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Original WWII Italian 1st Armored Regiment Colonel’s Bustina Field Cap

Regular price $550.00

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. The "Bustina" field cap was originally introduced in 1933 and was worn by both Army and Fascist militia personnel, with minor variations.

This blue gray wool field cap features fold down side panels are held together over the crown of the cap by two corresponding hidden snaps. The front visor is in the upright position. To the front is a very fine embroidered gold bullion on light blue felt background. Italian Army cap insignia for the 1st Armored Regiment. Also, on the left side are 3 stamped star rank insignia for Colonello (Colonel).

The interior is fully lined in a rayon/silk with a wide leather sweatband. Maker name is no longer present. Size is approximately US 6 3/4 (54cm).

1st Armored Regiment (Italy)
The regiment's baptism of fire came during the Italian invasion of France, when the regiment advanced with its battalion into Southern France. In early summer 1940 the regiment's I Tank Battalion "L" was sent to North Africa for the upcoming Italian invasion of Egypt, where it joined the X Army Corps. The regimental headquarters arrived in Libya in early July and on 20 July 1940 the 1st Armored Infantry Regiment's headquarter arrived in Mechili, where it remained and fulfilled administrative and logistic duties, while the regiment's commanding officer Colonel Pietro Aresca led the Babini Group's I Tankers Grouping (also known as "Aresca Group"). The regiment's headquarters remained in Mechili until 24 January 1941, when advancing British forces drove the Italians out of Mechili. As the regimental command had been destroyed during the British advance the regiment was declared disbanded on 8 February 1941.

The regiment was reformed on 15 March 1941 in Vercelli as training unit. For the remainder of the war the regiment trained replacement tank crews for the deployed units and occasionally also new battalions:

- I, II, IV, and X tank battalions "L" to replace units lost in the North African campaign
- X Tank Battalion "M14/41" with M14/41 tanks for the 133rd Tank Infantry Regiment (later transferred to the 132nd Tank Regiment)
- XV Tank Battalion "M14/41" with M14/41 tanks for the 31st Tank Infantry Regiment (half of the XV was raised by the 4th Tank Infantry Regiment)

On 1 August the regiment began with the formation of the I Tank Battalion "P" with new P 40 tanks, but after Italy changed sides with the Armistice of Cassibile on 8 September 1943 the 1st Tank Infantry Regiment was disbanded by the Germans and its materiel transferred to Wehrmacht units.

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