ww2 white navy bells..."Steady as she goes....."

Discussion in 'WWII' started by Shinobichi, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. Shinobichi

    Shinobichi Familiar Face

    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    Burnaby BC
    Hi everyone, how can you tell a WW2 sailors undress (white) bell bottoms from post war?

    Anyone selling a WW2 bell bottom with size 32 and 30 inseam?

    Thanks all for your input!
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2014
  2. DNO

    DNO One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,815
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Hello Shinobichi.


    Seeing that your location is the fine province of British Columbia, I assume you’re interested in RCN pants.

    I don’t have a wartime pair but I can certainly show you a post-war example. I managed to obtain a large seabag with an RCN naval rating’s various uniforms last year. Everything was dated 1951 or 52.

    Here’s the pair of white summer cotton duck trousers.

    [​IMG]

    Unlike the blue serge trousers they have a simple one button fastening.

    [​IMG]

    RCN uniforms are not as well marked as Army or RCAF equipment. Looking for the ‘C and Broad Arrow’ mark is second nature to me but you rarely find it on naval items. What you should find on WWII vintage uniforms is the word ‘NAVAL’… that’s the RCN equivalent of the C/Broad Arrow. These pants have been nicely dated by the manufacturer, as you can see. If you look carefully to the right of the label you can make out a faint circular stamp…that’s the post-war Canadian military acceptance mark. They abandoned the C/broad arrow.

    [​IMG]

    I suspect these are identical to the wartime issue. They did modify some articles of uniform and the blue serge pants went to a zipper closure in the early 50's but the blue serge trousers and the jumpers that came in this seabag are identical to wartime issue.
     
  3. DNO

    DNO One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,815
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    I dug a bit deeper in my iPhoto. Here's a better example of the post-war acceptance mark, found on the white duck jumper.

    [​IMG]

    And here's an example of the NAVAL acceptance mark, WWII vintage, found on an RCN pay belt:

    [​IMG]
     
  4. DNO

    DNO One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,815
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    And...last one.

    You're probably familiar with the C/broad arrow mark I referred to, but just in case, here's an example from an early war Canadian army tropical helmet.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Shinobichi

    Shinobichi Familiar Face

    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    Burnaby BC
    Thanks DNO for your time and info.Very informative. I know that it's hard to get Canadian WW2 stuff for some reason.
     
  6. Shinobichi

    Shinobichi Familiar Face

    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    Burnaby BC
    Here's some research I would like to share with you all concerning WW2 USN dress and undress enlisted uniforms:


    " The other primary way to date an enlisted jumper is by the type of manufacturing label it has.

    Naval Clothing Factory labels started the war fully embroidered, switched to printed labels in 1943, added “100 percent wool exclusive of ornamentation” in 1944 and changed to “Naval Clothing Depot” in 1945.
    Other features of World War II enlisted jumpers are branch marks—a white or blue stripe on upper right sleeve for seaman-rated and a red stripe on upper left sleeve for fireman-rated and combat-related distinguishing marks such as gun pointer, air gunner or amphibious forces."

    ~ WORTHPOINT: Collecting U.S. Naval Uniforms from the Second World War by Ken Hatfield (02/28/13).


    "The same white jumpers were used from 1898 to about the late 1950 (some surviving inot the 1970s. Anyway, if by "CB Striker" you mean a small patch worn on the lower sleeve that has the letters "CB" then, yes, it is WW2.


    Yes the CB striker is the small patch at the bottom of the wearers left sleeve. So, the striker ID's it to WWII? Why were the strikers dropped post war?


    OK, it's not actually called a "Striker". That is a collector term. They were called Distinguishing Marks, and there were dozens of them. The one you have was actually dropped about '44 but continued in use. it was to be replaced with the CB shoulder patch. Both were worn seperately or together until 1947 when the Navy dropped all shoulder patches and created a series of CB specific Specialty Marks and rating badges which would in themselves ID the wearer as a CB.

    Naval clothing factory uniforms also continued to be issued into the '50, useing up WW 2 contract stocks. The WW 2 contract stock white jumpers had a patch pocket and two pairs of eyelets on both sides of the hem (as do yours).

    the blue Seaman tape around the right shoulder was dropped in 1948, but continued to be worn until at least '49.

    Most likely, these are WW 2 uniforms, if not they were manufactured in WW 2.

    The same style of trousers were issued from the late thirties to '73. the early versions had eyelets on the waistband for the clothes stops (like in the hem of the jumpers). These were supposed to have been deleted in 1940, but most wartime production trousers continued to be made with them.

    The eyelets were supposed to have been replaced with cotton tape loops sewn into the inside of the waistband. This eventually becomes the norm in the mid fifties, but was present on some war time produced trousers. Other than these eyelets/ loops, there is no difference in the trousers made before WW 2 to 1973.

    A thing about tags in Naval enlisted clothing. In white uniforms prior to 1973, the manufacturer info was stamped in black ink on the inside. This quickly washed out, so finding any tags on white uniforms is pretty rare. In blues, the only thing that should be found is the sewn in tag under the collar on on a pocket in the trousers.

    These tags remain because they are sewn on all four sides, all other tags are removed. Size tags are only sewn on one side, so, they come out. Don't know why, it is just something we were taught to do in Boot Camp.

    Enlisted WW2 era uniforms have the following things in common that do not appear on post WW2 era enlisted uniforms.

    The blues have tags that read "Naval Clothing Factory". There are various styles of these tags for different points of time. Jeff Warners books get this right. Blue jumpers, both Dress and Undress, have two small eyelets at the base of the side seams in the hem. They also have a draw string in the waist. The trousers also have the same eyelets in the front of the front pockets and a small brass sipper in the left front pocket. Please note that some jumpers will not have either the eyelets nor draw string. These jumpers were either made without them or the jumper was shortened and they were just cut off and not replaced.

    White jumpers have the same eyelets as the blue jumpers, no draw string, and two cloth loops, one under the collar in the back and one on the front and the base of the "V" of the neck opening. The Necker chief was laced through the back loop and then tied into the front loop. Note, these loops were rarely ever used. The Necker chief was NOT tucked into the front loop, and sometimes Sailors removed them altogether as useless.

    The trousers have the eyelets set into the sides at the waistbands. There generally are NO stamps or markings in the whites other than the name of the owner as these makers marks were ink stamped in at the factory and quickly washed out.

    Additionally, remember that WW2 manufactured and contracted uniforms were still being issued well into the 1950s. It is common to find solid WW2 contract uniforms with post war insignia. "

    Information above ,unless stated otherwise is gotten from Steve Hesson at the "US Militaria Forum". Thanks Steve!
     
  7. Slobo

    Slobo New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Location:
    Virginia
    At what point did the gusseted rear, beltless white trousers give way in production to those with belt loops and no rear adjustment? Was this a prewar or wartime change? Also, i believe I have seen beltless butvsithout the rear gusset. Were these ever regulation or maybe private purchase? Finally, did the width of the legs ever change in the immediate prewar and wartime period, going to or from straight leg to more bell from knees to cuffs?
     

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