1934 USN Grumman Fabric - Red Ripper VF-5B ***PRICE REDUCED***


Regular price $1,975.00

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Wonderful unit insignia cut from the side of a crashed Grumman biplane fighter, likely a FF-1 or G-5 flown from the USS Lexington. The fabric as about 18x24" and is in a frame with double-sided plexiglas for viewing on both sides. There are several letters of provenance leading back to Major Lofton Henderson, USMC, who allegedly collected this fabric from a crashed fighter in an airshow in 1934. Henderson died in the Battle of Midway and was awarded the Navy Cross; Henderson Airfield, Guadalcanal is named in his honor. While there remains much research to be done on this fabric piece, it is fun to see how the insignia has "morphed" over the years. The current insignia has reversed the bar sinister to remove the "bastard" implication and the boar's head (on the Gordon's Gin bottle) is also reversed. However the two "balls" remain as does the apparent "link-of-bologna". (In 2011 the USN brass declared a traditional toast of the Red Rippers banned; the current military has no sense of tradition and too much political correctness in my mind.) The fabric is in generally very good condition for it's age of 80 years but there are some minor tears from removal of old hide glue used to paste down to a board.  ***PRICE REDUCED FROM $2275***