Original untouched WWII M-1 helmet owned and worn by US Army Major General Edwin F. Harding. The helmet is a swivel bail and front seam, and bears a dark green sand paint finish which is completely intact and virtually unblemished. Two chromed steel stars have been very carefully soldered or tack-welded at front, with the paint about them slightly heat-discolored in places. They were then touched-up in matching green paint.
The Westinghouse liner likewise bears two stars, interestingly self-applied cloth stars placed over traces of two slightly larger, weakly-painted stars. The liner bears a small tear at the rear. Both the leather and canvas chin straps are present, and the liner sweatband and straps are also present and in good to very good condition. The interior of the left side of the liner bears a hand-painted identification: "M[ajor]. G[eneral]. Harding" in aged white paint. This comes with a hardcover copy of his biography book. Overall fine condition.efQSXEDWIN FORREST HARDING (1886 - 1970) was a West Point graduate who commanded the 32nd Infantry Division, the first American unit, after the Battle for Guadalcanal, to engage in offensive operations in the Pacific Theater of Operations. The 32nd was understrength, ill-trained, poorly equipped, and thrust into its first battle against seasoned Japanese units. The unit finally logged a total of 654 days of combat during World War II, more than any other Army division. They were among the first to enter the war and were still engaging attacking Japanese after an armistice was declared. Harding is most remembered for leading the division in the attack on Buna, New Guinea, a plan which suffered form bad intelligence and for which he was sacked by MacArthur. Harding then served as Commander of the Mobile Force in the Panama Canal Zone, and in 1944 Commander of the Antilles Department in the Caribbean, comprising 20 forts, camps and fields in Cuba, Haiti, Costa Rica to Aruba, and portions of northern South America.
This was obtained from an Alexander Autographs Auction about two years ago who stated it came from the collection of a noted but unnamed media personality who is a collector.