A WWII USAAF 8th Air Force P-47 crew A-2 flight jacket and crusher cap belonging to Lt. Harold Gallagher (62nd Fighter Squadron, 56th Fighter Group - “Zemke’s Wolf Pack”). This is a Perry Sportswear-made brown leather, issue jacket with russet-brown elastique hem and cuffs. The jacket has a single, original Conmar front zipper with collar snaps, and a hook and eye fastener at the throat, and an emergency whistle is attached to the hook fastener. Perry Sportswear was located in Newburgh, NY, and the jacket has an intact sewn-in label with small size 40 sub-label, and clear “AN” inspection stamp just below. The exterior leather is still supple, with minor wear and flaking along the edge seams, collar, and on the forearms and shoulders of the sleeves. The cuffs and hem have almost no fraying, and are in fine condition. The original inventory label is still present in the left side pocket and lists serial #7312. The jacket has a large leather squadron patch on the left breast (the Bulldog Boxer emblem of the 62nd Fighter Squadron). The interior lining of the jacket is in good shape, but does exhibit quite a few tears at the collar and hanging loop. Also included is Gallagher’s “Flighter” brand crusher cap by Bancroft. The cap has a worsted olive drab crown with single spot of insect damage on the front, slightly tarnished officer’s pattern eagle on the front, and soft brown leather peak and strap in fine condition. The interior of the cap has a lightly flaked comfort band, with crinkled, but intact, sweat shield with fully legible Bancroft label.
A large binder of photographs also accompanies the grouping with numerous modern prints of photos of Gallagher and his squadron-mates (most of whom did not survive the war, going by the notes written on the back), and inflight photos of the “Razorback” P-47s of the squadron. The 62nd was part of the 8th Air Force’s 56th Fighter Group, nicknamed “Zemke’s Wolf Pack” after the group’s commanding officer, Col. Hubert “Hub” Zemke, and flew P-47 Thunderbolts escorting bombers over occupied Europe, as well as in the fighter-bomber role. The squadron was deactivated in October of 1945, but was reactivated for the Cold War before its second deactivation in 1970. The reorganized squadron is today based at Luke AFB, and flies the F-35 Lightning II. This is a splendid piece of WW2 history, with ties to an historic fighter squadron.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.