Item:
ON12464

Original U.S. Army WWII and Korean War M-1938 Folding Canvas and Wood Cot

Regular price $195.00

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Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. The Army Cot is a basic and versatile unit for a single soldier, used for steeping/rest positions or for medical patients. The folding cot is extremely portable, generally used in mobile encampments or field medical units. Metal spring camp beds, bunk beds etc. are used in more permanent facilities while the soldiers individual equipment such as sleeping bags or poncho used as a ground sheet are the norm in fast changing field conditions.

The M-1938 wood and canvas style of cot was in use before World War II, then evolved after the Korean War to a similar design based on aluminum and nylon. Such cots are still in use in the 21st century. Intended for one person, the cot dimensions were 78 inches long by 30 inches wide, by 17 inches high. When folded, the size is 37.5 inches by 6.5 inches by 5 inches. Straps wrap and hold the folded position.

This example is offered in very good functional condition. The Canvas is marked INLAND MFG CO. JULY 1945 and the framer is marked U.S. and Wood Products 1953.

Cots were in use by the US armed forces prior to World War II with both wood and steel models available. For example, the M-1938 Army Folding Cot (Army Stock No. 26-C-3033) was made for field use (olive drab canvas, dark stained wood frame) and medical services (white canvas, white painted or light stained frame). However, the most popular design of a folding bed was based on a more comfortable steel frame design.

As war production ramped up in 1940 and 1941, shortages developed in most types of steel. Pig iron and steel were placed under priority control by the OPM at the end of the summer of 1941. For the Army, the Quartermaster Corps was instructed to make "every effort to conserve the use of iron and steel products where they are now specified and substitute wood and other materials wherever possible." Thereafter. the Cot, Folding, Canvas with a wood frame replaced steel as the standard Army cot.

The cot was widely used in all theaters of World War II, wherever semi-permanent or permanent quarters were needed. The cot was not normally carried as individual equipment, but was installed for sleeping or resting purposes in barracks or tents, ranging from singles to vast arrays in hangers or even large outdoor spaces. The Air Corps used pyramidal tents with four cots and four sleeping bags each to house air crews next to airstrips, in England and on tactical strips in the ETO after D-Day in June 1944. Medical facilities used cots for patients, operating rooms, and staff accommodations.

The cot may be used with a sleeping bag or blankets, mattress or pad, an insect bar and other accessories.

The components of the folding cot system were issued individually or in sets, eg, a folding cot with insect bar, frame poles, and connecting clamps boxed together.
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