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New to the site: Question War Rifle I Recieved.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Twin Digger, Mar 3, 2009.

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  1. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    Hello everyone! I'm very new to this site. I'm MDer and I have been Digging most of my life. Just a short history on what I have been given.

    My Father Passed on and before he did he gave me a Japanese Rifle. I have been doing some searching to indentify it and have narrowed it down to a 38 Long Rifle. Series #2 Kokura. But it looks like the Marking has some added etching's? and the stock is different from all of the 38's I have been viewing online?? Plus I have not seen a good shoulder strape yet like I have.

    My father gave it to me with little information to pass on before he passed on. it was sudden so I have no try history except it was taken from a dead soldier killed in action. Now it could be WWII or the Korean War. But I'm left with a puzzle here so I am Asking for help in this. jtrt4l.jpg

    Thank you:)
     
  2. Robert

    Robert Moderator Staff Member

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    You most likely have a Type 38 Arisaka. The Mum has been struck off, though not very well, as was required at the end of WW II. It was done as to not offend the emperor. Without seeing the entire stock it is tough to tell how different it is, though I would venture a guess that it may have been sporterized by someone else.
     
  3. jim in Anchorage

    jim in Anchorage Member

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    If your talking about what I think you are,the symbol [I can't remember the name of it starts with a c,means flower or something] was intentionally marred when the gun was surrendered. This was done to show it no longer belonged to the emperor. Almost all Jap WWII rifles show this. It was therefore unlikely to be a battlefield pickup.
     
  4. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    In 2007 I was talking to on of our last CBI veterans: Sammy. Sammy is a leading member of our gun club, and he was in the Navy as a communications guy. His job was to relay messages from the ground commanders to the invasion Command ship. He was sent second wave on Iwo Jima and Okinawa. If you know anything about the survival rate of the early waves, you know he was lucky to survive.

    I mentioned to Sammy that I had seen a Japanese Paratrooper rifle, and that it had its Mum. Sammy said he had never seen a Japanese Paratrooper rifle, and he was glad never to have met a Japanese Paratrooper. He also said, something to the effect “how did that rifle get in without its crest being ground?”.

    So I followed up. Sammy had brought back five Arisaka rifles, in his duffle bag. He verified, that these were picked up by him on the battlefield, next to piles of dead Japanese. So these were not “turn in rifles”, and they had the crests on them.

    However, when Sammy came back through San Diego for discharge, directly off the troop ship, US military authorities lined everyone up, and went through their gear. Sammy said there was a pile of grenades, mortar shells, and mines, that had been confiscated . :what: For those who had rifles, they had to get into a line to have the crest ground off. When I asked Sammy why, he said “we had some sort of agreement with the Japanese”.

    From all the sources I have read, ground crest meant turned in rifle, unground meant captured rifle. But there is a subset of captured rifles which were ground by US authorities after the Surrender of Japan
     
  5. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    here are More Picture's to review. Thanks for the information on the marking. [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    Ok then so are you telling me this is a rifle that made it through when my dad got home and they tried to Etch the symbol off? and it was a poor attempt? Or was this brought in from an underground source? My dad was a very trust worthy guy with no Lie's or false information given on any subject... I even have some old picture's from his service days.. Keep the info coming. It's helping me research alot of things.
     
  7. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    [​IMG] Let's try this. so you can see the stock!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2009
  8. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    Well someone defaced the crest. Just who I don't know. The usual Mum was removed by a grinding wheel.

    If this came out of Korea, maybe a Korean used a punch or chisel on the Mum.

    Power tools were rare in 1950's Korea. Electricity was hard to find.
     
  9. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    can someone explain why the Picture is not showing???
     
  10. jim in Anchorage

    jim in Anchorage Member

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    chrysanthemum. That is the name of the mum. And I have seen intact ones.
     
  11. doubs43

    doubs43 Member

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    My uncle sent half a dozen Type 38 Arisaka rifles back from Okinawa. His unit was tasked with combing the battlefields and picking up any guns, ammo or ordinance they found. He gave me the last one he'd kept along with a bayonet and scabbard. The Mum has been ground off.
     
