Item:
ONSV1529

Original U.S. WWII B-25 Bomber Trouble Bruin A-2 Flight Jacket - 488th Bomb Squadron

Item Description

Original Item: One-of-a-kind. This is an exceptional A2 leather flight jacket issued to a member of the 12th Air Force, 340th Bombardment Group, 488th Bomb Squadron.

The 488th Bomb Squadron was established  as a B-25 Mitchell medium bomber squadron in mid-1942, trained by Third Air Force in the southeastern United States. Deployed to IX Bomber Command in Egypt initially in March 1943 via Air Transport Command South Atlantic Route through Caribbean, Brazil, Liberia, Central Africa and Sudan, then reassigned to Mediterranean Theater of Operations (MTO), and to XII Bomber Command in Tunisia. Supported Allied ground forces in Tunisian Campaign; participated in Invasions of Sicily and Italy during 1943, supporting Allied ground forces with tactical bombing of enemy targets. Participated in liberation of Corsica during the spring of 1944, then returned to Italy engaging in attacks on enemy ground forces and targets in the Po Valley during the spring of 1945.

Overall condition of the jacket is very good and in a large size (42). The leather is still supple with some areas of cracking or damage but nothing major and the coat is overall totally solid. The lining is original as are the cuffs and the waist band. The cuffs show wear and deterioration. The zipper is marked on the slider and pull with TALON, a known maker of quality zippers. The left shoulder has an embroidered 12th Air Force Patch and there are bullion embroidered lieutenant bars on each epaulets. The interior has laundry number B- 5421 which represents the first letter of the officer's last name along with the last four digits of his Army Serial Number. There are ink initials at the lower interior of the jacket that appear to read RHH.

The original tag is still intact:

TYPE A-2
DWG. NO. 30H1415
PROPERTY
AIR FORCE, U.S.ARMY
United Sheep Lined
Clothing Co.
Long Branch, NJ.

 

The most notable aspect of this jacket is the exceptional hand painted artwork. The front bears the an incredibly rare 488th Bombardment Squadron hand painted cloth patch. This patch features a naked woman riding a falling bomb while holding a lighting bolt.

The reverse of the jacket features 22 yellow bombs (missions) with a Kangaroo in boxing gloves about to punch a stunned AH who is wearing an Iron Cross medal around his neck. Above them reads the planes name TROUBLE BRUIN. The art is 100% period authentic, the paint while old is still vibrant and the the detail of the art itself is second to none. Sure to be a focal point of any WWII collection!

 

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