US Marine Corps Field Scarf, Rare Piece of the Pre-War Uniform:

From the 1930’s to the end of WWII, there were dramatic changes in the combat uniform, helmet, equipment and weaponry of the US Marine. But changes in the dress uniform were much more subtle. One of the little known changes made during this time was with the necktie, or “Field Scarf” as designated by the United States Marine Corps.

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Color Photo of the Field Scarf in use

The pre-war Field Scarf was made of khaki cotton or wool with a square tip reinforced with a line of stitching at the bottom. As with most USMC equipment, the Marine who was issued the tie usually wrote or stenciled his name on it. This pre-war tie is often associated with the China-Marines and can occasionally be seen being worn in photographs of Marines stationed in Shanghai and Northern China. The Marine Corps also issued a pin to wear behind the tie called the “Battle Pin”, which was worn until 1942 when it was discontinued.


Otis King of the 4th Marine Regiment Wearing the Early  Field Scarf

Footage of the square tip Field Scarf can be seen in the 1940 Warner Bros. movie March on Marines starring Dennis Morgan, about two brothers in the Marine Corps competing for a single acceptance spot (and love interest)to The Annapolis Naval Academy.

By early 1941, the square tip Field Scarf was phased out and replaced with a the standard pointed tip tie, which was universally used by Marine, Army and Navy personnel. Some of the last Marines to wear the square tip ties were the China-Marines who had been sent overseas before the new model tie came was adopted. These men continued to wear their Field Scarfs up until they were taken prisoner by the Japanese in 1942.


Marine Corps Square Tip Field Scarfs

Although a small part of the US Marine Corps uniform, the square tip Field Scarf epitomizes the pre-war Marine and his unending duty of protecting America and America’s interests overseas.


For Related Articles See:

 For more information on WWII USMC Uniforms and equipment see:

United States Marine Corps Uniforms, Insignia and Personal items of WWII:

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