Original U.S. WWII B-24 Liberator 484th Bombardment Group Named Grouping with Painted A2 Jacket and Italian Made Patches
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Sergeant Phillip L. Fritz ASN 37588821 was a aerial gunner aboard Consolidated B-24 Liberators. He was assigned to the 827th Squadron, 484th Bombardment Group, 15th Air Force during WWII. The 827th based in Torretto Airfield, Italy engaged in very long range strategic bombardment missions against enemy strategic targets in Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and the Balkans until April 1945. The 827th bombed aircraft factories, assembly plants, oil refineries, storage areas, marshaling yards, airdromes, and other objectives until the German Capitulation in May 1945.
This incredible grouping consists for the following items:
1. Incredible Completely Original WWII A-2 Flight Jacket Manufactured by J. A. DUBOW Manufacturing Company of Chicago, Illinois. Maintains its original Paint, Patches, Liner, Talon Zipper, Cuffs and Waistband. Nothing has been altered, added or restitched. Specification tag remains in excellent condition and indicates a 1943 Contract Date. Jacket maintains its Excellent Condition Reddish Brown Knit Waistband and Cuffs that are Typically Associated with this Contract. Each cuff has a minor snag to the interior side facing the body that is only visible under inspection and not visible when displayed. There are two small snags to the rear of the waistband that are also small and very hard to see.
Liner remains in very good condition with only minor signs of age, wear and use. ALL Leather remains soft, supple and flexible with a few minor scuffs. There are NO worn or thin areas anywhere to the leather and all leather remains VERY solid. The collar, shoulders and upper back also remain very solid and the leather to these areas is NOT worn thin, dry or heavily worn like most A-2's we find. The ORIGINAL Talon Zipper Remains Undamaged and Functions Perfectly!
To the Front of the Jacket are two Painted Leather Patches and a Painted Leather Name Tag. The tag bears the name PHILLIP L. FRITZ with 90% of the paint remaining to the Aerial Gunner's Wing. Leather shows age and wear with some loose stitching to the viewer's right side. To the Left Chest the jacket bears a 13.5 Centimeter Painted Leather 484th Bomb Group Patch that depicts both the Bow Tie Insignia and the Buzzard with the 50 Caliber Machine Gun Insignia that were utilized by three of the four squadrons within the group. The squadrons are differentiated by the numerical grouping of bullets in the Machine Gun Belt. In this case the number of bullets are "8," "2" and "7" for the 827th Bomb Squadron. Approximately 50% of the paint remains to the patch, but the images remain clearly visible and rather easy to distinguish. There is a small area of loose stitching to the edge of the patch at the 7 o'clock position.
To the Right Chest is a Very Unique Custom Squadron Patch that Depicts an Aerial Gunner Looking Through the Window of an Emerson Nose Turret and Giving the sign of Thumbs Up! The nose turret identifies this gunner's aircraft as a B-24G-1 or later variant of the "Liberator." The Emerson turrets were an addition to later B-24's in an effort to counter the Luftwaffe's Head On methods of Attack. This patch is approximately 13.5 centimeters as well. Approximately 80 to 85% of the paint remains to this insignia and the image remains very clear with good, mostly bright color. It remains firmly stitched with no loose or missing threads and no cracking or damage.
To the Right Shoulder is a Large Painted Leather American Flag Patch that shows considerable wear to the finish. The flag remains firmly stitched to the jacket and is constructed of thicker leather than the other patches. Approximately 45 to 50% of the red, white and blue paint remains. Very nice "war worn" depiction of our Nation's Colors.
To the Left Shoulder is a patch that had fallen off but was restitched. The Patch is a Shield Shaped Variant of the 15th Air Force Insignia with Winged Star over "XV" and "MINNESOTA" on an Upper Rocker. The Inscription "484 B.G 827 B. S. Q. " Is Visible to the Base. The leather remains soft, supple and undamaged with good color.
The rear of the Jacket Bears a LARGE B-24 "Liberator" with 484th Bomb Group Markings In Flight. Below the aircraft are EIGHT Flak Bursts, SIX of Which are exploding to reveal the words ITALY, GERMANY, AUSTRIA, YUGOSLAVIA, CZECHOLSLOVAKIA, and HUNGARY. This B-24 maintains approximately 85 to 90% of the Painted Image and Remains Very Bold, Distinctive and Easy to See. There is very minimal paint loss, fading and wear. It is Painted exceptionally well and is a Beautiful Artistic Rendering of a Liberator In Flight. The Artwork is Some of the BEST ORIGINAL ARTWORK That You Will Find on an Original A-2 in today's market. The Flak Bursts are also Painted in a Very Artistic and Attractive Manner and show only minor signs of age and wear. There is very minimal paint loss to these areas and all colors as well as the country names remain bold and easy to see.
The interior tag at the collar as well as the small cloth tag to the interior right front pocket list the jacket as a SIZE 38. It is a very nice size jacket that fits easily on a mannequin torso. The Measurements Are: SLEEVES = 24 1/4 Inches Measured From Top Shoulder Seam to Cuff; BACK = 17 Inches Measured from Shoulder Seam to Shoulder Seam Across the Upper Back Just Below the Collar; CHEST = 21 Inches from Center Armpit Seam to Center Armpit Seam When Pulled Tight Across the Chest, Zipped Completely and On a Mannequin Torso.