  12. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    Thanks Jim. So because of the etching's on the mum are so dominate and the mum is showing pretty good? would this make the rifle a WWII relic? or Korean War Relic? I have been getting mixed remarks both on here and in my research. I'm going to take it to a gun shop and get it registered and appraised because I do see what appears to be Blood stains on the sheath. Most of my research has not shown me the right stock on my gun compaired to what the serial number reflects. No ring or beyonet holder, and the stock is original.
     
  13. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    So when people are talking about grounded off. can someone show a picture of it? PLease thanks
     
  14. HoosierQ

    HoosierQ Member

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    Ground off mums are going to be a rough sort of scarred patch there on the receiver...there will be no hint of what was underneath...you just know that's where the Imerial Chrysanthemum had been located. The Japanese troops removed them so as not to dishonor the Emperor and when McArthur took over and ran Japan, he ordered US troops to do same. McArthur left the Emperor (Hirohito) in power to aid in the war-time rebuilding of Japan. A dishonored Emperor was not in our best interest. Hirohito was neither a Hitler-like figure or even Mousselini...he was a figure-head at the whim of the military leadership and had no political power or input.

    I have seen Arisaka's with mums intact. They are not exactly rare but they do add value to these collectables. It would be real shame to mess with a mum-intact Arisaka or even a nice one that had a good grind-off. A good grind-off job is kind of like an arsenal rebuild in terms of value...decreases it without destroying it. A mum intact is sort of like a serial numbers matching western gun in terms of valuing it.
     
  15. Twin Digger

    Twin Digger Member

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    Thanks that was good advise. I do not plan on doing anything with the rifle except making a displace. I served in Japan in 1980-84 in the Air Force following my Dad's request. I have some family history thier... Thanks again
     
  16. elmerfudd

    elmerfudd Member

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    The emperor was more than just a figure head. According to the Meiji constitution he was the commander in chief and he personally signed off and was consulted on most of the important war resolutions. The imperial family was also up to it's neck in military affairs and many of the emperor's brothers, uncles and cousins were officers including generals, admirals and field marshals. He didn't really rule the country by himself, but he was a very influential figure with far more power than say the British monarch.

    After the war we preferred that he be regarded as a figurehead since otherwise he should have been tried for war crimes and we had agreed to keep him on as emperor.
     
  17. elmerfudd

    elmerfudd Member

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    Some mums were ground off, others, like yours, were defaced with a few strokes of a file and others were defaced by stamping over them. I think they pretty much used whatever they had at hand to remove or destroy them and did it in a hurry.
     
  18. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

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    Assuming it has not been modified, Hornady makes 6.5mm ammunition you can use to fire it.

    MacArthur ordered the mums be ground off all captured rifles. He realized how important honor was to the Japanese, and realized treating them with respect was important to long-term peace. That's why he did it. You know what, though? He was right. Their culture could respect being beaten by a worthy opponent. They could not, however, accept debasement. It would have created major problems in the long term had he not understood this.
     
  19. krs

    krs Member

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    The emporer is to Japanese as the Pope is to Catholics or Ted Nugent is to rednecks..
     
  20. doubs43

    doubs43 Member

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    Here is an example of a ground Mum on a Type 38 6.5mm Arisaka rifle that was picked up by my uncle from the Okinawa battlefield after the fighting was over. He was an Infantry Platoon Leader and they were tasked to police up arms, etc.

    Type38ArisakawithGroundMum.jpg
     
  21. Kind of Blued

    Kind of Blued Member

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    The "Question War" sounds like something from Monty Python... :)
     
  22. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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  23. RonE

    RonE Member

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    There were usually two chrysanthemums on the Jap rifles, one on the reciever or barrel as shown and another on the back of the bolt. Most of the rifles that came into the states after the war had the crests (mums) ground off or defaced, some did not. It would be interesting to see the mum on the back of the bolt on your rifle.
     
  24. Dirty Dawg

    Dirty Dawg Member

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    Can't get the image to post either. Sorry.
     
  25. 2RCO

    2RCO Member

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    Many of the vet bringbacks that were picked up during battles were subsequently ground. Also it's pretty common for the stocks to be cut so they could be fit in a GI Dufflebag. Some survived unscathed.
     
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