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Original U.S. WWI M1917 Doughboy Helmet of the 6th Infantry Division with Original Paint and Liner

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. The M1917 was the US Army's first modern combat helmet, used from 1917 and during the 1920s, before being replaced by the M1917A1. The M1917A1 helmet was an updated version of the M1917 and initially used refurbished WW1 shells.

The M1917 is a near identical version of the British Mk.I steel helmet, and it is important to note that when the US joined the Great War in 1917 they were initially issued with a supply of around 400,000 British made Mk.Is, before production began state side. The M1917 differed slightly in its lining detail, and exhibited US manufacture markings. This helmet has split pin rivets, indicating it is one of the early British-made helmets.

M1917 helmet liners typically show a paper label at the crown and the dome rivet head. The liner is set up as on the British versions, with an oilcloth band and net configuration, attached to a leather strap, riveted to the shell. The chinstrap is leather with steel buckle.

This fine example has the original olive drab textured paint, complete with a six-pointed red star on the front, which is the insignia of the famous 6th Infantry Division, known as the "Red Star" or "Sight Seein' Sixth". The paint is somewhat worn, and definitely shows use, but it has a great textured look. The interior of the helmet has all the original paint.  It also has a mostly complete liner with felt top pad and partial chin strap. The liner does show age, and the leather is somewhat degraded, but the oil cloth is quite solid.

The inside front rim of the helmet is marked HS 396, indicating manufacture by Hadfield Ltd of Sheffield, England, who designed the alloy used in these helmets.

This is an excellent example of a genuine USGI Great War helmet from an legendary division of the US army, ready to display!

History of the 6th Infantry Division during WWI:

The 6th Infantry Division was activated in November 1917, and began training state-side in anticipation of deployment. It was comprised of several different infantry brigades, Machine gun Battalions, and Field Artillery regiments.

The division went overseas in June 1918, and saw 43 days of combat. Casualties totalled 386 (KIA: 38; WIA: 348).

The 6th Division saw combat in the Geradmer sector, Vosges, France, 3 September – 18 October 1918, and during the Meuse-Argonne offensive 1–11 November 1918. Separately the 11th Field Artillery Battalion became engaged earlier in the Meuse-Argonne offensive and fought from 19 October to the Armistice.

The division returned to U.S. in June 1919. Deactivated: 30 September 1921 at Camp Grant, Illinois.

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