Grandpa’s memory box

Dec 24, 2013
150
422
63
Colorado
#1
After my grand mother passed, we found a box buried in the back of a shed on their property of items my grandpa brought back from the Philippines during WWII. There was a steel plate the looks like something you would lace into the bottom of your boot laces, but it has a man’s name on it with a 9 digit number. Do any of you guys have any idea what the significance is of this? I didn’t post a picture of it out of respect to the man who’s name it is. Do you know of any online archives of WWII KIA, or Purple Heart recipients or anything?

Any way, here is some of the stuff in the box. E2FBB0CC-2A53-41EA-A0D0-B8C35D3C4BE6.jpeg 125BEDD3-570E-4ADD-A773-625995D0EDF9.jpeg 46E5B963-4D9F-4A98-A0B7-3A2DFD86148A.jpeg A0686885-DE3E-4F3C-B07B-0B426F037E78.jpeg 5AD636B9-985B-4406-ABAB-DD3F5639A8E7.jpeg
 
Dec 24, 2013
150
422
63
Colorado
#10
The bullet diameter measures .307” with my dial caliper. It weighs 126.5gr with the lead burned out of the rear. There are 4 grooves from the rifle landings. I assumed it’s out of a garand, but I don’t know.

Here’s a pic of the plate with the mans nae in it.

He also brought back 2 jap rifles of 2 different calibers, but my uncle has those. 3FD8D435-9B5F-465A-BBA2-86DE3AF3A50E.jpeg
 

Huskydriver

Sergeant of the Hide
Apr 17, 2018
360
246
43
SLC, Utah
#14
The bullet diameter measures .307” with my dial caliper. It weighs 126.5gr with the lead burned out of the rear. There are 4 grooves from the rifle landings. I assumed it’s out of a garand, but I don’t know.

Here’s a pic of the plate with the mans nae in it.

He also brought back 2 jap rifles of 2 different calibers, but my uncle has those. View attachment 7002920

Interesting this I believe is not a service number or ID tag after all. I think all ww2 service numbers started with either a 1 or an 8. That tag looks different than any dog tag style I have ever seen used as well.
 

j-huskey

Jafo / Instigator !
Jul 27, 2001
1,722
2,795
113
AL
None
#17
Bullet with "lead burned out of rear" is a spent tracer.
4 groove would be any ww2 used 30 cal, 1903 Springfield, 03A3, 1917 Enfield, M1 Garand, any 30cal belt fed... 4 groove was standard. There were some 2 groove 03 barrels.
Agree on grenade shrapnel from above post.
Stripper clips are standard 1903.
 

j-huskey

Jafo / Instigator !
Jul 27, 2001
1,722
2,795
113
AL
None
#18
Interesting this I believe is not a service number or ID tag after all. I think all ww2 service numbers started with either a 1 or an 8. That tag looks different than any dog tag style I have ever seen used as well.
Could have been a personal property ID tag, footlocker, tool box, steamer trunk, saddle if he was mounted Calvary (yes, the Philippines had the last mounted calvary unit to serve), something, at worst, could have been a temporary grave marker on a post driven into the ground above a wartime grave.

Screenshot_20190113-074950_Chrome.jpg 20190113_075343.jpg 20190113_075306.jpg
20190113_075621.jpg Screenshot_20190113-075155_Chrome.jpg

So, that service number makes the tag from a draftee from the Pacific Northwest.
 
Last edited:
Dec 24, 2013
150
422
63
Colorado
#20
Could have been a personal property ID tag, footlocker, tool box, steamer trunk, saddle if he was mounted Calvary (yes, the Philippines had the last mounted calvary unit to serve), something, at worst, could have been a temporary grave marker on a post driven into the ground above a wartime grave.

View attachment 7003177 View attachment 7003178 View attachment 7003179
View attachment 7003180 View attachment 7003181

So, that service number makes the tag from a draftee from the Pacific Northwest.
I’ll post I question on the cmp forum when I gat a chance along with some photos. Do you have a link to this info? Very interesting.

Yes there are a couple pieces of granade, but the ones on the left are not cast like granade shrapnel. The end of a couple of them you can see threads cut into them during manufacturing.
 

j-huskey

Jafo / Instigator !
Jul 27, 2001
1,722
2,795
113
AL
None
#21
The threads cut are from the top of the mk 2 grenade where the fuse body screws in.
20190113_101047.jpg

What information "specifically" do you want a link to ?

Rifle info, William S. Brophy, the Springfield,

Other weapon info, cant list all the mil manuals.

The tracer, I've personally recovered them, and old American Rifleman nag articles, along with studies why ball and tracer is not the best way to go because as tracer burns out, the weight drops and trajectories change, the non tracer bullet goes elsewhere. Old squad leaders used to run a full mag of tracer to get the squad on target, and this also caused some of the squad leader losses bc it let the opposition know where he was.

The horse calvary in the Philippines, Russell Volkmann, a Special Forces legend. There are numerous others about the calvary.

Ask specific and I will try to find the links.


Square holes stamped in the plate for bolting to ? surface indicate potential uses. The temp burial thing info came from my dad, ETO service 44 and 45.

