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Frogskin cover in Italy

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I came across this photo today and thought it was interesting enough to post.  Shows a T-Patcher in Italy wearing a frogskin helmet cover.  Best explanation I could figure is it's a section of camo parachute but the material looks like it could be thicker.  What do you guys think?

 

Rob 

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Could have been cut from a shelter half, it is pretty dark and grainy to verify it is actual frogskin pattern however.

 

Robin-


I Collect USMC WWII uniforms, gear, patches, insignia. medals and ribbons. I also sell and trade Militaria of primarily the U.S. Military.

 

R.Delaney

 

Semper Fidelis-

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Looks like frogskin to me - my guess is it IS parachute material  - looks like he has some around his neck as well.   Great pic!

 

Best,

Bill 


WTB USMC NAMED GROUPINGS, WWI, WWII (ESPECIALLY 4TH MARINE DIVISION ITEMS) AND UNIS MARKED ITEMS, NAMED INFANTRY DIVISION 4 POCKET CLASS A JACKETS, ESPECIALLY 34th ID AND NAMED GROUPINGS, FIRST SPECIAL SERVICE FORCE ITEMS



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Good eye with the scarf Bill, you know I was so fixated on the helmet I did not notice that.  That all makes sense.

 

Rob


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Don't be too surprised if you come across pictures of Germans with helmets covered in US silk. Several Normandy pictures out there showing this was common practice on both sides, well at least it was in the areas where the paratroops landed. 

 

 

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"The battle belonged that morning to the thin wet line of khaki that dragged itself ashore on the channel coast of France." - General Omar Bradley.

 

 

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More

 

 

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"The battle belonged that morning to the thin wet line of khaki that dragged itself ashore on the channel coast of France." - General Omar Bradley.

 

 

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Thanks for the additional photos.  I was well aware that the camo parachute material was used by both the US & the Germans.  When I first saw the photo I posted the material looked (to me) as if it could have been cut from something else.  After it was pointed out that he also had it tied around his neck it became clear what it was.  The 5th division liner used for your avatar I believe you bought from me, looks good!

 

Rob  


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Another possibility is that this is camouflaged mosquito netting. Mosquitoes were not just an annoyance in Italy. There were also very real concerns about troops becoming ill with malaria. In October 1943 the Germans flooded areas near Anzio to slow the Allied advance and the mosquito population rose. The Allies took a number of steps to control the spread of the disease. https://history.amedd.army.mil/booksdocs/wwii/Malaria/chapterV.htm Some bombers were even fitted to dust pesticides. Here are pics related to malaria in Italy.

 

Tom

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That is an interesting point Tom.  I am left wondering if camo mosquito bars are known to have been issued in the ETO?  I was not under the impression that they were.

 

Rob


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 It's not a frog skin helmet cover.  Look at the back of the helmet. I see the helmet isn't covered towards the back. That is likely a very dirty soiled cut parachute cloth that covers the front of the helmet, not the back. If I had to guess the soldier used the scarf to cover his face and blend in with his helmet covering. Mosquito netting is see through and thin. Look at how that cloth has frayed at the edges. 

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When I really look at that photo I see a guy who has been in the field at least a week if not more. I don't know about you but it would take me closer to two weeks to grow facial hair like that. He is dirty, his clothes are dirty his hands are dirty he looks worn out and tired. He still has fight in him, but its clear he has been in the fight for some time. His M-1928 is on his lap, not sling over his shoulder, not propped or placed on the ground.That is a soiled cut parachute on his helmet and around his neck. Something he picked up along the way. Something he figured would give him a slight edge. That is a telling photograph. I'm sure the photographer thought so too.

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I didn't set out to do a forensic study on this photo, but I keep seeing small details. Look at the ground and his boots. They are muddy. His clothes are not soaked. I see no defined shadows, so its cloudy when the photo was taken. It may have rained the night before. He is dressed warm. The canteen we can see is on his left side and looks to be snapped. He is right handed. He is holding the canteen cup in his right hand and his Tommy gun is placed on his lap for a right handed pick up. Odds are being right handed he has another canteen on that side and that is were that canteen cup came from. The canteen cup is black from being used over an open fire. He looks to be sitting on the side of a road. The terrane behind him rises up behind him and is cleared for a few feet behind him then turns to thick brush. He has his pack on so he is on the move and not at some rest area. Photographers tend to travel by jeep when they can. I would venture a guess that the photographer had a thermos of coffee in the jeep and offered some up. But then again I wasn't their. It's only what I see. Every photograph is worth a thousand words and none of them may be true.

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This is a section of parachute canopy. The ashtray at the top left is just shy of 4.5 inch's in diameter. Compare the size of the pattern on the canopy to the other patterns shown. Just a note indoors my camera is off on the color scale. its not as yellowish as it looks.

 

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On 6/29/2020 at 3:03 AM, P-59A said:

When I really look at that photo I see a guy who has been in the field at least a week if not more. I don't know about you but it would take me closer to two weeks to grow facial hair like that. He is dirty, his clothes are dirty his hands are dirty he looks worn out and tired. He still has fight in him, but its clear he has been in the fight for some time. His M-1928 is on his lap, not sling over his shoulder, not propped or placed on the ground.That is a soiled cut parachute on his helmet and around his neck. Something he picked up along the way. Something he figured would give him a slight edge. That is a telling photograph. I'm sure the photographer thought so too.

M1928 TSMG had top mounted Actuator, this is an M1 TSMG or M1A1 TSMG with side actuator

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Thanks for the excellent observations and I agree, it's one hell of a photo.

 

Rob


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14 minutes ago, Linedoggie said:

M1928 TSMG had top mounted Actuator, this is an M1 TSMG or M1A1 TSMG with side actuator

Good eye!!!

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