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    Description

    Normandy Assault Craft Utah Beach - USS LCI(L)-326.

    USS LCI(L)-326 was commissioned in February 1943 and assigned to the landings in North Africa. She was a Landing Craft Infantry, one of over 900 purpose-built "Elsie Items," that could land up to 200 fully equipped infantry, traveling from rear bases directly to a beachhead, The LCI was the largest beach-dedicated, infantry landing craft, smaller than the Landing Ship Infantry (LSI), but larger than a Higgins boat. The 326 had a U.S. Coast Guard crew.

    The ensign of the 326 is a US Navy Size 9 (3.52' x 6.69') bunting 48-star, double appliqué flag with sewn stripes and finished with a canvas header with four evenly spaced grommets. It is marked on the upper obverse hoist: "3.53 x 6.69 VALLEY FORGE FLAG CO." and, on the reverse upper hoist, "USNS LSI 326".

    The LCI(L) 326 convoyed across the Atlantic for Operation Torch in 1943. She landed troops in Tunisia and then again in Sicily and again in Italy at Salerno before transiting to England to train for Operation Neptune, the maritime component of Operation Overlord, the landings in Normandy. She was assigned to Force U, Flotilla 10 to deliver Texans from the 359th Infantry of the 90th Division's "Tough Hombres" to Utah Beach. Her skipper, LT Samuel W. Allison, USCGR, successfully landed on D-Day and then, realizing that a command & control craft was urgently needed, he volunteered for this duty and in the face of the chaos of the landing beach, concentrated shell fire and the constant threat of exploding mines, effectively directed boat traffic throughout the remainder of the initial assault. For this, he was awarded the Silver Star. After Normandy, the LCI(L)-326 returned to the States for a refit before transferring to the Pacific where she participated in the Okinawa Campaign. This ensign is an opportunity for a D-Day, Normandy or WWII naval war collector.

    During WWII the USS LCI(L)-326 was awarded: the Navy Combat Action Ribbon; Coast Guard Unit Commendation; American Campaign Medal; Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal with four campaign stars; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one campaign star; World War II Victory Medal and the Navy Occupation Service Medal with ASIA clasp.

    This ensign is in Good to Fair Condition - used, worn, torn and soiled. The fly edge is starting to tear, but it is otherwise complete.

    This flag was formerly in the collection of Dr. Clarence Rungee.

    For those who did not receive a hard copy of the auction catalog, we present here the introductory comments and history of Dr. Rungee and his remarkable collection. If you scroll further, you will also find various contemporary newspaper articles, as well as a selection of the many letters of donation and transmittal which accompanied the collection and a categorization of the collection.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2019
    14th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 12
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 607

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