HomeReproductionsReview: reproduction paratrooper leg bag

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Review: reproduction paratrooper leg bag — 5 Comments

  1. The British-made leg bag was used in TRAINING by the SCOUT Platoon (pathfinders) of the 2nd Bn./509th PIR at the U.S. Fifth Army Airborne Training Center, Camp Kunkle, Oujda, French Morocco, March-June 1943.

    In May-June 1943 (same location) the very first group of PATHFINDERS of the 82nd Airborne Division used the leg bag, also in TRAINING.

    The leg bags were used to carry the Eureka Mark II set and various lights (Krypton, etc.) into combat.

    When the pathfinder training was canceled, the 82nd Airborne disbanding (initially) its pathfinders. Hence, no pathfinders or leg bags were used during Operation Husky (Sicily, July 1943). The 2/509th was also not committed in Sicily.

    However, after the 82nd Airborne reached Trapani, Sicily during the last week of July 1943, the All-American's pathfinders got a new lease on life.

    Between late July and mid Sep. the pathfinders of the 82nd and the scouts of the 2/509th DID TRAIN with the British leg bags in Sicily and Tunisia.

    On the night of Sep. 13-14, 1943, the pathfinders of the 504th PIR used leg bags during the emergency rescue jump south of Paestum, Salerno beachhead, Italy.
    This was the first American use of the British leg bag in combat, albeit within friendly lines.

    The following night, the 505th PIR pathfinders did the same at the same locotion.

    Simultaneously with the 505th's drop, one pathfinder stick of the 2/509th jumped near Avellino, Italy, deep behind the German lines.

    Didn't mean to write a mini "thesis" but here it is anyway…

  2. Charles Eldon Clark was 101st Screaming Eagles Geronimo Company.He was sewing. parachutes in France. He was mad he didn’t get to go to the Front .He said the packs hurt your knees when you hit the ground .So he said I developed the Legbag .He said Uncle S Sam gave me 500.00 for the idea .

    • As the legbag was already in use before the 101st airborne came to Britain. It will not be this particular legbag he invented/made. The first recorded development of the legbag is by British Major Lander of the 21st Indenpendant parachute company (pathfinders) He got the idea when he saw British troops, during a transfer at a railway station, putting their kitbags on one of their feet and “walking” towards the arrived train. he took a regular, (smaller) kitbag to a tailor and asked it to be altered to his specifications. Other British paratroop units borrowed /copied some of of the first samples and it seems that other units paraleel had got similar ideas. A few years ago a ww2 instruction colour movie surfaced were British pathfinders demonstrate the use of this (early) kitbag and the use of the (early) kitbag. When the first American paratroop units arrived at Britain ideas , and several kitbags exchanged. After Normandy a Us Master sergeant Joseph Lanci maintenace section 501 Pir developed a US version used during Market-Garden. Information from the book 21st independant parachute company, and Special forces equiptment British parachute by Jean -Louis Perquin

      • Hello Jean-Louis, thank you for sharing this. We don’t know much about these leg bags, how they came about, and the different versions that existed. I am still glad I bought mine when they were still made. Other copies I have seen don’t come close. And I am pretty sure I once saw this same replica being offered for sale as an original. The only difference I could make out from the photos were some stampings on the inside. Regards, Wouter

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