1940s Albert Richard Horsehide bomber jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281606438407
This vintage jacket was made in the late 1940s by Fried-Ostermann under their Albert Richard Sportswear label. It is made of brown leather, which, though not labeled on the jacket as such, is called out in advertisements for this model as “Superior horsehide”. The jacket has a mouton collar, called “beavertex” by Albert Richard ads, handwarmer pockets and a zipped breast pocket. The main zipper is a Talon of mid 1940s manufacture, with a square cornered slider and Talon marked U shaped stopbox.
Chest (pit to pit): 20-1/2″ (doubled = 42″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 23-1/2″
Length (Base of collar to hem): 23-1/2″

A bit on the history of Albert Richard:
Fried-Ostermann was founded c.1902 as a glove manufacturer. They bought out their competitor, Price Gloves, and relocated production of that company’s products to their original factory, located at 617-645 Reed Street, Milwaukee, WI. By 1915, the company had gained a partner, and was known as the Fried, Ostermann, Meyer Co, but that looks to only have lasted until 1917. As the company grew, they relocated to 1645 S. 2nd Street, Milwaukee, WI. Fried-Ostermann diversified out of gloves and into outerwear in the late 1920s with the formation of a new division of the company, called Albert Richard. The leather jackets, mackinaws, overcoats and sportswear produced by Albert Richard would soon come to eclipse the glove-making side of the company. Pre-war advertising stressed health and sports, with endorsements from college football players. These ads also talk about bringing items of clothing which were previously thought of as workwear, like mackinaws and leather jackets, into the realm of ordinary streetwear, citing their comfort and durability. During WWII, the Albert Richard factory made A-2 (contract AC 23383), M-422A (contract 1406A), M444A and M445A flight jackets under the name of their parent company, Fried-Ostermann. They advertised leather jackets, overcoats and sportswear heavily during WWII, giving their jackets model names like the “Spitfire” and the “Meteor”. During the war, the company gave away wall-sized posters showing a range of american military airplanes. 850 workers were employed by Albert Richard in 1946, with plans to hire another 400. The company was one of the first to use fiberglass insulation in coats, a technology borrowed from b-29 bombers. Sheepskin collared “storm coats” became a signature model after the war. President of Fried-Ostermann, Richard Fried, sold their Albert Richard Division to the Drybak corporation of Binghampton, NY in late 1952. Drybak, a maker of canvas hunting clothing was looking to diversify their line. In the deal, they got the licensing, branding, patterns, dealership network, but other than the Vice President and designer for Albert Richard, all of the employees and equipment stayed at the plant in Milwaukee. Fried-Osterman re-focused the attention of their plant on the production of gloves, and on producing leather jackets under house labels for mail order and department stores. Starting in 1953, under Drybak’s ownership, Albert Richard clothing was once again produced, this time under contract at a factory in New Jersey, which Drybak declined to name. The plan at that time was to have production moved to New York by 1954. Labels were changed in this period to read “Albert Richard by Drybak”. In 1955, Drybak acquired the Martin Mfg. Co. in Martin, TN. They closed their Binghamton operations in that same year and relocated their hunting clothing manufacturing and their Albert Richard division to the Tennessee plant to take advantage of the lower labor costs in the south.

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Civilian B-15 flight jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281574337047
This vintage jacket was made in the late 1940s-1950s. It is modeled on the B-15 flight jacket, but was made for the Civilian market. In the years following WWII, civilian market flight jackets, sold under their military designations (ex. A-2, B-15) were popular pieces of casual outerwear and were sold by most of the leading stores. Though many were sold, because of their casual nature, many received heavy wear and they are now rare. The jacket is made of green cotton twill with a brown mouton collar. It has a crown zipper with two-way teeth developed during the war. It has snap handwarmer pockets, knit cuffs and waistband and two snapped internal pockets. The jacket has a quilted lining and a mouton faced throat latch.

Chest (pit to pit): 27″(doubled = 54″)
Waist: 26″ (doubled = 52″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 21″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 26″
Length (Base of collar to hem): 25″

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Ralph Lauren Reproduction suede leather A-1 jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271688862141
This jacket, made by Ralph Lauren under the Polo label, draws heavy design influence from the leather “windbreaker” jackets of the 1920s which evolved into the A-1 flight jacket. Many of these early jackets were made of lightweight leathers, suede or capeskin. Separable bottom zippers were not invented until 1927, and didn’t go into production until early 1930, so jackets of the 1920s had button fronts. In this period, knit collars, cuffs and waistbands were popular. These jackets were originally marketed toward the sporting market: golfers, hunters, outdoorsmen. This short style would come to be adopted by civilian aviators, as it was far less clumsy than the full length coats of the WWI period.

