MacArthur's hat

Discussion in 'WWII' started by hatguy1, Feb 3, 2014.

  1. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    The other night I caught a rerun of the 1977 Gregory Peck classic "MacArthur." Got me to wondering why MacArthur's wheel cap was all embroidered insignia? I can't say I've ever seen any photos of any other US army generals wearing one like that. Anyone know?

    MacArthur's hat.jpg

    Any other wheel caps I've seen worn typically have the metal insignia that screws on the front.

    Typical general's hat.jpg
     
  2. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

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  3. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    So you're saying that hat he paid to have his own uniform hat uniquely made like that? Reminds me of the line from Gettysburg (1993):
    "Colonel Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain: Generals can do anything. There's nothing so much like a god on earth as a General on a battlefield. "

    Wonder why no other officers/general officers followed suit and had their own similar completely embroidered wheel cap made?
     
  4. Treetopflyer

    Treetopflyer Practically Family

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    Probably because their egos didn't match his and they didn't want to emulate him. Not many Generals were fond of him. The ones that were, were on his staff. He surrounded himself with people he knew and people that agreed with everything he said.
     
  5. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Surrounding himself with "yes" men. Sounds familiar. Say; I see you're in Norfolk. Have you seen the MacArthur monument/museum there? I'm curious why he and his wife are interred there and his museum is there. Did they have ties to that area?
     
  6. Treetopflyer

    Treetopflyer Practically Family

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    I have been to the museum a couple of times. Although I am not a big fan of MacArthur, the museum is great and if you like history you could spend a solid day there looking at everything. His association to Norfolk is that his Mother was from Norfolk. Apparently the family spent a lot time there when he was growing up. When the city was vacating the old city hall building they asked him if he would want a memorial for him put in that building. Of course he said yes. The only stipulation was that the city couldn't charge the public a fee to see it.

    His wife was a lovely lady. I had a friend that reenlisted in the Navy at the Memorial and Mrs. MacArthur sent my friend a hand written letter thanking her for her service.
     
  7. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Sounds like a cool place amongst the many in Norfolk. Someday.... And that note to your friend on enlistment from Mrs Mac - wow!
     
  8. 1961MJS

    1961MJS My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    .

    Hi

    If memory serves, the reason no other officers had their own similar cap made was that there were no other officers of Field Marshal of the Philippine Army Douglas C. MacArthur's rank.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_MacArthur

    Later
     
  9. Treetopflyer

    Treetopflyer Practically Family

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    Another Wikipedia link says:
    "President Quezon officially conferred the title of field marshal on MacArthur in a ceremony at Malacañan Palace on August 24, 1936. He was presented at that time with a gold baton and a unique uniform. MacArthur wore no special insignia as field marshal of the Philippines, except for a modification to his army officer’s cap. To the standard gold-trimmed visor of a United States general's cap, MacArthur added gilt trim to the front body of the cap, above the visor. MacArthur referred to this modified headdress as his "Philippine field marshal's cap" and wore it for the duration of World War II and into the Korean War. However, the modified army headdress was against regulations, and MacArthur never officially obtained permission to wear this as a part of his uniform."
     
  10. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Ah. Thanks. I was wondering about those laurels, TreeTop.
     
  11. dhermann1

    dhermann1 I'll Lock Up

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    Not a Mac fan either. When he found out that he had been promoted to General of the Armies, i.e. 5 star grade, he got a bunch of enlisted men to file down some silver dimes to create a five star emblem like the one Ike had.
     
  12. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    I was shocked to learn that he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor shortly after fleeing the Philippines with the PI president but then railed about the USA general in command he left behind for eventually surrendering his starved, beleaguered troops.
     
  13. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Thanks, '61. I wasn't aware that Mac was a FM in the PI army. That explains his laurels round the cap and (perhaps) his feeling of exaltedness.
     
  14. SHOWSOMECLASS

    SHOWSOMECLASS A-List Customer

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    My two cents: who is going to censor a five star about his unifrom? The President or Congress? Certainly hyperbole but, he could wear 3 inch pumps and a feather boa and who is going to stop him. If memory serves me correctly he was diplomatically reassigned during the Korean Conflict because of his outspokeness against Truman regarding not pursuing the The North Korean troops beyond the 35th parallel. His stones made him successful, but were his ultimate undoing. "Pride before a crash".
     
  15. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    My understanding is Truman summarily fired him and forced him into retirement. Of course , Mac got the last laugh; a ticker tape parade in NYC, addressing a joint session of Congress and addressing the Corps of Cadets at West Point, then retiring to a penthouse in the Waldorf to live out his days. Hell; I'd loved to be fired like that and they could do it this afternoon, if it'd suit 'em.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
  16. SHOWSOMECLASS

    SHOWSOMECLASS A-List Customer

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    Yes that is like a paid day off as a punishment from the boss.
     
  17. Treetopflyer

    Treetopflyer Practically Family

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    He should have been court martialed for insubordination in 1932 when he disobeyed President Hoover's orders in how he dealt with the Bonus Marchers. I also wonder how he was awarded air medals when he was never a pilot.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
  18. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Yes! I agree. I'd still like to know just what it was that he had done so much more spectacularly than any other general of the time to warrant
    The CMoH.....


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  19. hatguy1

    hatguy1 One Too Many

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    Sounds like Mac and Patton had a lot in common - either loved or hated with no inbetween.
     
  20. Stearmen

    Stearmen I'll Lock Up

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    A song, sung to the tune of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," turned up at Bataan:



    Dugout Doug MacArthur lies ashaking on the Rock

    Safe from all the bombers and from any sudden shock

    Dugout Doug is eating of the best food on Bataan

    And his troops go starving on.

    Dugout Doug's not timid, he's just cautious, not afraid

    He's protecting carefully the stars that Franklin made

    Four-star generals are rare as good food on Bataan

    And his troops go starving on.

    Dugout Doug is ready in his Kris Craft for the flee

    Over bounding billows and the wildly raging sea

    For the Japs are pounding on the gates of Old Bataan

    And his troops go starving on...
     

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