2. Enlisted Man's Wool Four Pocket Dress Coat- EXCELLENT CONDITION - Coat shows only very minor signs of age, wear and use. NO Mothing, Soiling or Staining is visible. USAAF Winged Star Insignia to Left Shoulder and 15th Air Force Insignia to Right. Both patches remain in excellent condition and firmly stitched. Both sleeves maintain their Sergeant's Chevron in excellent condition and remaining firmly stitched. All buttons are present, remain firmly stitched and in excellent condition. The "US" and AAF Winged Propelleer Collar Discs are also in excellent condition and maintain their proper WWII Flat Faced Clutches. The Interior of the Coat is also excellent with virtualy no signs of age, wear or use. The QMD tag to the lower right front pocket indicates the coat is a SIZE 38 LONG, however the stamp to the interior collar lists the coat as a 36. The MEASUREMENTS Are: CHEST = 19 1/4; BACK = 18 1/2; SLEEVES = 24 3/4. All measured in the same manner listed in the A-2 description.
3. WWII Enlisted Man's "IKE" Jacket - EXCELLENT CONDITION - This jacket shows almost NO signs of age, wear or use. It is in exceptional condition and does not appear to have ever been worn in service. However, there is ONE minor snag to the wool material that is smaller than a pencil eraser to the area of the upper right shoulder. To the left shoulder the jacket bears a USAAF winged star SSI that remains in excellent condition and firmly stitched. Both sleeves maintain their original sergeant's chevrons also excellent and remaining firmly stitched. All buttons are present and also excellent. The jacket maintains its original "US" and Winged Propeller Collar Discs in Excellent Condition and Maintaining their Proper WWII Flat Faced Clutches. The Left Chest maintains its Original Aerial Gunner Wings that appear to be sterling and maintain their proper flat faced WWII Clutches. The left chest also maintains its WWII pin back three place ribbon bar. The ribbons are: 1. Air Medal Ribbon with TWO Oak Leaf Clusters Signifying MULTIPLE AWARDS, 2. Good Conduct, 3 EAME with THREE Stars signifying multiple tours in theater. The interior of the jacket is excellent with no apparent signs of age, wear or use. The QMD tag remains to the interior pocket and lists the jacket as a SIZE 38 Regular. The MEASUREMENTS Are: CHEST = 20 Inches; BACK = 19 Inches; SLEEVES = 25 Inches. All measured in the same manner listed in the A-2 description.
4. WWII Enlisted Man's Cotton Dress Shirt - VERY GOOD to EXCELLENT CONDITION - No damage or any sort. No moth, rips, tears or damage to seams. Minor signs of age, wear and use. Exterior remains crisp and displays very well. Some soiling/staining from wear is visible to the area of the Interior Collar, but is not visible when displayed. All buttons remain present and in excellent condition. To the Right Shoulder the shirt bear a 15th Air Force SSI in excellent condition and remaining firmly stitched. To the Left Shoulder the shirt bears a USAAF Winged Star SSI also in excellent condition and remaining firmly stitched. Both sleeves maintain their sergeant's chevrons also in excellent condition and firmly stitched. The Shirt has No Size Tags or Markings. The MEASUREMENTS Are: CHEST = 20 1/2 Inches; BACK = 17 Inches; SLEEVES = 22 3/4 Inches; NECK = Approximately 15 to 15 1/2 Inches in Circumference. Measurements are taken in the same manner as listed in the A-2 description.
5. Sergeant Fritz WWII Dog Tags - FAIR CONDITION - Tags remain very easy to read and all information is clear. Remain on original chain but both of the tags and the chain have obvious areas of corrosion due to being worn for long periods of time while sweating.
6. Engraved WWII Dated Sterling Silver ID Locket Bracelet - GOOD CONDITION - Bracelet is Engraved PHILIP FRITZ to the Front and THE GANG - 3/4/44 to the Rear. Bracelet remains undamaged with working clasp and locket hinge but is Heavily Tarnished. Would clean up to be a very nice, DATED piece.
7. Separate Leather WWII Name Patch & Two Sets Leather Staff Sergeant Chevrons - GOOD CONDITION - Leather chevrons show no signs of ever being stitched to a garment and remains very solid. Leather name tag with aerial gunner's wings appears to have been removed from a garment and shows age and wear to paint. Named PHILIP L. FRITZ.
8. ONE WWII USAAF Circular Shoulder Insignia Patch - EXCELLENT CONDITION -Air Force Winged Star Patch in Excellent, Unused, Unworn Condition.
9. TWO WWII Sergeant's Cloth Chevrons - EXCELLENT CONDITION - Unworn, unused condition. Seven sets for use on shirts, coats, etc.
10. WWII US Army Marksmanship Badges - GOOD CONDITION - Show age and heavy tarnish. One pin is bent, but remains in the clasp. Both are pin and clasp back. Markmanship Badge Marked Sterling. Expert Marksmanship Badge is unmarked. Both bear pistol bars.
11. Sterling Silver Flight Wings and cut away Ribbon bar
This is truly an outstanding grouping with an exceptional painted WWII A-2 Flight Jacket that on its own is worth over $5000. It remains an exquisite example that is in an exceptional state of preservation. The collection contains enough information for you to conduct further research on Sergeant Fritz and the grouping's history, if you so choose.
It is very difficult is to find an identified painted A-2 from such a historic and highly decorated unit in todays market. This is without a doubt a Museum Quality Grouping and worthy of being displayed in any historical institution or within the collection of a wonderful private collection.
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