Original U.S. WWII 8th Infantry Division M1 Helmet Liner by Firestone with Initials & Locations Painted Inside
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of a genuine WWII "High Pressure" helmet liner by Firestone, which has some lovely personalization. The front of the liner bears the painted insignia of the 8th Infantry Division, called the "Golden Arrow Division", or "Pathfinder". On the inside, it is further marked with the Initials E. J. in white paint, and also has the following country names marked as well, which chronical countries the soldier saw:
The liner is the correct “high pressure” WWII issue and stamped with an F logo over 47 for the FIRESTONE TIRE & RUBBER COMPANY Manufactured in Akron, Ohio this “high pressure” manufactured M-1 helmet liner is identified by an embossed “F” in the crown. Firestone Tire and Rubber Company started M-1 helmet liner delivery to the US Army in September 1942. They produced approximately 7,500,000 M-1 helmet liners and discontinued production around August 17 1945 when the war ended.
This true US WWII M-1 helmet liner be identified through the frontal eyelet hole. Other correct WWII features include cotton OD Green #3 herringbone twill (HBT) cloth suspension liner, held within the M-1 helmet liner by rivets and a series of triangular "A" washers, and the three upper suspension bands are joined together with the correct OD green string. The sweatband is present, but quite degraded due to use, and the cloth is quite stained as well. This is a helmet liner that saw extensive service.
A great personalized M1 Helmet liner, turned into a memento of a soldier's service during WWII.
8th Infantry Division in WWII
During World War II, the 8th Infantry Division was sent to Europe to fight against the Axis. After training in Ireland the 8th Infantry Division landed on Utah Beach, Normandy, 4 July 1944, and entered combat on 7 July. Shortly after its arrival, the division captured the French cities of Rennes and Brest. Fighting through the hedgerows, it crossed the Ay River, 26 July, pushed through Rennes, 8 August, and attacked Brest, France in September. When U.S. Brigadier General Charles Canham, who was at the time the deputy commander of the 8th Infantry Division, arrived to accept the surrender of German troops in Brest, the commander of the Brest garrison, General Hermann-Bernhard Ramcke asked the lower-ranking man to show his credentials. Canham pointed to his nearby troops and said "These are my credentials". That phrase has since become the 8th Infantry Division's motto.
Following these actions, the 8th turned eastward toward the German border, taking part in the heavy fighting in the Hürtgen Forest in November 1944. The Crozon Peninsula was cleared on 19 September, and the division drove across France to Luxembourg, moved to the Hürtgen Forest, 20 November, cleared Hürtgen on the 28th and Brandenberg, 3 December, and pushed on to the Roer. That river was crossed on 23 February 1945, Duren taken on the 25th and the Erft Canal crossed on the 28th. The 8th reached the Rhine near Rodenkirchen, 7 March, and maintained positions along the river near Koeln. In early March 1945, the 8th had advanced into the Rhineland. It fought its way into the Ruhr region the following month.
On 6 April the division attacked northwest to aid in the destruction of enemy forces in the Ruhr Pocket, and by the 17th had completed its mission. After security duty, the division, under operational control of the British Second Army, drove across the Elbe, 1 May, and penetrated to Schwerin when the war in Europe ended.
On 2 May 1945, as it advanced into northern Germany, the 8th Infantry Division encountered the Neuengamme prison camp Wöbbelin subcamp, near the city of Ludwigslust. The SS had established Wöbbelin in early February 1945 to house prison camp prisoners who had been evacuated from other NSDAP camps to prevent their liberation by the Allies. Wöbbelin held some 5,000 inmates, many of whom suffered from starvation and disease. The sanitary conditions at the camp when the 8th Infantry Division and the 82nd Airborne Division arrived were deplorable. There was little food or water, and some prisoners had resorted to cannibalism. In the first week after liberation, more than 200 inmates died. In the aftermath, the United States Army ordered the townspeople in Ludwigslust to visit the camp and bury the dead.
The 8th Infantry Division was recognized as a liberating unit by the U.S. Army's Center of Military History and the United States Shoah Memorial Museum in 1988.
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