Original U.S. WWII Extensive 601st Field Artillery Grouping For Captain Alvin Curtis Powers Featuring Interview/Biography and Captured German Silverware

Item Description

Original Items: Only One Grouping Available. This is an incredible and rather extensive grouping attributed to Captain Alving Curtis Powers. The best feature in our opinion is the transcript of an interview conducted by Judge Larry Turner on September 10, 1999. It’s not every day you come across a grouping that has a literal biography of the soldier!

The Field Artillery is one of the Army's combat arms, traditionally one of the three major branches (with Infantry and Armor). It refers to those units that use artillery weapons systems to deliver surface-to-surface long range indirect fire. Indirect fire means that the projectile does not follow the line of sight to the target. Mortars are not field artillery weapons; they are organic to infantry units and are manned by infantry personnel (US Army MOS 11C or USMC 0341).

The term field artillery is to distinguish from the Air Defense Artillery, and historically, from the U.S. Army Coast Artillery Corps (with the function of coastal defense artillery), a branch which existed from 1901–1950. In 1950, the two branches were unified and called simply Artillery, until Air Defense Artillery was made into a separate branch in 1968. The insignia of the Field Artillery branch is a pair of crossed field guns (19th-century-style cannon) in gold, and dates back to 1834.

Field artillery is called the "King of Battle". Conflicts in the 20th century saw artillery become exponentially more effective as indirect fire methods were introduced immediately prior to World War I. During World War I and World War II, field artillery was the single highest casualty-producing weapons system on any battlefield.

Soldiers from artillery units have often been used as infantry during both the Iraq War and the War in Afghanistan. While field artillery units have often performed admirably as infantry and accomplishing infantry missions, such use has led to atrophy of essential field artillery specific skills and tasks.

Most Notable Items In This Grouping:
- Class A Uniform Jacket: The uniform jacket is in wonderful condition and is marked as size 40 long. We believe the uniform did belong to Powers, but there are no markings present pertaining to him. The shoulder sleeve insignias are not original to the uniform and was attached VIA an iron on method. The ribbons present are the Bronze Star With Oak Leaf cluster, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign, American Defense and the EAME with 4 stars. The lapel devices are a lovely example of the 601st Field Artillery designators and the standard US devices.
- Various Uniform Insignia: The insignia consists of collar devices, tie, overseas cap with Major Rank, 2 boxed replacement medals, overseas stripes, his dog tags and more.
- Identification Card: The card is in good condition and still has the original picture of powers. The sleeve is cloudy and rather brittle, but all information and the picture is still clear.
- Captured German Medals: The medals are heavily oxidized and are a War Merit Cross With Swords and the Eastern Front medal, both with ribbons.
- x2 Rare First Special Service Forces Amphibian Training Force 9 Sleeve Insignia: These are incredible examples of these insignia. The troops of the First Special Service Force faced a strong wind and choppy seas as they headed for their assigned beaches. Starting at 0130 hours, the campaign to oust the Japanese from the Aleutian island of Kiska, Operation COTTAGE, got underway. It was to be the first combat for this unique Canadian-American unit.
- Unit Crest Plaque: Beautifully painted example, has a hole in the top which was used as a method of display.
- Interview: This is a fantastic and information heavy biography type interview. The booklet is titled as “THE LIFE AND TIME OF CURTIS POWERS / AS TOLD TO JUDGE LARRY TURNER / September 10, 1999. The book talks about his early life, experiences before and during the war and he even noted about hearing about the attack at Pearl Harbor over the radio and was ordered back to base.
- Bronze Star Citation COPY: This is not an original document, it is a copy.

The Citation is as Follows:

ALVIN C. POWERS, (0417331), Captain, Field Artillery, United States Army. For heroic achievement in action, on 23 May 1944, near Mt. Calvo, Italy. Nearing the completion of a long and arduous road march, Captain POWER’S battery was ambushed by a company of German infantry. Under heavy small arms fire, he emplaced two gun sections and opened fire at an extremely short range. Captain POWER’S then led his automatic riflemen and a group of cannoneers forward to positions along a ridge. As he advanced, the enemy discovered his presence and placed heavy mortar and automatic small arms fire on the area. Reaching his forward position Captain POWERS located enemy positions, and using voice control, brought artillery fire to bear upon the enemy. For over four hours he and his small group of men defended their position, inflicting heavy casualties upon the enemy and capturing twenty-five Germans. Captain POWERS’ courageous and aggressive leadership reflects upon himself and the Army of the United States. Entered military service from Umatilla, Florida.

- 29” x 21” 601st Field Artillery Guidon: The guidon is in good condition but does show signs of extensive field use and wear. There are scattered moth nips present and a corner is missing.

- x11 “Captured” German Silverware: This is a lovely small set of silver plated flatware and dishes by Carl Hepp. All pieces are tarnished but still in lovely condition. Each item bears a crest that we unfortunately have not been able to identify. This crest could have been used by any number of establishments such as hotels and restaurants. Each item is stamped with GEBR. HEPP for brothers Carl and Otto Hepp, who founded their company in 1863. The chemist Carl Hepp set a milestone in the history of exclusive gastronomy with the development of the process for silver-plating materials such as alpaca (and later stainless steel). This made the cutlery not only lighter, but also harder and more durable – perfect for use in the gastronomy world. The "Gebrüder Hepp 90" or "hotel silver" conquered the market and over time they replaced the products made of pure silver. So, it’s not for nothing that the Hepp brothers invented hotel silver.

This is an impeccable grouping with lovely bringback items! Comes more than ready for further research and display.

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