Militaria consists of all the military things from the past that are still available today. It also includes items from today's military that will be history tomorrow. Collectors, reenactors, and many others appreciate and enjoy these items as a link to important military people and events of the near or distant past.
Everything that was worn, used, carried, or consumed by a soldier falls into the militaria category today. Items that were given little consideration at the time -- e.g. a C-ration can -- may be quite valuable if you have it now. Photos show beaches and other combat areas littered with such things, sometimes being pushed into the sea to make way for more important cargo. We wish we had them in our collections today.
The advent of on-line auctions has made these gems from the past more available than ever, but not necessarily less expensive to acquire.
Sewing MP armbands at the Quartermaster Corps. Philadelphia Depot, May 1942.
Today in WW II: 22 Jun 1940 Vichy France signs armistice with Germany, staged at Compiegne, in the same railway car where Germany surrendered to the Allies in 1918, at the end of WW I. More ↓
22 Jun 1940 Army sub-committee of the US Ordnance Department's Technical Committee, issued proposed specifications for a new lightweight vehicle that was to become the first military jeep.
22 Jun 1941 Croations form the First Sisak Partisan Brigade, the first anti-fascist resistance group in occupied Europe.
22 Jun 1941 Operation Barbarossa, German invasion of the Soviet Union, ends the 1939 'nonaggression' pact.
22 Jun 1941 As the Germans invade the USSR, Germany's allies declare war on the Soviet Union: Italy, Romania, Hungary and Slovakia.
22 Jun 1941 Britain promises all possible aid to the Soviet Union as the Germans invade.
22 Jun 1944 Soviet forces clear Wehrmacht from Belarus, destroying German Army Group Centre and liberating all Russian territory still held by the Germans from Operation Bagration.
22 Jun 1944 British and Indian troops defeat the Japanese at the Battle of Kohima, India [4 Apr - 22 Jun].
Visit the Olive-Drab.com World War II Timeline for day-by-day events 1939-1945! See also WW2 Books.
Militaria: Tangible Military History
Olive-Drab.com has an extensive set of pages covering many of the most interesting and popular categories of militaria, primarily from the American military. These sections of Olive-Drab.com will provide crucial information and photos to help evaluate the authenticity and history of all types of militaria.
Here is a directory of those pages. Many of these links are the main page of large sections. See the Olive-Drab.com Site Directory for a more complete list of the pages.
Three female Marines, in dress blue uniforms, raise the morning colors, Marine Corps Base, Quantico, VA, 7 May 1969.
Militaria suppliers and dealers are available by searching the Olive-Drab.com Military Supplier database. Use the quick index at the bottom of any page or the Search Page.
If the item you are buying or selling is heavy or bulky, uShip.com has an eBay-like marketplace for matching shippers to your need to move your auction freight or other items. Big savings. Click on the banner to check it out:
Recommended Books about WW II Militaria
Find More Information on the Internet
There are many fine websites that have additional information on this
topic, too many to list here and too many to keep up with as they come and go.
Use this Google web search form to get an up to date report of what's out there.
For good results, try entering this: militaria. Then click the Search button.