I bumped the post "And then there were none", worth reading.
 
Last edited:
Apr 7, 2008
150
9
18
55
ms
#22
The writing on the flag would be from friends, neighbors and relatives. It's a souvenir banner each soldier took with him when he left home, with (last) good wishes and signatures from everyone he knew. As I recall, the practice of giving banners/flags to soldiers originated in remote villages; conscripts going off to war were given the flag as a keepsake from well-wishers.

I know that there's still a lot of hard feelings over the war, but ifn you're past it and don't feel a real attachment to the flag, send it to the Japanese consulate. They'll figure out the soldier's name and return it to his closest surviving relatives if they can be found.

My father-in-law brought one home from the Solomons. I didn't know better and threw it out after he passed away (I regarded holding it as a "trophy" as disrespectful to all my high school Japanese friends and their parents--though they never knew I had it). I'm Chinese; a LOT of my father's side of the family met their end in China during the war, so he absolutely HATED the Japanese race (442nd notwithstanding-- I remember once we were going to buy a house until he found out a Japanese family lived down the block--"lousy neighborhood; we look somewhere else".) Contrary to generalized Western understanding, the Chinese and Japanese cultures are not "the same". I grew up with lots of Asian/Japanese friends, but didn't get to know the Japanese culture until I after I visited Japan when I was in my 40s. It gave me enough of a different perspective to regret throwing out my father-in-law's trophy. I should have sent it back, out of respect for the dead. The soldier who carried it had family , too.
 
May 18, 2009
818
60
28
61
England, ar
#23
Man, if some of that stuff could talk! Really cool stuff! It no doubt was of some significance to your Grandfather. After my Dad passed away I found the core to some type of AP bullet in his stuff. It seems to be made of some type of very hard steel and has a needle sharp point. Would love to know the story! He hardly ever told war stories. He was a Korean War Vet.
 
Dec 24, 2013
150
422
63
Colorado
#24
The threads cut are from the top of the mk 2 grenade where the fuse body screws in.
View attachment 7003240

What information "specifically" do you want a link to ?

Rifle info, William S. Brophy, the Springfield,

Other weapon info, cant list all the mil manuals.

The tracer, I've personally recovered them, and old American Rifleman nag articles, along with studies why ball and tracer is not the best way to go because as tracer burns out, the weight drops and trajectories change, the non tracer bullet goes elsewhere. Old squad leaders used to run a full mag of tracer to get the squad on target, and this also caused some of the squad leader losses bc it let the opposition know where he was.

The horse calvary in the Philippines, Russell Volkmann, a Special Forces legend. There are numerous others about the calvary.

Ask specific and I will try to find the links.


Square holes stamped in the plate for bolting to ? surface indicate potential uses. The temp burial thing info came from my dad, ETO service 44 and 45.
I bumped the post “And then there were none”, worth reading.
The link I was asking about was for the information about enlisted serial numbers and the breakdown of how the number is configured.
The shrapnel with the threads is not cast metal like the obvious “pineapple” pieces to the right in the photo. So I thought maybe it came from other ordinance.
I posted about my family members in the “and then there were none” thread. My grandfather would not talk about the war. To anyone. I asked him twice in my life what he did in the war. First time (I was like 10 I guess) he told me he was a cook. The second time I asked (I was probably 13-14) he told me he was a foot soldier. I did not know until after he passed away he received a bronze star. In his “memory box” there were some of his ribbons. WWII participant and his Philippines liberation are the two I can remember off the top of my head. His uniform and metals are on display in our local museum.

The writing on the flag would be from friends, neighbors and relatives. It's a souvenir banner each soldier took with him when he left home, with (last) good wishes and signatures from everyone he knew. As I recall, the practice of giving banners/flags to soldiers originated in remote villages; conscripts going off to war were given the flag as a keepsake from well-wishers.

I know that there's still a lot of hard feelings over the war, but ifn you're past it and don't feel a real attachment to the flag, send it to the Japanese consulate. They'll figure out the soldier's name and return it to his closest surviving relatives if they can be found.

My father-in-law brought one home from the Solomons. I didn't know better and threw it out after he passed away (I regarded holding it as a "trophy" as disrespectful to all my high school Japanese friends and their parents--though they never knew I had it). I'm Chinese; a LOT of my father's side of the family met their end in China during the war, so he absolutely HATED the Japanese race (442nd notwithstanding-- I remember once we were going to buy a house until he found out a Japanese family lived down the block--"lousy neighborhood; we look somewhere else".) Contrary to generalized Western understanding, the Chinese and Japanese cultures are not "the same". I grew up with lots of Asian/Japanese friends, but didn't get to know the Japanese culture until I after I visited Japan when I was in my 40s. It gave me enough of a different perspective to regret throwing out my father-in-law's trophy. I should have sent it back, out of respect for the dead. The soldier who carried it had family , too.
I don’t really look at this stuff as trophy’s of war. I tend to look at this stuff as a connection to one of my first best friends, and the life he lived. That is pretty cool information regarding the flag though.