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Fake Engravings on Purple Hearts (and others) from Florida


JBFloyd
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I wanted to post 2 photos of my uncle's Purple Hearts which were both engraved. One is high quality engraving from Navy, while I hate to say it, the other looks like the Marines hired a few apprecntices. Can I ask how you are able to upload these finely detailed photos without exceeding the 150KB file size? Or, am I limited because I am new to the board? ~Gary

I figured out how to save space, and 1st medal follows:

post-8676-1262454891.jpg

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Nice examples! I am glad you posted those 2 medals. USMC Purple Hearts were never as fancy as the early USN engraved medals. I dont know why.

 

Kurt

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I have a question that may have been asked before. Were all Purples engraved by the Gov before being given out. Or were they given out then the party had them engraved by the Gov or went home and had it done locally. What I'm asking if the person went home and had it engraved in his home town its still a WWII era PH. So hows one to ever know.

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Nice KIA hearts !! :thumbsup: are they brothers ?

nice officially engraved hearts !!!

 

Yes, in fact they were not only brothers they were my uncles, both KIA on the USS Arizona. I've been on a mission that past year trying to learn as much as I can about them after my father turned them and many wonderful family heirlooms over to me for safe keeping into the next generation. My uncles were:

 

Gordon E. Shive, PFC, USMC USS Arizona Marine Detachment

Malcolm H. Shive, R3C, USNR USS Arizona Ship's Crew

 

~Gary

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wow !!! I could only dream to have that group !!! :thumbsup: Brave Family History !! I salute them both!!!! :thumbsup:

Did you ever go to the Arizona mem.? It is a somber Place !!!

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I have a question that may have been asked before. Were all Purples engraved by the Gov before being given out. Or were they given out then the party had them engraved by the Gov or went home and had it done locally. What I'm asking if the person went home and had it engraved in his home town its still a WWII era PH. So hows one to ever know.

 

There are specific styles of engraving the government used that are easy to spot if you study them. All posthumous awards are named, but not all named medals are posthumous awards. Non posthumous awards were sometimes named by the government, but normally were not named. Sometimes local commanders had them named or even the vets themselves. All posthumous awards were named by the government.

 

Kurt

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There are specific styles of engraving the government used that are easy to spot if you study them. All posthumous awards are named, but not all named medals are posthumous awards. Non posthumous awards were sometimes named by the government, but normally were not named. Sometimes local commanders had them named or even the vets themselves. All posthumous awards were named by the government.

 

Kurt

Thanks

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wow !!! I could only dream to have that group !!! :thumbsup: Brave Family History !! I salute them both!!!! :thumbsup:

Did you ever go to the Arizona mem.? It is a somber Place !!!

In fact I went there a few weeks ago for the 68th aniversary. My dad had special invitations from the Navy Department. I will be honest, when I watched the USS Lake Erie (photo below) Pass-In-Review and she rang her bell at 7:55AM with her sailors standing at attention the tears streamed down my cheeks. She was enroute to operations in support of our efforts in Afghanistan. It was an honor for me to be there representing my family after my dad had to back out at the last minute. I had a chance to speak with one of the few survivors who made it off the ship that day, and although he did not know my uncles, he certainly knew what it was to have survived that terrible day. It was my first trip to the memorial, and God willing, I hope to go back for the 75th.

post-8676-1262526501.jpg

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There are specific styles of engraving the government used that are easy to spot if you study them. All posthumous awards are named, but not all named medals are posthumous awards. Non posthumous awards were sometimes named by the government, but normally were not named. Sometimes local commanders had them named or even the vets themselves. All posthumous awards were named by the government.

 

Kurt

Here is the letter my grandmother received for my uncle Gordon's Purple Heart. Here they specifically state that it is being engraved, and will be forwarded at a later date.

post-8676-1262527030.jpg

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A series of Purple Hearts with bogus naming are appearing in Central Florida (especially in the Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater area). This one purports to be to a nurse/POW, but others are also to interesting recipients. For example, a DSC/SS/BS/PH group to Maj Gen Maurice Rose (commanding general, 3rd Armored Division) with similar naming style.

 

This naming style is commonly used on the bogus pieces, so beware. Early indications are that as many as 300 pieces have been moved into the market.

