World War II Era US Air Forces Type A-1 Heavy Flight Boots by Bristolite

WWII era United States army Air Forces uniform A-1 shearling flight boots. The boots shown here are 10″ tall size XS and may actually be women’s boots.  Other pairs I’ve seen were larger and the tongue tag read Mens instead of Wos. Not a war historian, but can’t imagine too many ladies donned these boots in those days. Crown Zippers with ankle and upper belts and buckles for added fit. Shearling lining runs throughout the uppers except for the sole. In each of these boots are two thick wool insoles as well as a wool foot bed. Don’t know if the added soles were standard issue or later additions by the wearer to increase warmth and or fit.

Bits of the US Air Forces logo still visible on the outside of the uppers, but most of the dark tanning has come off.  These boots are of a similar era to the Type A-2 jacket seen on my blog, but a little later.  The U.S. Army Air Forces became the U.S. Air Forces in 1947.
Tag reads:

OVERSHOE, FLYING, HEAVY, TYPE A-1
SPECIFICATION MIL-0-6540
SIZE………Wos XS 5-6 1/2
STOCK No. AF-8305
BRISTOLITE
U.S. PROPERTY

Vintage Military Rucksack Backpack

Not quite sure about the origins of this pack, the colors would suggest to me German military, but the only distinguishable marking printed on the inside of the top flap reads “Decize” which is a town in France. The pack is made of heavy-weight Grey canvas with black leather trimmings and fittings.

The pack itself is very wide at 19 inches across the back, expandable by a few more inches via lace up expansions on the back sides. Two large cargo pockets on the sides and one front pocket all close via leather buckles. A draw string closes the top underneath a double buckle top flap. Finally another long leather belt runs from the top and buckles to the solid leather bottom.

Shoulder straps secure a metal external frame. The straps are adjustable by multiple buckles which create tension on a lower cross strap at the hips which keeps the frame from resting directly on the back. About a half inch of felted wool makes up the shoulder strap padding. One of the straps is breakable, a technique common to military packs allowing troops to slip out of them while in the prone position.