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Regarding the “Really Old Corps”

By: Carl Plummer

Just read the article about the “Really Old Corps”. Made me smile with a strong inner sense of pride for having been in THAT Marine Corps, 1952-1955. I was not issued a Sam Browne Belt or Dress Blues but everything else in the article I remembered. I distinctly remember being one of about 6-7 men in my company in Korea still wearing boondockers and leggins in 1953. I had a Green Battle Jacket and wore it on R&R in Japan where I stood out like a sore thumb. Good memories all. Thanks .

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Gerry Schemel - March 31, 2020

I wasn’t issued one but a guy who was getting out gave me one in 1962. Really liked it. Was not allowed to wear it off base. 3rd Amtracs YAT YAS

‘Stoney’ Brook - March 31, 2020

Initially, the Army (and many police agencies) wore Sam Browne belts. Per USMC Uniform Regulations of 1937, the proper title of the Marine Officer’s Cordovan leather belt is the Officer’s Belt, Model 1937. The enlisted Marine ‘fair leather’ (Cordovan) belt was officially called the Dress Belt or, later, the Garrison Belt.

At some point during WWII, the Marine officer’s leather belt became known as a ‘Sam Browne belt’ but the enlisted belt (which didn’t have a double prong buckle & cross strap that gave the distinguishing name) had been discontinued as issue by about late 1942, replaced by the current style green cloth belt.

Marine Battle Jackets aka Vandegrift Jackets were adopted in 1943 when 1st Mar Div landed in Australia following the Guadalcanal campaign. The style was derived from UK troops who wore a similar jacket into battle, much as US Army and Marines wore their green blouse as a combat uniform in WWI. By the early 1960’s, the Vandegrift style was rarely allowed to be worn off-base and ceased issue by late 1963.

Bob Rader - March 31, 2020

The Ike jacket was my favorite winter wear on liberty. Only memory of Korea at Munson-ni is how cold it got.

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