Original U.S. WWII Navy VB-89 (Bomber Squadron 89) Named Deck Jacket
Original Item: Only One Available. This is rare World War II United States Navy VB-89 (Bomber Squadron 89) squadron patched deck jacket. VB-89 was part of the Pacific Fleet, and served aboard the USN aircraft carrier USS Antietam (CV-36) from October 1944 until April 1946, and flew Vought FU4 Corsairs off her deck. The embroidered patch shows a sheep hiding a bomb behind his back.
The reverse of of the jacket is named in black paint stencil:
Front of the jacket bears the patch and USN. Jacket is in very good condition and measures:
Collar to shoulder: 10”
Shoulder to sleeve: 23”
Shoulder to shoulder: 18”
Chest width: 20”
Waist width: 18”
Hip width: 20”
Front length: 26.5”
History of the Deck Jacket:
With needs at the outside edge of the “workwear” spectrum, military clothing has a long history of letting form follow function (the large slit up the back of a duster made it a whole lot easier for the Calvary to ride horses in jackets…not that the horses were wearing jackets…you know what I mean). And while this entire site could be devoted to military clothing and its influence on contemporary fashion, today let’s focus on one specific garment, one that will make as much sense in the fall and winter of 2017 as it did onboard a Navy destroyer in 1944: the N-1 Deck Coat (N1DC).
The N1DC is the successor to the Peacoat, and while that classic design served the Navy well (not to mention every retailer on earth from L.L. Bean to J.Crew to Georgio Armani), its practicality as a garment for braving the high seas was more 1840s than 1940s. After all, there was WWII to win! (I never cease to be amazed that companies like Buzz Rickson make such a painstakingly detailed reproduction of the N1DC–as they do of so many WWII-era items–in Japan. Man, talk about forgive and forget.) Initially, the Navy was using a design similar to the Army’s Winter Combat/Tanker Jacket, but by late 1943 a brand spanking new 100% Navy-designed model was proudly on the backs of American sailors–the N1DC. All of the innovations in the new and improved N1DC were brilliant in their simplicity, and 100% of them have found their way into garments from that day forward. In fact, the design elements are so pervasive that most who have assimilated them likely have no idea that they once held a “gee whiz” appeal.
For the exterior, we’re talking a heavy corded cotton grosgrain (often referred to jungle cloth, though not while sailing the North Atlantic), a slightly-longer-than-waist-length shell to protect from the weather (initially in dark blue, then khaki–the most classic–and finally olive drab), an alpaca (rounded) collar and lining, a knit cuff hidden up in the sleeve to keep warmth in and prevent snags (this was apparently a big problem), gusseted underarms for extended range of motion with eyelets added to aid in ventilation, a drawstring at the waist to keep out the draft (the only one you could avoid at the time), roomy slash pockets, and a buttoned flap as an added layer of security over the zippered front. If you have three or four warm weather coats in your closet, you likely have this full menu of features spread amongst them.
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