 

Its fake?

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All,

 

The guy that is selling them at Webster isn't doing the engraving. He lacks the skills. He is either the front man or just buying up bogus engraved medals for resale, haven't been able to determine which. Figure several of the really good sham artists from that neck of the woods are either dead (one died/was killed in his shop) another was/is having trouble with the state for running a business out of his home (this might be the scary one he's a tool and dye maker and may be the source of the good but phony engravings) and the other used to fake up USMC stuff and then moved to sports stuff. He's in trouble with the feds.

 

Is it one of these guys or someone new? I have a feeling that a lot of these have been floating around for a while. Then again, without solid proof all we can do is make educated guesses, which further muddies the waters and if they get it right, makes things scary.

 

Kurt, I have a friend that is a retired Master engraver. I showed him one of my KIA Navy hearts and he duplicated the engraving to a T. Lucky for us he is honest as the day is long, and even destroyed the engraving that he did for me just to see if he could do it. Scary! My fear is that eventually, you are going to get someone with serious skills, the right materials, and research. Can anyone say collect Pokeman cards? LOL

 

John

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Kurt, I have a friend that is a retired Master engraver. I showed him one of my KIA Navy hearts and he duplicated the engraving to a T. Lucky for us he is honest as the day is long, and even destroyed the engraving that he did for me just to see if he could do it. Scary! My fear is that eventually, you are going to get someone with serious skills, the right materials, and research. Can anyone say collect Pokeman cards? LOL

 

John

 

Those guys are a dying breed unfortunately, since most people have items machine engraved instead of hand engraved. One exception is gun engraving.

 

There was a fellow back in the 80's who did excellent work faking up MOH's , Navy PH's, Navy DFC's, and Navy AM's . He eventually got caught too. His work work was very very good. He got caught because he faked up some duplicate groups to real known groups. Even his engraving if you looked at it long enough had characteristics that seperated it from originals. It's kind of like knowing an autograph is fake.

 

 

 

Kurt

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Kurt, I have a friend that is a retired Master engraver. I showed him one of my KIA Navy hearts and he duplicated the engraving to a T. Lucky for us he is honest as the day is long, and even destroyed the engraving that he did for me just to see if he could do it. Scary! My fear is that eventually, you are going to get someone with serious skills, the right materials, and research. Can anyone say collect Pokeman cards? LOL

 

John

John-

Don't think there aren't others with the same skills out there and that their ability to engrave a name on a medal hasn't been put to use by someone. That's the reason I won't buy a stand alone engraved medal at a show or from a dealer. (Not that such sellers aren't honest, but they can't tell either.)

Kurt

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John-

Don't think there aren't others with the same skills out there and that their ability to engrave a name on a medal hasn't been put to use by someone. That's the reason I won't buy a stand alone engraved medal at a show or from a dealer. (Not that such sellers aren't honest, but they can't tell either.)

Kurt

 

 

Kurt, good point.

 

This is one of the reason why I especially like officially machine engraved WWII examples. I havent seen new machine engraving that matches the font or engraving cuts of the old ones.

 

Kurt

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John-

Don't think there aren't others with the same skills out there and that their ability to engrave a name on a medal hasn't been put to use by someone. That's the reason I won't buy a stand alone engraved medal at a show or from a dealer. (Not that such sellers aren't honest, but they can't tell either.)

Kurt

 

 

Of course, there was one dealer at the last SOS that I was at (two years ago) who had original documents (probably stolen) and matching fake-engraved medals to form some mind-blowing groups (into the five digits...)

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Guys,

 

The scary thing is that the old engraving machines are still out there! And, I agree with both Kurt's on the engraved medals. Unless I know:

 

A. Where it came from

B. Got it for a song

 

I leave it alone, at least a stand alone medal. Then again, if you have the documentation, but no medal + someone with skill, well.........

 

I've thought this for a number of years........ That EVERYTHING we collect is way over priced. Then again, we are the ones that drive the prices up as well, so it is a double edged sword. As for me, my collecting days are pretty much over, I'm happy with what I have. Age, plus the minefields of collecting, plus cost have pretty much ruined collecting for me. I won't say that I won't pick something up every now and then, but I am slowly coming to the conclusion that my days in the hobby are numbered.

 

John

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