US Navy Mark V Diving Helmet - A. Schrader's Son 1918 - Serial #400
Here is your opportunity to own an early World War One US Navy Mark V diving helmet! This helmet was found by Nation's Attic in Little Rock, Arkansas where it has been kept by a family for many decades. Family lore has it that the helmet was brought back by a Navy veteran and then used commercially before "retiring" in Arkansas. While the location it was found is unlikely, this unique Mark V also features some unlikely characteristics as well!
This helmet offers the special opportunity to own a very early example plus a notable serial number of the famed Mark V at a fraction of the price. The helmets breastplate was made by the A. Schrader's Son Company on September 3rd, 1918. The helmet is serial #400, meaning this is the 400th Mark V ever made by Schrader. While undoubtedly together for many decades, the bonnet was made by A.J. Morse Company around 1918, serial #2743. It's unlikely two rare WW1 Mark V helmet halves were put together after WW2. The helmets four brails feature A.J. Morse serial numbers from the WW1 time period. The forth brail does not have a number on it. It's our assumption this helmet was part of a group that was mixed up, likely while in use by a commercial dive company well after WW1.
Looking at the helmet from the front this Mark V features the early WW1 era eight pointed exhaust wheel. These were only used during the initial production years (1916-1918) and typically were replaced. All the glass is present and corresponding window guards. The old spitcock level has been shortened slightly. Three small patches made with screw heads are evident on the divers left side and one near the communications cup of the bonnet. The communications elbow has been removed and patched with a commercial style fitting installed. A 1945 dated whip is still attached to a non-return valve which is attached to the original air fitting elbow. An old dumbbell safety latch is present on the back. The breastplate has all 12 correct wing nuts. On the front is a thick piece of copper wire banded together to the breastplate eyelets. The twelve wing nut studs are stainless steel replacements. Inside the bonnet the original air vents are present. An early two piece style telephone set-up is still intact inside the bonnet as well!
Without a doubt this helmet has seen a lot of hard work and adventures over the past 100+ years. It wears the slight dents, scrapes and modifications synonymous with a true workhorse diving helmet. If you have always wanted a WWI Mark V but didn't want to pay five figures for one, then here is your chance! Display stand sold separately.