March 27, 1942

U.S.S. Asterion, March 22, 1942 - January 31, 1943


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While Navy rules evidently permitted multiple service stars (or other attachments) on the American Campaign Medal, the Army authorized one bronze service star for wear on the American Campaign Medal to denote participation in the antisubmarine campaign. To qualify the individual soldier or officer must have been assigned or attached to, and present for duty with a unit credited with the campaign (link here to see TIOH on the ACM). In any case, USAAF units were the only likely Army participants in the American Theater Antisubmarine Campaign and, in fact, the Antisubmarine Campaign is not listed in the Army's Unit Citation and Campaign Participation Register for WWII, which does not cover USAAF units.


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Then out spake brave Horatius, the Captain of the Gate:


"To every man upon this earth death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better than facing fearful odds,


For the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his gods."

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Here's a set of WW2 thick ribbons for a member of the Coast Guard. He has a 2 and a star on his American Campaign. I guess the Good Conduct and Victory Medals were the last two he received, so he just put both up top. I have no info on the him, but it is an original group.

Kurt

 

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Kurt - that is an outstanding ribbon bar! That's what I'm talking about. I had heard that numerals = anti-submarine patrols; that seems to be borne out by your vet's ribbon bar, since the star is also there.


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That one's mine MPage, and I was just about to submit it, too. You read my mind :lol:

 

The bars in your original post are the only American Campaign ribbons I've ever seen with more than one star on them. Very strange indeed think.gif


Jeff C.

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For a while I've liked this ribbon, the ubiquitous American Campaign ribbon. I don't know why; I suppose because it's a ribbon that was often earned while actively defending our shores or patrolling close to home, or in backwaters such as South America.

 

The top ribbon bar has four stars on it, which isn't "rare" but it's a distinction nonetheless. I'd imagine that it was related to an Atlantic convoy or task force.

 

The bar below it has two stars.

 

Does anyone have any similarly decorated American Campaign ribbons? I know that numerals were also used occasionally on that ribbon as well as the EAME ribbon.

 

dscn2624ty3.th.jpg

 

Hate to burst your bubble, but the ACM was the WW II equivalent of the Aunt Sally, first authorized c. 1953 and officially known as the National Defense Service Medal.


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a. The American Campaign Medal was awarded to personnel for service within the American Theater between 7 December 1941 and 2 March 1946 under any of the following conditions.

 

(1) On permanent assignment outside the continental limits of the United States.

 

(2) Permanently assigned as a member of a crew of a vessel sailing ocean waters for a period of 30 days or 60 nonconsecutive days.

 

(3) Permanently assigned as a member of an operating crew of an airplane actually making regular and frequent flights over ocean waters for a period of 30 days.

 

(4) Outside the continental limits of the United States in a passenger status or on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 days not consecutive.

 

(5) In active combat against the enemy and was awarded a combat decoration or furnished a certificate by the commanding general of a corps, higher unit, or independent force that he actually participated in combat.

 

(6) Within the continental limits of the United States for an aggregate period of one year.

 

b. The eastern boundary of the American Theater is from the North Pole, south along the 75th meridian west longitude to the 77th parallel north latitude, then southeast through Davis Strait to the intersection of the 40th parallel north latitude and the 35th meridian west longitude, then south along the meridian to the 10th parallel north latitude, then southeast to the intersection of the Equator and the 20th meridian west longitude, then south along the 20th meridian west longitude to the South Pole. The western boundary is from the North Pole, south along the 141st meridian west longitude to the east boundary of Alaska, then south and southeast along the Alaska boundary to the Pacific Ocean, then south along the 130th meridian to its intersection with the 30th parallel north latitude, then southeast to the intersection of the Equator and the 100th meridian west longitude to the South Pole. The American Theater included North America (excluding Alaska) and South America.

 

4. Components: The following are authorized components:

 

a. Medal (regular size): MIL-DTL-3943/227. Medal set with full size medal and ribbon bar. NSN 8455-00-269-5760.

 

b. Medal (miniature size): MIL-DTL-3943/227. Available commercially.

 

c. Ribbon: MIL-DTL-11589/9. NSN 8455-00-257-0517. Available commercially.

 

d. Streamer: The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer for one streamer on the Army flag. Although there are three designated campaigns in the American Theater, no Army units received campaign participation credit.

