German helmets captured by just one Division near the end of the war.
The C.E. Daniel Collection
Just prior to WWII, American families sat around their radio sets and listened to the news of war coming out of
Europe, as Germany spread its wings, invading country after country. Americans knew their time would come
to enter into the war, they just didn't know when that time would be. December 7th, 1941, ended the guess work
as to when America would enter into the war. Even before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, men and boys
of all ages were beginning to join the United States military. Some entered for a sense of adventure, while
others volunteered believing they were getting a jump on America's entry into the war and the looming draft that
was sure to come.
Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, men and boys from all over America descended upon their local military
recruiters and volunteered for military service. A vast majority of these men volunteered out of a sense of simple
patriotism. They felt America would need them and they felt the call to come to arms in defense of their beloved
nation. They were students, lawyers, doctors, butchers, plumbers, janitors, taxi drivers and accountants, and all
jobs in between. Regardless of their background or where they were raised, they were all Americans, fighting
for a common cause.
These men and boys would soon find themselves suffering in the heat of North Africa, working shirtless on the
deck of a ship in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, or braving the horrendous hail of fire as they stormed the
beaches at Normandy. Others would find a more solitary war, alone in the cockpit of a fighter plane high over
France or Germany, or bundled in high altitude gear while braving the freezing temperatures as a crewman in
one of America's bombers. On a less glamorous but no less vital side, some would find themselves manning
anti-aircraft guns, cooking meals for other soldiers, driving a truck or filing paperwork. Every job in the military
was important and every job needed to be done to ensure America's war machine was as efficient and
successful as it could be.
Some of these men would leave their mark on history, becoming genuine, celebrated war heroes. Some would
go on to win the Medal of Honor, the Silver Star or the Bronze Star. Some would have movies made of their
experiences, some would become famous politicians and others would have books written about them.
However, the vast majority would bravely and dutifully serve their beloved nation and return to a normal life after
the war, with little recognition for what they had done and what they had sacrificed. In many instances, the
families of these men would never know where they had served, what they had experienced or hear about the
friends these men lost during battle. These stories would remain untold forever.
This is what drives my collection. I enjoy telling the stories of men who's stories would otherwise remain
untold. The average every day aviator, soldier or seaman, who performed their duties with bravery and
distinction, but who's stories and their service would otherwise remain unknown. Along with these stories are
the artifacts they brought back from the war. The small pieces of history that help to fill in gaps and illustrate
where these men had been, what they had done, and in what capacity they served.
I collect WWII items for my permanent collection so that future generations will know about the service of these
brave men. Preserving and maintaining these items allows these men and their experiences to live forever, and
never be forgotten. Small artifacts such as photographs, medals, paperwork, captured items, flags and other
items, each hold a terrific amount of history and a direct link to the soldier who maintained these items following
their military service. To have the honor of preserving and maintaining these items is of the greatest honor. To
preserve and care for these items is a small gesture done out of respect and reverence for each of these
gentleman and their military service to our great nation. It is the very least I could do for all that they have done
for the rest of us as Americans.
The most prized items within my collection are groupings of items; numerous items all related to a specific
soldier. When kept together, a grouping related to one soldier which is maintained and preserved together as a
group, provides a historical road map to the soldier's history and military service. For any substantial grouping I
add to my collection, a page of my website will be dedicated to the honor of that particular soldier and their
"untold story" will finally be told through text and photographs of their items. I am always disheartened to see
groupings of items sold to a military dealer or other unscrupulous type of "collector" who is only interested in
breaking up the items, selling them off one by one for simple profit. When this happens, the story of that soldier
is lost forever to history, with the items destined never again to be reunited. Those are stories which will forever
remain untold and lost.
If you have any items that you are interested in parting with, donating or selling, please feel free to contact me.
As collecting WWII items covers a vast amount of topics, most collectors are specific in what they collect. If the
item you have is not of interest to me or will not fit within my collection, I will be happy to direct you to a collector
who is dedicated to preserving that specific type of item. My pledge is to always provide an honest appraisal of
your item and make a fair offer for the item. My interest in collecting is based purely on the historical aspect of
these items, and is not driven for resale or value. If you have taken the time to read this, thank you. Please help
me to continue to tell the untold stories of the Greatest Generation.
|Although I am always looking for WWII items of all kinds to add to my permanent collection, I am specifically looking for some of the
I am currently restoring several pre-WWII and WWII era
instrument panels for static display. I am searching for WWII
instrument panel gauges of various types including B-16
compasses, C-12 altimeters, turn/bank indicators, airspeed
indicators (especially those marked 0-260), and any other
WWII instrument panel gauges.
I am also interested in "groupings" of items which are all related together to a
specific soldier or airman. These groupings could include paperwork, photographs,
insignia, medals, headgear, etc. For any groupings I obtain where enough of a story
can emerge, I will create a page dedicated to that specific soldier, so that his
military service can be commemorated and seen by others. If you have a grouping of
items related to one specific soldier or airman, please feel free to contact me and help
me to preserve these items for future generations to learn from and enjoy.
To date, items from my collection have been featured in photographs in college
text books, World War Two magazine, periodicals all throughout the United States
and Europe and even on a board game. I hope to expand and begin sharing items
within my collection with students of all ages to ensure our Greatest Generation is
|WWII Items Wanted By private collector in Southern
California (South Bay)!!!
I am very interested in obtaining additional items (photographs, letters, paperwork, uniforms,
medals, etc) relating to any of the featured pilots/airmen found on my website. In some instances,
items from the groupings of some of these men and women were sold off before I could acquire the
items and keep them together. If anyone out there has items related to any of the men and women
featured on my website, I would be very interested in hearing from you.
I am currently seeking pre-WWII and WWII era United States Army Air Corps flags, guidons and
banners for my private, permanent collection. (See below for an example.)
photograph below. The paddles do not have to be in mint condition, but in fair condition for display.