Item:
ON11306

Original U.S. WWII / Korea 1945 3rd Infantry Division M1 McCord Rear Seam Helmet with Firestone Liner

Regular price $895.00

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Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of a genuine late WWII Issue helmet, with each side bearing a very nice painted U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Division Logo. Most likely this helmet saw service post war and possibly in Korea, so we do not know when the divisional insignia was added.

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 1210C, which indicates the approximate manufacture date of March - April 1945, just prior to V-E day.

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. The total production of M-1 helmet shells during the war reached 22,000,000. Of these about 20,000,000 were produced by the main contractor McCord Radiator and Manufacturing Company of Detroit. Although McCord was supposed to be the single source of M-1 helmet shells, by the summer of 1942 a second company was enlisted to help the production effort. This was Schlueter Manufacturing of St. Louis, Missouri. Schlueter began production of its M-1 helmet shells in January 1943. Schlueter produced only 2,000,000 M-1 helmet shells during the war (both fixed and swivel). 

The early M-1 helmet shells had a set of fixed (static) chinstrap loops called "bales" and a stainless steel rim. 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 October 1943, issues with the fixed bales breaking off resulted in a change to the "swivel bales" that this helmet has. In 1944, to deal with paint wearing off the very shiny stainless steel rim, the material was changed to manganese steel, and the seam moved to the rear.

This helmet is a fine example and still retains all of its original WWII parts and the shell has all original "corked" grain paint with rear seam and swivel bails. The chin strap is the correct mid - late war OD Green #3 with blacked brass stamped hardware. The strap shows age and wear related fading as shown.

The liner is correct “high pressure” WWII issue and stamped with an F logo over A 22 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, with the webbing in solid condition with light wear. This HBT suspension is 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. This way the wearer could adjust the fit. Unfortunately the sweatband and liner chin strap are completely missing.

An excellent genuine WWII issue helmet marked to the 3rd Infantry Division, which possibly also saw action in Korea, perfect for any collection! Ready to display!

The U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Division
The 3rd Infantry Division (nicknamed The Rock of the Marne) is a combined arms division of the United States Army based at Fort Stewart, Georgia. It is a direct subordinate unit of the XVIII Airborne Corps and U.S. Army Forces Command. Its current organization includes two armored brigade combat teams, one National Guard Infantry Brigade Combat Team, one aviation brigade, a division artillery and support elements. The division has a distinguished history, having seen active service in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War, and the Global War on Terror. The Medal of Honor has been awarded to 56 members of the 3rd Infantry Division, making the division the most honored in the Army.

The 3rd Division is the only division of the U.S. Army during World War II that fought the Axis on all European fronts, and was among the first American combat units to engage in offensive ground combat operations. Audie Murphy, the most highly decorated American soldier of the war, served with the 3rd Division. The 3rd Infantry Division saw combat in North Africa, Sicily, Italy, France, Germany and Austria for 531 consecutive days. During the war the 3rd Infantry Division consisted of the 7th, 15th and 30th Infantry Regiments, together with supporting units.

During the Korean War, the division was known as the "Fire Brigade" for its rapid response to crisis. 3rd Infantry Division had been headquartered at Fort Benning along with its 15th Infantry Regiment. The 7th Infantry Regiment was located at Fort Devens. 3rd Infantry Division initially arrived in Japan where, as the Far East Command Reserve,it planned post conflict occupation missions in northern Korea. In Japan their strength was increased by augmentation by South Korean soldiers.

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