 

5. Background: a. The American Campaign Medal was established per Executive Order 9265, dated 6 November 1942, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and announced in War Department Bulletin 56, 1942. The criteria was initially announced in Department of the Army (DA) Circular 1, dated 1 January 1943, so that the ribbon could be authorized prior to design of the medal. The criteria for the medal was announced in DA Circular 84, dated 25 March 1948 and subsequently published in Army Regulation 600-65, dated 22 September 1948.

 

b. The ribbon design was approved by the Secretary of War on 24 November 1942. The blue color represents the Americas; the central blue, white and red stripes (taken from the American Defense Service Medal ribbon) refers to the continuance of American defense after Pearl Harbor. The white and black stripes refer to the German part of the conflict on the Atlantic Coast, while the red and white stripes are for the Japanese colors and refer to that part of the conflict on the Pacific Coast.

 

c. The medal was designed by Mr. Thomas Hudson Jones. The reverse side was designed by Mr. A. A. Weinman and is the same design as used on the reverse of the European-African-Middle Eastern and Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medals. The first medal was presented to General of the Army George C. Marshall on 17 December 1947.

 

d. One bronze star is worn on the ribbon to indicate participation in an authorized campaign. There were three campaigns in the American Theater:

 

(1) Antisubmarine: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

*(2) Ground Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

*(3) Air Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

* These campaigns are not displayed as streamers on the Army flag.


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Collecting WWII Armor and Tank Destroyer Items

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You'll find that almost everybody inducted into the Armed Forces after 7 Dec 41 and TRAINED in CONUS for a year prior to deployment overseas was awarded this.

 

Anyone who joined the Armed Forces after the NDSM was authorized, including NG and OR, rec'd one of these puppies, too. Not too many NG or OR are on active duty longer than 6 months, w/ the exception of today's GWOT.


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[4.]...d. The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer for one streamer on the Army flag. Although there are three designated campaigns in the American Theater, no Army units received campaign participation credit.

 

[5.]...d. One bronze star is worn on the ribbon to indicate participation in an authorized campaign. There were three campaigns in the American Theater:

 

(1) Antisubmarine: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

*(2) Ground Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

*(3) Air Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

 

* These campaigns are not displayed as streamers on the Army flag....

What is the source of your material?

 

Paragraphs 4.d. and 5.d. of the cited material are inconsistent with the same numbered paragraphs on The Institute of Heraldry Web site (link here) and on the U.S. Army TACOM Veteran Medals Web site (link here), which are identical:

 

4...d. The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer. The Army displays only one streamer on the Army flag, that of the Antisubmarine Campaign, because there were no Army units that received campaign participation credit for the other two designated campaigns.

 

5...d. One bronze service star is authorized for wear on the American Campaign Medal to denote participation in the antisubmarine campaign. The individual must have been assigned or attached to, and present for duty with, a unit credited with the campaign.


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Then out spake brave Horatius, the Captain of the Gate:


"To every man upon this earth death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better than facing fearful odds,


For the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his gods."

 

 

 

 

 

 


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What is the source of your material?

 

Paragraphs 4.d. and 5.d. of the cited material are inconsistent with the same numbered paragraphs on The Institute of Heraldry Web site (link here) and on the U.S. Army TACOM Veteran Medals Web site (link here), which are identical:

 

4...d. The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer. The Army displays only one streamer on the Army flag, that of the Antisubmarine Campaign, because there were no Army units that received campaign participation credit for the other two designated campaigns.

 

5...d. One bronze service star is authorized for wear on the American Campaign Medal to denote participation in the antisubmarine campaign. The individual must have been assigned or attached to, and present for duty with, a unit credited with the campaign.

 

 

http://www.gruntsmilitary.com/acpm.shtml


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Collecting WWII Armor and Tank Destroyer Items

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Hate to burst your bubble, but the ACM was the WW II equivalent of the Aunt Sally, first authorized c. 1953 and officially known as the National Defense Service Medal.

 

Uh, there's no bubble to burst; I was merely commenting on interesting devices that you don't usually see on this ubiquitous ribbon.


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Regarding that one ribbon bar I posted - I've checked the ships involved in the authorized campaigns, and there are none that would rate four stars, or even two for that matter. I'd imagine that it was common to add a star for an engagement with the enemy.


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I have never heard of using numbers on any of the campaign medals except the Marine Corps Expeditionary medal, of course that does not mean that it was not done.

 

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The bended knee is not a tradition of our Corps. (General A. A. Vandegrift, USMC, 5 May 1946)

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You'll find that almost everybody inducted into the Armed Forces after 7 Dec 41 and TRAINED in CONUS for a year prior to deployment overseas was awarded this.

