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Navy volunteer armband


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Probably women and older men, could be for anything. Couldve just been when sailors were returning they helped at the port, just a guess

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It appears to have been an early war recruiting armband from what I could find. I have seen photos of armbands like this worn in the past, but cannot find examples now. It appears that while volunteer enlistments were still open, the Navy was giving those who signed up these armbands, apparently both as a way of showing the men chose Navy (and probably hoped others would be influenced to follow suit) and to show selective service draft boards that the man was taken.

 

About the only specific mention I found was in a St Louis, Mo. newspaper dated November 8, 1942 talking about the people waiting to board trains at their station and mentioned three African American men in suits wearing "NAVY VOLUNTEER" armbands. So it looks like they were worn by volunteer enlistees until they arrived at their first training station.

"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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