WWII Paratrooper Uniform Group
Tell me about what your dad did in World War II.
He was a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne.
These items have been in your family, then?
Ever since 1944.
The way to read a World War II uniform is in the insignia. This particular uniform has the oval of the 507th parachute infantry, I believe. Was that his outfit?
He's got his jump wings with one bronze star in there, indicating that he did make a combat jump. His Army good conduct medal, his ETO campaign, his American campaign and World War II victory are on there also. And he was in combat long enough to earn a combat infantryman badge. The 507th was a D-Day unit. They jumped into D-Day. Did he mention if he participated in that at all?
He didn't jump D-Day.
And we see that here too because there's no arrowhead on his medal. That's the device that they put on there for individuals who participated in an invasion. The 507th, a number of them were pulled out of the line, and then they became cadre for this other outfit, which is the 13th Airborne. The 13th Airborne did not make any combat jumps in Europe, but yet, this man did. So at some point, he went back over to another unit. And they ended up jumping in Operation Market Garden in Holland. And we know that he participated in that because he has the orange lanyard that was given to the Airborne outfits that participated in Market Garden. We've got the uniform here, which is his Ike jacket. And then he also brought home his parachutist uniform. That one is in kind of rough condition, frankly. But that's what we like to call good wear, as opposed to "I wore it out planting potatoes after the war" kind of wear. So that's the kind of stuff that doesn't really hurt value to a collector. An identified World War II paratrooper group with his paratrooper jump boots, you're looking at a retail value today in the neighborhood of $3,500 to $4,000.
Oh, cool. All right. I wouldn't have guessed that at all.
Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.
Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.
Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.
Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.
Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.
Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.
Last Tango in Halifax
Enjoy the third season of this award-winning series that celebrates life and love