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Original British WWI Texture Painted Mk 1 Brodie Helmet by Hutton & Sons Ltd of Sheffield With Late War Guards Division Painted Insignia - “All Seeing Eye”

Regular price $795.00

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a lovely example of the scarce WWI British MkI Brodie helmet, which was also the same type that was issued to American forces in the beginning of the US involvement during The Great War. The shell features great textured paint that was a very popular paint scheme used by all armies that fought during WWI.

The All Seeing Eye painted on the front of the shell is the unit flash for the Guards Division and is a late war example, the same type that was utilized during WWII. The Second World War sign was a somewhat simplified version of the sign worn by the Guards Division during the First World War. The original badge was designed by Major Sir Eric Avery (who commanded the Divisional MT Company) and the Second World War version was chosen from a number of designs painted on divisional vehicles by Rex Whistler, who was serving in the 2 Welsh Guards, Divisional Armored Recce. unit. The sign represents the eye of vigilance, red and blue being the Household Brigade colors.

At the outbreak of World War I, none of the combatants provided steel helmets to their troops. Soldiers of most nations went into battle wearing cloth, felt, or leather headgear that offered no protection from modern weapons.

A significant partial exception to this lack was the German pickelhelm. Like other army helmets of 1914, it was made out of leather; but it also had a significant subset of steel inserts that offered some head protection. This includes the top spike, originally used to stop strikes from an enemy hand-held saber.

The huge number of fatal head wounds that modern artillery weapons inflicted upon the French Army led them to introduce the first modern steel helmets in the summer of 1915. The first French helmets were bowl-shaped steel "skullcaps" worn under the cloth caps. These rudimentary helmets were soon replaced by the Model 1915 Adrian helmet, designed by August-Louis Adrian. The idea was later adopted by most other combatant nations.

The heat stamp on the underside of the rim is HS 316. This is the typical marking where the designation of Manufacturer followed by designation of steel supplier followed by batch lot number of steel used. H is for Hadfield Ltd of Sheffield who made helmets. S is for the steel supplier of Sheffield who provided the needed material for the helmets. The heat stamp and the split rivets on the chinstrap bales are a solid indication and a good reference point for identifying British made helmets for American use during the Great War.

The liner is also in quite nice shape, with a very good oil cloth liner, and the top felt pad is present but not the rubber “donut” underneath. The chin strap is partly present.

This is a wonderful example of a mid war produced British MkI Brodie Helmet. Comes more than ready for display.

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