The jacket is made of brown suede. It has a full wool tartan lining.

Tagged size: M (always go by measurements)
Chest (pit to pit): 26″ (doubled = 52″)
Waistband: 21″ (doubled = 42″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 23″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of cuff): 25-1/2″
Length (base of collar to end of waistband): 27″

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WWII German theatre made USAAF A-2 leather flight jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281514834920
This vintage A-2 leather flight jacket was made in the 1940s, either at the end of the war or during occupation. A-2s ceased to be produced in 1943, but remained popular with servicemen. Theatre made examples like this are rare, but were commissioned by Americans who wanted a jacket that was no longer available through official channels. It is made to the A-2 pattern, with a shirt style collar secured by snaps, flapped, snapped patch pockets, knit cuffs and collar, and a zipper front with a wind flap. The jacket has a one piece back and two piece sleeves. The jacket has war-time German hardware, with a Zipp main zipper (with the back marked DRP, which stands for Deutschers ReichsPatent, and points to a 1945 or before dating of manufacture of the zipper). All the snaps are PRYM brand. The jacket is lined with a typically German plaid, which has been heavily worn and has been patched.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 26″
Length (base of collar to end of waistband): 24″

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A guide to dating Talon Zippers

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1970s Brill G-1 leather flight jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281472908007
This vintage jacket was made by Brill Bros under the Mil-J-7823E G-1 contract. It is made of brown goatskin leather, with a brown mouton collar and knit cuffs. The wind flap is stamped USN and the jacket does up with a Scovill zip.

Chest (pit to pit): 22″
Shoulder to shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 25″
Length (base of collar to hem): 25″

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G-1 Leather Flight Jacket AOPA

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281384893346
This vintage leather jacket is a USN G-1 flight jacket. It has a half-belt, bi-swing back, knit cuffs and waistband, button closure patch pockets with a pencil slot and a button throat latch on the underside of the collar. There is a patch for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association on the chest, attached by pinbacks rather than stitching.

Chest (pit to pit): 21″ (doubled = 42″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of knit): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to end of waistband): 24″

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Late 1940s mouton collar bomber jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281379406025
This vintage leather jacket was made in the late 1940s. It is made of brown leather with a brown mouton collar. It has slash handwarmer pockets and a zip chest pocket. The cuffs and waistband are knit wool. The chest zipper is an early style Talon and the main zipper is a spring loaded two-way post war Crown.

Chest (pit to pit): 21″ (doubled = 42″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 18-1/2″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to end of knit waistband): 24″

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Battered A-2

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281204190634
This vintage A-2 leather flight jacket was made during the 1940s. It has a spring-loaded zipper introduced in 1943 by Crown. This type, with “two-way” teeth, was designed exclusively for the military with larger versions finding their way onto the turrets of bombers to keep the wind out. Featuring this late-war military zipper, the jacket may have been private purchase. Snaps are of a ball style, and were made by Rau of Providence, Rhode Island, and have exposed backs. Pockets have nicely scalloped flaps, with the size tag stitched on the inside. The collar is long and pointed, and is attached directly to the body of the jacket The leather jacket hanger is off-center, stitched with “X” style stitching. The jacket has a khaki liner, which is in very good shape. Unfortunately, the original tag is long since missing.

Chest (pit to pit): 21″
Shoulder to shoulder: 17″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of knit cuff): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to end of knit cuff): 23″

Also see: https://vintagehaberdashers.com/2013/03/08/original-a2-leather-jacket/

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Gibson and Barnes A-2

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281195687466
This is an older Gibson & Barnes reproduction of a WWII Army Air Corps A-2 flight jacket. It is made of heavy russet brown leather, with dark brown knits. The pockets are authentic patch style, not the hand-warmer style they are currently using. The jacket has a one piece back. The jacket has a Scovill Gripper Zipper and Scovill snaps. The tag is long since missing, but the cut, detailing, hardware, and liner color and material identify it as an older G&B.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to Shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of knit cuff): 25″
Length (to end of knit waistband): 24″

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