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My first USMC HBT shirt


Bob Hudson

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Finally found an HBT shirt today in one of the thrift stores near Camp Pendleton. It's missing all of the buttons except for on the sleeve cuffs and has some fraying, but it was still cool to find it on the rack at the Salvation Army. It belong to a Sgt. who served from just after Korea up to the early 60's. Is this a P41?

 

hbt1212.jpg

hbt1212buttons.jpg

hbt1212ega.jpg

hbt1212name.jpg

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craig_pickrall

Yes that is a P41. It is nice to find one at a Thrift Store in this day and time. That was fairly common 20 or 30 years ago but those days are gone.

 

It appears to be in decent shape. It is a shame the buttons are missing.

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Yes that is a P41. It is nice to find one at a Thrift Store in this day and time. That was fairly common 20 or 30 years ago but those days are gone.

 

It appears to be in decent shape. It is a shame the buttons are missing.

 

So, did they continue to issue both P41 and P44 patterns into the 50's?

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Greg Robinson

I know they were worn up into the 1960's but can't say how long they were issued. It seems like the P41 pattern was used longer than the P44 and I get the impression that the P44 was not well thought of by most Marines. Sometime in the 1950's, post Korean War, the regulations were changed requiring that these shirts be worn tucked inside the trousers and sometimes you see examples with those lower pocket removed for this reason. In the mid 1950's an HBT version of the "gomer pyle" utility shirt was adopted but then replaced by the cotton sateen version shortely thereafter. I was once told that HBT's were removed from the authorized uniform list sometime in that period but I remember seeing an old Gunny wearing one of those HBT shirts at Parris Island in '67 and nobody tried to tell him to take it off. I was issued an HBT utility cover brand new at Parris Island in '67 but that was just a fluke since it was the only size 7 3/4 cover they had in stock.

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craig_pickrall

I have a P41 that was worn by a Marine advisor in Vietnam. It has his name embroidered above the pocket in typical VN fashion.

 

Like you Greg, I have no idea how long they were issued, but the "old salts" had a way of finding and hording things like this. THey were definately "Old Corps" and popular.

 

A civilian work shirt of the same design was popular long after WW2. I remember them in blue denim but they may have been available in other colors / materials as well.

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the stenciled chevrons are also a nice touch. I myself have a P41 in my collection with stenciled Corporal chevrons

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craig_pickrall

For the most part you do not see chevrons stenciled on the sleeve during WW2. I think it is more of a post war - peace time thing. The quality of the chevrons were all over the place. They were a direct reflection of the artistic abilities of the owner or one of his friends. Some are garbage and some look perfect.

 

During the early 1950's they made a metal stencil kit that covered all ranks. You would place the stencil on the sleeve and get it aligned and then use a roller with black stencil ink to create the particular set of chevrons you needed. These were fairly cheap. They used to be in Leatherneck Magazine for sell. I would love to find one now but I have never seen one for sell.

 

The USMC introduced the pin on metal rank insignia about 1953 or 54 and that eliminated the need for more sleeve stencils.

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Here is a little gem I picked up in a thrift shop a few years ago, I just show them I don't explain them. The insignia would put it about 1956 or 57. Usually when I see things like this I assume it is bogus, something kid's mother made up for him or something a dealer made up to increase the value. But I don't think that is the case here as I got it for about $3.00 and there is a pocket added to each sleeve but if you look inside the pocket there is a stencil sergeant stripe so it appears they were actually added to cover the stripes and lower the rank. The Seventh Division was in Korea at the time so I am guessing it was a matter of just using what was on hand at the time. Oh yes, it dose have the USMC buttons and it did have the EGA on the pocket but you have to look very hard to see it.

 

post-55-1166570449.jpg

post-55-1166570617.jpg

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Sorry, I don't know why those pictures are sideways, they were right in my files. I guess I will have to read the instructions for posting pictures.

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Sorry, I don't know why those pictures are sideways, they were right in my files. I guess I will have to read the instructions for posting pictures.

 

Not sure why that happened, but we've fixed them.

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I have seen wartime photos of stenciled chevrons, as well as unit symbols stenciled onto the backs of shirts. not often, but it happened

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Greg Robinson
I have seen wartime photos of stenciled chevrons, as well as unit symbols stenciled onto the backs of shirts. not often, but it happened

 

I own a wartime manufactured P41 dungaree shirt that has 4th Marine Div unit markings on the back and the Marine's name and service number written on it. And it has SGT stripes marked on both sleeves. This guy was a WW2 Marine.

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there's also a nice example in the book 'Paramarine!' where the Marine stenciled the Para patch over the entire back of the jacket. very nice

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Actually, the HBT with the para wing on the back is mine, and the pics did not make it to the author in time for inclusion in the book Paramarine!. Unless you are thinking of the HBT jump smock that HG put in his uniform book. I think that has wings on the chest.

 

I'll try to post some pics today....I have snow to shovel!!

 

Marine-Kabar, I would love to see your 4MarDiv set!!

 

LJ

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that's not the one I remember seeing. you'll have to forgive me, I haven't been able to actually sit down and enjoy the book since I bought it two years ago. Too big to bring to Iraq

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