Original U.S. WWII 11th Airborne Division 1944 M1 McCord Front Seam Paratrooper Helmet with Westinghouse Liner
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of a genuine WWII Front-Seam Swivel Bale M1 Helmet made by McCord Radiator, with markings indicating issue to the 188th Infantry Regiment, part of the 11th Airborne Division during WWII. They used a "Bugle" marking on the sides of their helmets, which this helmet has on both sides. This unit saw much service during the later part of the Pacific Campaign. It features a WWII issue Westinghouse paratrooper liner, complete with both the paratrooper and shell chin strap.
The helmet's service does not look to have ended with WWII, and it has been repainted several times. There are also several names and operating numbers marked on the inside of the shell. This is definitely a helmet with lots of history and research potential!
The U.S. WWII M-1 helmet was only produced from 1941 to 1945. The first production batch resulted with over 323,510 M-1 helmets before the start of the American involvement in the war. This helmet is heat lot stamped 1030K. which indicates the approximate manufacture date of August - September 1944, shortly before the move to the rear seam shell.
The Ordnance Department selected McCord Radiator and Manufacturing Company of Detroit Michigan to produce the steel M1 helmet bodies. These bodies were made from a single piece of Hadfield Manganese steel that was produced by the Carnegie-Illinois & Sharon Steel Corporations. Each completed raw M-1 helmet shell weighed 2.25 lbs each.
This fantastic condition M1 shell has correct later war swivel (movable) chinstrap loops called "bales" and a stainless steel rim with a front seam. These rims were both rust resistant and had "non-magnetic qualities" that reduced the chance of error readings when placed around certain sensitive equipment (such as a compass). In November 1944 the specification was changed to have the rim seam in the rear of the helmet.
This helmet shell is a fine example and still retains most of its original WW2 parts and the shell has all original "corked" grain paint, though it definitely has seen use, and the cork is worn and chipped off in places. It has definitely been repainted at least once, and shows a lot of use. It has the correct mid war OD Green #3 chin strap with stamped steel buckles, which have the paratrooper liner extensions.
The liner is definitely correct "high pressure" WWII issue, and stamped with a W for the Westinghouse Electric Co Manufactured in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This "high pressure" manufactured M-1 helmet liner is identified by an embossed "W" in the crown (which is still Westinghouse's logo to this day). Westinghouse was the largest M-1 helmet liner producer and had two production divisions; Micarta and Bryant Electric. The Micarta Division produced about 13,000,000 M-1 helmet liners and the Bryant Electric Division about 10,000,000. Westinghouse Electric Company started M-1 helmet liner delivery in May 1942. Westinghouse did have a contract to produce airborne liners and converted an unknown amount to airborne configuration. This liner definitely looks to be original, and not a conversion, but with the amount of wear it is difficult to tell. Westinghouse discontinued production around August 17, 1945 when the war ended.
This true M1 liner be identified through the frontal eyelet hole. Other correct features include OD Green #3 cotton herringbone twill (HBT) cloth suspension liner. This HBT suspension is held tightly within the M-1 helmet liner by rivets and a series of triangular "A" washers. The three upper suspension bands are joined together with the correct tie string. This way the wearer could adjust the fit. The original suspension is definitely aged and worn, with some tears. The sweatband is present and shows only light use, so it may not be the first one installed. The paratrooper chin strap extensions are both complete with their cast brass buckles, and are in the correct OD Green #3, which matches the aged color of the rigging perfectly. The paratrooper chin strap is still present and intact, as well as the original leather chin strap for the liner as well.
A true WWII Issued paratrooper helmet with loads of research potential. Ready to display!
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