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The Motherload of M-1917's


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This is my garage, the day after I found nearly 150 M-1917's which had come out of the attic at the Kohler Wisconsin Town Hall shortly before it was demolished.  These had been there since the violent Kohler Mfg. strike in 1934. I have since sold them all but, it is my all time greatest helmet find.

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This all happened around 2010... was a exciting find. I sold them with a letter detailing the find, the history of the strike, of the Ohio National Guard which was called in along with a picture of their numbered helmet. Sadly, within a year, sellers on eBay were selling these as WWI Navy and Costal Defense helmets, it was so annoying.

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Radio Operator

Reminds me of the post from last month of all those M1's sitting in a field, an amazing find! I like the helmet with the painted insignia on the top left of picture 4.

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26 minutes ago, Radio Operator said:

Reminds me of the post from last month of all those M1's sitting in a field, an amazing find! I like the helmet with the painted insignia on the top left of picture 4.

Actually, that was a reverse swatika, the native American good luck sign. It was scratched into the paint.

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I remember that- that was awesome!  I should have gotten one for WI history sake- but at the time I limited myself to WW2's

 

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Wow, you weren't kidding when you said the motherload of m1917s.

 

It's fantastic that they were saved instead of being scrapped or trash but it's a shame to hear how people were misrepresenting them on resale. I can't imagine what it must have been like to find a stockpile like this.

 

Thanks for sharing the story.

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So glad I got one Scott. The liner and chin strap were mint. Whoever it was issued it to had taken a local newspaper which headlined the strike, rolled it up and stuffed it inside the liner, a nice surprise!

 

Larry

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On 5/4/2021 at 7:47 PM, patches said:

Wow!

 

How bout liners and chin straps. are most present?

All had intact and nearly pristine oil cloth liners and leather chinstraps

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23 hours ago, LarryM3 said:

So glad I got one Scott. The liner and chin strap were mint. Whoever it was issued it to had taken a local newspaper which headlined the strike, rolled it up and stuffed it inside the liner, a nice surprise!

 

Larry

There were several like that Larry. I kept a helmet that had the badge and arm band with it along with a newspaper in it also. I wish I had kept that one but, other things came along that seemed to tickle my inner raccoon and it got sold to buy that newest sparkly one.

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Here are a few more shots

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M1917 Kohler Find 021 DS.JPG.jpg

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