Original U.S. WWI & America North Russia Expeditionary Force 339th Infantry Attributed M1917 Helmet With Dogtags - Corporal John Brozowski

Item Description

Original Items: Only One Available. This fine, extremely RARE example offered in complete condition with dogtags. The shell is maker marked with a stamping on the underside of the rim that reads ZC 230. This is a wonderful example of a genuine USGI Great War helmet from a well known infantry regiment of the US army. The best feature of all is the original hand sticker type insignia of the “A.N.R.E.F.” American North Russia Expeditionary Forces better known as the Polar Bear Expedition. The liner is complete and in wonderful condition with most of the wear present on the chin strap.

This helmet has no dings or dents and maintains approximately 95% of its original finish and texture. The insignia maintains approximately 90% of its original paper label and remains bold, visible, and easy to see.

The included dogtags belonged to a Corporal John J. Brozowski who served with Company K of the 339th Infantry Regiment. The 339th Infantry Regiment is an infantry regiment of the United States Army, raised for service in World War I, that served in the North Russia Intervention and World War II.

This is a wonderful helmet and comes more than ready for further research and display.

The 339th Regiment was created in June 1918, composed mainly of young draftees, for the purpose of fighting on the Western Front in France. Most of the 4,487 men were from Michigan, but some 500 draftees from Wisconsin were included. It was commonly referred to as "Detroit's Own". They were sent to fight the Bolsheviks in Northern Russia. They were nicknamed the "polar bears" because of their service there.

On 30 July 1918, General John J. Pershing, Commander-in-Chief of the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) on the Western Front, by order of President Woodrow Wilson, chose the 339th Infantry Regiment, the 1st Battalion of the 310th Engineers, the 337th Field Hospital, and the 337th Ambulance Company, (all from the 85th Division) to form the Murmansk Expedition. These units are assembled and equipped at Cowshott Camp, Surrey, England. 9 August 1918, with Lt Col George Evans Stewart (later Col) of the 339th Inf as commanding officer of the expedition. 27 Aug 1918, the expedition, 143 officers and 4,344 enlisted men, sails from Newcastle upon Tyne, England, arrives Archangel, North Russia, 4 September, where, with other Allied forces, it becomes part of the command of Maj Gen F. C. Poole, British Army. American Headquarters is established at Archangel. Distribution of American troops begins along a front 450 miles long, extending from Onega in the west to Pinega in the east, and at some points 200 miles distant from the Archangel base. Elements of the 339th Infantry and attached units operate with the Allied forces to cover the main avenues of approach to Archangel from the south as follows: on the Onega River near Chekuevo; on the railway from Archangel to Vologda near Obozerskaya; on the Vaga River at Pinega. These forces were opposed by the Soviet Sixth Army. 30 September 1918, reinforcements, consisting of 17 officers and 486 enlisted men from the 85th Division, join. Between September 1918 and May 1919 many minor operations take place against the Soviet forces resulting in more than 500 American casualties. 26 October 1918, Major General Edmund Ironside, British Army, succeeds Major General Poole as commander of the Allied force. 9 April 1919, the American contingent is again redesignated, becoming the"American Expeditionary Force, North Russia"; Brig Gen Wilds P. Richardson assumes command of all American troops in North Russia, supreme command however continuing with the British. During May the Archangel contingent is concentrated in the region of that town preparatory to return to the United States. 3 June 1919, the contingent begins moving via Brest to the United States. 27 June 1919, last element, the 1st Battalion of the 310th Engineers, sails for Brest, en route to United States.

In April 1919, the enlisted men Company I mutinied, challenging their officers and refusing orders. Chief of Staff Gen. March attributed the action "Bolshevik Propaganda" at a press conference on 12 April. Company I consisted almost entirely of men from Detroit.

Only after leaving England, were the men told of their destination. Spanish Influenza broke out on two of the three transports, and seventy-two men would eventually succumb to the disease or resultant pneumonia.

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