745th Tank Destroyer Battalion – 1st Infantry Division Uniform

A decorated soldiers ’41 service dress coat with theater made insignia.


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Once the 745th Tank Battalion arrived in England in April of 1944, they were assigned to the 1st infantry Division. and first elements of the battalion landing on Omaha Beach at 1500 hours on June 6th, with more companies coming ashore the next day, June 7, 1944. By June 27th the entire unit was on shore.  The three companies within the 745th were assigned as follows:  They would hold their association with the 1st Infantry Division throughout their service time in the ETO.

This 1941 service dress OD wool coat has a theater made (likely German made) armor patch, made with heavy silk threads and black armor tread and lightening bolt at center.  A twisted tread border forms the perimeter; all the embroidery is directly sewn onto OD wool.  Side are all approximately 3.5 inches long.  There is some fraying in a few areas.  The 1st Division patch is a fully machine embroidered type.

The Dui’s are “Lauer- Nurnburg” made screw back insignia.  These are a scarcer variety where enamel was not used for color, but were painted instead. Condition of both overall is excellent with a few very tiny spots of flaking on one Di alone.

This unidentified Tech 5 has ribbon bars displaying: Purple Heart, American Campaign, WWII Victory, Good Conduct, EAME (3 campaign stars), Croix de Guerre. These are pin back bars; 2 of the ribbon bars are covered in plastic coating (GC and EAME).  The Combat Infantryman’s Badge us STERLING hallmarked. Silver strips on blue cotton twill chevrons, what appears to be English made bullion overseas bars, and a low flying service stripe sewn very low on the cuff. The French fourragere is draped from the right shoulder, and correct for all serving in the 1st Infantry Division.  Brass collar insignia and the Ruptured Duck complete this uniform. Just a few tiny moth holes

Unfortunately, the 745th history does not list recipients of the Purple Heart or the French Croix de Guerre.  Only three men received the Croix de Guerre during WWII, and only one enlisted man SSgt. Earl R. Jacobson, who was one of the original members of the unit, in Company B, as a Tech 4.

Finally, completing what is in this lot is a service visor, with black visor and chinstrap. Some wrinkling to the chinstrap leather; the wool is excellent, and the interior show some wear but all together and fine.  Size label reads “6 3/4.”

This came from an excellent source, and I think there is no doubting the coat for being 745th/ 1st ID. All the sewn on insignia is right, as well as the dui’s and collar brass. The fourragere  has light fading and does match condition of the coat and patches  Could this coat be an earlier coat belonging to SSgt Earl R. Jabobson?   Further research has to be made down the road.

Overall a great historically significant unit with a fantastic combat record in the ETO.






Additional information

Weight 4 lbs