Original U.S. WWI M1917 Doughboy Signal Corps Helmet with Camouflage Paint
Original Item: Only One Available. This wonderful example that has original period textured camouflage paint. The shell is maker marked with a stamping on the underside of the rim that reads D/F 15. This is an wonderful example of a genuine USGI Great War helmet from the Signal Corps of the US army. There is also an original hand painted Signal Corps crossed flags over a 402 for the 402nd Signal Corps Company. Included are a original liner and chinstrap but both are detached from the helmet.
On 1 August 1907, an Aeronautical Division was established within the Office of the Chief Signal Officer (OCSO). In 1908, on Fort Myer, Virginia, the Wright brothers made test flights of the Army's first airplane built to Signal Corps' specifications. Reflecting the need for an official pilot rating, War Department Bulletin No. 2, released on 24 February 1911, established a "Military Aviator" rating. Army aviation remained within the Signal Corps until 1918, when it became the Army Air Service.
The Signal Corps lost no time in meeting the challenges of World War I. Chief Signal Officer George Owen Squier worked closely with private industry to perfect radio tubes while creating a major signal laboratory at Camp Alfred Vail (Fort Monmouth). Early radiotelephones developed by the Signal Corps were introduced into the European theater in 1918. While the new American voice radios were superior to the radiotelegraph sets, telephone and telegraph remained the major technology of World War I.
A pioneer in radar, Colonel William Blair, director of the Signal Corps laboratories at Fort Monmouth, patented the first Army radar demonstrated in May 1937. Even before the United States entered World War II, mass production of two radar sets, the SCR-268 and the SCR-270, had begun. Along with the Signal Corps' tactical FM radio, also developed in the 1930s, radar was the most important communications development of World War II.
During World War I, women switchboard operators, known as the "Hello Girls", were sworn into the U.S. Army Signal Corps. Despite the fact that they wore U.S. Army Uniforms and were subject to Army Regulations (Chief Operator Grace Banker received the Distinguished Service Medal), they were not given honorable discharges but were considered "civilians" employed by the military, because Army Regulations specified the male gender. Not until 1978the 60th anniversary of the end of World War Idid Congress approve Veteran Status/Honorable discharges for the remaining "Hello Girls".
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.
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.
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