Corporal George Asack of Baker Company was probably issued this blouse while recovering from wounds suffered on the island of Saipan. The Fifth Amphibious Corps patch on the sleeve (instead of the Fourth Marine Division insignia) is a giveaway that Asack wore this article of clothing sometime between July, 1944 (while recovering from wounds in Hawaii) through January, 1945 (stationed on limited duty in California until discharged for reasons of disability).
This blouse was recently sold at auction to a private collector. The seller, Brennan Gauthier of Portraits of War blog forwarded these photographs.
Corporal Asack owned this blouse near the end of his time in the service, as evidenced by the unusual insignia on the left sleeve.
The front of the blouse would have featured two Eagle, Globe, and Anchor pins (in the two holes on the collar) as well as Asack’s ribbons (Purple Heart, American Campaign, Asia-Pacific Campain with two stars, WWII Victory) and any weapons qualification badges.
Each of the buttons features and eagle with fouled anchor.
What makes this blouse unusual is the patch above the corporal chevrons. As part of the 24th Marines, Polus would have had a blouse with the Fourth Marine Division patch starting in the spring of 1944. The patch above is for the 5th Marine Amphibious Corps (VAC). While the 4th Marine Division was part of VAC, wearers of this patch usually served with its headquarters units. Asack was probably issued this blouse while recovering from his Saipan wounds, though he was technically “on detached duty” he was in reality recovering in a hospital.
Looking at the inside of the left sleeve, one can see that the VAC patch is original – there’s no indication of a 4th Marine Division patch (which would have left a diamond stitching pattern) – so Polus didn’t receive this blouse until after he was wounded. The nature of his wound is unknown; he was at Naval Hospital #10 in Aiea Heights for ten days before going to California for treatment. Possibly he received this blouse while in Hawaii; there would have been no time to collect his belongings from Camp Maui. The contractor’s stamp is slightly unusual in that it is printed in red (most examples have black ink) and the fact that it is simply sized L – rather than “4L” “5L” etc – seems to indicate that this was a replacement garment rather than a fitted issue.
However, this definitely belonged to the Baker Company NCO – there was only one G. P. Asack, Jr. serving in the Corps. All Marines were expected to have their clothing stamped in accordance with regulations, and Asack followed them – this would appear inside the right sleeve.