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Old 03-15-2018, 08:41 PM
spartanpgh spartanpgh is offline
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Default Tell me more about this baton *militaria* *82nd Airborne*



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Okay so I'm a Marine, my dad is Navy, and I have no clue where this came from. Its a solid hard wood, quite heavy, and has "82nd Airborne" as well as a First Initial + Last Name + Last 4 of someone I havent been able to track down. Can anybody teach me something about my baton?
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Old 03-15-2018, 09:12 PM
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looking at that, the straight cut, the grip, looks more like a Belaying pin off a sailing vessel than a baton whats the overall length?

belaying pin was used to secure lines on running rigging........
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Old 03-15-2018, 09:14 PM
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And an occasional attitude adjustment
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Old 03-15-2018, 09:37 PM
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Definitely a belaying pin.



http://www.goodoldboat.com/reader_se.../bowsprits.php

To belay the line, just take a single or double wrap around the smooth top part. This allows sail trim to be adjusted while relieving the sailor of having to hold the full force in his hands. Like putting a wrap or 2 on a modern winch does.

Also serves as a cleat if you do a cleat wrap on it. Plus it gives a nice peg on top to stow the coil of line.

And they were easier to make in the old days than a modern cleat.
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Old 03-15-2018, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spartanpgh View Post
Okay so I'm a Marine, my dad is Navy, and I have no clue where this came from. Its a solid hard wood, quite heavy, and has "82nd Airborne" as well as a First Initial + Last Name + Last 4 of someone I havent been able to track down. Can anybody teach me something about my baton?
This looks to me to be a decorative (well-made hardwood) night stick wall hanger or desk ornament for a former Military Policeman or CID agent or something, given in a ceremonial situation for a former member of the 82nd Airborne Division.

Folks in the Army tend to give things like Calvary hats, spurs, swords, bayonets, and so forth as ceremonial gifts. I think that's what you've acquired.

It might very well be a quality hardwood.

The fact it's in a pawn shop or similar means the prior owner is likely either no longer with us, didn't want it (sold it at a moving sale) or lost it in a seized storage locker. My educated guess.

You might contact the 82nd historical society and see if they know or have interest, but I doubt it.

Probably just keep it. Looks like a well made night stick/baton.



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Old 03-15-2018, 11:39 PM
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I'd argue that there is no "standard" military baton. And this is likely a retirement or ceremonially gifted one, so wouldn't be "historically accurate" anyway.

Clearly the individual was in the 82nd. And the only careers in the 82nd that used or had affiliation with batons would have been the Military Police force. No other explanation makes sense as to why someone would have an unused "new" condition baton with his unit and SS# engraved (I'm surprised that he actual company unit isn't there, but whatever). There's simply no other rational explanation or guess.

Probably some junior individual found a hardwood historic (recreation) military baton and got it engraved and the unit likely gifted it to an individual. Or the person bought it for himself. Seen it many, many times with other items in the Army.

Here's a Chicago Police baton from the 1960s that is almost identical.

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Old 03-16-2018, 12:18 AM
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Yeah, that is a retirement or PCS-type gift from military police/CID.
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Old 03-16-2018, 07:29 AM
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super cool fellas. It doesnt look like a belaying pin, and I hate that I don't have any more context about it. It really is a tough baton
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Old 03-19-2018, 04:44 PM
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My first instinct was that it's a belaying pin also. Then I took a second look at the handle. The grooves are definitely for enhancing the grip. Belaying pins would not have that because it would cause chafe on the lines. I know that doesn't help identify it any, but it does eliminate one possibility.
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Old 03-19-2018, 05:27 PM
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Probably a pre-war truncheon or espantoon engraved post or during the war.

It may be weighted if it has an unusual heft to it.
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Old 03-19-2018, 05:33 PM
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most belays length is between 8" and 11" overall, some as long as 13" most shorter and in fractional splits, made from, hardwood, brass, stainless steel, plated steel, even saw some copper ones once on a older ketch, like this brass one.

why i asked the length

most SP/MP "billy's" i had experience with were pine,painted black, and slightly tapered. I never had a assignment where ceremony came into play, I did see a couple of hardwood spar varnished ones in various embassies, public eye so to speak, so i could see them doing a fancy one for a retirement memento/ sorta like the Rudius presented to gladiators upon their granted freedom.

to carry that on, I had a friend that retired as a dog trainer a few years back, when i say dog trainer, he was the guy that wore the red suit for about 20 years. go to work, get attacked by dogs all day.

when he retired, the CO (military and DOD civilian)of the facility gave him a Rottweiler puppy as a retirement gift.........I saw the irony in that,
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Old 03-19-2018, 05:44 PM
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It's painfully obvious to me what it is, as I've said above.

Nobody would gift or engrave a boating item for someone in the 82nd Airborne (which is an Airborne infantry unit)! Hello?!?!

Former owner - quite obviously - had some ties to law enforcement. Probably an MP. This was almost certainly (99% sure) a retirement or PCS gift meant to be mounted or kept for sentimental value. It's identical to that police baton photo above... Same size, same straight design, same handle, same finger grooves, same strap holder design, etc.

Mystery solved.
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Old 03-19-2018, 06:09 PM
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Agreed, its a baton. I am a sailor, so my mind went straight to belaying pin, especially with the angle of the photo that made it look tapered and shorter.

but the handle part would be much smoother for a belaying pin, for the rope to slide on easier. Definitely a baton what for clobberin folks on the cabeza with.
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