Wednesday, March 11, 2015


QLVNCH issue "VN" Leather Holster, RVNHS Collection.
                   A variety of leather equipment was utilized by personnel in all branches of The Republic of Vietnam military. A soldier acquired this equipment essentially in two ways. It was either issued to the soldier or acquired at the soldier`s own expense, "private purchase." For the most part, leather holsters produced in the republic were unmarked. United States military holsters often bore a "US" embossed on the leather, and as a portion of the equipment issued to soldiers in the republic was sometimes United States surplus, many soldiers carried leather holsters with an embossed "US."          
         There is one pattern of holster known that was made with an embossed "VN." It was made for a .45 caliber type sidearm, and appeared in a brown/natural leather color, unlike other leather holsters which were usually black. Bearing a "VN," these were obviously produced for soldiers of The Republic of Vietnam. However, the exact details as to where these were  produced, and how widely they were issued is not known. Evidence shows them being for sale by military tailors in Vietnam, but these shops invariably only sold these, and did not produce them. These holsters also have a degree of uniformity in design and material quality. This contrasts with holsters made in Vietnam during the time, which often varied greatly. For this reason, it remains to be known whether these holsters were produced in Vietnam or were made in another country by contract. An example of the latter would be the canteens and flak jackets bearing QLVNCH markings, which were produced in other countries (such as South Korea) under contract for and issued to the QLVNCH.

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