Welcome to the Axis Arms WWII Bringback Collection. Here you will find a collection of WWII bringback items with provenance.
All of the items in this section are for display only. They have either previously been sold or in the Axis Arms museum and are therefore not for sale. I will, from time to time, add items to this page for display and reference.
If you have a WWII bringback item with provenance that you would like to sell, please contact us.
During WWII, many war souvenirs were brought back to the United States by returning veterans. Many of these items were shipped home in crates, stuffed in sea bags, or simply carried back by the returning veteran.
It was common knowledge in the European Theater of Operations that a US solder would take anything that wasn’t bolted to the floor and if it was bolted to the floor, he would unbolt it!
Over the years, many of these WWII bringback items have had their story lost to time. As WWII veterans die at an increasing rate every year, their stories sadly die with them.
The preservation of these WWII bringback items with provenance help us to research who brought the items back, where the item came from, and how they brought it back. The information contained on a simple piece of paper or wood crate can help historians research WWII artifacts.
Aside from weapons such as firearms, swords, bayonets, and ordnance; you will also find many other items in this section that were brought back by returning veterans. These items might included things you would never think a soldier to send home. Scrap metals, silk, and other precious commodities that were all strictly rationed in the US were sent back to families in need.
In the case of weapons, all ordnance displayed in this section has been made inert and is for educational and display purpose only. No explosives or powder are present in any of the grenades, bombs, or mortar rounds. They cannot under any circumstances be made dangerous and have been demilled per US regulations.
Seabee Ira Merritt WWII Bringback Knee Mortar Round and Shipping Tube
This Japanese Type 89 knee mortar round was shipped home by Ira Merritt in 1943. There is a great chance that this knee mortar round came off of Guadalcanal. It is dated around the time that Ira’s unit was stationed there.
This particular knee mortar round is unique in that it is accompanied by the original bamboo shipping tube as well as two copies of the original capture paper. The capture paper is signed in ink by Ira’s commander W.W. Suddert.
Ira was attached to the 61st Naval Construction Battalion on Guadalcanal. A photo of him in his unit can be found below. Here is a link to more information on the 61st Naval Construction Battalion. https://www.history.navy.mil/…/61st%20NCB%201942-1944.pdf