Original Chinese Made Imperial Japanese Army Damaged White Sun Pith Helmet with Lieutenant Insignia
Original Item: Only One Available. This is definitely an interesting helmet, and something we have not seen before! This began life as a very nice Hong Kong made sun pith helmet, very similar to those used by British Forces. As Hong Kong was a British Colony during the Pre-WWII Period, this is not surprising. However, the area was taken over by Japanese forces during WWII, and occupied for almost four years.
During this time, this pith helmet was pressed into service in the Imperial Japanese Army, and was used by a 1st Lieutenant in the field. It was most likely much easier to use the locally sourced items than to get additional supplies from mainland Japan or the occupied areas of South East Asia.
The crown of the cap still has the original manufacturers label:
KAU U FONG 3-5
MADE IN HONG KONG
TUNG WAH HAT FACTORY
Condition is unfortunately quite poor, as the helmet was at some point subjected to a crushing force, which has resulted in significant damage. This essentially separated the crown from the brim, and partly unraveled the Puggaree, which has an attached Imperial Japanese Army Shoulderboard for the rank of 陸軍中尉 (Rikugun-Chūi), or 1st Lieutenant.
While not in any condition for use, it still makes a great display piece, and would be a worthy addition to any Pacific War Collection.
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