While that's technically true, many folks who were drafted or inducted later in the war never served a year in the U.S. For example, my grandfather was drafted in October, 1944, went through basic training, had a short furlough and was sent to Germany as an infantry replacement with the 86th Division in February, 1945. He earned the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with a battle star for the Central Europe campaign. Because his division was one of the last to enter combat in Europe, it was sent home in June, 1945, given a couple of months of intensive training to prepare for the invasion of Japan and sent to the Pacific where he also earned the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. But he never had enough cumulative time in the U.S. before his discharge to rate the American Campaign Medal.

 

Also, keep in mind that the American theater was huge and encompassed everything from the Arctic Circle to the tip of South America. Thousands of soldiers and sailors qualified for overseas bars for months and sometimes years of foreign service in such places as the Caribbean, Panama and Brazil where they engaged in anti-submarine patrols and stayed on alert for possible Axis invasions, especially early in the war. Those guys earned their American Campaign medals much the same as a supply clerk in Hawaii earned the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal or an aircraft mechanic in England earned the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal.

 

I have a magazine type booklet published for the Army in 1942 or 1943 that breaks down all of the dozens of countries around the world where American troops were serving and it is amazing to see all the places, especially in South America and West Africa, where you usually don't think about us having troops during the war.

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Here is a ribbon bar to a gunner who served with the 6th BG in both the Caribbean and CBI/Pacific. His first Air Medal award is GO'd to the 6th AF and he has the 'battle star' on the American Campaign. If he had worn his ribbons prior to heading to the CBI he would have had the AM-ATO combo, would that have raised some hell on this forum. Markpost-527-1230664866.jpgpost-527-1230664875.jpg


"The Dude Abides"

 

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...Here is a ribbon bar to a gunner who served with the 6th BG in both the Caribbean....and he has the 'battle star' on the American Campaign. If he had worn his ribbons prior to heading to the CBI he would have had the AM-ATO combo, would that have raised some hell on this forum....

No "hell raised" by anyone who knows what he is talking about. 6th Bombardment Group had credit for participating in the American Theater Antisubmarine Campaign (see below), which warrants a star on the ACM worn by soldiers attached or assigned to the Group and present for duty with it during that campaign (see post #11 above).

 

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Then out spake brave Horatius, the Captain of the Gate:


"To every man upon this earth death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better than facing fearful odds,


For the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his gods."

 

 

 

 

 

 


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4...d. The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer. The Army displays only one streamer on the Army flag, that of the Antisubmarine Campaign, because there were no Army units that received campaign participation credit for the other two designated campaigns.

 

This bears repeating, and would explain the preponderance of stars seen on American Campaign ribbons. The only thing I don't quite understand is - the antisubmarine campaign is listed as rating a streamer, however the Navy regulations never seem to mention it, only the nine convoys/task forces.


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I just won this group, I will post better pics when it arrives


-Brig
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"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
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Sgt John P Huling
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...I don't quite understand...the antisubmarine campaign is listed as rating a streamer, however the Navy regulations never seem to mention it, only the nine convoys/task forces...

Link here to read about the U.S. Navy Battle streamer for WWII American Theater. This indicates that one Bronze Star was authorized for escort, antisubmarine, armed guard, and special operations.


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Then out spake brave Horatius, the Captain of the Gate:


"To every man upon this earth death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better than facing fearful odds,


For the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his gods."

 

 

 

 

 

 


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1. Escort, antisubmarine, armed guard and special operations

 

Right but the task groups may be what they're referring to, regarding "antisubmarine".


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Forum members:

 

You are in the MEDALS & DECORATIONS "Reference Section". This area is where posts from the general Medals & Decorations "discussion section" (http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind...?showforum=83) are moved for permanent retention and education about the history of the various U.S. medals and military decorations.

 

As time moves forward, some of these posts may have additional information added to them by the moderators of this section. We ask for your input as well, especially in the correction of any erroneous information that may have inadvertently be posted..

 

We encourage further comments about this post and its content. In order to do so, you will need to start a new post in the general Medals & Decorations "discussion section" (here: http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/ind....?showforum=83). And, as needed, we will be pleased to move any new and / or valued information that is derived from your post (and subsequent comments) into this reference area as its own standing post.

 

Please be advised: posting and / or editing is restricted on this post to moderator's and forum staff.

 

Sincerely,

Chris / ADMIN


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