SUPERB WWII US ARMY AIR FORCES OFFICER "50 MISSION" TRUE CRUSHER HAT. "Flight Ace" cap manufactured by Ace Manufacturing Company, San Antonio, Texas.
I acquired this exceptional hat about 15 years ago, keeping it for myself. It has been very carefully stored with the hat "blocked" to retain shape.
What is a true crusher hat? These are the most desirable, least common, WWII USAAF hats, based on the very soft visor construction, which made the cap fold-able, or roll-able for storage in a suitcase, flight bag, or duffle bag when traveling. When removed from storage, the quality construction permits the hat to quickly resume its proper shape. This is the concept, too, of the "Traveler's Roll Up Fedora Hat, " as worn by Indiana Jones. Most World War II US Army visor hats are not true crusher hats.They will have a stiff visor, but can only be deformed in photos by vigorous side-to-side squeezing, causing the visor to bend a little. Where the term "50 Mission Crusher" originated is harder to say. Probably, experienced aircrew ("Old Salts" in Navy terminology) could get away with non-regulation manipulations of their headgear, such as removing the crown spring, to give the hat a sloppier, drooping, look. That is not a "true crusher" hat. Exceptionally clean for 75+ years. All leather components soft, pliable, not cracking, still even gleaming! Forward chin strap still has points at keepers (these are often torn off on original caps). Rear "Cavalry strap" with buckle. Original brad type WWII US Army gold plated buttons.
Soft leather sweatband 100% stitched with original thread. Inner tag size 7 1/8. Very soft visor nearly folds in half, merely under weight of cap! Original vinyl liner in crown has crazed a bit with age.
No personal identifier (Name, Rank, Serial Number) seen. No provenance available on this hat. Original-to-hat oversize "Gemsco, Acid Test" WWII Officer Eagle with 99% of gold plate present. DEFECT: Tiny, 1 cm linear area of moth nipping to wool where crown meets visor on right side.This defect is easily reparable by a museum conservationist, and is hidden under the chin strap with ordinary display. THIS IS A GREAT MUSEUM QUALITY TRUE WORLD WAR II USAAF OFFICER CRUSHER HAT FOR A MUSEUM OR INDIVIDUAL COLLECTION! The item "Superb US WW2 Soft Bill 50 Mission US Army Air Forces Pilot Crusher Visor Hat" is in sale since Thursday, June 11, 2020.
This item is in the category "Collectibles\Militaria\WW II (1939-45)\Original Period Items\United States\Hats & Helmets". The seller is "banddvarietysalesnm" and is located in Las Cruces, New Mexico. This item can be shipped to United States.