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Vietnam Graffiti M1

Article about: Hey everyone, Another helmet to ask some questions about! This one is rather interesting! It's what looks to me like a Vietnam era helmet shell (rear seam, sand rather than cork, lighter gre

  1. #1

    Default Need Help! Vietnam Graffiti M1

    Hey everyone,

    Another helmet that is for sale to ask some questions about! This one is rather interesting! It's what looks to me like a Vietnam era helmet shell (rear seam, sand rather than cork, lighter green colour) with a Korean era liner (eyelet hole in front, OD7 webbing, marked Westinghouse Micarta 1952). However, it seems that some of the webbing has the lighter second world war colour?

    The Mitchell cover war produced in 1965, as it is labelled as contract #8116. The graffiti, which is the most interesting (and easiest to fake), is present on both sides of the mitchell cover. On the autumn brown side, it has the word "ROOT" as well as a large 65 (which I'm assuming is 1965, the year the cover was produced.) It looks like there was something written above the 65 that has faded with time.

    On the green side, there is "we are as one" written in pen, as well as a large badge-like drawing with "ROSCOE" written on top. It appears that something was drawn in the badge, but perhaps the ink bled or it was poorly done and then covered in ink.

    Inside the liner, "ROOT" is written along one of the HBT support arms, which seems to have been written over as "ROSKO".

    Finally, on the inside of the metal helmet shell, "Ruble" is written in pencil.


    So, this begs a few questions. Were Korea era liners used during the early Vietnam war? Since the names are written in both the liner and on the Mitchell cover, we must assume that the trio (helmet, liner, cover) has not been recently put together, but together since 1965. However, if Korea liners were not used, then we know that the grafitti is faked and that the trio has been recently married. Another questions - if authentic - who were Root and Rosko? Or was it the same person, with just a nickname? Or were they just kids from the 90's who found their uncles helmet and decided to draw all over it? If so, how would they know the cover is circa 1965? Or perhaps it was a faker?

    I believe that the graffiti looks like it could be period; there is wear on the helmet, as well as fading on the ink. There are similar examples that can be seen here (period photos): Helmet Graffiti | My Vietnam Experience

    Does it look correct to you guys?


    Thanks in advance,


    Quinn


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  2. #2

    Default

    Interesting Helmet Quinn,the webbing certainly has the look of ww2 shade no3 but i can't say why this would be,never seen one like this before,if it is indeed that then it makes it a rare bird,the shell is from 1968 onwards,judging by the paint colour and chinstraps,i can't comment on the graffiti itself,but yes many shells and Liners remained in service for decades,many recieving various repaints etc,also many ww2 HBT marine covers were still used in vietnam alongside Mitchells,its a nice set you've shown,well done.
    With Regards Jake.

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks for the reply Jake, so do you think that this pairing could be original?

    You think the helmet is from 1968? Hmm... I wonder if it would be original to the mitchell, since it says "65" on it?

    If only it could talk!

  4. #4

    Default

    The circular rust band on the helmet shell would indicate that some sort of rubber band or USGI band was present on the shell for quite some time no?

    If that is the case, the cover doesn't really show any evidence of a band ever being on it, it seems as if the wear dose not match and the cover has been added to the helmet, the question is when. I also could be wrong

    Overall it is a very cool looking piece, and I personally would be proud to add it to my shelf

  5. #5

    Default

    Thanks for the reply Aaron! I thought possibly the rust marks could be from stacking? It also looks as if paint is scraped off the helmet where metal-metal contact would be if stacked.

    This would indicate storage at some point. But was it before or after the war, then I suppose the helmet wouldn't be original to the cover. And if so, I would doubt that the cover and liner would have been together, then we would assume that the whole thing is fake/post war, since the liner and cover read "Roscoe" and "Root"


    This one is certainly a tough call.

    Thanks!

  6. #6

    Default

    Staking is something that I did not think of and is a good point. I'm not sure if that is the correct wear though for staking, mainly because I have never seen it. Is it possible to date the heat stamps in M1 helmets?

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